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ExpatPH

Philippines 2019 for new expats

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Posted (edited)
7 minutes ago, vogie said:

The money in the bank required for an expat in the phillipines $10,000 with a monthly income of $800, the money in the bank is roundabout the same as the Thai requirements (marriage), do they have agents there that can circumnavigate the bank requirements, or is there any other method to avoid depositing the cash.

Appologies if this has been mentioned earlier, but over 700 posts is a lot to trawl through.

 

Alternative tourist visa up to 3 years. Leave. Return next day, start over.

 

No money deposit required on tourist visa. No monthly requirement, no minimum deposit required.

 

SRRV deposit can be used to buy a condo. Else it must stay in bank until you cancel your SRRV

 

Note that US veterans have lower required amount. @lopburi3 know more about that than I do.

 

 

Edited by ExpatPH
Added info tourist visa
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Let me repeat this for others who jump in later.

 

NO minimum monthly income / pension needed for Tourist Visa, max 3 years.

 

NO minimum deposit in bank required for tourist visa.

 

No pension letter required.

 

Tourist visa extension, Immigration don't ask for proof of income or bankbook or bank letter or pension letter. Forget all this in Philippines. Only fill out application form for 1-2-6 months.

 

SRRV somehow similar to retirement visa in Thailand have different categories and amounts. From 1,000$ - 20,000$ deposit in bank. Amount must stay in bank to keep SRRV visa valid. A yearly smaller fee.

 

Allowed to use SRRV deposit to buy condo, if condo later sold, deposit required back in bank, or SRRV visa voided.

 

No 90 days report.

No proof of your location required.

No 24 hours rule to report new location.

 

Most stay on tourist visa forever, even many married on 13A visa find it just easier to stay on tourist visa.

 

 

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Posted (edited)

Agents.

 

Immigration clamped down on agents some years ago 'No Fixers'.

 

Travel agents can do your tourist visa extension legally for 800 - 1500 PHP.

Do it yourself visa extension takes 2-3 hours on average. In Cebu city immigration is located inside J Centre mall, easy to pass waiting time. Other immigration office located at Mactan has less waiting time.

 

SRRV Application has agents working legally for you, and one get a short list of names of agents to use. Highly recommended by those who applied for SRRV.

Do it yourself, expect lots of red tape and delays.

 

Expats been here 10+ years, many still on tourist visa, some on 13a (married) some on SRRV.

 

Edited by ExpatPH

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I am 31, I think Vietnam has more to offer in terms of value for money and food for me (no need to cook myself as in Thailand).

 

I see the big positives in the Philippines (from all my research) in the people, friendliness / socializing, and flexible visa. No more planning required when my next extension will be, when I can travel, planning that my extension will be shortly before the smoky season so I can go away for 3 months etc etc.

 

It is all a trade-off as you said. So for now, living in Thailand, I trade good accommodation / food for some time/effort with immigration.

But I value total flexibility - I could, but I do not want to buy Elite card, it is like a prison for 20 years, because once I leave the country I paid for nothing. Also I do not trust them with all the changes in immigration. Advance-payments for such a long time is just not a good investment for me. Philippines with a maximum of 6 months extension at a time, that is really a dream. Leaving whenever I want, worst case I lose some money for a few months paid in advance. Philippines wins hands down with flexibility and visa. Easy to travel around with no tm30 and stuff like that.

 

Philippines and Vietnam are good options, if there is ever a crackdown on ED visa. For Vietnam I like DaNang and SGN for more experience - just bigger and more to see. Actually I will be going to SGN next month, since Vientiane is now no longer an option for new visas. The school urged me not to go to Laos for a new ED visa, they started refusing.

 

I do not see many people talking about Cambodia; but I guess I should check it out too.

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Now my question is, why do you think PH would be boring for younger people (below 50)?

It is a "new country" for someone who has not lived there before, I see (e.g. looking at Cebu) lots of streets / city life to explore, mountains, beaches over to Bohol etc.

Do you think Vietnam makes it more interesting because it is more exotic as Thailand?

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Philippines is ok if you like boiled fish heads.

Thailand has a lot more to offer and I can put up with jumping through a few hoops, it doesn't bother me or stress me out like some here.

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28 minutes ago, cerox said:

Now my question is, why do you think PH would be boring for younger people (below 50)?

It is a "new country" for someone who has not lived there before, I see (e.g. looking at Cebu) lots of streets / city life to explore, mountains, beaches over to Bohol etc.

Do you think Vietnam makes it more interesting because it is more exotic as Thailand?

 

Good question cerox.

I base my personal opinion from those younger (30ish) expats who already left, for Vietnam.

I also followed many vlogs from Vietnam.

Advantage in Vietnam:

● Faster internet.

● Better modern apartments

● All the frills same Thailand.

● Better / more nightlife.

● Better food

● Overall faster pace of life.

 

For the younger crowd, I see many advantages.

But, not all are the same, so I'm sure some individuals only in their 30s will enjoy Philippines as well. All depends of our needs, wants and expectations.

 

When you reach 50+ you get other priorities.

If you already experienced other countries become less attractive over the years, Philippines becomes a alternative, same as many other destinations do recently.

 

Age 50+:

● Slower pace of life

● less need for nightlife

● Appreciate more friendly natives

● Appreciate the culture based on courtesy, politeness all the way.

 

Example, seen arrest of criminals here in Philippines. Even in this situation, police behave with respect to the criminal. No kicking, no accidental hits to his body, its all done in a well mannered way.

 

Exotic? English language make culture barrier less in Philippines. Maybe less exotic although easier. What do people want most. Up to each of us. 

 

As 50+ myself, 'easy' get high priority. English widely spoken so no need to learn a new language. And as we both know so well, its not always a advantage to speak and understand the local language.

Still lots of learning and adjustments to enjoy.

 

Is it exotic to order food in a local restaurant in Vietnam? Seems so, based on vlogs. Even google translate isn't to much help in Vietnam. A frustration for some.

 

Wherever you choose to go, you are well prepared it seems, and know what to expect, and not.

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1 minute ago, ExpatPH said:

 

Good question cerox.

I base my personal opinion from those younger (30ish) expats who already left, for Vietnam.

I also followed many vlogs from Vietnam.

Advantage in Vietnam:

● Faster internet.

● Better modern apartments

● All the frills same Thailand.

● Better / more nightlife.

● Better food

● Overall faster pace of life.

 

For the younger crowd, I see many advantages.

But, not all are the same, so I'm sure some individuals only in their 30s will enjoy Philippines as well. All depends of our needs, wants and expectations.

 

When you reach 50+ you get other priorities.

If you already experienced other countries become less attractive over the years, Philippines becomes a alternative, same as many other destinations do recently.

 

Age 50+:

● Slower pace of life

● less need for nightlife

● Appreciate more friendly natives

● Appreciate the culture based on courtesy, politeness all the way.

 

Example, seen arrest of criminals here in Philippines. Even in this situation, police behave with respect to the criminal. No kicking, no accidental hits to his body, its all done in a well mannered way.

 

Exotic? English language make culture barrier less in Philippines. Maybe less exotic although easier. What do people want most. Up to each of us. 

 

As 50+ myself, 'easy' get high priority. English widely spoken so no need to learn a new language. And as we both know so well, its not always a advantage to speak and understand the local language.

Still lots of learning and adjustments to enjoy.

 

Is it exotic to order food in a local restaurant in Vietnam? Seems so, based on vlogs. Even google translate isn't to much help in Vietnam. A frustration for some.

 

Wherever you choose to go, you are well prepared it seems, and know what to expect, and not.

The biggest advantage for the Brits in the Philippines would be the unfrozen pensions, it can make a very big difference. I have been drawing mine in Thailand now for four years and I have already lost £40ish, the Philippines is looking very tempting.

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, vogie said:

The biggest advantage for the Brits in the Philippines would be the unfrozen pensions, it can make a very big difference. I have been drawing mine in Thailand now for four years and I have already lost £40ish, the Philippines is looking very tempting.

 

That explains the high number of Brits we have here. A friendly group all of them, and they seem happy here. Meetup at bars in Ayala mall for a few pints ... and the fish & chips here is rather good I must say.

 

So you saying that in Thailand, Brit pension is on frozen amount, while here in Philippines, your pension get regulated up yearly, same most europeans?

 

th.jpeg.jpg

Edited by ExpatPH
Edit photo from TGIF Philippines

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Oh I need to go eat fish&chips again 🙂

Good summary, thank you. That is what I thought. Esp. those working online, fast Internet and a decent accommodation is important. When you stay and work home, you do not want to stay in a crappy room or pay as much as you would back in a developed country.

With exotic I meant everything, language, culture, religion, food etc. Philippines seems more easy to adjust for Westerners because of the same religion and English.

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3 minutes ago, ExpatPH said:

 

That explains the high number of Brits we have here. A friendly group all of them, and they seem happy here. Meetup at bars in Ayala mall for a few pints ... and the fish & chips here is rather good I must say.

 

So you saying that in Thailand, Brit pension is on frozen amount, while here in Philippines, your pension get regulated up yearly, same most europeans?

 

th.jpeg.jpg

Not all european pensions are frozen, might be only the British. I believe that the only country in  Asia where UK pensions are not frozen is in the Philippines. Yes in the Philippines the pension would be upgraded yearly as they have an agreement with the UK.

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Repeat for new readers.

 

After 2 months stay in the Philippines, in Cebu one can apply for 2 x 6 month extension apply the 2nd one next day.

(Not all areas allow this)

 

Then one have 12 months of valid visa, that some LTO require, and one can apply for local driver license.

 

Pay fee, see doctor, eye test (no worries, all pass) some area still require urine test (drug test) go to dedicated office for printing temporary paper DL or if you lucky a plastic DL. Think I paid 700 PHP per license. First time 1 year validity, renewal get 5 year validity.

 

One are allowed to drive on DL from home, up to 90 days in country, most checkpoint are inconsistent, can ask for IDL, some ask for passport. If one see LTO on their back, expect thorough check.

 

Unlicenced vehicles get impounded at checkpoint, same with 'for registration' plate, after first 7 days. Impound fee, daily fee, it quickly become more. Vehicle will not be released until all docs are in order.

 

Traffic move much slower here than in Thailand. No street racing here, no need to be worried to drive a motorcycle.

 

Buying a small or big motorcycle are cheaper here than in Thailand. Midsize 300-700cc can be 1,000$ less.

 

Only passport and money required to buy a vehicle. Nothing else. New motorcycle get a 'for registration plate' driving only allowed for 7 - seven days only. Then one wait for temporary plate, digits only. It can take 1 month to 1+ year to get this plate. Final registration plate can take from 1 month to more than 1 year. Always buy from a recommended dealer who expedite registration quickly, alternative buy 2nd hand.

New cars get temporary digit plate almost instantly these days, and can drive without restrictions.

 

And lastly, get a good extended 3rd party insurance, just saying.

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I am sorry I am not sure whether I understand that correctly.

I buy a new motorcycle and after 7 days I cannot drive it anymore. Then I have to wait (worst case) 2 years for temporary/final plate?! Or do I get another temporary plate?

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Posted (edited)

New motorcycle:

 

1. Out the shop = for registration, valid 7 days only.

 

2. Temporary digit plate after 1 month in best case, up to 1+ year.

 

3. Final number plate, letters and digits.

 

Unbelivable but true.

 

Edit: in between, you have to park vehicle, or drive illegal and take your chances...

 

Edited by ExpatPH
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2 years?

So I never need to bother about a motorbike or even a license. Who wants to plan his whole life so much in advance. Not doing the same mistake again as in Thailand - no attachments.

Now I understand why all these vloggers ride motorbike taxis and do not drive their own... Really sad, but thanks for the heads up.

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