How Many Filipinos are in the USA and where are they?

I sometimes think that Filipinos are out to take over the world. We are everywhere! Case in point, I was in Zambia a couple of years ago and I came across 4 Filipinos, two of them were Ilokanos from Northern Luzon. They worked as carpenters and miners near the city of Ndola in Zambia. In Lisbon, Portugal, I even found a San Miguel Beer bottle at the foot of a statue! It might have been a Filipino who drank that.

Have you ever wondered how many Filipinos there are in the USA?

According to the 2010 American Census, there were more than 3.4 Million Filipinos in the USA, making us the 2nd largest Asian group in America, next only to Chinese Americans. In 2015, that number grew to 3.9 Million.

The following cities have the most concentration of Filipinos in the United States:

  • Los Angeles CA – 495,000
  • San Francisco, CA – 305,000
  • New York, NY – 241,000
  • Honolulu, HI – 211,000
  • San Diego, CA – 196,000
  • Chicago, IL – 137,000
  • Las Vegas, NV – 124,000
  • Riverside, CA – 120,000
  • San Jose, CA – 106,000
  • Seattle, WA – 101,000

As you can see, most of the cities in the list above are in the state of California. If you want to meet a lot of Filipinos, California is still the state to be. I went to San Diego once and I met so many Filipinos working at the airport.

There are a lot of information to be gleaned about Filipinos living in the USA. This website by MigrationPolicy is full of interesting information about Filipinos in the USA: https://www.migrationpolicy.org/article/filipino-immigrants-united-states.

Most Filipino immigrants become lawful Permanent Residents, a process which we intend to go through soon. This can be done through employment-based petition, or also through family-based immigration petition. This family-based path to immigration, though, is being challenged by the Trump administration.

The top 5 States where Filipinos settled in the USA are:

  • California (45%)
  • Hawaii (6%)
  • New York
  • New Jersey
  • Illinois
  • Texas

I bet these are also the states where you could find Jollibee! Unfortunately, Tennessee is not included in this list, so no Jollibee for us.

If you want to see the population of Filipinos in each US state, please visit this link: https://www.migrationpolicy.org/programs/data-hub/charts/us-immigrant-population-state-and-county and choose Philippines as the Region of Origin.

An interesting aside, the interactive map shows that there are 8,000 Filipino immigrants in Tennessee. We’re probably not included in that number because it had been several years since the census happened and we’re not immigrants but possess a non-immigrant visa.

In terms of age and educational attainment, 48% OF Filipino immigrants reported achieving at least a bachelor’s degree. This number is pretty high, even higher than the overall average in the United States.

Maybe, when Filipino families came to America, they brought with them the high value for education. Which industries do Filipinos work in?

Census data shows that most Filipinos immigrants’ occupations are in:

  • Management
  • Business
  • Science
  • Arts

Filipinos tend to have higher incomes compared with the overall national average in the USA. The median income for Filipino families in 2013 was $82,370. Fewer Filipino households lived in poverty, either.

In general, overseas Filipinos all over the world send money back to the Philippines. Filipino immigrants in the USA sent remittances for a total of USD $25.4 billion in 2013. That’s a huge amount of money that helps the overall economy of the Philippines.

If you want to check out more information about Filipinos in the USA, go to the following links:

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