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Philippines: Visa and Entry (2020)

Here you will find everything you need to know about entering the Philippines. This includes useful tips on all topics related to visas, visas on arrival, tourist visas, costs and processing times as well as information on embassies and consulates.

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Table of Contents

Before you travel to the Philippines, there are a few organizational tasks to do. For example, you have to check whether your passport is still valid long enough. The topics of travel credit cards, travel health insurance and preventive health care are also on the to-do list.

It is also very important to deal with the requirements for visas and entry. It makes no difference whether you are backpacking on your own or want to book a tour of the Philippines.

Once you have done everything, your journey to the most beautiful destinations in the Philippines can begin.

Due to the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19), many countries have changed their entry regulations or have completely banned entry. Here you will find a continuously updated overview on the subject of coronavirus in Southeast Asia and the Philippines.

Visa Philippines - All options

Note: The entry requirements for the Philippines have changed over and over again in recent years. The information in this article is as of January 2020. All information is checked regularly. Nevertheless, the information is without guarantee. Legally binding information is only available directly from the embassies. If you notice any changes, we look forward to a short message. You are helping us and other travelers.

What are the different visas for the Philippines?

The most important visas for travelers are on the one hand the 30-day residence permit (which is not a visa) and the non-immigrant tourist visa. This allows you a 59-day stay in the Philippines and is available in the following versions:

  • Single Entry: entitles you to single entry and is valid for three months.
  • Multiple Entry (6 months): entitles you to multiple entries and is valid for six months.
  • Multiple Entry (12 months): entitles you to multiple entries and is valid for one year. Attention: a sponsor is required!

In addition, there are various special forms for former Filipino nationals as well as for spouses and children of Filipinos.

Philippines: Entry without a visa

To enter the island kingdom of the Philippines, Germans, Austrians and Swiss do not initially need a visa applied for in advance. The term “Visa on Arrival” can often be found on the Internet, but technically it is not entirely correct. No visa is issued, but a residence permit, such as in Thailand or Singapore.

Upon entry, you will receive an arrival and departure card to fill out, go through passport control and then get a stamp in your passport. This entitles you to a 30-day stay in the Philippines. The residence permit is free, but make sure that your passport has to be valid for at least 6 months and that you have to prove your departure (e.g. with a return or onward ticket).

Visa on arrival or online: How do I get my Philippines visa?

You do not need a visa in advance for a stay of up to 30 days. If you are planning a longer stay, the next step would be the Non-Immigrant Tourist Visa. This is neither available online nor “on arrival”, but must be applied for in advance at the Philippine embassy in Berlin.

Which visa do I need for my internship or business trip in the Philippines?

There is no separate visa for business purposes. The one-year version of the non-immigrant visa is also used here. In addition to the standard documents, an invitation letter from the Philippine business partner or the company must also be submitted. Otherwise there are no differences in the procedure.

Important note about your passport

Your passport must be valid for at least 6 months at the time of entry. The temporary passport is accepted by the Philippine authorities.

Interesting facts about visas

Visa to the Philippines: what is the cost?

The 30-day residence permit is free of charge. The following fees apply for the non-immigrant visa:

  • Single entry: € 27
  • Multiple Entry (6 months): 54 €
  • Multiple Entry (12 months): € 81

30 or 90 days - how long is my visa for the Philippines valid?

The residence permit is valid for 30 days from the time of entry (stamp date). The Non-Immigrant Tourist Visa is available in the versions 3 months, 6 months and 12 months. Please note, however, that this refers to the period of validity of the visa - not your permitted length of stay! In any case, this is 59 days, unless you extend it.

What documents do I need to apply for my Philippines visa?

To apply for your Philippines visa, you must present or send the following documents to the embassy:

  • your passport
  • the completed application form
  • a passport photo
  • your return ticket
  • the visa fees in cash or the transfer receipt
  • If you apply by post, please ensure that you enclose a self-addressed and stamped envelope.

Philippines: do i need a return ticket?

Yes, in any case. For every visa, the embassy clearly indicates that the return journey must be documented by a return flight ticket. This also applies to the 30-day residence permit. The non-immigrant visa will most likely not be issued to you at all if you have not yet booked a return flight.

Philippines Visa: Time to Process

The processing time at the Philippine embassy is around 10 working days for a visa, if you apply by post, this will of course be added. In addition, the embassy advises that visa applications should be submitted at least 30 days before entering the Philippines in order to be on the safe side. Incomplete applications will not be processed.

If you go to the embassy in person, you can also use the express service for a surcharge of € 9. In that case, your visa will be completed by the next day.

How can I extend my Philippines visa?

So much in advance: Only previously issued visas can be extended - not your residence permit. If you have a visa, you can easily extend it on site. To do this, you have to register with a Bureau of Immigration (you can find an overview here), fill out a form there and pay the fee.

In this way you have the choice of extending your visa by one or two months, the costs for this are 4,400 or 4,900 Philippine pesos (around € 70-80). The whole procedure is very well described on the website of the Bureau of Immigration.

Make sure you do not exceed your permitted stay of 59 days without an officially approved extension. There is a risk of penalties for each overdrawn day and, in the worst case, detention or an entry ban.

Visa through an agency

Lost overview? Visa agencies help! If you don't feel like dealing with the authorities yourself, or are afraid of doing something wrong or you don't have the time, various visa agencies can help. Proven providers such as Visabox are experts and list all the documents you need and take care of the correspondence with the authorities.

Your individual Philippines dream trip

Would you like to have your trip organized by professionals? Whether beach vacation, cultural sights, nature experiences or honeymoon: With Fascination Southeast Asia you can book your very own dream trip. It is organized and carried out by local experts who have been working in the Philippines for many years and know the best destinations, accommodations and insider tips. The itinerary is designed on the basis of your wishes, expectations and ideas. Basically, (almost) anything is possible.

Interest? Check out some sample routes here.

Immigration tips

Entry requirements for the Philippines

At least since the last change of government it should be clear: possession, consumption or import of drugs are not trivial offenses. Even the smallest amount can result in draconian penalties. In addition, the import of night vision devices, weapons (including dummies) and pornography is prohibited.

Be careful when you bring your local currency with you! Without a declaration to customs, you are "only" allowed to import 10,000 Philippine pesos. That sounds like a lot, but it's just under € 170. So if you still have foreign currency left over from your last vacation and want to bring generous start-up capital with you, you should definitely register this with customs.

As far as criminal law peculiarities are concerned, please pay attention to the ban on drinking alcohol on the street and smoking outside of designated areas. Here, too, there is a risk of inconsistent penalties.

What is the “Airport Tax” about?

An airport tax or airport terminal fee is actually always included in the ticket price, so we travelers do not notice anything about it. In the Philippines, the fee should also be included in the ticket price recently, but this does not always seem to be the case at smaller domestic airports, and so you will sometimes be asked to pay extra.

Since this was also the case in Manila some time ago, the fee has been nicknamed the “exit tax”. There is no transparent information about the amount of the fees, depending on the airport they can vary between 30 and 1000 Philippine pesos. So it is possible that, as everywhere else, you will not notice the fee or you will be asked to pay it in cash immediately. It can't hurt to just put 1000 Pesos (around € 15) aside, just in case.

The best travel credit card for the Philippines

You can save a lot of money on your travels with the right credit card. Here you can find out which cards you can use to withdraw cash free of charge worldwide and pay in local currency at no additional cost. And who is currently the only provider who reimburses you the foreign fees at the machine, for example in Thailand or the Philippines.

Here is the credit card comparison

Embassies and consulates

Filipino embassies and consulates


Embassy of the Philippines
Address: Luisenstraße 16, 10117 Berlin
Web: Embassy of the Philippines

Phone: +49 30 864 95 00
Opening times: Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.

Honorary Consul of the Republic of the Philippines in Bad Nauheim
Address: Frankfurterstraße 70, 61231 Bad Nauheim
Web: Honorary Consul of the Republic of the Philippines in Bad Nauheim

Phone: +49 6032 9661 250
Opening times: Monday to Friday 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Honorary Consul of the Republic of the Philippines in Dresden
Address: Palaisplatz 3, 01097 Dresden

Phone: +49 351 448 333 12
Opening times: Monday, Wednesday and Friday 9 a.m. - 12 p.m.

Honorary Consul of the Republic of the Philippines in Stuttgart
Address: Leitzstraße 45, 70469 Stuttgart

Phone: +49 711 65 52 00 50
Opening times: Monday, Wednesday and Thursday 9.30 a.m. - 12.30 p.m.


The Philippine Embassy is in Vienna. There are consulates in Salzburg and Innsbruck.


The Philippine Embassy is based in Bern.

Representations in the Philippines


Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany Manila
Address: 25 / F Tower II, RCBC Plaza, 6819 Ayala Ave. 1200 Makati City, Metro Manila
Web: Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany Manila

Phone: +63 2 702 3000

Honorary Consul of the Federal Republic of Germany in Cebu
Address: Ford's Inn, AS Fortuna Street, Corner Banilad Road, 6000 Cebu City

Telephone: +63 32 236 1318 and +63 929 667 6386 (mobile)

Honorary Consul of the Federal Republic of Germany in Davao City
Address: University of Southeastern Philippines, Obrero Campus, Inigo Street, Davao City 8000, Philippines

Phone: +63 82 227 17 61

Austria and Switzerland

The Austrian Embassy is based in Manila. There is a consulate in Cebu City.

The Swiss embassy is in Manila.

We need your support!

Due to the corona crisis are almost all income broke away practically overnight from the fascination of Southeast Asia. Nevertheless, we will continue to report updated daily about the situation on site, expand our content and update existing posts. So that this is still possible, we need your support. With a membership or a one-time donation, you help ensure that we can continue to create useful content for Southeast Asia travelers in the future. THANKS!

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About the author

Stefan has been traveling to the countries of Southeast Asia since 2006 and often spends several months there. In 2013 he founded Fascination Southeast Asia and has since written several eBooks and books on the subject (including the insider travel guide "555 Tips for Bangkok"). Between his travels he lives and works in Düsseldorf.

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