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How Much is the Salary of an OFW vs. Cost of Living in Bahrain?

Filipinos aspire to work abroad for many reasons. Some may want the experience and professional growth, but most of the time, it’s about the money. And one of the more popular places Filipinos go to for work is the Kingdom of Bahrain because aside from the numerous job opportunities provided there, Bahrain also has a large OFW community.

In this post, we will give you an idea about OFW life in Bahrain, mainly about the monthly salary an average OFW in Bahrain is earning and the cost of living in the Kingdom. If you’re eyeing to work in Bahrain in the future or anytime soon, continue to read below…

Disclaimer: The information published is based on the research at the time of the posting of the content by the vlogger/YouTuber. The information provided may change without prior notice and may differ in actual scenarios. Let this article serve as a guide only.

Here is the video guide shared by IntoyShokoyTV on YouTube. If you find their content helpful, you may check out their YouTube channel to catch more interesting content about current events, trending topics, and life in general.

OFW Salary vs. Cost of Living in Bahrain

Filipinos take up different kinds of jobs in Bahrain. Some work as domestic helpers, service crew (i.e., waiter, cook), retail workers (i.e., saleslady, cashiers), accountants, healthcare workers, and private or public staff.

To start, there is no set minimum wage system in Bahrain. This means that your salary will depend on the kind of job you have, your skills set, work experience, and other credentials.

But for the average worker or employee (retail staff or service worker), their salaries range from 150-250 BD (approximately Php 20,000 to Php 32,000). This includes other allowances such as food and accommodation or even transportation (for others).

Do you think that’s a lot? Let’s see where an average OFW’s monthly salary goes to…

Breakdown of Monthly Expenses

Accommodation

Depending on your contract, you may or may not receive sponsored accommodation from your employer. But if housing is not directly provided, you may be provided with an accommodation allowance, so be sure to review your contract.

But if you’re going to rent accommodation, a single (basic) room costs approximately 70 BD (Php 9000+). You may also opt to get a shared unit with other people, which costs around 100-130 BD (Php 13,000 to 17,000).

Note: Some flats already cover EWA or your water and electricity bill, so do take note of this.

Food/Groceries

Because the Bahraini Dinar is approximately 130x higher than the Philippine peso, essentials such as food and grocery items are more expensive. For this reason, OFWs typically allocate a budget ranging from BD 30 to 50 (Php 4,000 to 6,000+) for food and personal necessities.

Transportation

As mentioned, some companies or employers offer transportation allowance, but if they do not, you will have to allot a monthly budget of BD 15 to 25 (Php 2,000 to 4,000+).

Note: If you think walking to work is an option, you will be surprised to find out that even this simple activity can be challenging because of the climate in Bahrain – that is, if you don’t want to pass out in the middle of the street.  

Other Expenses

OFWs in Bahrain try their best to budget their expenses for their necessities because the cost of living in the Kingdom is quite expensive. This means not eating out as often as they would like or going to the mall to go shopping.

The above list of expenses does not even include other essentials such as medical check-ups or budget for hospitalization.

The good news though is many employers provide health insurance that covers all medical costs up to an annual cap, which varies by scheme. So before you accept a job offer in Bahrain, you should check what coverage is provided and consider topping up your insurance to meet the additional costs for treatment not eligible under your employer’s scheme.

In Summary

Working abroad requires one to make different kinds of sacrifices and adjustments. You will learn first-hand the importance of budgeting and the value of money once you start working abroad.

For this reason, families and friends of OFWs should be considerate enough to understand how much effort or sacrifice their loved ones abroad are doing for them just to send monthly remittances. Some of them can’t even afford to buy the things they want for themselves or set aside a portion for their savings.

As you can tell from our breakdown of expenses above, an average OFW in Bahrain may not be able to afford the finer things in life while living in the Kingdom – that is, if they still want to support their families back home, which is the case 95% of the time, right?

What Can Be Done?

If you have an OFW in the family, be as supportive and considerate as you can. Make time to check their situation and do not be unreasonable with your demands or requests from them, especially when they plan to have a vacation in the Philippines.

Remember, working abroad does not make your loved ones your cash cow.

They put in so much time, effort, and sacrifice just to be able to provide for their families back home. Sometimes, to the point of not even having enough for themselves. According to our resource vlogger, this is one of the reasons why some OFWs choose not to come home anymore. When in fact, the reasons why they want to go home is to spend time with their families, relax, and to have some peace of mind – not to splurge and to deal with the unreasonable demands of the people around them. Think about it. So the next time an OFW comes back home for a vacation, give them some personal time-off and let them take the initiative to spend their hard-earned money as they wish.

We hope you got something new and valuable from this post. What are the other things that you allocate budget for when you work abroad? Do you have other helpful tips on how to save up or better manage your expenses while working abroad? Let us know by leaving a comment in the section below!  

ALSO READ: 10 Tips for Saving Money as an Expat in Bahrain



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