Nowadays, what we see on TV, movies or any social media sites about working abroad are mostly about the sorry plight, the hardships, the discrimination, homesickness, the difficulties, and the different challenges OFWs are facing, albeit these are all the truth, that is only one side of the coin. Working abroad for most people, is not entirely a choice, but rather the “only” choice. In most cases, the cons outweigh the pros but for a moment let us forget the disadvantages and let us take a look at the other side of the coin, the advantages.
1. Can give your family a better life.
I believe that one of the main reasons of people working abroad is to give their family a better life. Many OFWs came from middle-class family or some came from a poor family and they are using their experiences in the past as a motivation to work harder and to make sure that their family or the family of their own would not experience the hardship they’ve experienced on their childhood.
2. Higher compensation.
The main reason on working abroad is to give their family a better life, but the main drive is getting higher compensation. Imagine doing the same job you have back in the Philippines only the salary is four or five times higher, of course you’ll take the bait even if that means being away from your family.
3. Learn to be more independent.
You wake up, you prepare your own food, you go to work, you finish your work, you go home, you prepare your own food, and you sleep. That is the usual daily routine of an OFW, unlike in the Philippines where you’ll just wake up and the food has been prepared by your mother, then you go to work with the packed lunch prepared by her, of course and you got back from work and your dinner is ready then you just go to sleep, living abroad cut you off that luxury, but you learn. You will learn and you will realize that you can actually do it by yourself. Trust me, it may be tiring but it gives you a different joy and satisfaction.
4. Learn a new language.
If you are living in a country where English is not the mother language, then learning their language is a must. From talking with Locals on a daily basis you get to learn new words gradually until you are able to speak confidently and be able to talk to them with this new language that you’re now familiar with.
5. Be familiar with another country’s culture.
Learning another country’s culture and experiencing it by yourself will make you more appreciative and tolerant of other people from other nationalities’ actions and not to mention that it will enrich your mind and increase your knowledge and awareness.
6. Travel the world.
Earning more for some means you get to buy things you want to buy, but for me, earning more gives me a chance to travel and discover the world. In most cases too, it is much easier to acquire visas of some 1st-world countries from the country you’re working at than to your own.
7. Gain more experience.
You are working in any hotel in Macau and knowing the growing number of big hotels and casinos being built in the Philippines now, you decide to go home and work in any of the new hotels in the country, chances are high that you”ll get accepted for a job right away.
8. Traffic, intermittent internet connection, regular brown-outs, floods and calamities are all rare and almost non-existent.
We are all optimistic and hoping that in the future, traffic problems and the problems with electricity will be resolved, the internet connection will be on par in terms of speed with other countries, and we will be more ready in handling inevitable natural calamities.
9. Get to experience different season.
The Philippines being a tropical country has two seasons, summer and the rainy seasons, and admit it or not most of us want to experience snow. Filipinos love cold weather that is why Baguio City and Tagaytay are two of the most famous vacation spots in the country. When we go abroad we get to experience the autumn, spring and winter season and we all loved this three other seasons.
10. Discover a part of you that you never knew.
Being alone can be challenging, being alone on a foreign country doubles the challenge. First, you do things you’ve never done before like a simple household chore to hardcore stuff like fixing the sink, the electric wiring and other stuff that you usually ask and pay someone to do these things for you. Second, you become your own doctor, whenever we feel sick instead of going to the doctor immediately, we research first on the remedies of our sickness because we can’t afford to pay for a doctor or be absent for work. With that, we learn new things, we discover that we can be a better version of ourselves; you are no longer the listless, dependent ones.
11. Be friends with someone from another nationality and race.
Being friends with someone of another race is quite an experience, you will learn how to adapt with their own cultures, and you will discover that even if you are not from the same country there are similarities among you, thus, making you less judgmental of other people or other race.
12. You are more vocal about your feelings.
Not all of us has the guts to say how we feel towards our loved ones. Not everyone can easily say “i love you” or “i miss you” to your parents, but being away from them can perform some kind of magic and can give you a pluck to say these things. That’s why even if you are away you became closer.
13. Get you ready for your future.
We are talking here not only about being financially ready but also being ready emotionally. Earning more means saving more and when it’s your time to retire you know that you have something in the bank for your future. Overcoming all the hardships brought by working abroad will make us a better, stronger person that when we go home we know we can do almost everything and we can face every problems that will come our way as we have been tested by fate.
14. You achieved the feeling of fulfillment.
Whether its building your own house, having your own car, sending your brothers or sisters to school, sending your children to a prestigious school, or seeing your parents enjoying a comfortable life, are some of the achievements that can make an OFW happy, contented and most of all fulfilled. When you know that you have achieved something, and you get to see the fruit of your labor, every hardship will be worth it.