A Filipina lady, just like all the other descendants of Eve feels special when the man she is with gives her a gift but do not be alarmed, you do not have to scrimp the whole year and stick to bread and water because gifts should not be expensive. For a Filipina woman, it is the thought that counts, and not the value of your gift.
Before visiting your girlfriend in the Philippines, you should have already known something about her through your chat sessions, phone conversations, emails, and other ways. You should already have an idea what are her interests and hobbies, what she really likes.
From what you know about her, buy an appropriate date gift. For example, your Filipina girl is a bookworm. You should know by now who her favorite authors are and what type of books she reads. Expect her to be happy when you give her a book by her favorite author.
Flowers and chocolates are all-time favorites, too. Since time immemorial, they had never failed to serve the purpose of making the recipient feel special and loved. The secret is to know her first, and you will know what gift to pick out for her. You will be surprised at how Filipina ladies tend to go sentimental on gifts and may even keep wrappers as souvenirs.
Take note that when you come a courting to your girlfriend’s house, you must again remember that the Filipina lady comes from a family-oriented society and are expected to bring pasalubong (bringing of gifts) to her family. They would appreciate it. Again, you do not have to go overboard but whatever gift you give them would prove that they are in your thoughts and you also consider them as your future family.
Before you leave for the Philippines, it would be helpful if you pick up bottles of fragrance for your Filipina girlfriend’s parents, and they will appreciate this. Gifts from foreign countries are considered highly prized even though they can be bought in the Philippines at a much lesser price. Do not also expect Filipinos to open the gift in front of you. They will often place the gift aside after thanking you, and open this later preferably in private.
Expect your Filipina girl to share whatever she gets with her family. For example, if you give her a box of chocolates, do not expect her to hide under the covers and eat it after everyone is asleep.
The best time to give your gift for your girlfriend could be when at the airport when she picks you up, as pasalubong is customarily given right when you arrive but if it is inconvenient, you can present your gift to her after you have unpacked.
You do not actually have to give gifts, but if you do, its considered a very nice gesture, and you will be seen as a ‘very nice man’ who brought things for all the family.Remember, to court a Filipina is also to court the family!
By Peter Finch
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