How to Impress Filipino Parents As A Foreigner

In Filipino dating culture, parents play a significant role in their children’s lives and decisions. When dating someone from the Philippines, you should know that this is completely typical for most Filipinos, as Filipino families are more tight-knit than families in the West. That ultimately means you need to impress Filipino parents to get anywhere.

This might not be the case forever as the Philippines adopts more Western practices. Still, there are still many Filipinas who follow the traditional stages of courtship. When pursuing a Filipina girl, the suitor goes through many obstacles and steps, including meeting the parents and asking for their blessing.

Aside from earning the trust of your Filipino lover, you also have to work hard to make her parents trust you. This article will guide you through what you need to know to impress Filipino parents.

What Are Filipino Parents Like?

Filipino parents are unique in how they raise their kids. Here are a few examples that are common across most Filipino families:

1. Filipino parents are strict

Even if they are already 25 and employed, girls still need to get approval from Filipino parents to go out and hang with friends. As long as she lives under their roof, she follows their rules. There is also a curfew that you need to remember which you need to follow, or else you’ll sleep at the doorstep. 

2. Filipino parents like to keep their kids close

Filipinos are so family-oriented that they do not need to move out even when they become adults. There are even some kids who stay with their parents after they get married. Filipino parents hold onto their adult kids like babies.

3. They’re harder on their daughters

If you’re a guy dating a Filipina, you face a larger obstacle. Filipino parents guard their daughters like diamonds. They do not let boys go near them without going through them first. 

And if you are already dating a Filipina, and you visit her at her house, you are only allowed to hang out in the living room. This way, everyone in the family can see what you are both doing. 

4. They can be melodramatic

Aside from being super strict, Filipinos can be dramatic, perhaps because of all the telenovelas they watch. When they see their babies dating for the first time, they get very emotional. So it would help if you showed them that they could trust you.

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How You Can Impress Filipino Parents

Impressing Filipino parents can be pretty challenging. Considering that Filipinos are less liberal than Westerners, you have to abide by some conservative traditions. At the same time, Filipinos are sweet people, and they trust anyone with good intentions. So, impress them and make them trust you by checking out the points below:

1. Compliment them

Compliments make the atmosphere feel light by brightening the person’s mood. When you meet your Filipino partner’s parents in their house, you can say something good about the environment in their home. 

Say something good that can make them smile and be comfortable with you. You’ll never know it will be an ice breaker, and you can start a whole conversation from it. 

2. Dress well

Meeting your lover’s Filipino parents is an enormous step to take. For many Filipinos, it is something that you should take seriously. Not to generalize, but parents can get a little judgemental of the person who’s dating their child. The very first step to think about is to look good when meeting them. 

As humans, we can’t help but base everything on what we see first. So, dressing to impress is what you need to focus on in the first meeting with the parents. The anticipation can be overwhelming, but do not get too carried away. Instead, focus on the preparation, such as the things to say and, of course, what to wear. 

So, what should you wear when meeting your Filipino lover’s parents? For women, consider wearing something decent. Go for wrap dresses, mid-length dresses. If you are not a big fan of dresses, try jeans or tapered pants and pair them with a silk blouse. You can also top your look by using casual blazers. Avoid wearing distressed clothing, strappy tees, and crop tops. 

For the guys out there, try not to be so laid back. Put on your best shirt. If you are in the Philippines, it can be a little hot to wear long-sleeved shirts. But try your best to wear something in between casual and formal. Wear slacks, shoes, and a buttoned shirt or polo shirt. Shave your facial hair to look more clean-cut. Smelling good is always a plus point, so make sure you have a good shower and wear your best perfume. 

3. Put your phone away

As much as possible, do not get distracted by your phone. Turn it off or put it on silent mode. When you are meeting Filipino parents, focus on the moment. Resist the urge to check your phone, most especially if you are in front of her parents.

It would look disrespectful when you start to check your phone in the middle of the conversation. The person on the other side will think you find the conversation boring. Always stay present and interactive.

4. Bring out your funny side

We can’t deny that people with a good sense of humor will always be liked by many. You will be more likable by your partner’s Filipino folks. Prepare some funny and wholesome jokes before you set foot in their house. But if you are not really good at jokes, at least laugh when they make jokes. Many Filipino find it charming if someone has a good sense of humor.

One of the main reasons your partner brought you to meet the parent is to interact with them. You need to talk about yourself. What are your plans for the future? Many Filipino parents will be impressed by how well you are doing in life. They also like to listen to your ambitions and goals. But of course, try not to sound too boastful. Share everything with humbleness.

5. Show your partner love and respect

Respect in a relationship is a must. It’s also what Filipino parents will try to look for in someone dating their child. That means you should show them that you care for your partner.

However, remember not to be too affectionate. Don’t hug or kiss when you are with your partner’s family. It’s good to show that you care about your girlfriend in front of her parents, but you should know your limits. 

You could also use “Po” and “Po.” “Po” is the word to use to show respect to the elders at the end of the sentences. For example, when you meet them for dinner, you greet them, “Good evening po.” Meanwhile, “Opo” is a replacement for the word “yes.” 

Another way is to do the “Mano Po.” It is a way of showing respect to the elders in the Philippines culture. You can do this by taking the elder’s hand and pressing it on your forehead. After you greet them, make sure you grab their hand and do the “Mano Po.”

6. Give them some gifts

Filipinos love the idea of giving gifts. In Tagalog, “pasalubong” is a souvenir. When someone just arrived from another place, a friend or a family member will ask this from the person who traveled. Filipino love generous people, so when meeting Filipino parents for the first time, give them something.

If you are a foreigner, you can hand them sweet treats from your home country. That could be chocolates, candies, or liquor. It does have to be expensive. Filipinos are very appreciative of what you can give, so you really should not have to hurt your wallet just to impress them. But, if you have some money to spare, why not splurge into buying something that is not cheap.

You do not have to buy luxury items, a simple and thoughtful gift will be enough. They hold onto those gifts, and they will always be reminded of you, so buy something that they can display and remember you always.

What to bring when meeting the parents? A lot of Filipino moms love plants; you can bring them a low-maintenance succulent plant. Meanwhile, the father can have his favorite alcoholic beverage. Just do some digging about their hobbies so you can win their hearts.

7. Offer to do the dishes

When you are in the house for a meal, try to be polite by helping out with the dishes. You can help with cleaning up the table after you all ate. 

Or if you arrived ahead of time and everyone is still getting ready. You should also help out setting the table. Even though you are the guest, Filipino parents will be pleased to see you offer to assist. Usually, they will decline, but the Filipino folks will surely be pleased, especially the mom. 


Dating a Filipino can be a little challenging because you’ll also be dating the entire family. Just don’t forget that there are more factors to make a relationship work with a Filipino. And, if you need help, TrulyFilipino is always available to assist you with informative blogs. 

But, if you are someone still trying to get into the Philippine Dating scene, go and visit TrulyFilipino. It has a fast-growing community, plus it is secure and trusted. Sign up now!  

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