Davao Review 2024: The Ultimate Guide for Single Men

Last Updated Feb 15, 2024

Davao City, Philippines is an excellent place to meet lovely native Pinays.  In this post, I will outline the pros of cons of a place that stole my heart in the Philippines.

After reading, you will have a better idea of what to expect in Davao City.

Let’s start off by going over some of the cons:

  • It is HOT.  Not just hot, but boiling hot.  If you plan to go out during the day or enjoy being outside in the sun, think twice.  Davao City is humid too.  All I had was a fan, and it was miserable at times.
  • Lots of blackouts, or as they say, “brownouts”.  Davao has a rotating system set up where different parts of the city lose power for arbitrary periods during the day.  It happened to me daily while I was there.
  • The food is not great.  It’s important to get close to the mall to find decent food.  Davao has a fruit called Durian that is very popular.  For anyone who hasn’t smelled it, the scent is pungent and funky.
  • Davao City is somewhat dilapidated.  There isn’t much city there at all.  A lot of it appears Third World.  I did see a lot of construction in progress though.
  • Davao City is in the Southern Philippines (Mindanao), which is considered unsafe for foreigners.  On numerous occasions, people warned me about kidnappings and public attacks.  There is a Muslim community in Mindanao that is considered dangerous.  In my experience, it was mostly safe.
  • Packs of wild dogs roam the streets.  If you are frightened by dogs in the street, you will most likely encounter fear.  I saw a man get attacked by a wild dog in Santo Domingo.
  • Foreigner value can become too high and draw excessive ladyboys.  If you don’t have it in you to tell them to scram, then prepare to be steadily annoyed by them.
  • There isn’t much to do in Davao City besides dating or visiting Samal Island, which is fine with me for a short trip of up to a month.
  • Nightlife in Davao is lesser than other major Filipino cities, e.g., Manila and Cebu.

Now that we have all the cons out of the way, let’s focus on the pros:

  • Foreigner value was soaring.  With some decent skills, a man can pull in top-notch talent.  My prize was an 18-yr-old pale, voluptuous local who spoke little English.
  • A lot of Davaoeñas use Filipino Cupid.  Don’t expect to talk to as many girls as in Manila, but expect to have a greater success rate with higher quality dates.
  • Davao City can be a genuine Third-World experience.  For those of us who like diving headfirst into a culture to discover what it’s like and live it, Davao is a fabulous choice.
  • Davaoeños are friendly in general.
  • The women are gorgeous.  Perhaps more beautiful than in any other part of the country.  My favorite women lived in Manila and Davao, but some of the women I saw in Cagayan de Oro were stunners.
  • There is a good chance of finding a virgin wife in Davao.
  • Davaoeñas are incredibly sweet and wholesome women.  They went out of their way to make me feel at home.  My Davaoeña girlfriend spent what seemed like hours scrupulously cutting string beans at the perfect angle.  They were the best string beans I’ve ever eaten.
  • Davao is close to Samal Island, and the ferry is dirt cheap.  Samal is expansive and full of different resorts on the beach.  The water is crystal blue.  The resorts aren’t the most luxurious, but if you are looking to teleport back to ’90s summer camp, you will love them as much as I did.
  • Everything is affordable.  You can live a good life in Davao for less than $1000/month.
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Extra Tips for Living in Davao City

Now, readers should have a solid idea of what to expect in Davao City.  It is certainly not for everyone.

In this section, I’ll share some extra tips for traveling to Davao.

The best way to get there is to fly with Cebu Pacific from Manila.  Cebu Pacific also has routes to Davao from other cities in the country.

Cebu Pacific Davao Philippines

Cebu Pacific is typically on time and the cheapest option.  If you get there early, you can get a massage at the airport.  I was taking full advantage of that luxury.

Make sure to get to the airport early because lines get crazy, and the cut-off times for Cebu Pacific check-in are strict.

There are a lot of little apartment complexes to choose from in Davao.  Hotels are more expensive, yet still cheap for most guys.

Try to find an apartment near the Abreeza Mall; it’s owned by the Ayalas.

In my opinion, the Ayala Malls are the best.  By staying near the mall, men give themselves the best place to meet girls for dates.

Sometimes Davaoeñas won’t want to be seen with foreigners in public.  However, once they know the foreigner is safe, they will want to go to his place in a hurry.

With a basic, yet logistically optimized plan, a foreigner should have high success.

Here are more tips on dating Pinays:

Meet and Date Cebuanas

Philippines Girls Dating Guide


  1. Brianmark

    Great article about a city in the Philippines I haven’t been. You rated the weather too low. It’s not cold and doesn’t have snow and ice. I’ll have to check Davao out.

    • 199Flags

      Haha yes, but the heat and humidity is the highest I’ve ever experienced in my life. I usually walk a few miles a day while traveling and during the day in Davao I could only make it about 1/4 mile in the sun before turning back. Some days aren’t as bad as others. It depends on the season. I think I was there in the summer.

  2. hump

    good to know… thanks for the info.

    • 199Flags

      Glad you appreciate it! Enjoy Davao, it’s a great yet place for some.