Visa policy of the Philippines

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The visa policy of the Philippines is governed by Commonwealth Act No. 613, also known as the Philippine Immigration Act, and by subsequent legislation amending it.

The Act is jointly enforced by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) and the Bureau of Immigration (BI). Visitors from 157 countries are permitted visa-free entry for periods ranging from 14 to 59 days.

Generally, foreign nationals who wish to enter the Philippines require a visa unless the visitor is:

Visa policy map[edit]

Visa policy of the Philippines
  Philippines
  Visa not required (59 days)
  Visa not required (30 days)
  Visa not required (14 days)
  Online application (ETA / eVisa)
  Visa required in advance

Visa exemption[edit]

The Philippine visa waiver program is governed by Executive Order No. 408,[1] signed by President Carlos P. Garcia on November 9, 1960, and by subsequent executive issuances amending it. While visas are issued by the Bureau of Immigration, the program itself is administered by the Department of Foreign Affairs, which maintains a list of countries eligible to participate in the program.

In principle, nationals of countries which maintain diplomatic relations with the Philippines and whose nationals are not classified as restricted nationals by the DFA are allowed to enter the Philippines without a visa.

Eligible nationals availing of visa-free entry must possess passports valid for at least six months beyond their contemplated period of stay.[2][3]

On July 1, 2013, the Bureau of Immigration began implementing an extended visa waiver for covered nationals from 21 to 30 days, which the Philippine government hoped would boost tourism[4]

Visa-exempt foreign nationals may extend their stay two months per extension but not exceeding the maximum period of 2 years.[3] Foreign nationals who require a visa may extend their stay one month per extension but not exceeding the maximum period of six months and must have a ticket valid for onward travel.[2]

In March 2015, it was proposed to extend the visa exemption to citizens of China and India.[5]

Holders of passports of the following jurisdictions do not require a visa for Philippines:[6]

59 days

30 days

14 days

Non-ordinary passports[edit]

Holders of diplomatic, official or service passports of the following countries enjoy an extended length of stay when compared to ordinary passports:

1 - 6 months
2 - 3 months
3 - 90 days
4 - 2 months
5 - 59 days

Holders of diplomatic, official or service passports of the following countries may enter without a visa while ordinary passport holders require one:

D - diplomatic passports
O - official passports
S - service passports

Replacement visas[edit]

Nationals of China traveling as tourists and holding a valid visa issued by Australia, Canada, Japan, United States or a Schengen Area state may enter and stay without a visa for up to 7 days.

Nationals of India holding a valid tourist, business or resident visa issued by Australia, Canada, Japan, Singapore, United Kingdom, United States or a Schengen Area state may enter and stay without a visa for up to 14 days. They may enter from any port of entry.[27]

Online application[edit]

Citizens of Taiwan may apply for Electronic Travel Authorizations issued by Manila Economic and Cultural Office by paying 1500 NTD online. The validity of this multiple entry ETA allows visitors to stay in Philippines for no more than 30 days.[28]

Citizens of China may obtain e-Visas from Consulate General of the Philippines, Shanghai after transferring the visa fee to a designated bank account since November 15, 2023. Visitor with e-Visa may stay in Philippines for a maximum of 59 days. Single entry e-Visa costs 50 USD while multiple entry e-Visa valid for 6 months costs 125 USD.[29] However, the operations of the Philippine e-Visa System in China is temporarily suspended from November 28, 2023 until further notice.

Visa required[edit]

Holders of passports issued by any country except the following may obtain a visa (for a fee) valid for 59 days on arrival:[6]

APEC Business Travel Card[edit]

Holders of passports issued by the following countries who possess an APEC Business Travel Card (ABTC) containing the "PHL" code on the reverse that it is valid for travel to Philippines can enter visa-free for business trips for up to 59 days.[6]

ABTCs are issued to nationals of:[30]

Types of visas[edit]

The Philippine Immigration Act prescribes fourteen different visas grouped into two broad categories:

  • Section 9 visas (non-immigrant visas), for temporary visits such as those for tourism, business, transit, study or employment
  • Section 13 visas (immigrant visas), for foreign nationals who wish to become permanent residents in the Philippines

Some visas have been introduced by subsequent legislation or proclamation of the President which are not classified by the Philippine Immigration Act as either being a Section 9 or Section 13 visa. These visas are called special visas and are issued to groups such as retirees, investors and entrepreneurs.

List of visas[edit]

Visas in the Philippines
Type Visa Description
Non-immigrant[31] 9(a) Pleasure, business or health
9(b) Transit
9(c) Seaman on a ship docking in a port of entry in the Philippines
9(d) Alien businessman
9(e) Foreign government officials and their dependents, assistants and employees
9(f) Students
9(g) Pre-arranged employees and their dependents
Immigrant[31] 13 Quota immigrants, of which no more than fifty of any one nationality or without nationality may be admitted within one calendar year. Immigrants who are issued Section 13 visas belonging to one of the seven listed sub-categories under CA 613 are considered non-quota immigrants, and may be admitted despite the quota.
13(a) The spouse or unmarried child (below 21) of a Filipino citizen.
13(b) Children born during a temporary visit abroad to mothers granted permanent residence in the Philippines.
13(c) Children born after the issuance of the visa of the accompanying parents.
13(d) Women who lost Filipino citizenship by virtue of marriage to a foreign spouse, and her unmarried children (below 21).[a]
13(e) Permanent residents returning to the Philippines from a temporary visit abroad to resume permanent residence.
13(f) The spouse and/or unmarried children (below 21) of an alien admitted to the Philippines for permanent residence prior to the approval of the Philippine Immigration Act.[b]
13(g) Natural-born Filipinos and their dependents who have naturalized in a foreign country and wish to permanently reside in the Philippines. This visa was provided for under Republic Act No. 4376, passed in 1965.[c]
Special 47(a)(2)[34] Special Non-Immigrant Visa. This is a non-immigrant visa granted to several categories of foreign nationals:
  • Those employed as executives, supervisors, specialists, consultants, contractors or personal staff at enterprises registered with special economic zones, the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA), the Board of Investments (BOI), or the Authority of the Freeport Area of Bataan (AFAB)
  • Those employed in enterprises that have existing agreement/s with the Philippine government or any of subdivisions and instrumentalities, including government-owned or controlled corporations, for the completion of a project
  • Exchange professors, scholars, trainees, participants, students, fellows and social workers under sponsorship of locally or internationally recognized educational, scientific, cultural, relief and charitable organizations, institutions, agencies or foundations, including representatives of non-recognized foreign governments to those organizations
  • Volunteers registered with the Philippine National Volunteer Service Coordinating Agency (PNVSCA), including foreign personnel of international rescue/aid organizations providing assistance on occasion of natural disasters and major emergencies
  • Dependents of any foreign national covered under the previous categories
SIRV[35] Special Investor's Resident Visa. This is a non-immigrant visa granted to foreign nationals and their dependents who have shareholdings in Philippine corporations engaged in the manufacturing or services sectors, involved in projects listed under the Investment Priority Plan, or are listed on the Philippine Stock Exchange. This visa is issued by the BI in coordination with the Board of Investments.
SVEG[36] Special Visa for Employment Generation. This is a non-immigrant visa granted to foreign nationals and their dependents who employ at least ten Filipinos in a lawful enterprise or business venture.
SRRV[37] Special Resident Retiree's Visa. This is a non-immigrant visa granted to foreign nationals and their dependents who wish to retire in the Philippines. This visa is issued by the BI in coordination with the Philippine Retirement Authority.
SNIV[38] Special Non-Immigrant Visa. This is a non-immigrant visa granted to foreign nationals and their dependents who are employed by the regional, area and/or regional operating headquarters of multinational corporations.
SEVOBU[39] Special Employment Visa for Offshore Banking Unit. This is a non-immigrant visa granted to foreign nationals and their dependents who are employed by the Philippine offshore units of foreign banks.

Foreign travel statistics[edit]

Rank Country Mar 2024[40] 2023[41] 2022 [42] 2021 [43] 2020[44] 2019[45] 2018[46] 2017[47] 2016[48] 2015[49] 2014[50] 2013[51] 2012[52] 2011[53] 2010[54]
1  South Korea 458,619 1,439,336 428,014 6,456 338,877 1,989,322 1,587,959 1,607,821 1,475,081 1,339,678 1,175,472 1,165,789 1,031,155 925,204 740,622
2  United States 264,690 903,299 505,089 39,326 211,816 1,064,440 1,034,396 957,813 869,463 779,217 722,750 674,564 652,626 624,527 600,165
3  China 109,568 263,836 39,627 9,674 170,432 1,743,309 1,255,258 968,447 675,663 490,841 394,951 426,352 250,883 243,137 187,446
4  Japan 105,347 305,580 99,557 15,024 136,664 682,788 631,801 884,180 635,238 495,662 463,744 433,705 412,474 375,496 358,744
5  Australia 70,601 266,551 137,974 2,184 55,330 286,170 279,821 259,433 251,098 241,187 224,784 213,023 191,150 170,736 147,649
6  Canada 67,634 221,920 121,413 6,781 55,273 238,850 226,429 300,640 175,631 153,363 143,899 131,381 123,699 117,423 106,345
7  Taiwan 57,347 194,851 23,604 1,619 48,644 327,273 240,842 236,777 229,303 177,670 142,973 139,099 216,511 181,738 142,455
8  United Kingdom 47,689 154,698 101,034 4,348 39,980 209,206 301,039 282,708 173,229 154,189 133,665 122,759 113,282 104,466 96,925
9  Singapore* 36,860 149,230 53,448 653 19,998 158,595 171,795 168,637 176,057 181,176 179,099 175,034 148,215 137,802 121,083
10  Germany 29,527 74,731 39,013 2,037 25,893 103,756 92,098 85,431 86,363 75,348 72,801 70,949 67,023 61,193 58,725
11  Malaysia* 24,691 97,639 46,805 1,620 23,359 139,882 145,242 143,566 139,133 155,814 139,245 109,437 114,513 91,752 79,694
12  France 24,535 51,601 23,949 1,425 24,530 88,577 74,400 64,777 55,384 45,505 38,946 39,042 33,709 29,591 27,302
13  Hong Kong SAR 23,946 80,512 8,589 354 12,444 91,653 117,992 111,135 116,328 122,180 114,100 126,008 118,666 112,106 133,746
14  India 23,415 70,286 51,542 7,202 29,014 134,963 121,124 107,278 90,816 74,824 61,152 52,206 46,395 42,844 34,581
15  Vietnam* 16,039 67,661 38,605 1,785 11,406 66,698 52,334 39,951 33,895 31,579 29,800 26,599 20,817 17,781 17,311
16  Indonesia* 15,183 53,707 24,596 1,888 13,734 70,819 76,652 62,923 44,348 48,178 46,757 45,582 36,627 34,542 31,997
17  Thailand* 10,659 40,952 16,300 1,464 9,788 61,292 59,793 48,727 47,913 44,038 45,943 47,874 40,987 37,862 36,713
18  Netherlands 10,637 31,956 19,306 1,510 8,961 41,313 37,051 33,821 31,876 28,632 25,236 22,595 22,195 21,029 19,227
19  Spain 10,633 34,063 19,194 1,220 9,621 49,748 44,133 36,954 32,097 24,144 19,353 17,126 15,895 14,648 12,759
20  United Arab Emirates 9,874 33,769 2,084 2,733 2,518 10,192 15,402 16,399 17,634 16,881 17,000 15,155 12,684 13,404 12,734
21  Italy 9,230 22,496 12,933 1,212 8,976 38,951 35,182 30,437 25,945 21,620 19,865 17,668 16,740 15,798 16,350
22   Switzerland 9,216 24,048 11,092 598 7,094 29,966 31,075 29,837 29,420 27,200 25,548 24,907 23,557 22,335 21,224
23  Russia 9,210 23,104 8,040 1,027 12,643 36,111 29,967 33,279 28,210 25,278 32,087 35,404 28,270 20,185 14,642
24  Guam 8,972 35,501 2,875 644 2,882 19,835 32,357 36,637 38,777 35,262 38,016 42,204 42,695 41,013 40,928
25  New Zealand 6,752 29,272 17,503 345 6,883 37,872 33,341 28,983 23,431 20,579 17,704 15,783 14,100 12,782 11,323
26  Sweden 5,887 16,789 9,389 508 6,996 27,892 28,085 27,703 26,062 23,206 21,861 22,957 21,807 17,973 15,510
27  Norway 4,857 20,000 12,004 508 4,365 23,464 23,571 21,890 21,606 20,968 20,846 20,625 19,572 17,959 16,742
28  Saudi Arabia 4,474 19,311 10,414 2,252 7,014 43,748 46,967 54,716 56,081 50,884 43,483 38,969 30,040 27,945 22,214
29  Belgium 4,460 14,459 8,961 648 3,756 19,156 17,285 15,703 14,477 12,825 12,236 11,454 11,649 10,959 10,512
30  Ireland 4,145 16,379 12,009 600 3,621 21,475 20,051 18,051 16,557 14,050 12,354 10,576 8,362 6,023 5,368
31  Myanmar* 3,720 6,395 4,255 271 2,877 13,978 9,630 9,571 7,442 7,033 6,633 4,948 4,290 3,246 3,983
32  Israel 2,894 13,334 9,711 452 4,745 22,851 20,343 17,446 16,725 11,756 8,776 7,675 5,895 4,990 4,525
33  Brunei* 1,626 6,639 1,884 37 1,037 8,126 9,533 8,679 8,211 9,015 9,677 8,297 5,992 5,247 4,072
34  Cambodia* 829 3,999 1,454 40 942 5,988 4,154 4,712 3,526 3,503 3,276 3,228 2,661 2,469 2,244
35  Laos* 208 988 495 15 203 1,454 1,183 1,580 1,173 1,231 1,056 1,062 1,088 971 1,079
All Countries 1,662,491 5,450,557 2,653,858 163,879 1,482,535 8,260,913 7,168,467 6,620,908 5,967,005 5,360,682 4,833,368 4,681,307 4,272,811 3,917,454 3,520,471

* Country in ASEAN

See also[edit]

References and Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Republic Act No. 8171, approved October 23, 1995, provided a mechanism allowing Filipino women who have lost their Philippine citizenship by marriage to aliens and natural-born Filipinos who have lost their Philippine citizenship, including their minor children, on account of political or economic necessity, to reacquire Philippine citizenship.[32]
  2. ^ The Philippine Immigration Act stipulates that persons being admitted under this visa category must have been admitted within two years of the Act's approval.[31]
  3. ^ Republic Act No. 9225, approved August 29, 2003, provided that all Philippine citizens who become citizens of another country shall be deemed not to have lost their Philippine citizenship. It further states that natural-born citizens of the Philippines who have lost their Philippine citizenship by reason of their naturalization as citizens of a foreign country are hereby deemed to have re-acquired Philippine citizenship upon taking an oath of allegiance to the Republic, and that their children whether legitimate, illegitimate or adopted, below eighteen (18) years of age, shall be deemed citizens of the Philippines.[33]
  1. ^ "Executive Order No. 408, s. 1960". Official Gazette of the Republic of the Philippines. Retrieved November 1, 2014.
  2. ^ a b "Guidelines on Entry Visas of Temporary Visitors to the Philippines". immigration.gov.ph. Archived from the original on March 15, 2014. Retrieved April 2, 2018.
  3. ^ a b "BI extends stay of foreign tourists". Philippine Bureau of Immigration. August 6, 2007.
  4. ^ "Tourists' initial stay in PH extended from 21 to 30 days". Philippine Daily Inquirer. July 24, 2013.
  5. ^ "Business News, India Stock Market, Personal Finance, IPO, Financial News Headlines - The Financial Express". www.financialexpress.com. Archived from the original on March 22, 2015. Retrieved April 2, 2018.
  6. ^ a b c "Visa and passport". Timatic. International Air Transport Association through Emirates. Retrieved April 1, 2017.
  7. ^ "The Bureau of Immigration, Philippines Official Website - General Information". Archived from the original on December 15, 2013. Retrieved August 24, 2013.
  8. ^ "Consulate general of the Philippines HK SAR". Retrieved August 23, 2013. In accordance with Department of Foreign Affairs Service Circular 125-10 dated 17 December 2010, holders of Hong Kong SAR passport do not need a visa for a stay not exceeding fourteen (14) days provided that they possess a return or onward airline ticket.
  9. ^ "STATEMENT of TREATIES and INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during January 1963" (PDF). United Nations. New York. 1963.
  10. ^ "STATEMENT of TREATIES and INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during March 1964" (PDF). United Nations. New York. 1964.
  11. ^ "STATEMENT of TREATIES and INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during January 1967" (PDF). United Nations. New York. 1967.
  12. ^ "STATEMENT of TREATIES and INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during March 1967" (PDF). United Nations. New York. 1967.
  13. ^ "Under the Visa Agreement on December 10, 1969" (PDF).
  14. ^ "STATEMENT of TREATIES and INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during September 1970" (PDF). United Nations. New York. 1970.
  15. ^ "STATEMENT of TREATIES and INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during June 1971" (PDF). United Nations. New York. 1971.
  16. ^ Agreement on waiver of visas on passports between the Federative Republic of Brazil and the Republic of the Philippines, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Brazil. (in Portuguese)
  17. ^ Agreement on waiver of visas on passports between the Federative Republic of Brazil and the Republic of the Philippines, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Brazil. (in Portuguese)
  18. ^ "STATEMENT of TREATIES and INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during September 1973" (PDF). United Nations. New York. 1973.
  19. ^ "STATEMENT of TREATIES and INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during January 1976" (PDF). United Nations. New York. 1976.
  20. ^ "STATEMENT of TREATIES and INTERNATIONAL AGREEMENTS Registered or filed and recorded with the Secretariat during July 1980" (PDF). United Nations. New York. 1980.
  21. ^ "Mongolia: Visa Free Countries". mongoliavisa.com. September 2017.
  22. ^ "Agreement on the reciprocal abolition of transit and visitors visa requirements between the Government of the Philippines and the Government of Mongolia" (PDF). May 13, 1994. Archived from the original (PDF) on August 1, 2017.
  23. ^ "Executive Order No. 191, s. 1994 | Official Gazette of the Republic of the Philippines". Officialgazette.gov.ph. July 22, 1994. Retrieved April 6, 2022.
  24. ^ Under the Visa Agreement on April 10, 2005
  25. ^ "Филиппины. Миграция, виза, туризм". polpred.com. Retrieved April 2, 2018.
  26. ^ "Philippines waives visa requirements for 7 more countries". The Philippine Star. April 15, 2014. Retrieved April 18, 2014.
  27. ^ "Business News, India Stock Market, Personal Finance, IPO, Financial News Headlines - The Financial Express". www.financialexpress.com. Retrieved April 2, 2018.
  28. ^ "Electronic Travel Authorization". Manila Economic and Cultural Office. Retrieved August 11, 2015.
  29. ^ "菲律宾电子签证系统全面启动". 菲律宾驻上海总领事馆. November 14, 2023.
  30. ^ "ABTC Economy Entry Information" (PDF).
  31. ^ a b c Commonwealth of the Philippines. (Enacted: August 26, 1940). COMMONWEALTH ACT NO. 613 - AN ACT TO CONTROL AND REGULATE THE IMMIGRATION OF ALIENS INTO THE PHILIPPINES. Retrieved September 25, 2016, from the Official Gazette.
  32. ^ An act providing for the repatriation of Filipino women who have lost their Philippine citizenship by marriage to aliens and natural-born Filipinos, Chan Robles Law Library, October 23, 1995, retrieved October 6, 2008
  33. ^ Citizenship Retention and Re-acquisition Act of 2003, Chan Robles Law Library, August 29, 2003, retrieved October 6, 2008
  34. ^ "47 (a) (2) Special Non Immigrant Visa". Philippine Consulate General, Los Angeles. Retrieved July 26, 2019.
  35. ^ "QUESTIONS & ANSWERS: Special Investors Resident Visa Program" (PDF). Philippine Board of Investments. November 14, 2007. Archived from the original (PDF) on June 11, 2012. Retrieved December 22, 2012.
  36. ^ "SPECIAL VISA FOR EMPLOYMENT GENERATION (SVEG)". immigration.gov.ph.
  37. ^ "Special Resident Retiree's Visa". Philippine Retirement Authority. May 5, 2011. Archived from the original on January 22, 2013. Retrieved December 22, 2012.
  38. ^ "Conversion to Special Non-Immigrant Visa". Bureau of Immigration. Retrieved September 26, 2016.
  39. ^ "Special Employment Visa for Offshore Banking Unit". Bureau of Immigration. Archived from the original on February 28, 2014. Retrieved February 24, 2014.
  40. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to The Philippines by Country of Residence January - March 2024" (PDF).
  41. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to The Philippines by Country of Residence 2023" (PDF).
  42. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to The Philippines by Country of Residence 2022" (PDF).
  43. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to The Philippines by Country of Residence 2021" (PDF).
  44. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to the Philippines by Country of Residence 2020" (PDF).
  45. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to the Philippines by Country of Residence 2019" (PDF).
  46. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to the Philippines by Country of Residence 2018" (PDF).
  47. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to the Philippines by Country of Residence 2017" (PDF).
  48. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to the Philippines by Country of Residence 2016" (PDF).
  49. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to the Philippines by Country of Residence 2015" (PDF).
  50. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to the Philippines by Country of Residence 2014" (PDF).
  51. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to the Philippines by Country of Residence 2013" (PDF).
  52. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to the Philippines by Country of Residence 2012" (PDF).
  53. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to the Philippines by Country of Residence 2011" (PDF).
  54. ^ "Visitor Arrivals to the Philippines by Country of Residence 2010" (PDF).

External links[edit]