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  1. #15362
    Quote Originally Posted by Mdemde  [View Original Post]
    I arrived back in the Philippines last month and was given a 30-days tourist visa on arrival. I have just obtained a 29 day visa waiver (extension of stay) from my local Bureau of Immigration office. This 29 day period is the maximum period allowed when requesting extra time on your initial 30-days visa on arrival.

    At the end of this 29 day period I will be eligible to apply for either a 2 month or a 6 month visa waiver and then to continue doing this up to a maximum period of 3 years, after which you must exit the country.

    I had read reports earlier this year that said the BOI were not issuing visa waivers to tourists. I had previously managed to stay for 3 years using their visa waivers and I was very concerned and worried about this supposed rule change as I plan to stay for at least another 3 years. But as it turned out, my worries were for nothing!
    This might be more helpful if you were to identify with which passport you are utilizing to make your visa.

  2. #15361

    Visa waiver (extension of stay)

    I arrived back in the Philippines last month and was given a 30-days tourist visa on arrival. I have just obtained a 29 day visa waiver (extension of stay) from my local Bureau of Immigration office. This 29 day period is the maximum period allowed when requesting extra time on your initial 30-days visa on arrival.

    At the end of this 29 day period I will be eligible to apply for either a 2 month or a 6 month visa waiver and then to continue doing this up to a maximum period of 3 years, after which you must exit the country.

    I had read reports earlier this year that said the BOI were not issuing visa waivers to tourists. I had previously managed to stay for 3 years using their visa waivers and I was very concerned and worried about this supposed rule change as I plan to stay for at least another 3 years. But as it turned out, my worries were for nothing!

  3. #15360
    Quote Originally Posted by WestCoast1;2733074.
    Then within 24 hours you need (ed) a negative covid test, which you upload a picture of the certificate..
    My understanding is that fully vaccinated travellers no longer require the covid test. Maybe t has changed since you entered.

  4. #15359

    Life returns

    Well, look who's back. Coming back in with the required covid test, and completing the OHP was less problematic than I thought, but was still a PITA. Regarding OHP. You start entering your info 3 days before your departing flight, including sending them your vax card picture, and answer some health questions. Then within 24 hours you need (ed) a negative covid test, which you upload a picture of the certificate. At that point, OHP generates to you a rectangular bar code, which is good enough to get you on your flight. Within 4 hours of your departure, you are supposed to log into OHP, and it should generate a square QR code.

    When I checked in at the airport with my rectangular bar code, that was enough to get me on the plane. However the airline checkin agents were looking thru every piece of documentation, for everyone (it takes time). But logging in to OHP didn't get my my QR code. I tried it several times, right up to the point of being seated on the plane at the gate, waiting pushback. No QR code. Well, OK. A QR code seemed no big deal, according to OHP is simply gets you thru to an 'Express Lane' for Phils Immigration on arrival. However when I landed at my connecting airport, I logged in again to OHP, and the QR code showed up. There were many other passengers at the connecting airport who were not getting their QR code. It turned out to be a clear advantage. Once arriving at NAIA, there were military, dividing up the arriving throng into two groups: QR code to the right, and everyone else to the left. To the left they were lining up to sit and chat with DOH personnel who was going thru all of their documents (at the time, that's a bunch: vax card, covid test, PP, onward ticket, and so on. After they finished there they were heading to the regular Immigration booths. But to the right, there were 2 Immigration booths, and only 2 of us who seemed to have a QR code. They swiped my PP and asked to see my outbound flight. They even gave me an extra day after my outbound flight on the stamp. Then they sent me to baggage claim. Made it thru Immigration in record time, not just because there was no line, but because their checking my stuff seemed to be cursory, a quick look-see. "Enjoy your stay sir". Yes ma'am, there's a good chance that will be happening.

    Lets start with Ayala in Makati. All 5 Greenbelts are up / running. Lots of changes in G3. All the restos appear to be re-opened. The first 3 pics are near the Starbucks downstairs show the old Havana Cafe area. HC is gone, replaced with a different resto. The other pics are restos on level 2 and are operating. Everything across the street at LandMark and Glorieta appears to be operating.

    More later on Burgos.
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  5. #15358
    Quote Originally Posted by WestCoast1  [View Original Post]
    My preference is to pre-purchase a 1-way flight to HK, BKK, or such (whichever is cheapest) on CP or PAL (whoever is having a promo), for day 29. That will get you thru Immigration. Then I go to my CP or PAL account online and cancel the flight, which puts the money into the CP or PAL account. Later after extending, I will use it to fly to Cebu or other province. It all works out in the end. I realize that might not work for the 2-week warrior.
    Yes this works well too, their travel fund and their site seems to work a bit better nowadays, and you will end up flying Cebu Pacific at some point if you visit Phils frequently.

  6. #15357
    Quote Originally Posted by GDreams  [View Original Post]
    If you buy a fully refundable fare you can cancel it with full or nearly full refund. You arrive, show your onward ticket then the next day cancel it? No fake document just a valid ticket that you get a refund on. Why involve a third party?
    Exactly. This way you will present a fully legit booking at the border crossing. You were in good faith when you presented it (although they very seldom ask you to).

  7. #15356
    The 'Every Man Has A Story' YouTube channel recently reported (for the benefit of antivaxers) that Cebu is admitting tourists, subject to 5 days' hotel quarantine and tests; via Manila vax is still compulsory for entry. A dive into the dank web revealed QR-certificates of vaccination, tailored to country-of-origin by selection, for $149.

  8. #15355
    Quote Originally Posted by PuteNut  [View Original Post]
    OK, I will rephrase that for clarity, I thought the (booked / cancelled) part made it clear enough. What those sites do is to "help" you perform a booking and then cancel it for you. If you try to use this cancelled, non-valid booking at a border crossing, you are essentially presenting fake credentials. Will often work, but sometimes not. Getting caught lying to border officials may lead to negative outcomes.
    My preference is to pre-purchase a 1-way flight to HK, BKK, or such (whichever is cheapest) on CP or PAL (whoever is having a promo), for day 29. That will get you thru Immigration. Then I go to my CP or PAL account online and cancel the flight, which puts the money into the CP or PAL account. Later after extending, I will use it to fly to Cebu or other province. It all works out in the end. I realize that might not work for the 2-week warrior.

  9. #15354
    Quote Originally Posted by PuteNut  [View Original Post]
    OK, I will rephrase that for clarity, I thought the (booked / cancelled) part made it clear enough. What those sites do is to "help" you perform a booking and then cancel it for you. If you try to use this cancelled, non-valid booking at a border crossing, you are essentially presenting fake credentials. Will often work, but sometimes not. Getting caught lying to border officials may lead to negative outcomes.
    If you buy a fully refundable fare you can cancel it with full or nearly full refund. You arrive, show your onward ticket then the next day cancel it? No fake document just a valid ticket that you get a refund on. Why involve a third party?

  10. #15353
    Quote Originally Posted by GDreams  [View Original Post]
    Why would you buy a fake ticket? There are real tickets that you can purchase that are fully refundable or refundable with a small fee.
    OK, I will rephrase that for clarity, I thought the (booked / cancelled) part made it clear enough. What those sites do is to "help" you perform a booking and then cancel it for you. If you try to use this cancelled, non-valid booking at a border crossing, you are essentially presenting fake credentials. Will often work, but sometimes not. Getting caught lying to border officials may lead to negative outcomes.

  11. #15352
    Quote Originally Posted by WestCoast1  [View Original Post]
    What is a 'verifiable PNR'?
    Passenger Name Record.

  12. #15351
    Quote Originally Posted by MrEnternational  [View Original Post]
    Yeah sometimes you need an actual ticket number and not just a reservation number. But I think those sites may be booking the actual ticket then canceling the reservation. In other words, doing the same thing that you could do for free, but they are charging you $20 to do it.
    Exactly, Mr E. It's just paying for a worthless "service". You will end up with a no longer valid reservation either way.

  13. #15350
    Quote Originally Posted by MrEnternational  [View Original Post]
    Yeah sometimes you need an actual ticket number and not just a reservation number. But I think those sites may be booking the actual ticket then canceling the reservation. In other words, doing the same thing that you could do for free, but they are charging you $20 to do it.
    The route from CRK-SIN is only about $60-65 I opt for this ticket because its a real verifiable ticket. I would buy a round trip ticket but set the return date as far out as I could get it so I would use that half of the ticket for my next return trip. I DID fly the other leg of the trip so I don't think any breaches of policy were committed. But I used to buy a ticket say from Depart in JAN and Return in OCT and then buy a ticket from CRK to SIN at the 30 day mark to show at check in. I would then be free to book my return ticket whenever I felt like it within that 8 moth period. Reason is round trip tickets are cheaper than buying 2 one way tickets so I would juggle these tickets to save a few bucks as I am getting older the need to budget is not as much of an issue and too much hassle. I fly business class now when I can get a deal so I stopped doing this some time ago.

    EDIT: I also used this ticket legitimately a few times as SIN has direct flights to Chiang mai, Laos, Myanmar and flights to Jakarta are cheaper through SIN than MNL, during "covid" I don't plan to visit more than 1 country.
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  14. #15349

    Flying in

    Thanks for this post. Flew in from US last week and was still a little anxious about not getting in somehow. My experience was basically the with getting the OHP a couple days ahead.

    Flew by way of Seoul (Incheon) . In the US, they checked my vax car, but didn't seem to know what the OHP was. Also didn't check for onward ticket.

    In Seoul though, there was a special line for those of us headed to Manila and they checked that I had the OHP and my vax card and an onward ticket.

    In Manila, they asked to see OHP screenshot on my phone and then stamped my boarding pass with a green stamp saying "self quarantine" I think. I mention this as I don't always keep track of boarding passes after getting on a plane. I was asked 2 times at checkpoints to see my boarding pass with the stamp. May have asked at the passport check too, I can't recall.

    For onward tickets, I tend to just buy an Air Asia flight flex ticket. Costs a bit more, but you can change your dates 2 times. This time I bought a ticket to Bangkok, as I plan to got there at some point anyway. Cost about 175 USD. I have also done this same to KL in the past. From there, you can take another flight to many other cities in this part of the world. So if you are unsure of where your next destination will be, it's a good option.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mdemde  [View Original Post]
    Last week, two days before my flight from Bkk to Manila, I registered online at https://onehealthpass.com.ph by way of clicking on the 'Register' button/link though there is another button/link named 'e-HDC' which appears to link thru to the same page as the first link.

    You will be unable to register more than 72 hours before your departure date.

    After completing the form with my personal details, I then uploaded a copy of my vax record, in all, it took less than 5 minutes. I did not need to provide a pre-departure negative covid test result.

    Within a few seconds after hitting the submit button, their website confirmed my registration and I was given a ten-digit registration code. You can take a screenshot of this page which includes a QR code. There was a note that said they would email me with confirmation but it never arrived.

    Later, I went back to their website and clicked on the 'My Profile' button/link, after entering my surname and the ten-digit registration code it brought up a page with a 'VALID FOR BOARDING' message. It had a barcode, this is the proof you will need to show when you are checking in with your airline and also when you arrive in the Philippines so take a screenshot.

    When travelling to the Philippines there is no longer any requirement to have insurance. And if you are 'fully vaxxed' (check https://onehealthpass.com.ph to see their definition of 'fully vaxxed') you are no longer required to obtain a pre-departure negative covid test result.

    When I dropped my bag off with Philippine Airlines at their check-in desk at Suvarnabhumi airport in Bkk, for my Bkk-Manila flight, I was asked by the check-in clerk to show my vax card and proof of registration with onehealthpass. I showed her the screenshots on my phone and she gave me the ok. She then asked me for details of my onward flight from the Philippines, which I didn't have, and she told me that I couldn't board the flight unless I was able to show her details of an onward flight! She advised me to make a booking online.

    I explained that I was actually travelling back to the Philippines on a return ticket that originated in Cebu, and that I was not flying one-way to the Philippines.

    She then asked if I live in the Philippines and I said yes, though I do not have citizenship or residency. I still have a rental lease on a condo unit in Cebu City and all my possessions are in the unit. I lived in Cebu City on extended tourist visas for 3 years from July 2019 up till the beginning of this month which was when I had to leave the country, on a visa-run.

    The check-in clerk then asked if I had any proof that I had been living in the Philippines, so I showed her my still valid Philippine ACR I-Card (issued by Immigration, and is required for all foreign nationals who have stayed for more than 59 days in the Philippines). 5 seconds later she gave me the OK and finished off the check-in procedure!

    After arriving at T2 at NAIA in Manila, I headed for the Immigration desk. Just before the Immigration desk security staff were directing all arriving passengers off into a small holding area where we were asked to show proof of registration with onehealthpass. I opened up my phone and showed a screenshot of the 'VALID FOR BOARDING' page, it was quickly scanned, presumably to make sure that it matched up with the one that was in their database.

    So, after they confirmed my registration with onehealthpass, I was out and headed off to the Immigration desk. There was only person in front of me when I got there, when it was my turn I stepped forward and offered my passport, and was asked how long I plan to stay. I said I plan to stay about 2, maybe 3 weeks. I was not asked for proof of onward travel. After about a minute my passport was returned, stamped with a one-month tourist visa.

    Having cleared Immigration, I went to collect my luggage and then headed off to the Domestic Terminal to catch my flight back to Cebu.

    After arriving in the Philippines back in July 2019 I was given a one-month tourist visa, and then kept extending it up to 3 years which is the maximum period they will give you, after which you must exit the country. There have been reports that some Immigration offices in the Philippines are now refusing to extend the one-month on arrival visa which is offered to tourists from most Western countries.

    Next month I will try to extend my one-month visa, and I would be interested to hear from other board members who have managed to recently extend their one-month on arrival visas.

  15. #15348
    Quote Originally Posted by PuteNut  [View Original Post]
    BTW those sites that sell you a cheap fake (booked / cancelled) tickets do most often NOT provide a verifiable PNR, so I consider those essentially worthless. Border officials have access to the internet too, and are not stupid. It's better not get caught lying / faking stuff when crossing borders, better be spotlessly clean IMO.
    What is a 'verifiable PNR'?

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