Finding work abroad is easier than you realize. With the increasing number of in-demand jobs in factory work, sales and accounting, nursing, entertainment, engineering, and tech, getting a job abroad is only a matter of being handed the right information, diligently doing your research, and finding the job that best suits you.
For Filipinos, the top destinations include the United States (3.4 million Filipino residents), Saudi Arabia (1.5 million OFWs), Canada (842,651 Filipinos), and the United Arab Emirates (679,819 Filipinos). Runners-up include Malaysia, Australia, Qatar, Japan, the United Kingdom, and Kuwait.
If it’s your first time looking for a job a broad, it might be best to know not only the go-to countries of OFWs but also the places around the world that are, in fact, beneficial to Filipinos. A more experienced overseas Filipino worker or OFW will tell you that the major factors to consider in choosing a place to work abroad are: safety, career advancement opportunities, quality of life, and how open a place’s culture is to integration and future retirement.
Here we list down the best places around the world that a Filipino could work in and perhaps later call a home:
Located near the Philippines, Singapore is a favorable place for OFWs to work in. According to the 2015 HSBC Expat Explorer report, this South East Asian country provides a viable career progress with its stable economy. Expats love Singapore for its safety, high wages, and job opportunities. It is overall ranked as the best place to live and work as an expat.
This 2015, job openings in Singapore include IT and software engineers, office workers, bank staff, accountants, nurses and caregivers. The Philippine Overseas Employment Agency (POEA) reminds Filipinos that the country’s Ministry of Manpower follows a strict direct hiring procedure for foreigners.
2. New Zealand
Among the appealing factors of living abroad is the new life it offers in an unfamiliar but rewarding environment. New Zealand is the best destination for this as it ranks first in the HSBC Expat Explorer report’s Experience League table—an expats’ overall ranking of their entire experience in the country considering lifestyle, easy integration with locals, and finding accommodation.
77% of expats say that their overall quality of life is better since moving to the country. They enjoy the outdoor lifestyle and sporting culture of the country and 57% say they have become more physically active living there.
Four out of five expats in InterNations’ Expat Insider survey emphasized the friendliness of locals to foreign residents, making them feel welcome in Canada. Most expats love the available leisure activities in the country as well as the family-friendly destination it has become creating a good impact on family life and children’s well-being.
A conducive place for start-up Filipino families, Canada is one of the countries that allow permanent residence for foreign workers with a required one-year continuous full-time job experience. Their redesigned Federal Skilled Worker Program recently released a list of eligible jobs that vacancies in labor and caregiving.
Filipinos will easily feel at home in Australia’s great climate, relaxing scenery, abundant leisure activity, and laid-back lifestyle of the good-natured Australians. In InterNations’ Expat Insider survey, four-fifths of expats found it easy to get used to the “Aussie” culture and feel at home in the land down under.
The country has a strong, service-based economy, with mining and agriculture making up a huge share of exports. In the HSBC Expat Explorer report, Australia is the popular choice for expats focused on new experience and for those living abroad for the first time.
5. Saudi Arabia
Expats in the Middle East enjoy the generous employment package. This holds true for Saudi Arabia which overseas workers associate with the financial side of life. The country offers strong contractual benefits, a lower cost of living, and a strong economy.
A top spot for OFWs for years, the job deployment of Filipino new hires and rehires from 291,419 in 2009 to 382,553 in 2013. Based on projections, Saudi will remain a leading OFW destination in the coming years.
6. United Arab Emirates
The UAE provides many economic opportunities—career advancements and generous employment packages—to an expat. Given its thriving economy, salary levels are high. According to the HSBC Expat Explorer survey, expats earn an average of over $124,000 per annum in the UAE, compensating for the relatively higher cost of living, considering accommodation and monthly bills.
There are tons of job opening available for the Filipino expat. Dubai, for instance, offers jobs for customer representatives, baristas, domestic helpers, IT staff, and call center agents.
Qatar has been having a shortage in labor for years, which calls out to Filipino overseas workers easily. The POEA estimates a demand for labor in the country in 2015 to reach over 117,000.
Among the jobs available are for caregivers, CAD operators, laborers in oil and gas, and domestic helpers. Today, Qatar employs 342,442 Filipinos. It is one of the richest countries in its region due to the development of oil and gas fields.
8. Hong Kong
Due to its strong economy and business environment, Hong Kong is an appealing destination for expats. The place projects the best career progression opportunity of any destination. In the HSBC Expat Explorer report, 86 percent of expats stating the place gives a chance to acquire new skills. Despite the estimated 16,000 Filipino domestic helpers now in Hong Kong, there are still job openings for engineers, drivers and chefs.
For those who seek the challenge and adventure that living abroad offers, Taiwan is a destination that fulfills just that. Asia’s “hidden experience capital,” 55 percent of expats who reside there, according to the HSBC Expat Explorer report, are attracted to the lifestyle and culture of the country.
67 percent of these expats love exploring the island’s natural springs, moon festival, and indigenous traditions. 84 percent, meanwhile, feel safe in the country. Taiwan is known to OFWs as a country that hires production operators, machine operators, and factory workers for electrical companies. There are also job vacancies for domestic helpers and caregivers.
10. United Kingdom
With some 220,000 Filipinos residing in the United Kingdom, the country is a top OFW destination. Expats who move to the UK often get to advance their career and experience the rich British culture, according to the HSBC Expat Explorer report. The country is also a popular destination for first-time overseas workers, with the country being likely to feel like home for an expat.