Replies: 8 - Last Post: Oct 20, 2013 7:11 AM Last Post By: vincentjustin
Mar 3, 2013 2:15 AM
Malapascua-WARNING!I joined Lonely Planet just to warn people about my experience. I cannot say that other islands in the Philippines are the same as this, or that your experience will be anything like this, but mine was horrible enough to warn others about...take these things into consideration before you decide to come to Malapascua:
--Almost everyone here is trying to scam you and it appears that everyone is in on it. They act like your friends so they can take advantage of you in some way. If you are traveling on a budget, be aware of this please, and expect to pay double for what prices say on the internet. These people are not genuine in any sort of way and are only thinking about money no matter how much you think they like you, although most of the time it's obvious they don't. Motorbike rentals are hourly, not daily, and extremely expensive in my opinion(the same price as a whole day in any other SE asian country). I rented one for an hour and was charged for three because the guy pretended like he didn't know where I was dropping off his bike. This is the mindset of every local I've met, good luck finding a genuine friend here. You'll never hear the same price for ANYTHING more than once.
--Everyone on the island is on drugs, especially the men but not excluding the women. I forget the name of it but there is a drug that the whole island is addicted to, it's not something harmless like weed. You will see them all with extremely bloodshot eyes and not get many smiles from anyone.
--The service is unbelievably slow at every single restaurant I've been to, and you will have to physically go to the bar and ask for everything, they will not under any circumstances come to check on you or even greet you when you arrive most of the time. This ranges from cheap to expensive restaurants, so don't think you're getting better service if you're paying more for your meals.
--If you meet someone named Arca(or he might call himself RC), run! He's known throughout the island for his scamming and drug addiction. The island is very small so chances are he will try to swindle you at some point during your visit. He carries around a brochure for a one-day boat trip to a smaller island and makes you sign you name and give a deposit for "confirmation". He got me for 1000 pesos but that was my fault, I will never under any circumstances give anyone money in advance for anything, no matter how professional they look. The guides I met when I arrived were accomplices to him and I really do get the impression that everyone on the island is in on it...they're all related to each other, and they're all on drugs.
--My girlfriend felt uncomfortable/unsafe around almost every Filipino guy we met.
--You will not, at any point, be left alone. If peace and quiet is what you're looking for, this is not your beach destination. You will be constantly approached for one thing another.
I'm currently writing this still a bit upset about my destination choice, so if you are determined to come here or have come here and had a great time, I respect that, and I hope your experience is the opposite of mine. The water is crystal clear and karaoke was really fun, the disco is really authentic. But I will never, ever, ever, come back here. Sorry for my first LP post to be so negative, and I hope this helps anyone who is considering a trip to Malapascua Island.
Mar 4, 2013 3:04 AM
1You are right. That is your experience.
I have had 4 trips.
These are my experiences.
- Make your boat deals directly with the people on the boat. You cut out the P500 or more for the middle man that way.
- You are how they earn money. There is no industry on Malapascua. So of course you can expect to be offered deals. However, i have never been offered a deal sitting at a table at Maldito watching the world go by. I have never been offered a deal while relaxing at my accommodation on Malapascua. By the way, I do my relaxing on Logon Beach. I like Logon beach because it is a cove and is very pretty to look at. It is not an open beach like Bounty Beach. Maybe it is different on Bounty Beach.
- Most Filipinos on Malapascua are related.
- Most Filipinos on the island are not on drugs.
- My first trip was 2003. They charged by the hour for a motor scooter back then and it was a rip off back then too. You can see the whole island just walking. That is what I am happy to do now
- There are no fast food restaurants on Malapascua. Unless they have just been introduced. So, of course your meal is going to take a long time as they cook it from scratch. You should be happy that you are getting a fresh cooked meal. Not something frozen or pre prepared. By the way, did you dine at Ging Gings, It is my favourite!
Mar 4, 2013 10:21 AM
2rew -did you visit any other place in philippines ,how was your trip there ,if all the people on island were on drugs -no wonder the service was slow or would it make it quicker? He carries around a brochure for a one-day boat trip to a smaller island and makes you sign you name and give a deposit for "confirmation" -how does he make you sign it -hold a gun to your head?
Mar 5, 2013 2:40 AM
3I went to Malapascua in December and would thoroughly disagree with what is written in the original post. Yes, people approach you in the busier areas, but in my opinion we were hassled far less than in Bali or parts of Thailand. If you politely say no then you are left alone.
If you walk for about an hour to the undeveloped side of the island, there are perfect beaches which are almost empty (and no hawkers in sight!). Motorcycle hire is uncessary!
I had a completely different experience in the restaurants. Some service was excellent, some not great, but this is true of any country in the world.
I'm a police officer and I didn't notice the drugs thing at all. But I was switched off and on holiday!!
I was there for a week and didn't come across Arca.
Mar 6, 2013 2:36 PM
4The drug you are talking about is called Shabu, it is crystal meth. (methamphetamines).
Your post describes the attitude of many Filipinos, toward foreigners, in all parts of the country.
Not long ago, someone posted about thefts at one of the resorts. The police didn't do anything but suspected it was the owners daughter filling her pockets.
May 5, 2013 7:55 PM
May 6, 2013 1:03 AM
May 12, 2013 9:43 AM
7Isn't that the island with all those murders of ageing expats as well? In particular those married locally?
Heard they get bumped off one by one from some reliable source on the internet.
It is said that if they run out of expats then they turn on to foreigners with their wives booking boat trips and renting motorbikes by the hour.
You are lucky you got out alive!
I recommend Dumaguete in Negros, much safer there and very friendly folks, they even will cure your Dengue and accommdate you in their brand new anal-retentive unit, real posh and all that for free.
Food is served within seconds, no joke, you can watch the countdown on the microwave. Plus the karaoke is the best, you get to sing a duett with Elvis, now how is that?
Oct 20, 2013 7:11 AM
8I was on Malapascua for 7wks a couple Years ago and I had the most Amazing time,,Everyone I met was super Friendly and was on First Name Terms with what seemed like half the island..I was often invited to Eat and Drink in the shade with the Massage Lady's,,No Moneys asked for or given...I went Several Local Parties and Received nothing but Friendliness...I not sure what Malapascua u went to,,Perhaps it may be more to do with u and the Vibe ur giving off...I'm Going back there this Xmas for a Month,,Can't Wait.
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