It is a well known fact in the Philippines: You must never, ever, go home without pasalubong. Even if you’ve been gone only a few days. Even if you’ve only been to a place a few kilometers away.
Well, maybe that’s an exaggeration but time and again, people we leave behind usually have last words such as :
- Ingat! Pasalubong ha? (Take care! Bring home something, okay?)
- Ui, Size 8! ‘Yaw kalimti! (Size 8, don’t you forget!)
And, in the spirit of tradition, there came a magical invention called the Balikbayan box (literally means “Repatriation Box” courtesy of Wikipedia). It may look like a normal box on the outside but look inside, you’ll see all kinds of things such as:
- Imported lotion, perfumes, make-up
- Rubber shoes, sandals
- Barely worn, as well as, brand new, brand name clothing
- Ipods, ipads, and other toys
- Canned goods (Spam, anyone?)
- and of course, Chocolates!
As a result, it is not uncommon to see Pinoys at international airports incur exorbitant excess baggage fees. It’s a hassle, I know, but somehow, seeing how happy that makes the people being given the pasalubong, kinda makes it worth it. 🙂
A lil’ side note: If you’re pinoy and you want to avoid the extra fees as the airport. Here’s a tip. Try buying a handy weighing scale, like this:
Or, if you don’t have one. You can use the normal bathroom weighing scale. Balance your box/ luggage with a can of Sky Flakes 😛 and you’re good to go!