La Union, perched on the western coast of Luzon Island in the Philippines, is a province more than just a city. A stunning amalgamation of coastal charm, rugged mountains, and alluring culture, this region is home to around 800,000 people. Among this number, an estimated 40% are single adult women, providing ample opportunities for introductions and interactions for the discerning traveler.
However, does this paradise hold up when examined through the lens of our well-defined rubric?
Cultural Activities & Entertainment (8 / 10)
As a vibrant fusion of cultures, La Union offers a smorgasbord of experiences for the discerning traveler. From traditional Filipino festivals to its thriving music scene and night markets, there’s always something to keep you entertained. The score is slightly marred by the lack of larger-scale events, but for the traveler who thrives on genuine, local experiences, this place is a goldmine.
Food, Dining & Social Scene (4 / 5)
The local culinary scene deserves its own epic saga. Bursting with flavor, the regional cuisine is a mouth-watering mix of fresh seafood, fruits, and vegetables, complemented by a dash of Filipino and Spanish influences. The burgeoning café culture and the social scene around it in La Union add a modern twist to its rustic charm.
Safety & Security (7 / 10)
La Union, overall, is a safe place. Petty crime exists, as in any region, but violent crime is low. Exercising usual caution will serve you well here.
Climate (3 / 5)
La Union enjoys a tropical climate. Warm, sunny days can be expected most of the year, with a monsoon season that typically lasts from May to October. For lovers of warm weather and beach life, this is near paradise.
Women Willing to Date Foreigners (7 / 10)
Filipinos are known for their hospitality and openness, and that extends to dating as well. English is widely spoken, making communication easier for most Western travelers.
Expat Community & Services (3 / 5)
The expat community, while not as large as in Manila or Cebu, is active and welcoming in La Union. There are numerous services catering to expats, such as international restaurants and a few international schools.
English Language Accessibility (6 / 10)
English is a common second language in the Philippines. In La Union, locals are generally comfortable conversing in English, though proficiency varies.
Availability of Emergency Services (4 / 5)
Emergency services are available, but there might be a delay in response times in more remote areas.
Public Transportation and Infrastructure (2 / 5)
Public transportation in La Union is satisfactory, with buses and tricycles being the primary modes of transport. However, infrastructure, particularly the road conditions, could use some improvement.
Proximity to Airports (3 / 5)
The closest airport to La Union is in San Fernando City, which mainly handles domestic flights. For international travel, you’ll need to head to Clark International Airport or Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila, both several hours away by road.
Internet Connectivity (2 / 5)
Internet connectivity in La Union is decent in populated areas, but gets spotty in more remote locations.
La Union earns a ‘D’ with a Doc’s Passport Bro Score of 64. Its strengths lie in cultural activities, safety, and its openness to dating, but it’s hampered by some infrastructure issues, limited internet connectivity, and distance from international airports. Given its relatively low score, it’s probably better suited for those looking for a more adventurous, off-the-beaten-path type of experience rather than the comfort-oriented expat.
This evaluation is geared towards expats seeking affordable living arrangements and not those looking for vacation spots or other purposes.