Philippines visa

Philippines visa

Traveling to Philippines

Besides being a popular tourist destination, the Philippines also has a quickly growing economy that is attractive to investors and entrepreneurs, and affordable study courses for students looking to study abroad. It is also becoming a hub for medical tourism and retirees who want to settle outside of their home country. 

There are over 150 nationalities that are eligible to enter the Philippines visa-free for tourism or other short-term purposes for a period of 59 days, 30 days, 21 days, or less, depending on their nationality and any bilateral agreements between the Philippines and their home country. To enter visa-free, eligible foreign nationals must have a passport that is valid for at least six (6) months beyond their intended period of stay in the Philippines and a valid return ticket from an accredited airline. For all other nationalities, the Philippines government does require a visa to enter the country. 

The Philippines offer several types of visas with different periods of validity. The validity period will depend on the visa type and the purpose of the visit. For more specialized applicants like journalists, students, or diplomats, the validity period will be determined based on need and planned activities.

Philippines visa types

The Philippines offers two main types of visas: Non-Immigrant and Immigrant. These visa types are further divided into specific categories based on the purpose of travel. 

The following are the available visa types for traveling to the Philippines:

Non-Immigrant Visas

  1. Temporary Visitors visa
    • This visa is intended for anyone who wants to travel to the Philippines to engage in short-term activities including business, pleasure, medical treatment, training, or attending conferences, meetings, workshops, and seminars.
    • Nationals with visa-free access do not need to apply for this visa for stays of up to 30 days.
  2. Transient Visa
    • This visa is valid for 72 hours, for any foreign nationals passing through on their way to a destination outside the Philippines. Nationals with visa-free access do not need to obtain this visa.
  3. Seaman and Crew Members visa
    • This is for crew members of vessels from any country that plan to dock in the Philippines.  
  4. International Treaty Traders and Treaty Investors visa
    • This visa type is for visitors who intend to carry out trade or commerce between the country they represent and the Philippines.
  5. Foreign Government Official visa
    • Accredited officers of foreign governments recognized by the Philippines can obtain this visa to conduct official business. It is also available to employees and officers of international non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
  6. Student visa
    • Applicants for this visa must be at least 18 years old and intend to travel to the Philippines to study for a Bachelor’s degree or higher at an accredited institution such as a university, seminary, academy, college, or school.
  7. Pre-Arranged Employees visa
    • This visa is for any foreign national who is traveling to the Philippines to engage in lucrative employment (work with compensation). They must be able to show they have a lawful relationship/position with a company in the Philippines.
  8. Special Non-Immigrant 47(A) (2) visa
    • This visa is intended for specialists including visiting lecturers, study abroad students, consultants, volunteers, and social workers, among others.

Immigrant Visas

There are two types of Immigrant visas available for the Philippines:

  1. Quota Immigration Visa
    • This visa type is available to foreign nationals who want to reside in the Philippines permanently.
  2. Non-Quota Immigrant Visas
    • This visa category has several sub-categories of visa for different circumstances:
      • 13(a) Visa – This visa category is for the spouse or unmarried children of Philippines citizens.
      • 13(b) Visa – This is for children whose parents are foreign nationals who were born during a temporary visit abroad to a mother who is a permanent resident.
      • 13(c) Visa – This visa category is available to children born after their parent(s) was issued an Immigrant visa.
      • 13(e) Visa – This visa is for foreign permanent residents returning to the Philippines.
      • 13(g) Visa – This is a visa for natural-born Filipinos who were naturalized by another country and are returning to the Philippines.

Philippines visa requirements

To apply for any Philippines visa, applicants will be required to submit documents that correspond to their visa type. The following are the general documents required for all visa types:

A valid passport

Passports should be valid for at least 6 months beyond the period of stay in the Philippines and be electronic or machine-readable.

Complete application form

The application form can be completed online and printed or by hand. All application forms must be signed and included in the visa application materials.

Recent personal photo

The applicant is required to submit one recent personal photo, taken within the last 6 months, against a white background. Photos should be 3.5 x 4.5 cm and clear.

Proof of financial means

The applicant must prove they have sufficient funds to support themselves for the duration of their stay in the Philippines.

Onward/return flight ticket

The ticket must be issued by an official travel agency or airline, and clearly show a flight itinerary to the applicant’s country of origin or the country they plan to visit next 

Payment of visa fee

Payment methods will vary depending on where and how the applicant submits their visa application packet.

Depending on the visa type and the purpose of travel, applicants may be required to submit additional documentation such as a letter of employment, a bank statement, a police clearance certificate, or a medical examination form.

Philippines visa application steps

All applicants for a Philippines visa will follow the same basic steps to complete their application, regardless of visa type. The basic steps they will take include:

  1. Complete the visa application form

    The visa form should be completed online and printed, or completed by hand. All forms must be signed.

  2. Gather the required documents

    Required documents will vary depending on the visa type.

  3. Schedule a visa appointment (if required)

    Applicants who choose not to submit their application by mail should make a visa appointment at their nearest embassy or consulate. 

  4. Submit the visa application

    Applicants will submit the visa application by post or in person at the nearest Philippines embassy or consulate. The method of submission will depend on the specific requirements of the foreign mission (embassy or consulate).

  5. Pay the visa fee

    Payment methods will vary depending on where and how the applicant decides to submit their Philippines visa application.

Additional steps may be required depending on the visa type, the applicant’s nationality, and the intended duration of stay.

Where to apply for Philippines visa

Visas to the Philippines can be applied for at the nearest embassy/consulate, or by submitting the application by mail, depending on the specific requirements of the embassy or consulate. Some nationalities will be able to submit the visa application form for Temporary Visitor visas online at the Philippine Visa Online Portal. After completing the visa application online, applicants must print the form and submit it along with the other documents to their nearest Philippines foreign mission (embassy or consulate).

Philippines visa processing time

The average processing time for a Philippines visa is one to three  (1-3) weeks. This may vary depending on the embassy or consulate where the applicant submits their application and the complexity of their case. Applicants are advised to apply well in advance of their intended travel date to avoid delays.

Philippines visa FAQ

Do I need a visa to visit the Philippines?

Some nationalities are eligible for visa-free access to the Philippines for stays up to 30 days. For all other nationalities, and visa-free eligible nationals who want to stay longer than 30 days, it is necessary to apply for a visa in advance.

How do I apply for a visa to the Philippines?

To apply for a Philippines visa, applicants must submit their passport, visa application form, visa payment, and all required documents at their nearest embassy or consulate. Some applicants will be able to submit their application packet by post.

How long will it take to receive my Philippines visa?

The average processing time for a Philippines visa is one to two (1-2) weeks. This may vary depending on where the applicant submits their application and the complexity of their case.

What is the cost of a Philippines visa?

The cost of a Philippines visa will vary depending on the visa type and the foreign mission (embassy or consulate) where the applicant submits their application. Applicants should check the cost of their visa before beginning the visa application process..

Check if you need a visa for your next destination

I have a passport from
I want to travel to