Travellers to the Philippines, rejoice! The country’s Bureau of Immigration has just announced that foreigners wishing to stay longer in the country will be able to do so without the usual hassles of applying for a visa upon arrival.
The Bureau of Immigration has launched a new visa program which will allow tourists to apply for six-month visas. Planning a gap year? Why not spend half of it exploring the Philippines vast islands and isles?Going tropical: Philippine’s waterfall restaurant
The Long Stay Visitor Visa Extension (LSVVE) is a project that was launch in hopes of drawing more international travellers to the Philippines without the hassle of having to extend their visas after arrival with frequent visits to immigration offices. This way travellers will be able to arrive with the correct papers for their entire stay, up to six months. Previously tourists were issued visas for 60 days. With each extension, an additional 60 days was granted.
The new visa program for foreigners will also no doubt reduce the number of people and cases being processed at the Immigration Bureaus across the country. The new visas will also feature an extension sticker instead of a wet stamp. Many foreigners have fallen victim to fake stamps but the new stickers will have tracking features and be very difficult to duplicate.
The Philippines Department of Tourism hopes to double the number of tourists planning holidays in the Philippines, currently 5.5 million, by the end of 2016 and the new visa program is just one way to make it easier for visitors to stay longer.
Have you paid a visit to the Philippines yet? Is it on your travel bucket list?