The Christmas season is right around the corner and you’re probably thinking of what to do with your Christmas bonus or how your team will pull off this year’s dance contest. Not to ruin your mood, but some people can’t have the privilege of celebrating Christmas with their loved ones and joining their family for this year’s Noche Buena.
Most of these people are workers who try to earn an honest living by serving your meals or taking customer service calls away from home during holidays. However, these individuals get to spend the next day with their family as a compromise for missing Christmas. But, the case for Filipinos abroad, being away from home is different.
Unlike the workers here, Filipinos overseas don’t usually get the chance to spend the holidays with their families. An OFW Christmas is usually filled with sacrifice and loneliness. But, there are ways to make an OFW Christmas more memorable for the brave heroes of today.
If you are a Filipino overseas, here are some ways you can spend the holidays away from your family.
Call your family in the Philippines
The most obvious item on this list to make an OFW Christmas away from home more memorable is through getting in touch with them through calls. Unlike before, you no longer have to pay thousands of pesos for international calls because there are apps like Zoom and Skype where you can call your OFW relatives free.
Yes, being there physically with them is different from watching them on a computer screen, but it is an excellent platform to show your love and care for them. The only problem here the time zone difference between the Philippines and another country, or if the shift of your loved one back home is not compatible with your free time.
The best way to compensate for this problem is by scheduling the best time to do the call. That way, your OFW Christmas away from home is less lonely. Yes, the other person might get sleepy on the line (depending on the time zone), but if they can sacrifice being a thousand miles away from home, you can surely spend a few hours awake at night.
Spend time with fellow OFWs
Being away from home overseas can surely make anyone homesick, especially during the holidays. One of the reasons why Overseas Filipinos feel alone in another country is because they think that no one relates to their struggle. But, there are communities within these countries that have the same struggle that you have.
You can have an OFW Christmas party and get-together with your fellow countrymen to at least feel the Filipino Christmas spirit during this occasion. You can also share stories with them about your family and being away from home. Some countries abroad even have towns and streets dedicated to the Filipino community.
During these OFW Christmas parties, you’ll surely have a taste of all the Filipino cuisines that you grew up loving. Also, it is sure that one of your fellow Filipino friends will bring out a karaoke machine, a must-have for almost every Filipino celebration.
Send gifts to your loved ones
Many Filipinos away from home practice the love language of giving a balikbayan box filled with gifts to their families. This is not encouraged but if this is your way of making them happy, you should go for it as long as you consider your finances. After all, seeing their smiles is the best gift that you can have this Christmas.
Your package might take days, or even weeks before reaching your family’s doorsteps, so consider the shipping time when shopping abroad. The best way to solve this problem is to ship the balikbayan box a few weeks before December so your family can receive it on or before Christmas.
The common gifts of Filipinos who are based or working away from home is usually chocolates because they are pricey in the Philippines but cheap abroad. Cosmetics and beauty products are arguably the second item shipped in balikbayan boxes.
Here’s a pro tip. If you are planning to buy gifts for the holidays, you can consider buying them on the last Friday of November, also known as Black Friday if you’re working in the United States. During the Black Friday sale, items of all sorts are extremely discounted. This means that you can buy items for your family at a better price.
If you are a Filipino working overseas, everyone knows that you are doing your job away from home so your family can have a better life here in the country. But, you should never forget to have some time for yourself as well. To have the best OFW Christmas, you can always go to a movie, eat at your favorite restaurant, and do recreational activities you like.
Another way of treating yourself and having the best life for your family away from home is through investments and one of the best things to invest in is having your own affordable house and lot. And good news, there are multiple options for real-estate investments and loan for OFW.
With a loan for OFW, you can have a home already while working to pay you to need for the house. Among these loan for OFW, bank loans and in-house financing offered by property developers like Lessandra are some of the accessible choices. A loan for OFW is an alternative if you can’t buy an affordable house and lot by cash because you no longer have to wait for many years to live in a decent place.
When you have your real estate property, you should consider it not only as a way for your family to have a place to live in. You should consider it as an asset and an investment as well. And if you are looking for the most affordable house and lot this Christmas season, Lessandra has the best options with different price range catering to your property needs and dream homes.
Being away from home for your family might be tough, but you should know that your sacrifice will one day pay off as long as you work hard for them. For now, the best way to enjoy your OFW Christmas is to do whatever it takes to communicate with your loved ones and go home as soon as possible.
Filipinos overseas are nothing short of heroic. We at Lessandra wish you happy holidays!
For more information on property investments, house designs, and information on how to buy a house and lot in the Philippines, visit Lessandra’s Lifestyle and Home Investment articles.