Travel Alert Status
Level 3: Reconsider Travel
UTC+8 (13 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
The Philippines has a tropical climate, but it is marginally less hot and humid than many tropical countries for most of the year. Although the sun shines almost year round, there are slight seasonal variations in the weather. The dry summer season, which runs from about late April to early June is hot and humid and with little rainfall. The typhoon season runs from June to September, with frequent drenching rains that can temper the heat somewhat but also preclude any outdoor activities. The downpours are often limited in duration, but the resulting flash floods can create chaos by blocking streets, stranding motorists, and bringing the already congested traffic of Manila to a virtual standstill. The most pleasant season follows the rainy season, from November until March. During this time of year, mornings can be fresh, and even the midday temperatures remain bearable, with frequent breezes that temper the heat.
The temperature range in Manila is relatively narrow, with minimum temperatures in the mid-70s and highs in the mid-90s, and an annual mean of about 80°F. Average relative humidity ranges from 69% in April to 84% in August or September.
Baguio, the original summer capital of the Philippines, is located 155 miles north of Manila at an altitude of about 5,000 feet. The climate varies between the dry and the very wet season, each lasting about six months. The dry season runs from December to May, with temperatures ranging from the 50s and 60s at night to highs in the mid-80s during the day. Baguio averages 176 inches of rainfall a year, about half of which falls in July and August alone. The rains begin tapering off in September and are light in October and November.
Philippine peso (PHP)
There are two official languages in the Philippines, Pilipino and English. English is used for business, government, and education from the fourth grade through college. Pilipino, which is based mostly on Tagalog, which is the language spoken in central Luzon. Pilipino is referred to as Tagalog by most people.
two official languages - Filipino (based on Tagalog) and English; eight major dialects - Tagalog, Cebuano, Ilocano, Hiligaynon or Ilonggo, Bicol, Waray, Pampango, and Pangasinense
Christian Malay 91.5%, Muslim Malay 4%, Chinese 1.5%, other 3%
Independence Day, 12 June (1898); note - 12 June 1898 was date of declaration of independence from Spain; 4 July 1946 was date of independence from the US
13 00 N, 122 00 E
Southeastern Asia, archipelago between the Philippine Sea and the South China Sea, east of Vietnam