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Extending your visa in the Philippines as a tourist.

Discussion in 'Migrating to the Philippines' started by Dave C, Dec 12, 2013.

  1. Markham
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    Markham . Lifetime Member

    I believe what you are actually getting is a new 9(a) Visitors Visa from the Philippine Embassy. That is NOT the same as an Extension which is only available from the Bureau of Immigration within the Philippines.

    You can apply for a Tourist ACR-I Card at any BI office. They cost $50 and are only valid for one year.

    You will need to show an exit/return ticket at the airline check-in counter for your flight to the Philippines. Only a valid e-ticket is acceptable but some airlines may accept those stored on a tablet/smartphone but this is not guaranteed. The Immigration Officer at your airport of arrival will very likely also ask to see your exit/return ticket.
  2. Jim
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    Jim Well-Known Member Trusted Member

    Just got back from the BI and P7,795 lighter, for a 59 day extension. My stupid fault for staying a few extra days. Next time I'm going to stay for 59 days lang.:(
  3. Bootsonground
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    Bootsonground Well-Known Member

    A straight 6 month visa is about 12/13k and then about 8 k for next 6 months??
    About 300 Quid a year.
  4. bigmac
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    bigmac Well-Known Member Trusted Member


    so--it makes the UK general visit visa seem a bargain
  5. Jim
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    Jim Well-Known Member Trusted Member

    Can you get those 6 months visa in the BI? I had to pay P 3150 for 29 days wavier visa, then P 7,950 for the extension! Only staying for 64 days. No matter what I write on the BI form, same 29 days then the extension!
    • Like Like x 1
  6. Bootsonground
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    Bootsonground Well-Known Member


    I believe you can get them at B.I Manila or Cebu.
    • Like Like x 1
  7. whipster
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    whipster BANNED

    in Cebu whatever you do don't get an extension at the new main BoI office at the Mandaue J-Mall. They're hopeless there. It takes about 2 hours. Go to the satellite BoI office at the Island Mall in Lapu Lapu. That took, amazingly, less than 5 minutes for them to process in November 2015 after I handed over the 3,130 fee beating my previous best, which was eight minutes, in the Bacolod BoI in 2012. I always start my stopwatch the moment they take the money. Getting extensions done is easy, not time-consuming, and there is no reason, at all, to get someone else to do it on your behalf, although my 2nd extension in the sleepy small-scale Tagbilaran BoI office this year took much longer than my first one in Lapu Lapu did, it was still only 45 minutes.
  8. Markham
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    Markham . Lifetime Member

    I doubt that there is little difference in time taken if travelling time to cross to Lapu-Lapu and back is taken into account. Plus the additional taxi fares.
  9. Markham
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    Markham . Lifetime Member

    Six month extensions are also available at Davao BoI on JP Laurel Avenue. And, I believe at Angeles and Olongapo/Subic.
  10. whipster
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    whipster BANNED

    that depends where you're coming from and how. If you are driving there on a motorbike from Compostela, like I was, then the difference is non-existent. And even if you were coming in a taxi from downtown, the taxi fare is only about 60-70 pesos more to Island Mall in Lapu Lapu than it is to J-Mall in Mandaue. At the moment with the bridge works going on, traffic is appalling to and from Mactan island and somebody might want to avoid going to Island Mall for that reason, but normally Island Mall is a much better place for people in Cebu to get an extension than J-Mall is.
  11. Markham
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    Markham . Lifetime Member

    In your opinion.

    Far better to support a local business by letting Paul and Elsa Whiteway obtain the extension. It then doesn't matter if BoI takes 5 minutes or two hours to issue the extension.
  12. whipster
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    whipster BANNED


    it does matter quite a bit when they now charge 1,200. When I had one done myself at Lapu Lapu it cost me about 35 pesos in fuel , even with driving from Compostela I left at about 8.30am and was out of there and finished by 10am. It wasn't a hassle at all, but a pleasurable experience. I have much better things to do with 1,200 plus pesos than that, frankly. 1,200 pesos is a substantial amount of money in the Philippines. It takes somebody in a Jollibee more than two full days' work to earn that kind of money.

    gettig an extension done with them was not so bad before they massively raised the price to 1,200 from the 700 it was before, but even before they raised the price so hugely, I stll thought 700 was fairly expensive.

    the only places I know of where there are outfits that do extensions for a reasonable price are in Angeles and Subic. You can get them done for less than 500 there, sometimes apparently even only 2-300 and at that price then yes I might well consider it although it is not as if either the Angeles or BoI Olongapo offices, each of which I have got extensions at, are anything like as time-consuming as the Cebu J-Mall is currently. Oh, and the travel agents where you can get extensions for under 500 in Angeles and Subic really are 'local' businesses. Totally Filpino owned and staffed. No foreigner involvement at all. That's why they charge so very much less. They don't have to have these really high profit margins that many foreigners tend to insist on.
  13. Markham
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    Markham . Lifetime Member

    My daughter spent each of the summer holidays whilst she was at university working in an ice cream van. She told me that the average mark-up is between 300% and 600% depending on the product. So I think it's a bit rich you complaining about another business' charges when they're offering a service of convenience to you.

    For that P1,200 they collect and deliver throughout the metro Cebu area and have all the necessary forms prepared for you ready to sign. And that fee also includes collecting and delivering the Tourist ACR Card. I doubt that the agencies you mention in Angeles and Subic offer such a full service at the price you indicate. Not only that but they have quite an investment in their rental bikes which they have to maintain and exchange for new ones every so often. Plus they need licences, permits and bonds for their business; it all adds up.

    Fortunately there is a good number of other foreigners who aren't quite so penny-pinching and who have better things to do with their time than to sit in a BoI office.

    You can thank me and you can thank Bob Ward for the price increase. We have both nagged Paul to charge realistic prices for his various services since he started his business. He has at last seen sense.

    You strive to make a profit, why shouldn't they?
  14. whipster
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    whipster BANNED

    false analogy. Desert courses always have high mark-ups. A whippy cornet only costs about 6p to produce but you cannot possibly sell it for less than 10 times that amount. People would not know the value of it. They'd just play games with it, and throw it around. And ice cream sellers basically all charge the same except the very few that are in premium locations like central London. And their mark ups are a lot more than 600%. More like 2-3000%.

    but sellers of extensions don't all charge the same and certainly not anything like 1,200. So why do properly 'local' businesses in the Philippines, where is no foreigners involved at all, like ones I've seen in Angeles and Subic, only charge 500 or even less for the exact same service?

    those vendors in Subic and Angeles pick and deliver everything for 500 or less. They have shops, offices, and overheads. Their customers aren't 'penny-pinching'. They're just not idiots. Charging 1,200 to get a first extension on behalf of someone else, which any idiot can do, requires no skill at all, takes up only a few hours and which a Filipino will be happy to do for about 200 pesos pay, is just ridiculous.
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2016
  15. Markham
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    Markham . Lifetime Member

    Strangely enough, foreigners tend to have a higher standard of living compared to many Filipinos and that has to be paid for. I do realise that P1,200 is about your daily budget to include accommodation, food, beverages and entertainment for yourself and whichever young lady is your "guest de jour"; therefore you might begrudge paying that amount for something that you say "any idiot can do, requires no skill at all, takes up only a few hours"; which actually speaks volumes about you! Nevertheless Paul's regulars often have better things to do with their time than spend it in some sweaty BoI office.

    There's also the issue of trust. Some foreigners may not feel too comfortable about entrusting their Passports with some local they don't know and who very likely doesn't have insurance. Paul and Elsa's business has full insurance and is bonded.

    I used them for all my extensions between 2007 and 2010 during which time I happily paid his fee - and if he had increased his prices during that time, I'd have still used him.
  16. whipster
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    whipster BANNED

    would you care to explain exactly why I or anybody else for that matter, should be expected to pay for a foreigner to have a 'higher standard of living' by being charged three times more than a local Filipino business charges for the exact same service?
    • Like Like x 1
  17. Markham
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    Markham . Lifetime Member

    You rarely ever associate with Expats out here many of whom don't approve of your mongering lifestyle. So you wouldn't feel inclined to pay a peso or two more for a SML in an Expat-run bar just as you wouldn't pay a little more to an Expat business to organise and obtain your extensions. Fortunately not all who visit this country from abroad are quite as penny-pinching as you.

    You never know, Paul or Elsa may read this thread and it would be poetic justice if they bore your words in mind when next renting you a motorcycle.
  18. whipster
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    whipster BANNED

    good luck to Paul and Elsa if they can find customers fool enough to pay such an exhorbitant amount for such a small service.

    getting extensions done is not difficult. You said that the BoI premises are 'sweaty' when they are nothing of the sort - and I should know this as well as anybody because I must have got extensions in about 15 different BoI offices all over the Philippines over the years including all the ones in Cebu, Negros, Bohol, and Leyte (that is seven offices alone).. They are all of them - no matter how small - airconditioned, quite well appointed, and fairly comfortable. In some of them you are out of there in less than 30 minutes and in almost none of them are you in there for over an hour. Good luck to them if they can find idiots ready to pay 1,200. It's a large amount of money. A worker in a Jollibee gets 39 pesos an hour. Add it up for yourself. Starting on Monday morning at 6am, and doing a ten hour day, it would take them three whole days, to earn that 1,200. The last-but-one extension I got, in Lapu Lapu I was in and out of there in 15 minutes.

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