Entry Requirements for the Philippines

entry requirements for the philippines

With beautiful beaches and stunning natural landscapes, the Philippines is a popular tourist destination in Southeast Asia.

The entry policy of the Philippines grants visa-free access to passport holders from several countries. Non-visa-exempt visitors are currently required to apply for a visa online, at an embassy, or at the airport.

Soon, tourists heading to the Philippines will be able to take advantage of the ASEAN visa waiver. Find out below how the new visa will benefit travelers and how to apply online.

Philippines Visa Requirements

Foreign citizens require a visa for the Philippines unless they are a:

  • Citizen of another ASEAN country
  • CItizen of a non-ASEA member state with visa-free access
  • Person of Filipino origin living abroad (balikbayan) returning temporarily to the Philippines

Which are the ASEAN countries?

The Philippines is a member state of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) along with:

  • Brunei
  • Cambodia
  • Indonesia
  • Laos
  • Malaysia
  • Myanmar
  • Singapore
  • Thailand
  • Vietnam

Citizens of these countries do not need a visa for the Philippines.

Countries with visa-free access to the Philippines

Travelers from several countries can enter the Philippines for short stays without a visa. How long a visa-exempt visitor can remain in the country depends on their nationality, ranging from 14 to 59 days.

All European countries and citizens of the United States can enjoy up to 30 days in the Philippines without a visa.

Visa on arrival and embassy visa for the Philippines

Passport holders from some non-exempt nations can wait in line at the airport to purchase a Philippines visa on arrival. The visa on arrival is valid for up to 59 days.

All other visitors who need a visa should apply at an embassy or consulate.

It is expected that, once the online ASEAN visa becomes available more foreigners will be able to avoid going to the embassy or queuing at the airport.

Philippines online visa for Taiwanese nationals

Currently, only citizens of Taiwan can apply for a Philippines Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA).

Once the ASEAN visa is launched, citizens of additional countries will be able to benefit from an online Philippines visa application.

The ASEAN Visa for the Philippines

With an ASEAN visa, it will be possible to enter all the ASEAN countries using just one permit. This is good news for tourists who are traveling a long distance and wish to visit several Southeast Asian countries on one trip.

With the new ASEAN visa, visitors will complete just one visa application to be granted access to the entire bloc, replacing the need for multiple applications and nation-specific visas.

Applying for an ASEAN visa for the Philippines

Eligible passport holders will soon be able to apply online for an ASEAN visa. The form is completed and submitted electronically, with no need to submit paperwork in person at an embassy or queue at the airport for a visa on arrival.

Applicants are asked to provide basic personal information, passport data, and some travel details. There are also some questions regarding health and security.

Once the ASEAN visa request has been approved, the visa is sent to the applicant by email, to be printed at home, and presented on arrival in the Philippines or any of the other ASEAN countries.

ASEAN visa requirements for the Philippines

To successfully apply for the permit, travelers must meet all the ASEAN visa requirements for the Philippines.

To be considered eligible, applicants must have a:

  • Valid passport valid for at least 6 months
  • Debit or credit card to pay the ASEAN visa fees

The ASEAN visa for the Philippines will be available to passport holders from a selection of countries yet to be announced. The list will be made available closer to the visa launch date.

Traveling to the Philippines: borders and transport

The Philippines is an archipelago and, as such, does not share land borders with any country. However, the Philippines does have maritime borders with the following overseas territories:

  • China
  • Japan
  • Indonesia
  • Malaysia
  • Palau
  • Taiwan
  • Vietnam

Of these countries, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Vietnam are also part of the ASEAN bloc and will, therefore, be easier to access with the launch of the new visa.

The other ASEAN countries do not share a border with the Philippines but are nearby and easily accessible.

Flying to the Philippines from other ASEAN nations

Manila Ninoy Aquino International Airport (IATA: MNL, ICAO: RPLL), is the main airport in the Philippines. Daily flights to the other ASEAN countries make flying a quick and convenient option for exploring Southeast Asia.

Popular routes include:

  • Bangkok (Thailand) to Manila: 3 hours 25 minutes
  • Phnom Penh (Cambodia) to Manila: 2 hours 55 minutes
  • Hanoi (Vietnam) to Manila: 3 hours 25 minutes
  • Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) to Manila: 3 hours 55 minutes

Crossing the Filipino border

Foreign citizens who arrive at Filipino immigration and customs are asked to present the following documents before being granted access to the country:

  • A passport valid for at least 6 months beyond the expected stay
  • Proof of onwards travel such as a return flight ticket
  • A Philippines visa, if required

Soon, the ASEAN visa will be accepted instead of the country-specific Philippines visa.