Tag Archive: VISA

1 jan 11

Our Philippine passport is now 74th of the world’s most powerful passports among 199 other countries, according to the 2019 Henley Passport Index.  Below is the list of countries that we can visit without the need to secure a visa and those that have visa-on-arrival and e-Visa policies.

Which one will visit first?

Asia  Non-Visa Countries

  • Brunei
  • Cambodia
  • Hong Kong (SAR China)
  • Indonesia
  • Laos
  • Macao (SAR China)
  • Malaysia
  • Mongolia
  • Myanmar
  • Singapore
  • Taiwan
  • Thailand
  • Vietnam

Asia Visa-on-arrival and e-Visa Countries

  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Maldives
  • Nepal
  • Sri Lanka
  • Tajikistan
  • Timor-Leste

Africa Visa-free Countries

  • Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
  • Gambia
  • Morocco
  • Rwanda

Africa Visa-on-arrival and e-Visa Countries

  • Benin
  • Cape Verde Islands
  • Comores Islands
  • Djibouti
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Kenya
  • Madagascar
  • Malawi
  • Mauritania
  • Mauritius
  • Mozambique
  • Seychelles
  • Somalia
  • Tanzania
  • Togo
  • Uganda

Oceania Visa-free Countries

  • Cook Islands
  • Fiji
  • Micronesia
  • Niue
  • Vanuatu

Oceania Visa-on-arrival and e-Visa Countries

  • Marshall Islands
  • Palau Islands
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Samoa
  • Tuvalu

Caribbean Visa-free Countries

  • Dominica
  • Haiti
  • St. Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Americas
  • Bolivia
  • Brazil
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • Ecuador
  • Peru
  • Suriname

Caribbean Visa-on-arrival and e-Visa Countries

  • St. Lucia
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Nicaragua

Middle East Visa-free Countries

  • Israel
  • Palestinian Territory

Middle East Visa-on-arrival and e-Visa Countries

  • Armenia
  • Iran

We wish you a vibrant and hassle-free travels and tours this year!

Source: https://news.abs-cbn.com/news

Chips And Nibblers (1)

Closet Queen



1 jan 10

Denied US visa… again?  We know it could be truly disappointing to be told you are not permitted to leave for a US state and without telling you why.  But take heart, there are a lot of other countries you can tour that are visa-free or have visa-on-arrival policies.

We have the latest list of Asian countries that you can visit without the need for a visa but have a number of days when a tourist can stay.  During my recent trip to Hong Kong last December, I was given a total of 13 days by the Hong Kong Immigration; I stayed for four.

But before we feature the list, let us first share with you the different types of visas that Pinoys need to secure when traveling abroad.  Actually, it should only be counted as three, as the first entry is ‘visa-free’; but based on my experience in Hong Kong last month, I would like to count the visa-free as well since I was only given a particular number of days to stay in the country.

So here it is:

  1. Visa-free

These are countries that do not require a visa but you may only be given a certain number of days to tour the place.  Your ticket must have a return date on it, and you must have a valid booking at a hotel and enough cash to sustain your visit.  Of the three, it is your ticket that the Immigration might scrutinize the most so have it handy all the time.

  1. Visa-on-arrival

There are no pre-application (of visa) required to land at these country’s airports.  You will be granted your visa upon appearing before an immigration officer and after you have duly settled any associated visa fees.

  1. Visa-required

These countries require that you apply for and are granted a visa in the country’s embassy, consulate, or approved travel partner.  The requirements for visa application may vary and may include your financial records and history, medical records, employment documents, and proofs of your previous travels abroad.

  1. e-Visa

Visa applications are done online and should your application be approved, your e-visa shall be linked or electronically associated with your passport number.

In Philippine Star’s latest feature news, the following Asian countries are visa-free for Filipinos, with the corresponding number of days’ stay for tourists:

  1. Brunei – 20-day stay
  2. Cambodia – 21-day stay
  3. Hong Kong – 14-day stay
  4. Indonesia – 30-day stay
  5. Laos – 30-day stay
  6. Macao – 30-day stay
  7. Malaysia – 30-day stay
  8. Mongolia – 21-day stay
  9. Myanmar – 14-day stay
  10. Singapore – 30-day stay
  11. Taiwan – 14-day stay Taiwan will be visa-free until July 31, 2019)
  12. Thailand – 30-day stay
  13. Vietnam – 21-day stay

These countries follow a visa-on-arrival policy and or e-Visa for Pinoy tourists

  1. Kyrgyzstan – 30-day stay
  2. Maldives – 30-day stay
  3. Sri Lanka – 30-day stay
  4. Timor-Leste – 30-day stay

So where do you plan to travel this year?  Share your stories with us!

Chips And Nibblers (1)

Closet Queen


Apr 24

About 2 weeks ago, while I was trying to withdraw funds from my savings account, my ATM card was captured by the machine.  I called my bank immediately to report the incident and was told to wait by the machine in case it spews my card back out.  It didn’t.  Finally, the agent asked me if my ATM is EMV-enabled.  I was not familiar with the term; she said an EMV-enabled card must have a chip embedded in it.

I said, no.  My card was the regular card with the magnetic strip at the back.  She then proceeded to explain that my card was not captured by accident.  The machine that I used was calibrated to capture and destroy ATM cards that are not EMV-enabled.  All I need to do now is visit a branch of my bank and request for a new ATM card, one that has the EMV chip.

What is an EMV chip and why are banks encouraging its depositors to switch to this new technology? 

Since we are on the subject of identity fraud and all these types of personal information security, we decided to feature the five reasons why it is important to have all your ATM cards changed to the EMV-enabled version.

EMV, or Europay, MasterCard, and Visa, provide added security for credit and debit card users.  This is especially important if you like purchasing online where all your payment information is made available for just about anyone to intercept.  The EMV makes “swiping” cards a thing of the past; the term often used now is “insert your card” so the machine could read the EMV.

So why have all your ATM cards changed to EMV cards?  Read this!

  1. EMV allows more secure card-present transactions.

EMV smart cards offer better transaction security to all parties involved in the payment process.  While traditional magnetic stripe cards store all of your information in a single magnetic stripe (and a simple swipe is all it needs to complete a transaction), it also makes it easier for skimmers to intercept this information to create clones of your card.

EMV cards store your information in microprocessor smart chips that are encrypted to protect your data.  Unlike the magnetic stripe cards that leave all your card information available to just about anyone after a swipe, EMV chips make it more difficult to acquire and copy your data.  Encrypted information requires a certain technology in order for all stored data to be duplicated.

EMV cards also have various options for cardholder verification, unlike the magnetic cards where merchants only rely on your signature and any valid ID you can present – both can be copied and faked.

  1. EMV supports contact, contactless, and mobile transaction types.

EMV technology enables contactless transactions where cardholders tap their cards against the terminal.

Contact payments, such as the ones done in grocery counters, require the card to be inserted into the terminal for the duration of the transaction.

A more advanced feature of the EMV technology is the fast mobile wallet payment which allows customers to wave their smartphones over a terminal rather than dipping or tapping a card to a terminal.

  1. EMV is a global standard.

The Banko Sentral has ordered banks to issue EMV cards to all clients by June 2018.  This is a hard deadline that all banks must implement among its depositors.  If your ATM is not yet EMV-enabled, go visit your bank immediately to avoid the rush.

  1. Better information storage.

Since EMV chips are capable of storing more of your personal information, your identity as the owner and user of the card is likewise broader.  Unlike when using a magnetic stripe card where merchants only rely on your signature as proof of your identity, an EMV-enabled card provides more options to ensure that the card being used for the transaction is not stolen or duplicated.

  1. EMV systems can operate in offline mode.

EMV cards can perform offline transaction verification and offline cardholder verification.  This is one of the breakthroughs of the EMV technology that makes the magstripe cards look like play money.  EMV terminals can be configured to accept offline PIN codes, improving transaction security without requiring an online connection to banking systems.

If your card is not yet EMV-enabled, contact your bank now and ask how you can have your cards replaced with new ones.  If your old card gets captured in an ATM, don’t panic!  If your card is still magstripe, chances are it was captured more for your protection than anything else.  🙂

Share this with your loved ones!

Chips And Nibblers (1)

Closet Queen






Last week, we featured the reminders for Pinoy passport holders who are travelling as tourists and to work abroad under a contract.  Today, on our second and final installment of this 2-part series, we are going to share the basic documentary requirements for Pinoy emigrants and those travelling with a minor.

These were lifted from the Bureau of Immigration website.

  1. What are the departure requirements for emigrant Philippine citizens?
    • Unexpired passport;
    • Immigrant visa or residence card;
    • CFO-emigrant registration sticker (ERS); and
    • Validly-issued travel ticket.

The Emigrant Registration Sticker may be obtained by registering at the Commission on Filipino Overseas (CFO and by attending the pre-departure orientation seminar (PDOS).  Children aged 12 years old and below are exempted from attending the PDOS but still needs to register at the CFO.  Children aged 13 years and above need to attend the Peer Counseling Program.

2. When shall a DSWD-travel clearance for travelling Filipino minors be required?

A Filipino minor (below 18 years of age) shall secure a DSWD-issued Travel Clearance if:

  • He/she is traveling alone to a foreign country; or
  • He/she is traveling to a foreign country accompanied by a person other than his/her parents.

3. What are the exceptions to the DSWD-issued Travel Clearance?

These minor children shall be exempt from the DSWD-issued Travel Clerance:

  1. Those of Philippine Foreign Service or diplomatic corps officials;
  2. Those living abroad with Philippine emigrants, subject to child-trafficking regulations;
  3. Those with unexpired alien passports;
  4. Adopted children, subject to a court-issued adoption order with Certificate of Finality;
  5. Illegitimate children with biological mother. If traveling with biological father, a proof of lawful custody must be presented.
  6. Those with proof of unexpired visa for permanent residence outside the Philippines;
  7. Those accompanied by a court-appointed guardian, subject to proof of guardianship;
  8. Those accompanied by a solo parent, subject to a Social Welfare Office-issued ID.  If illegitimate, subject to a Local Civil Registrar-issued Certificate of No Marriage.

It is good to note that coming back home to the Philippines with a passport that has less than six months’ validity is allowed for the following:

    • Philippine passport holders;
    • Former Filipinos and their dependents (i.e. immediate family members);
    • Permanent Residents and other special visa categories requiring temporary residence (with valid ACR 1-Cards);
    • Holders of diplomatic, official, and government passports.
    • Holders of visa under Section 9 (except Sec. 9 (a) and 47 of Commonwealth Act No. 613, as amended, and special non-immigrant visas under special laws, where the validity of such visas extend beyond the expiration of their passports and there is an Embassy or Consulate in the Philippines of which they are a citizen or subject (with valid ACR-1-Cards, where applicable); and
    • Those admitted by the Commissioner on humanitarian grounds.

A complete list of the countries whose nationals are allowed entry in the Philippines even passports of less than six months validity from date of arrival is available at the BOI website.

Share these information with your family and friends to avoid delays and set-backs on your trips abroad.

Source: http://www.immigration.gov.ph/faqs/travel-req



If you are planning to visit China this coming holiday season, you’re in for a treat.

Pinoys who have been issued visas to certain countries may now be exempted from applying a visa to enter Taiwan.  This is an announcement made through the website of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in the Philippines.  Instead of a visa, an applicant may secure an ROC Travel Authorization Certificate instead.

Below are the conditions that an applicant must meet in order to enjoy visa-free entry to the said country:

  1. Applicant’s passport must have remaining validity of at least six months starting from the date of arrival in Taiwan.
  2. He or she must possess an onward/return air or ferry ticket.
  3. The applicant has never been employed as a blue-collar worker in Taiwan.
  4. The applicant must possess at least one of the following documents issued by Australia, Canada, Japan, Korea, New Zealand, any of the Schengen countries, the United Kingdom, or the United States.
    • Valid resident or permanent resident card;
    • Valid entry visa (may be electronic visa);
    • Resident card or visa that has expired less than 10 years prior to the date of arrival in Taiwan.

Note that work permits to the above countries are not considered as visa.

Upon receipt of the ROC Travel Authorization Certificate, the applicant must print a copy and be able to present this for inspection when entering Taiwan.  Entry will be denied to travelers who fail to execute the printed copy.

The ROC Travel Authorization Certificate is valid for 90 days and the holder may enter Taiwan multiple times within the 90-day  period.  Should the applicant find the need to extend his stay, he must request for an extension seven days prior to the expiry of his certificate.

There are no exemptions to the above-mentioned requirements.  Should an applicant not meet the requirements, or intend to study, work, or stay in Taiwan for more than 30 days, he or she must apply for the appropriate visas at the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in the Philippines.  Their address is at the 41st floor Tower 1, RCBC Plaza, Ayala Avenue, Makati City.

Source: http://www.roc-taiwan.org/ph_en/index.html



Pangkaraniwan ang kwento ng buhay nina Mavis at Tony. Si Tony ay anak ng mga American missionaries na dumalaw sa simbahan na kinabibilangan ni Mavis at ng kanyang pamilya. Natural-born U.S. citizen si Tony. Sa maikling panahon na inilagi niya sa Pilipinas, nahuli niya ang loob ni Mavis at hindi nag tagal, naging magkasintahan sila nito. Pinayuhan sila ng kanilang mga magulang na magtapos muna ng pag-aaral bago mag isip ng tungkol sa pag-ibig. Sinunod naman ng magkasintahan ang nais ng kanilang mga magulang; bumalik sa Amerika si Tony at si Mavis ay nagpatuloy sa kolehiyo sa Manila.

Nagta-trabaho na sa isang call center si Mavis nang bumalik si Tony sa Pilipinas. Isa na siyang Pastor at sinadya niyang magpa assign sa Manila para magkita silang muli ni Mavis. Napagpasyahan nilang ito na ang tamang panahon para lumagay sila sa tahimik kaya’t hindi na nag dalawang isip pa si Mavis nang yayain siya ni Tony na mag pakasal.

Bago ang kanilang first wedding anniversary, kinailangang bumalik ni Tony sa Amerika dahil nabalitaan nitong may sakit ang kaniyang ama. Naiwan si Mavis sa Pilipinas ngunit binilinan siya ni Tony na asiksuhin na niya ang kaniyang passport para maumpisahan na ang petition para sa kaniyang pag sunod sa Amerika.

Nag set ng appointment si Mavis sa www.passport.com.ph para sa kaniyang new passport application. Nakita niya na isa sa mga documentary requirements ay ang Guidance and Counseling Certificate of Attendance mula sa Commission of Filipino Overseas o CFO. Bilang asawa ng foreign national at dahil nais na din gamitin ni Mavis ang apelido ni Tony sa kaniyang passport, kailangan niyang mag submit nito sa DFA para kasama ng iba pang documentary requirements.

Ano nga ba ang Guidance and Counseling Certificate mula sa Commission of Filipino Overseas (CFO)?

Ang CFO ay nagbibigay ng seminar at counseling session para sa mga Filipino citizens na nakapag asawa ng foreign national. Ito ay isang paraan para matulungan ang mga Pilipino na may balak mag-migrate sa ibang bansa sa bisa ng kasal nila sa foreign national. Tinatalakay dito ang mga issue tungkol sa inter-marriage, migration, ang buhay at kultura sa ibang bansa, at iba pang related topics. Tumatagal ang seminar ng dalawang oras; pag natapos mo ito, bibigyan ka ng CFO Certificate of Attendance na siya mo namang ipapakita sa DFA kapag nag apply ka ng passport.

Kapag nakuha mo na ang iyong passport at visa, maaari ka nang mag register para sa Guidance and Counseling Certificate at makakuha ng CFO Emigrant Registration sticker. Ito ay ididikit sa iyong passport bilang patunay na natapos mo ang requirements mula sa CFO. Iche-check ito ng immigration officer sa araw ng pag-alis mo kaya’t siguraduhing kasama sa iyong hand-carry ang mga documents mula sa CFO (bukod sa iyong passport, tickets, at iba pang documents).

Narito ang mga requirements na kailangan mong ihanda bago ka makakuha ng Guidance and Counseling Certificate at CFO sticker:

  • Properly accomplished guidance and counseling forms
  • Two valid IDs with pictures
  • PSA Marriage Certificate (kung sa Pilipinas ikinasal)
  • Original and photocopy of Authenticated Marriage Contract by the Philippine Embassy or Consulate (kung sa ibang bansa ikinasal).
  • Counseling fee (P250)
  • Registration Fee (P400)
  • Additional supporting documents as may be required by CFO counselors.

Para sa kumpletong information tungkol sa mga location ng CFO offices at schedule ng mga Guidance and Counseling Programs, pumunta sa kanilang website . Kung nais mong mag attend ng Guidance and Counseling Program, kailangan mong mag set ng appointment online sa CFO website. Ang may mga confirmed online appointments lang ang ia-accommodate ng CFO para sa seminar.

Tulad ni Mavis, siguraduhing kumpleto ang iyong mga documentary requirements bago mag apply ng passport or mag renew.  May mga pagkakaiba sa mga requirements depende sa pakay ng byahe ng applicant kaya importanteng basahing mabuti ang mga information sa Passport Appointment System.

Reverification.jpgWhen applying for an Immigrant Visa to the U.S., an applicant may be required to submit additional documents to establish his eligibility. If this happens, the applicant is essentially “denied” under Section 221 (g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. There are no prescribed lists of documents you will be asked to submit; you will instead receive a letter from the US Embassy informing you of the additional documentation and how to submit these. It is important that you provide an active email address that you regularly access to avoid any delays in your response and submission as this will greatly affect your visa application.

In cases when the additional documents you need to submit are PSA-certified documents (or civil registry documents), such as: PSA Birth Certificate, PSA Marriage Certificate, PSA Death Certificate, you may follow the procedure below. These were lifted from http://manila.usembassy.gov/

Option 1: Submit the Re-verification Form in person at the Pasay City Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) outlet:

  1. Go to the Pasay City PSA outlet.
  2. Complete the colored NSO document request form provided at the PSA outlet.
  3. Submit BOTH the colored NSO document request form and the Re-verification Form to the PSA clerk.
  4. Pay the required fee. Keep your receipt. This serves as proof you submitted the form to PSA.

Note: This form will only be accepted in person at the Pasay City PSA outlet.

Option 2: Log on to www.nsohelpline.ph

  1. Click on the Order Now! Button.
  2. Choose the PSA document you need.
  3. Choose US Embassy Reverification; keep your reverification form.
  4. Fill out the Reverification Form Details and then click on the Submit button.

You also have the option to call the PSAHelpline hotline at 737-1111. If you are accessing the site with your phone, you will notice a “Call Now” green button on your screen. You may simply click on the icon to connect to a PSAHelpline customer care officer.

The PSA will submit the requested documents directly to the U.S. Embassy. All you have to do is be on standby for the embassy’s call or email regarding the status of your visa application. You may also contact the Visa Information and Appointment Service Center at (632) 976-8500, (632) 976-8501, or (632) 976-8502.


Whether it’s for pleasure or business, traveling is most often part of a young urban professional’s annual itinerary. The experiences and opportunities gathered from these trips are otherwise not offered if you remain confined in the four corners of your home or office. It could be disappointing to miss an opportunity to travel, especially if the hindrances are as petty as:

  1. You still don’t have a passport.
  2. You do have one but you’ve let it expire.
  3. You don’t have a visa.

You can easily take care of the first two reasons by simply setting an appointment at www.passport.com.ph. Prepare the necessary documents such as your PSA certified Birth Certificate, Marriage Certificate (if needed), and other supporting papers.  Appear before the DFA branch you set an appointment with and then wait for your passport to be delivered to you.

Getting over the third obstacle though could be quite intimidating.  Preparing the necessary documents and appearing before the interviewer are nerve-racking thoughts but are necessary if you are serious about obtaining a visa for a particular country.

Every Pinoy will have to go through this process; and the earlier you are able to complete the requirements and conquer the dreaded interview, the better!  So to help you prepare for your visa application process, here are five tips from Rappler (http://www.rappler.com/life-and-style/travel/53687-visa-application-tips-travel).

1.File all frequently requested documents in one bag/envelope and label accordingly.

A clear book with sturdy covers can help you organize your documents. Make at least five copies of these documents and make sure that the photocopies are clear so you would not need to photocopy the original while you are at the embassy.

Documents to include in your file are:

  • PSA Certified Birth Certificate
  • PSA Certified Marriage Certificate (if annulled, you will probably need a copy of your Marriage Certificate annotated by the NSO certifying that the marriage was declared null and void).
  • Latest Income Tax Return
  • For business owners, include business permits, business license and (audited) financial statements.
  • Photocopies of previous visas you have been issued (if there are any).
  • ID pictures: Different embassies will have different size requirements, so when you have your picture taken, have the picture reproduced in different size dimensions. You can get one picture taken in the standard 2×2 white background and one in the US visa size and Schengen size. (Note that for all visa requirements, both ears must be shown and women should not be wearing earrings.)
  • Proof of income and ownership such as land titles and or car registration documents.

Your old passports with other visa stamps must also be readily available so keep these in your visa application file folder too.

2. Keep a list of the countries you have visited.

Since most embassies require for a list of the countries you have visited, it is best that you keep track of your travels, including the dates. Do not rely on your memory or pictures in your Facebook timeline! Keep a soft copy of your travel journal and update this each time you travel. Print out your most updated list and bring this with you when you go to the embassy.

3. Make a checklist of the visa application requirements.

Every country has a different set of requirements to be presented to the visa processing center. Visit the embassy’s website and collect the list of requirements for the type of visa that you are applying for in that country. Invest time and effort in making sure that you have the correct list and then, that you have the complete set of requirements on hand.

Other things that you need to pay attention to are fees you need to pay, acceptable denominations (US dollars, Euros, Pesos, etc.), and payment modes (cash, manager’s check, etc.). It is wise to bring the exact change as well since some embassies will not offer change.

Lastly, make sure that you have the correct location of the visa processing center as these change from time to time.

4. Have a standard template for letters of introduction to consuls.

Some embassies require applicants to present a letter of introduction, including therein the purpose of your travel. Create a standard template that you can update whenever you need to apply for a visa.

The letter must have the following information:

  • Header with your name, contact details and if available, your visa application reference number.
  • Reason for travel
  • Duration of stay
  • Mention of other countries you have visited
  • How you will fund your trip
  • Day by day travel itinerary as an attachment

5. Befriend your Travel Agent.

 If you are a frequent traveler, it is best that you find a travel agent that you can trust. He or she can help you save time and effort in booking tickets and hotels, finding the best plane fare deals, and other travel details you may miss.

Your journey towards acquiring a visa can be less stressful with these tips. These do not guarantee that you will be granted a visa.

Non Visa Countries.jpg

What keeps you from grabbing that airfare promo? You know you want it, why don’t you get it? The most common answer one would get is: Hassle kumuha ng visa!

The Pinoy passport ranks 69th in the world for free entries. This can greatly discourage a first-time traveler from making an effort to apply for a visa in countries that require one. Only the promise of an employment or a family member pledging to pay for your tour can encourage you to step out and apply for that elusive permit to travel.

Oh but it doesn’t have to be that way. If we are to take things from a wider perspective, our Philippine passports give us free access to postcard-worthy islands and beaches, provinces rich in history and culture, centuries-old temples, flea markets and endless food trips in Southeast Asian countries. Places, sites, and experiences that other passport holders may need to pay dearly for to visit. Isn’t that good news? Sure it’s always exciting to travel to a different continent (like the US and Europe) but if you can’t summon the courage, time, and effort to work on your visa just yet, you can always visit our neighboring Asian countries.

To help you decide on which country to visit first, here is a list of visa-free countries for Pinoys I sourced from www.travelbook.ph.

Visa-free (no limits)

  • Colombia (Hello, Ariadna Gutierrez!)
  • Morocco
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (a southern Caribbean nation)
  • Suriname (a quaint country in South America)

Visa-free (limited number of days)

  • Bolivia – Visa-free for 60 days
  • Brunei – Visa-free for 14 days
  • Cambodia – Visa-free for 21 days
  • Costa Rica – Visa-free for 30 days
  • Ecuador – Visa-free for 90 days
  • Hong Kong – Visa-free for 14 days
  • Indonesia – Visa-free for 30 days
  • Laos – Visa-free for 30 days
  • Malaysia – Visa-free for 30 days
  • Peru – Visa-free for 60 days
  • Singapore – Visa-free for 30 days
  • Thailand – Visa-free for 30 days
  • Vietnam – Visa-free for 21 days

Visa-free (limited number of days plus special conditions)

  • Brazil – Visa-free for 90 days
    • for holders of diplomatic, official, and service passports, visa-free for:
      • Duration of tour of duty or
      • 180 days for official business or tourism
  • India – Visa upon arrival valid for 30 days (limited only to New Delhi and Mumbai airports)
  • Israel –
    • Visa-free for tourists (number of days of stay will depend on Immigration)
    • Visa-free for holders of diplomatic and official passports; visa is required for business.
  • Mozambique – Visa upon arrival valid for 30 days.
  • Palau – Visa-free for 30 days, visa upon arrival (provided that the Filipino national has a return/onward plane ticket)
  • Sri Lanka – Visa-free for 30 days, upon arrival (provided that the Filipino national has a return/onward plane ticket)
  • Tuvalu – Visa-free for 30 days, visa upon arrival (provided that the Filipino national has a return/onward plane ticket)
  • Vanuatu – Visa-free for 30 days, visa upon arrival (provided that the Filipino national has a return/onward plane ticket)
  • Zambia – Visa upon arrival:
    • Three months for tourism
    • One month for business

So, who says you can’t travel? All you need is a valid passport (not expiring within the next six months), your suitcase, some cash, and an unquenchable thirst to soak up a foreign, sometimes strange, culture!

Bon voyage!


Acquiring a visa to visit Japan as a tourist has become easier and more convenient for Filipinos.  Previous tourist visa holders are actually granted visas valid up to five years while tourists are now able to stay up to 30 days!  If your documents and IDs are complete and updated upon application, you are almost always guaranteed to be granted your visa and be able to take that long-awaited trip to the Land of the Rising Sun!

So how easy is it really to apply for a Japan tourist visa?  Well, here you go:

Tourist Visa (No Guarantor)

  1. Updated Passport
    • Passport will not be accepted if lamination of the photo part is broken.
    • Must have at least two blank pages left.
    • Must be signed.
  2. Visa Application Form 2012
    •  This is also available upon entry at the Embassy and at the offices of accredited agencies.
  3. Photo
    • 4.5cm x 4.5cm with white background
    • Paste the photo on the printed application form.
  4. PSA Certified Birth Certificate of the applicant
  5. Marriage Contract (if the applicant is married)
  6. Detailed Itinerary
  7. Bank Certificate
  8. Income Tax Return – Form 2316
    • Original and Photocopy

Document numbers 4 and 5 must be issued within one year upon application/submission. In case of non-record, the applicant must submit a Certificate of Non-Record along with the copy from the Local Civil Registrar.

Visiting Relatives Visa (With Guarantor)

  1. Updated Passport
    • Passport will not be accepted if lamination of the photo part is broken.
    • Must have at least two blank pages left.
    • Must be signed.
  2. Visa Application Form 2012 – this is also available at:
    • The Embassy website
    • Entrance of the Embassy
    • Through accredited agencies
  3. Photo
    • 4.5cm x 4.5cm with white background
    • Paste photo on application form
  4. PSA certified Birth Certificate (to prove relationship)
  5. PSA certified Marriage Certificate (if applicant is married)
  6. Reason for invitation from Guarantor residing in Japan.

IF GUARANTOR IS JAPANESE, submit the following:

  1. Family Registration (Koseki Tohon)
  2. Residence Certificate (JUMINHYO)
    • Both must have been issued within three months.

IF GUARANTOR IS NOT JAPANESE, submit the following:

  1. Residence Certificate (JUMINHYO)
    • With description of his / her family relationship with all Family members from the City Hall,
    • Photocopy of Passport (all pages) or
    • A copy of Residency Card.

Other Requirements:

  1. Bank certificate (if applicant shoulders the trip’s expenses)
  2. ITR Form 2316 (Original and Photocopy)
  3. Letter of Guarantee – MIMOTO HOSHOSYO
    • Should guarantor pay for some expenses of the trip
  4. Income Certificate from City Hall – SHOTOKU SHOMEISHO
  5. Tax Return Certificate from Tax Office – NOUZEISHOMEISHO: form 2

Your application must be filed through accredited agencies; the following are listed in the Japanese Embassy website:

  1. UHI
  2. Discovery Tour, Inc.
  3. Rajah Travel Corporation
  4. Reli Tours and Travel Agency
  5. Attic Tour Phils., Inc.
  6. Friendship Tours and Resorts Corporation
  7. Pan Pacific Travel Corporation (for with Japanese Guarantor)

Visa Validity and Processing Time

The average processing time is one week; it may take longer especially when submitted requirements are incomplete. There are instances when the applicant may be required to submit additional documents or appear personally for an interview. Case in point, it is important that you submit the complete and accurate set of documentary requirements.

Your accredited agency shall provide you updates on the status of your application.  Visa application is free of charge in the Philippines.  In the unfortunate event that your application be denied, reasons for denial will not be disclosed; you may re-apply after six months.

Usually, a tourist is granted a total of 15 days’ stay in Japan, counting from the date of his arrival. If purpose of visit is to see relatives residing in Japan, visa is allowed up to 90 days.

If you are planning on traveling to Japan soon, do check out the weather and find out what is the best season to visit. Most people would want to see the famous cherry blossom trees, known to be at its most beautiful during the months of April and May. But there are a lot of other sites you can enjoy if the said months don’t work for you.  Enjoy your visit!




How to Apply for Japan Visa in the Philippines

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