Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Koreans -- Where do they buy their pasalubong (Take-home treats)?

That there are many Koreans in the Philippines is already given. We all know that. Perhaps they outnumber all the other nationalities in the country. Maybe their number is even greater than the number of other tourists combined. Some of them come here to see the beautiful places like Vigan in the North and Boracay in the South. Others stay here to study in good Universities like the University of the Philippines and La Salle. Others just come here to study English believing that Filipinos are good teachers of that language. Still others come here to do business. But I've also learned that some Koreans actually come here with intentions of staying for good. Some of them intend to make the Philippines as their retirement place. Nice thought, right?

We Filipinos like to bring pasalubong or take-home presents to our family and friends whenever we come home from trips. Do Koreans do the same? In my observation, some of them are like us. Some of them also bring pasalubong. I saw some Koreans buying bags of Chicacorn when I was in Vigan. By the volume of what they were buying, I assumed they were for pasalubong. I also saw Koreans buying key chains in Boracay. In Laguna, I saw some buying buko pie although I doubt if they are going to bring those pies home to Korea. Perhaps they'll just give it as pasalubong to friends who were left in Manila and were not able to join them.

But do Koreans who do not go out of Manila buy pasalubong as well? They do as I saw in SM Mall of Asia. I saw Koreans buying volumes of pasalubong in a stall near the skating rink called Michelle's Putong Ube.

Michelle's Homemade Putong Ube

There was a long line of Koreans buying bags of goodies that I assume are delicacies not available in Korea (duh? haha). The delicacies they sell in Michelle's are good -- export quality I should say. We won't be shamed if tourists like these Koreans present them as pasalubong to their family and friends. However, for many of us locals, their delicacies are a bit pricey. But judging from the long line I saw, these Korean tourists probably didn't mind.

Long line of Koreans buying pasalubong

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