DOH-FWs (as in, “doe-F-W’s”, is a suggested term for OFWs in Qatar) will be a two-part series that I will write about Doha (DOH) Filipino Workers (FWs) featuring their penchant for travelling. It doesn’t, however, exclude Pinoys working in other parts of Qatar but only a term suggested to make it unique and personalized for this blog only.
The first part of this blog series showed our DOH-FW’s fancy for travel. For different reasons and seasons, travelers experience a refreshing feeling as well as enchantment for having their dream coming to life. Click here to know some of the jobs that let you travel for free.
In this segment, allow me to show a personal review of DOH-FW’s travel behaviors and note that our samples are taken in the context of what I perceive on social media. Though it may not necessarily reflect a general sentiment, using a basic sampling technique can, at least, still give basis to my conclusions.
(France, Italy, Amsterdam, Greece, United Kingdom)
Europe seems to be the top choice destination of many DOH-FW’s. Some of the notable reasons are attributed to the proximity of Doha to Europe (about 7-hour non-stop flight to France or Italy) as compared to taking it from Manila. The smooth processing of Schengen Visa in Doha and the availability of good packages for Europe Tours contributed to making it an attractive destination with the Mediterranean cities of France and Italy as all-time favorites.
MIDDLE EAST and WESTERN ASIA
(UAE, Georgia, Jordan and Turkey)
With only a few minutes flight from Hamad International Airport, these countries in the Middle East and Western Asia are another favorite weekend destinations of many DOH-FW’s. Who can resist Dubai’s enticing attractions and stunning man-made architectures? Who would not want to see budget-friendly Georgia and its country-side feel (even a snow if you’re lucky to visit during winter)? Wouldn’t you want to go back in time and be fascinated by the history of the region while visiting Jordan and Turkey?
Reasonable prices of airfare and affordable living expenses are reasons why it’s easier for some DOH-FW’s to book a quick weekend trip to these places.
THE UNITED STATES
It’s not surprising to see many DOH-FW’s travelling to the US from Qatar. Most of them would be visiting families and relatives and only a handful would go for personal tours. The magnificent tour of the Statue of Liberty, the Golden Gate Bridge, the Washington DC, and the Time Square in Manhattan are some of the popular itineraries… spots we only get to see on silver screen.
For some, visa restrictions, cost of living and airfares could be the reasons why their American dream is still a bit elusive. But our DOH-FW’s will definitely not take it out from their bucket list and could be saving those earlier trips to secure visa approvals later on.
(Japan, Hongkong, South Korea)
Being close to our culture as Filipinos, these countries in East Asia captured the hearts of many travelers with Japan, Hongkong and South Korea as their top destination of choice. While having their vacation in the Philippines, most DOH-FWs would prefer to go out to these countries instead of getting stuck in the traffic of Manila. Also, the high cost of airfare to some tourist attractions in the Philippines would usually turn off our DOH-FWs and consider alternative tours overseas.
The Japanese ramen and sushi, the no-visa policy of HK as well as Disneyland, the K-pop fever and the sites of popular Korean novela were some of the reasons why many Pinoys love to visit these countries.
Canada, Australia and New Zealand are also dream destinations to many. Young couples as well as single professionals consider Maldives, Bali and Brazil as popular beach getaways. On the other hand, Singapore and Thailand appeals to many shopping-savvy travelers.
Though many would pick Europe as their top travel destination, would want to experience Korea personally, or would love to swim in Maldives before it sinks (as they say), I still believe that nothing beats the call of our 7,107 islands!
Summer wouldn’t be complete without dipping our feet at the clear white sand beaches of Boracay, Palawan, Davao and many more. The beat of the drums and the festivals of Cebu, Iloilo and Baguio will surely make you move to the groove. The longest Christmas season in the world can only be found in the Philippines which starts when “ber” months begin and ends until the malls decides to put down their Christmas Trees and change it to their Valentine decors. Name it, Filipinos will always have a special way to spell F-U-N.
WHEN IN PINAS. Get that Mediterranean-feel when you visit the Venice Grand Canal at the Bonifacio Global City and head out to the different Italian and French restos available at High Street or Aura. If you are looking for that authentic Japanese or Korean food, just look around Ayala and Ortigas or visit any malls and it will give you an array of Sushi Restaurants and Shabu-Shabu house. And while Disneyland could be the happiest place on earth for others, our distinct style and taste for adventure can give an equally fun-filled trip. Try Zoobic Safari in Zambales, Sand Box in Pampanga, some of the longest ziplines, exciting whitewater rafting, stunning mountain hiking sites, surfing sites and more. We didn’t say #itsmorefuninthePhilippines for nothing, right?
Choosing a travel destination is definitely exciting. But also consider your wallet, read more articles and explore possible ways to save. Prepare ahead, as most of the savings comes from booking hotels and tickets earlier on. Travel in style and with purpose, not only to take photos and come home tired. Click here for some of the practical travel tips I’ve been reading so far:
Special thanks to all my friends for allowing me to use their photos during my random selection (credits are mentioned when photos are clicked). I really appreciate your kind support to this blog.
I'm a Christian, a husband and a father, a Filipino expat in Qatar, entrepreneur, aspiring blogger, freelance real estate consultant, lover of anything KOREAN, an adventurer.