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Banking in the Philippines (Manila)

Hey everyone. I plan on finally making it to the Pi within the next 45 days. I will be living in Las Pinas. Can anyone recommend a bank. Also I need to know about using my Visa check card to acquire additional money when I need it. Hopefully an ATM that does not charge a fortune in fees. Do you recommend opening a Philippine bank account and if so, who with?
Anything you can tell me to keep me straight in dealing with money issues would be greatly appreciated.
I also will want to meet with other expats soon after arriving. Am depending on my girl friend initially to keep me out of trouble, but know that I am going to need the wisdon of other expats to stay safe and sound. Thanks in advance for any help.

Manila Forum