Useful information in Manila, Philippines

When moving abroad, it is very crucial that you know who are providing the basic amenities such as water, electricity as well as telecommunications companies, emergency numbers and important agencies for expats. Here is a list of some information that’ll help you in your relocation:


All telecommunication companies operating in Manila and across the country are under the supervision of a government agency called National Telecommunications Commission (NTC). NTC is in charge in supervising the installation, operation and maintenance of both the public and private providers. The National Capital Region where Manila is situated has the highest number of fixed line telephones in the country. The two major fixed line providers in Manila are:

  • Bayan Telecommunications (BayanTel)
    GF, G Espana Tower, 2203 Espana Boulevard
    Brgy.530, Sampaloc West, Manila City
    Tel.No.: (02) 874-7474

According to the Business Monitor International, the number of mobile subscribers in Manila and the whole country is expected to rise to 117 million by the end of 2016. Smartphones are the trend for many Filipinos. The Philippines is also referred to as the ‘Social Media Capital’ of the world because of the long hours they spend in online streaming.

In Manila, cellular companies offer broadband packages as well; which make them a one-stop shop for expats looking for mobile and internet service. Here are the leading providers in the city:

Currently, telecommunication companies are not offering unlimited internet plan in Manila. Customers can choose between different data plans wherein they will only be billed based on their consumption. Broadband connections can also be bundled with fixed telephone lines and cable TV, upon the customer’s request. The range and average monthly bills of the different data plans are as follows:


Broadband Monthly Price Maximum Speed Data Allowance
€20 2 Mbps 20 GB
€25 3 Mbps 30 GB to 50GB
€30 5 Mbps 50 GB to 60 GB
€40 7 Mbps 60 GB to 70 GB



Regardless if you are renting or living in a purchased house, the cost of utilities is for you to shoulder. Monthly bills usually arrive every 15th or 16th of the month, and you can pay your bills directly to their respective offices or through ‘Bayad Centres’ or the provider’s accredited payment centres. Payments can also be made online thru bank transfer which is a more convenient way of settling your monthly bills.

Manila Electric Company is the largest and only provider of electricity in Manila. It holds a massive amount of power distribution franchise for 22 cities and 89 municipalities including Metro Manila and other cities in Luzon. It is also a privately owned corporation headed by the business magnate Manny V. Pangilinan.

There is no alarming shortage of water supply in Manila unless there is a scheduled maintenance or natural calamity. Currently, the two leading water suppliers in the city are:


  • Police, Fire and Ambulance: 117
  • National Emergency Hotline: 911
  • National Public Complaint Hotline: 8888



Just a precaution, expats who are on short-term assignments in Manila are advised to keep a substantial amount of their money in their home country. However, when it comes to your routine banking activities and for emergency situations, it is best that you open a local bank account. Some of the basic documents that you need to present when opening an account in Manila are:

  • Valid ID with Photo, preferably your Passport
  • Proof of Residency (tenancy agreement or utility bill)
  • Immigrant Certificate Registration (ICR)
  • Your personal appearance

You also need to deposit a minimum amount in able to open a bank account. Deposit price varies depending on which bank and the type of account that you need. Two largest banks in Manila are:

Chamber of Commerce of the Philippine Islands

This organisation embarks on trade missions and form international partnerships to boost business in the Philippines. Additionally, it offers several support services and spearheads industry events for members.

Contact No: +632 5275610 to 11
Fax: +632 527-5609
Address: Chamber Building, No. 3 Magallanes Drive, Intramuros, Manila 1002, Philippines


Know more about Manila, Philippines with our relocation guide for expatriates:


This relocation guide is provided by, copyright © 2016 Interexpat Pte. Ltd. All rights reserved. Neither Interexpat nor S.A.S. ACS can be held liable for any errors or omissions, or any loss, damage that may occur as a result of this information. This information does not constitute advice.


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