Are you a first-time OFW? If you’re feeling anxious and excited about leaving the country to work abroad, you might have some questions in mind regarding what you need to prepare as an overseas Filipino worker (OFW) if you plan to work in Singapore or anywhere abroad.
Also Read: 11 Interview Questions for Domestic Helpers in Singapore
In this post, we will share some of the important things that you need to bring with you for your travel. You will notice that the tips we are about to share with you are not specific only to OFWs going to Singapore, but for anyone who wishes to go abroad for work.
Here is the video guide shared by a Filipina working in Singapore as a domestic helper a.k.a. Yaya Jhin. If you find her tips helpful, you may check out her YouTube channel to catch more interesting content about her work and life as an OFW in Singapore.
Disclaimer: The information published is based on the experience shared by the vlogger/YouTuber. The information provided may change without prior notice and may differ in actual scenarios. Let this article serve as a guide only.
Here are 10 Essential Things You Need to Bring When Working as an OFW in Singapore
Are you on a tight budget? Are you looking for ways to maximize your expenses for your travel for work abroad? Here are some great tips from Yaya Jhin, a Filipina domestic worker based in Singapore.
No need to list down her tips because we’ve compiled them here all for you. Continue reading below…
If you are planning to work abroad, be sure to prepare and have the following with you:
#1. Prepare yourself.
As they say, your health is your most important asset when working overseas. This is true so you must prepare yourself physically, emotionally, and mentally for the challenges that you will face as an OFW abroad.
#2. Get a cheap yet durable suitcase for your belongings.
Because you can only bring so much stuff with you, you must invest in a cheap yet durable suitcase for your personal belongings. If you can borrow from a relative or family member then that’s much better. Just be sure to keep the luggage in safe and in good condition, or save up to get a new one for yourself.
#3. Your mobile phones.
When traveling abroad (especially for work), it’s best if you can bring two mobile devices with you so that in case you lose one, you still have the means to communicate with your loved ones and family back home.
This is also a safety measure in case your employer requires you to surrender your mobile phone during work hours or for the duration of your stay with them.
#4. Charger with Type G adapter
Of course, if you are bringing your mobile devices with you, you need to have a charger, too. Take note that the power sockets here in Singapore are not the same as the ones we have in the Philippines, so you need to look for a type G power adapter as shown in the picture below.
Aside from those considered as prohibited medications, you may bring personal medicines (usually in tablet form) for diabetes, hypertension, etc. as long as they do not amount to three months’ supply. For more details, you may check the HSA’s official website.
However, if you are just going to bring OTC medicines for pain, then you won’t have any issues with it as long as they are not in powder or liquid form in bottles.
A word of caution: the first few days abroad are the biggest adjustments you’ll have to endure, especially when it comes to food, so it’s best if you bring a good amount of food with you.
The ones you can easily bring and consume when you arrive abroad are biscuits, cup noodles, instant coffee, chocolates, candies, chocolates, and easy-to-open canned goods.
#7. Toiletries and Personal Hygiene Kit
You don’t need to bring a lot of these because everything you can buy in the Philippines is also available in Singapore and other countries. For your basic hygiene supply, you can bring your toothbrush, toothpaste, shampoo, soap, body and face towel, sanitary napkins (for women), and slippers.
Just remember to bring small amounts of your supplies as in sachets of shampoo, toothpaste, and soap, because there are airport regulations when it comes to bringing liquids and tube containers.
You do not have to bring a lot, but the basics are your work clothes (t-shirts and long pants), jeans, and casual wear for your day-off.
Avoid wearing indecent tops and bottoms so as not to attract unwanted attention. This applies to almost every country you might consider working in.
#9. Pocket Money
As you might have already spent a lot on processing your application and travel expenses, the safe amount of cash for your pocket money in Singapore would be between Php 3,000 to Php 5,000 (or around SGD 100 – 150). But if this is still too much, then you can bring at least Php 2,000 (or SGD 50) with you.
This is primarily for buying a sim card for your device as well as water while you wait to be transferred to your employer’s house by your agency.
#10. Important Documents
And last but not least, do not forget to bring your travel and work documents. These include your passport, employment/work visa, as well as your employment contract. Other than your passport, all other important work documents will be provided by your employer or your agency, so be sure to bring all of them with you.
As you might have noticed, everything we’ve included in the list is only what we consider as travel essentials. Besides, the purpose of your trip abroad is not to have fun or for leisure, but to work so you must have the mindset of only bringing what is necessary and to minimize costs as much as possible, especially if it’s your first time working overseas.
Did we miss anything? Are there other things that you brought with you on your trip abroad for work? You can share with us some of your tips by leaving a comment in the section below!