Clark Economic Zone in Angeles City, Philippines
Clark Economic Zone in Angeles City, Philippines
Clark Economic Zone in Angeles City, Philippines

Angeles City, Philippines

By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Jul 28, 2021

Summary: With a population of approximately 450,000, Angeles City offers expats and retirees a low cost of living, a tropical climate with highs in the upper 80s to low 90s and Clark Freeport Zone. People living in Angeles City discuss everything from how to find a home to why you need to have health insurance. Tip for newcomers: Pampang Market is the place to go to find good produce.

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Are healthcare and health insurance expensive in Angeles City?

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"There are a lot of health insurance choices on offer and it is highly recommended to go on one of them. To be without cash and medical insurance may become a death warrant for the "Unprepared"," remarked another expat in Angeles City.

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Need health insurance in Philippines? William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.

Is the cost of living in Angeles City high?

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We asked people about the cost of living in Angeles City, they wrote:

"One can live on a tight budget when shopping at local markets, buying local produce. Affordable accommodation can be easily found and a 2 bedroom house can be rented at US 200 dollars a month," explained one expat living in Angeles City.

Residency & Visa Requirements

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"Most passports are given a three month visa on arrival and one can arrange longer stays through the many visa agents found in most hotels," said another expat in Angeles City.

Why do people move to Angeles City?

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When we asked people why foreigners move to Angeles City, they responded:

"Many expatriates in Angeles City are former military men hailing from the U.S., and most are married to local women. Other expats move there for the low cost of living," said another expat in living in Angeles City, Philippines.

What do I need to know before moving to Angeles City?

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When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Angeles City, they said:

"Do your research and trust your instincts because although locals seem helpful, they often have hidden agendas and you'll definitely pay more for everything than you should. There are loads of homes in safe sub-division areas that have an office with efficient staff who are governed by a strict board," said another expat in Angeles City.

"There have been some tremendous price increases in real estate over the past few years. The old Clark Air Force base is a busy international airport, growing in flights annually. You can still find some real bargains to both rent and purchase. Most of the people I know rent and few pay more than $150 a month for a somewhat worn but still comfortable American type home with 3 bedrooms and a single bath. People who pay much more than this are really overpaying. You can hire labor for about $4 a day so doing a little fix up work is really quite inexpensive. If you can't own it yourself you are better off renting. Do not trust your Filipina girl friend or even wife. I've seen several guys purchase homes in their wifes name and once the paperwork is completed the wife's attitude changes and the fellow is left outside with nothing. If you rent it's amazing how loyal a Filipina remains. A previous poster stated that the schools there were not too good. I would strongly disagree. For about $800 a year I send my daughter to a very good private school there and after her first year she spoke and could read and write English almost as good as I. I was truly amazed at how well she was educated. Six years old and she could read almost anything. Her writing lags behind her reading somewhat but she certainly can read quickly and her pronunciation is excellent. It's mostly at university level where the schools tend to fall off. Also there was a comment about the girls in the bars wearing numbers? I've been in AC for 15 years and a lot of that time I was in bars, never have I seen a girl wearing a "number" they do wear a government issued ID that shows they are at least 18 years of age and can legally work in the establishment. The numbers thing is in Thailand, not Angeles City, Philippines. The Philippines is a very poor country to you have to be streetwise and on your guard but it's not unlike living in most older US neighborhoods. Given the oportunity the filipinos will try to take advantage, as they themselves say "It's our culture". I like it there and where else in the world can you live quite comfortably on $300 a week and get by speaking English?," remarked another in Angeles City.

"I would tell a person considering a move to the Philippines and up to Clark to pay close attention during the look-see trip. If you are going to be assigned to this area, go out on Field's Avenue and experience the life there. It is not something that everyone can come to terms with. Seeing young girls clad in a string bikini with a number tag pinned to her bikini bottom can be a horrifying experience. I only entered one of those places two times during my 2.5 years in the Philippines. It pains me to know that people have to live like that to put rice on the table. It is their choice though, so I make no judgements. It is just something that makes you scratch your head and wonder what will become of the world in our lifetime? Up at Clark it's not easy to find great food. Dining out is not easy. You have to search for a few good restaurants and you will end up haunting them until you leave. They do a pretty good job of Chinese food in the Philippines. Wonton soup is perfect there, but beware of the portion sizes. Leisure activities are scant unless you like sweating like crazy on a golf course or hiking up to see Mt. Pinatubo. Of course, as I mentioned, there is quite a nightlife, but it is not for everyone. Anyone that was or is in the military has probably heard many stories that they may find inviting to this kind of lifestyle, but it's important to know that it exists. I did not have my children with me, but the school situation up at Clark is not what it is in Manila. There are no expat schools. Children will have to be enrolled in the local school system or sent to a boarding school if American schooling is the preferred choice. Be prepared to head into Manila to "get away" from time to time. There are now a couple of decent movie theaters up in the Clark area and a couple of malls as well, but Manila has it topped. One word of caution in the movies -- it is LOUD! Wherever you go, be prepared for the need to bring ear plugs when you go to the movies. The Pampang Market is the place to go to find good produce and if you are so inclined, there is a wet market with meat, fish, poultry and pork. The newer local supermarkets are fairly well stocked now also," explained one expat.

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How do I find a place to live in Angeles City?

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We asked expats how they chose their neighborhood and found a place to live. They answered:

"Accommodation is in abundance, but safety was key when I was looking for a house. After much research, I found a lovely house in a well guarded sub-division called Timog Park Homes," remarked another expat in Angeles City.

"I reasearced a bit, found a reputable real estate person and found a great home near one of the gates to Clark. It was former US military housing and actually fairly nice," explained one expat living in Angeles City.

"I had Cendant relocation services and in the end, negotiated the contract myself. The landlord let me know that the relo rep was "on the take," so I took over," said another expat in Angeles City.

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We've partnered with Explorastay, the largest aggregator of 1-12+ month stays. Compare listings and rental rates from 20+ accommodation sites in one search, including: Booking.com, VRBO, Expedia, UniPlaces, Spotahome, HousingAnywhere, Zumper and over a dozen more accommodation companies. Search rental properties in Philippines.

What is a typical expat home or apartment like in Angeles City?

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"It's a beautiful two bedroom house with a large kitchen, garden and two bathrooms. Ideal for a small family and a lot of expats live there too," remarked another expat in Angeles City.

"Mine is typical but larger than most in the neighborhood. 6 bedrooms, 4 baths and truly huge living and dining rooms. It's the standard concrete block/stucco home and I was fortunate enough to also buy the lot behind my home so I now have a huge yard with one of the best possible views in the city," explained one expat living in Angeles City.

"The house was beautiful. It was in Angeles City in an upscale gated community,not upscale like Forbes Park in Manila, but guarded well and kept clean. The houses were all very different and some were the size of a mansion. Mine was large -- too large for a single woman. There were 4 bedrooms and I was often too nervous and jittery to walk into the other ones. The house was finished as I was moving in. It was large and had tile and hardwood floors throughout and I had airconditioners put in all of th rooms, but the loft. It was too hot up there, so I never furnished that room. Lizards became my shower-mates and the cockroaches scared the living daylights out of me. The balut man came around everyday chanting his pitch to sell the fertilized duck embryo that I successfully declined until a recent return visit. I lived there for a year before finding that I was not very comfortable living away from other expats. The expat community up in the Clark area is small and I was alone. I moved to the Holiday Inn property and into a lovely golf villa. Had to do some good negotiating to get something that would be covered under my allowance, but it worked and was very comfortable. I had my own household help and a guard stationed outside 24x7. Estrada was about to be ousted and our security team felt it wise to have a guard. It turned out to be totally unnecessary, but it's better to be safe than sorry," said another expat in Angeles City.

What is the average cost of housing in Angeles City?

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If you are thinking about moving to Angeles City, cost of living in probably a key consideration. Expats commented about the cost of housing:

"I found a lovely home which had all we needed, and more, at a fraction of the rental costs in Germany. We paid a mere U.S.$ 180 per month for this two bedroom house," explained one expat.

"I had a filipina wife so we purchased our home about 10 years ago. Homes were extremely inexpensive back then due to the eruption of Mt. Pinatubo. I bought everything for under $30,000 US and spent maybe $5000 more on improving the bathrooms and kitchen. Additionally I bought a few window type air conditioners as it does get rather hot there. One thing to be aware of, electricty is not cheap there and running a single air conditiong unit can increase your electric bill by $100. My wife died a few years later and I now own the property myself. Be aware, that is the only way a "foreigner" can actually own land in the Philippines," said another person in Angeles City.

"I found housing costs to be equal to the US. I think I was just an easy target. Big company, big allowance. I would be inclined to do the same had I been the landlord," remarked another expat in Angeles City.

Need a rental in Philippines? We've partnered with Explorastay, the largest aggregator of 1-12+ month stays. Compare listings and rental rates from 20+ accommodation sites in one search, including: Booking.com, VRBO, Expedia, UniPlaces, Spotahome, HousingAnywhere, Zumper and over a dozen more accommodation companies.

Search for Rentals

Need a rental in Philippines? We've partnered with Explorastay, the largest aggregator of 1-12+ month stays. Compare listings and rental rates from 20+ accommodation sites in one search, including: Booking.com, VRBO, Expedia, UniPlaces, Spotahome, HousingAnywhere, Zumper and over a dozen more accommodation companies. Search for Rentals in Philippines

What to Bring When Moving to Angeles City (and what to leave behind)

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When we asked expats living in Philippines what they wish they had brought when moving to Philippines and what they wish they had left at home, they replied:

"I wish I had brought a couple of air condition units as most landlords do not provide them. Also, fans will help cut down electricity costs. A quality mattress is an important buy and so is a T.V.. I shouldn't have brought a fridge, lounge suite and curtains, as they are inexpensive there," explained one expat.

"Things I wish I had brought.... an American mattress, my car and a good electrical generator. What might I left at home? Nothing I can think of to be honest, everything I brought, I used," said another person in Angeles City.

"What I wish I had brought with me: ~ My sense of humor. It pays to be light-hearted about things when you move into a new culture. Life doesn't end because things are different. ~ Tampons. That word in the local language means cotton balls. Had to send for an emergency shipment. Sorry guys -- it's not pleasant to talk about, but needs to be mentioned. ~ My favorite shampoo, conditioner and soap. There is variety there, but not the upscale brands some of us become used to. What I wish I had left at home: ~ My furniture! All but the leather chair and ottoman. Finding furnished accomodations or purchasing local furniture would have been easier that waiting for my household goods to arrive by sea. Also, there are some incredible artists that work wonders with wood and you can furnish a mansion with pieces that will be passed down to familiy for centuries. Reclaimed Philippine hardwood makes for fine fine furniture. My "typhoon jacket." I bought a huge rain slicker that I never wore. Even during the most severe of typhoon rains, it was too hot to put the slicker on. ~ Stereotypes -- I learned in quick order that Philippinos are the nicest, most caring, gentlest people in the world. They are not what movies, books and the news would have you believe. The relationships I built will last a lifetime. I feel that I am part of a large family in the Philippines," remarked another expat in Angeles City.

Is there a lot of crime in Angeles City?

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We asked people if there is a lot of crime. They answered:

"No. Less crime than most places. There is crime, but if you don't look for it you probably won't find it," said another expat in Angeles City.

What are the schools in Angeles City like?

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"It is the best school outside of Manila, with a proven track record of placing students in top universities each school year," commented one expat when asked about Noblesse International School in Angeles City.

"They could not find a better school outside of Metro Manila. The school has overcome its early problems and is really flourishing, it offers a great environment and education for all its students," remarked another expat living in Angeles City with children attending Noblesse International School.

"I think this is a great school. With the new Headmaster, Noblesse is a well-run and organized facility," said another expat in Angeles City with children at Noblesse International School.

"There aren't a lot of great options outside of Manila, but there are some. There are a few schools in the mold of Noblesse that are all about equal in their mediocrity. If you don't plan to send your child to a competitive western university, you are probably ok at Noblesse. Personally, for my family, i don't really like the all talk with no results when i'm paying really high tuition. In talking with others, I get the impression that there is always new admin or staff claiming that things are now going in the 'right' direction, yet things pretty much stay the same. Overall, I'd have to recommend giving the school a pass," remarked another parent with kids at Noblesse International School in Angeles City.

"Every school is different, go there and check it out yourself will be the best to tell if the school suits you. My kids love the music and sports activities in the school. That would be a plus for me," explained one expat living in Angeles City, Philippines.

"If you are to consider NIS for your child, you must expect that it will be a different environment especially if you're coming from a local school. Your child must be open for adjustments and can get along pretty well with other nationalities," said another parent with children at Noblesse International School in Angeles City.

About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder of Expat Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Some of Betsy's more popular articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Italy, 12 Things to Know Before Moving to The Dominican Republic and the Living in Panama Guide. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

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Clark Economic Zone in Angeles City, Philippines
William Russell Health InsuranceInternational Health Insurance

Get a quotes for international health insurance from our partner, William Russell.
Get a Quote

Angeles City, PhilippinesGuide to Living in Angeles City, Philippines

Angeles City, Philippines: Cost of Living, Healthcare and What to Know About Living in Angeles City

Philippines Forum Philippines Forum
Join our Philippines forum to meet other people living in Angeles City, Philippines.

ContributeContribute
Help other expats and newcomers by answering questions about the challenges and adventures of living in Angeles City.

Healthcare in PhilippinesHealthcare in Philippines

Expats in the Philippines have a lot to say about the quality of medical care, hospitals, prescription medicine availability and health insurance in the Philippines.

Angeles City, PhilippinesExpats Talk about Living in Angeles City

Expats share their experiences living in Angeles City, Philippines and offer advice about meeting people, schools and more.

Expat Report: Moving to Angeles City

An expat in Angeles City, Philippines advises others moving to the Philippines to do your research and be wary of locals with hidden agendas. She found a home in a lovely sub-division that cost a mere $180 per month, which is a fraction of what she used to pay in Germany.

Expat Healthcare & Health InsuranceExpat Report: Healthcare in Angeles City

An expat in the Philippines urges newcomers to get health insurance. Without insurance, she explained that you'll need to have a lot of cash on hand for emergency treatment. She talks about her son's hospital stay for a broken arm.

12 Tips for Living in Angeles City, Philippines12 Tips for Living in Angeles City, Philippines

An expat talks about living in Angeles City - the being able to live on a tight budget, Angeles City's large US military retiree population, using jeepneys and trikes to get from place to place, the heat, dining in Korea Town, international schools in Angeles City and more.

Expat Report: Retiring in Angeles City

An expat in the Philippines talks about choosing to retire in Angeles City for the lower cost of living. He appreciates the Filipino people, lower crime rate and lifestyle.

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