A friend recently told me about his company’s job openings, explaining the job description and benefits.
Friend: “We offer everything – sick leave, health insurance, performance bonuses, rice allowances, transportation allowance…”
Me: “Wait – did you say rice allowances?”
Friend: “Yes – and?”
Me: “Forgive me if I’m sounding ignorant, but companies offer that? Is that just your company?
Friend: “No – it’s common here!”
Apparently, it is. Companies literally provide sacks of rice, or money to go towards purchasing rice. And that money is non-taxable. It makes sense, given that rice is eaten with breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Many desserts are even rice-based.
But rice is cheap right? Sure, by American standards; but, if you haven’t heard, wages here are low. A customer service agent or call center representative earns about 15,000 pesos per month (that’s about $350). Factor in rent and living expenses, and you’re not left with much to live with.
Rice allowances, sure I’d take it!
Any thoughts or questions about rice allowances, local wages, or riced-based desserts? (they’re good, I promise – one day I will share another post on these treats…)