Moving To The Philippines
* Visa Requirements for Foreign Visitors
If you are a US citizen planning to make a trip to the Philippines, you will be allowed to enter and stay in the country for 21 days without a pre-approved visa (but you need to present a return trip ticket or a plane ticket to another country). If you plan to stay for more than 3 weeks, kindly bring your passport to the nearest Bureau of Immigration Office for a 38 day extension, which costs around 3,000 to 4,000 pesos. Kindly bring your passport at least 1 week before expiry of visa to avoid unnecessary penalties.
For Boracay tourists, visit the following link for Visa Extension in Boracay Island (requirements, fees, dress code, office address, contact information, etc).
*Are you married to a citizen of the Philippines?
- If your answer is “NO”, for starters, you need to prepare about 100 USD every 60 days to renew your tourist visa.
And you will never have a chance of owning that “house and lot” you’ve dreamed of upon your move. The government simply does not allow foreigners to own such types of properties (unless you buy it under your wife’s name). You are allowed, however, to own a car and/ or a condo.
- If the answer is “YES”, good for you. Upon marriage, your wife can help you apply for a “Temporary Residence Visa” or TRV (otherwise known as 13-A Visa) at the Bureau of Immigration (or it’s satellite offices). Read more on Temporary Resident Visa (13-A) in the Philippines here.
Filipinas have amazing qualities that are rare to western women. Some of these qualities are: faithfulness, warmth, being family oriented, etc. Here are some tips on how and where to get to know Filipina women, dating tips (how to make her knees buckle with love), how to avoid pretentious women or avoid getting scammed, and more.
In this section, we talk about jobs that foreigners usually take on when they relocate to the PH. Most expats who come here are retired. Few try to open new businesses or get employed as specialists (e.g. financial consultants, computer engineer). For those who are retired or semi-retired looking for money-making opportunities, the article we have prepared gives the real picture of the few possible jobs that you can get here.
*How Do You Send Money to The Philippines?
So far, what worked best was sending money through Western Union. You can also wire money through the bank, but it may cost additional fees (as third party banks also need to be paid for the transfer).
It is illegal to send money through the mail. If you do and the receiver doesn’t get it, don’t blame the post office.
*How to Move Your Things to the Philippines?
The most popular and safest way to move your things to the Philippines is through “Balikbayan Boxes”. They come in several sizes (20x 20 inches, 20×32 inches, 24x18x24 inches, etc). You may also use your own boxes (which may be bigger or odd-shaped) and just pay a certain price depending on the dimension and destination.
Shipping through balikbayan boxes takes 30 to 60 days.
*Tip: If you are using your own boxes, be sure to use sturdy ones. And don’t be cheap on tape, ensure that your boxes will not break or bust during shipping. We never had problems shipping our boxes.
Shipping through container vans are also used by some people. But usually, this takes a little bit longer and more stressful as it requires rigid custom checks.
*Tip: If you ship through container van, don’t rush to the port upon notice from the Bureau of Customs that your container has arrived. Wait for about 2 or 3 weeks before claiming your shipment.
* Traveling to Other Countries With A Philippine Citizen
Here is a list of countries where Filipinos can go to without a visa including the number of days allowed.
*Words of Wisdom from a Filipina Bride to Another
I have been married to my American husband for quite some time now. As expected, there are a lot of cultural differences between us that we have to adjust to, especially that we are living in the Philippines full time. I have listed here the Top 5 Things that Every Filipina Should Know Before Marrying A Foreign National.