Discussion in 'Military and Veterans' started by Always a Poppy, Apr 15, 2020.
Wow! Great info. Thanks!
No, I stayed back from the scones, clotted cream and strawberry jam.
Visa: a. Quite a few expats stay in the Philippines on tourist visa indefinitely, meaning they extend their visa every 2 or 6 months up to the 3 year maximum stay, then leave the country on a short trip to Malaysia/HongKong (anywhere with a cheap ticket will do), then return to the Philippines and start a fresh 3 year period of extensions. Mind you, although not prohibitively expensive, those extensions do cost money (around 400 US$ a year per person).
b. Your wife not being a Filipina, you have limited other options for visa, there's a permanent retiree visa which requires a lump sum of money to be deposited in a Philippines Bank (lower amount for US veterans), more info here https://pra.gov.ph/srrv/
Money: 1. It is not hard to exchange cash US$ for Peso here, on your first trip just bring some dollars and exchange them for peso at a bank or currency exchange shop (many of those here). Other than that, yes there's plenty atm's where you can get peso using your US bank card, however using a foreign bank card is not cheap, you pay a few dollars fee and the exchange rate applied is not very favourable.
2. If you decide to retire here there are other options, like opening a peso account here, getting a local bank card (no high atm fees) and transfering US$ from your US account to your peso account as needed.
Is that not how it works for everybody in every other aspect of life? I thought this was just responsible personal finance 101. Being financially responsible is the responsibility of the individual. The VA isn't a veteran's personal accountant, serving overseas doesn't excuse anyone from being a big boy or girl and having to deal big boy and girl things, they have millions of other veterans to deal with and their own budgeting issues. As for them talking a long time to get out checks/refunds, they are underfunded and understaffed because of those cowards, traitors and enemies of the state in Congress and the Whitehouse.
An investors visa (SIRV) is a permanent resident unlimited entry/exit visa option if you have $70k USD to invest in government approved Filipino businesses and/or stocks.
Just one bit of advice, let your bank know in advance of your travel plans so they don't cut your ATM/other cards off as a security precaution. Depending on your bank, you might be reimbursed ATM fees, my USAA account does that.
This is exactly the info I was looking for. Please clarify: to extend the Tourist Visa we would need to pay about $400 each every 2-6 months? Or do you mean after the short trip to Malaysia/Hong Kong it would cost about $400 each to start the tourist Visa cycle over again?
$400 is about what it will cost you annually in visa renewals. You can find good deals on flights to nearby countries for around $100-300 round trip.
Thanks Happy Camper,
I too have USAA. Been with them about 15 years now. Bought houses, cars, insurance, etc, through them in years past.
Great info from everybody. Thanks so much. We're thinking of possibly coming there through the winter months if COVID clears up. I'll stay in touch with you all. Thanks again.