The SRRV Experience - Page 3

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The SRRV Experience - Page 3


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  #21 (permalink)  
Old 1st September 2019, 01:45 PM
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I hope to explain here and detail my recent experiences in obtaining a Special Residence and Retirement Visa through the Philippine Retirement Authority. I arrived in the Philippines on the 1st of May of this year, fronted up at the PRA office in Angeles City on the 6th to start the process and received the finalized visa just over 3 months later on the 8th of August. My intent here is explain some of the process so other may have an easier time of it and be more comfortable with the system.
Prior to arriving I got locally in the US and hand carried; 1) Police report from the local Oregon State Police, 2) income statement from the SSA, 3) Certified copy of my military discharge, DD214, 4) 12 passport photos. The 3 documents were sent to the Philippine consult in SF for authentication. Received back the returned docs 2 weeks later with a couple of pretty ribbons and a stamp affixed, cost $25 each. No worries about the medical requirements at this point, easy enough later.
Monday morning the 6th of May I was well greeted at the Angeles PRA office and began the forms process, too many to remember but completed in 2-3 hours. Was told to return for 2pm and would do the NBI portion. With 3 others was driven by van to the NBI fort in San Fernando where we were finger printed, on the return to AC stopped by a small clinic for the medical physical. Piss in a cup and a quick chest x-ray later was returned to the AC PRA office, all done. Now a wait 3 weeks for the NBI investigation. During this 3 week interval I kept my passport as it became necessary to set up the CD and other things. Costs were $1400 for the PRA processing fee and $1500 for the CD and 4500 pesos for the medical work.
After 3 weeks, on the 28th of May was called, text, to the PRA office as the NBI report had come back good, so paid 4K pesos for a tourist visa extension, turned over my passport and started the long wait. A month later received text from the PRA that I needed to extend my tourist visa again. This time I took it to the local immigration office myself and I had been told that this time I would need to get an Alien Registration Card (5K pesos) as well as the extension. Luck was with me as I took a copy of the PRA SAAV application form so they waived the ARC requirement, only 5K pesos this time. About 30 days later received another text from the PRA saying the visa was in the process of being issued and no need for an additional tourist visa extension. Then on 7 Aug received another message that the next day, the 8th they would be having a signing and swearing event and the SRRV was Done & Issued! Good for 3 years and $10/yr for renewal.
Throughout this process the PRA people were always courteous, polite and as helpful as possible, understanding that much was out of their control. Also of note, forget about conducting any business via email, they simply ignore or just donít answer emails, this mostly applies country wide, everything is by text messages.
Will gladly field questions, as I recall there where a great many unknowns when I first started, and found much of it to be extremely stressful, though very pleased now to have done it!
Gazza
are you happy with the process? what i don't understand is paying for the extension of tourist visa - not just once. once you've applied for SSRV - you're no longer an overstaying tourist. i wonder if the main office of SSRV knows about these practices.

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  #22 (permalink)  
Old 1st September 2019, 07:13 PM
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are you happy with the process? what i don't understand is paying for the extension of tourist visa - not just once. once yoSu've applied for SSRV - you're no longer an overstaying tourist. i wonder if the main office of SSRV knows about these practices.
Because until the SSRV is completed and the visa is in your passport you previous visa status stands. SSRV is not guaranteed.
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Old 1st September 2019, 10:25 PM
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esv1226,
Gary D is correct, until the SRRV has been issued the applicant is just that, an applicant for a SRRV, in country on a tourist visa, if the tourist visa should expire during the wait for processing normal rules and fines apply.
Was I happy with the process?? I'm Very Happy it is now complete, if I were applying western standards and methods to the process; inefficient and highly frustrating
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Old 3rd September 2019, 04:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Gazzalee View Post
esv1226,
Gary D is correct, until the SRRV has been issued the applicant is just that, an applicant for a SRRV, in country on a tourist visa, if the tourist visa should expire during the wait for processing normal rules and fines apply.
....
I went through an agent. They asked for the tourist visa extension fee at initial set up and refunded it when my SRRV was issued within the first 30 days. Had it taken longer than 30 days they would have gotten me a tourist visa extension and most likely looked into an extension past the 59 day first extension.
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Old 10th September 2019, 09:16 AM
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Originally Posted by esv1226 View Post
what i don't understand is paying for the extension of tourist visa - not just once. once you've applied for SSRV - you're no longer an overstaying tourist. i wonder if the main office of SSRV knows about these practices.
The SRRV is not an immigration visa and has nothing to do with the BI.

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Old 10th September 2019, 09:59 AM
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The SRRV is not an immigration visa and has nothing to do with the BI.
Gary D wrapped this up succinctly and may I suggest that the PRA while working with IMMI have to abide by the law, though they work in tandem, IMMI at the end of the day has the final say.
An SRRV is recognised by IMMI as a retirement visa, something that the PRA worked hard for to create an alternative to most of the other shite not suited to some, an alternative probably no different to the SRIV also offered for those with excess funds for investment opportunities/considerations.
Border control is a serious issue no matter the country. immigration/migration?

Cheers, Steve.


Last edited by bigpearl; 10th September 2019 at 10:06 AM.
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  #27 (permalink)  
Old 11th September 2019, 02:58 AM
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The SRRV is not an immigration visa and has nothing to do with the BI.
Which is probably why when the BI makes a statement about something, say the annual reporting requirement, they generally fail to make explicit what the impact of this is on SRRV holders. My first year here I had to specifically ask the BI if SRRV holders were exempt before I could get any sort of official looking answer.

It also explains why when I go to the airport to return here without a return ticket, that I usually have to educate the gate agent on the fact that as a resident I don't need an ongoing ticket, the statements put out from BI never make it clear that an SRRV is exempt from this requirement.
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Old 11th September 2019, 09:09 AM
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Which is probably why when the BI makes a statement about something, say the annual reporting requirement, they generally fail to make explicit what the impact of this is on SRRV holders. My first year here I had to specifically ask the BI if SRRV holders were exempt before I could get any sort of official looking answer.

It also explains why when I go to the airport to return here without a return ticket, that I usually have to educate the gate agent on the fact that as a resident I don't need an ongoing ticket, the statements put out from BI never make it clear that an SRRV is exempt from this requirement.
I gather/assume that you are talking about booking a oneway flight from a foreign country back to PH. one of the benefits of holding an SRRV. Then as you say and I typically agree the left hand omitting the right hand from the conversation/outcome. Education appears to come from more experienced people such as yourself with a gentle slap instead of (left hand right hand) education/training/information for those "in control" knowing visa statuses and requirements.
As said Rick, both by you/me and countless others know your visa requirements and status/legalities with relation to travel plans.

Cheers, Steve.


Last edited by bigpearl; 11th September 2019 at 09:14 AM.
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  #29 (permalink)  
Old 11th September 2019, 10:26 PM
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The SRRV is not an immigration visa and has nothing to do with the BI.
Gorn,
I just can't follow your logic so I'll no longer consider you a serious user of this board, you just are so wrong. The SRRV is as near to an immigration visa as can possibly be, it allows me to live in the Philippines without additional fees or tax for as long as I like provided I renew it after 3 yrs at $10/yr. International travel without extra fees or the requirement for an onward ticket. So all up, pretty close to an immigration visa. Also your comment about the SRRV 'has nothing to do with the BI' is just ridiculous! The Bureau of Immigration is the government authority and the agency that issued the visa ....

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Old 11th September 2019, 11:17 PM
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When coming back with no onward ticket, i like to have some fun with the gate agent.

Agent " Do you have onward ticket"


Me "No"

Agent " You need onward ticket"

Me " no I do not"

Agent "Yes a tourist needs an onward ticket from the Philippines"

Me "That is correct"

Agent " I cannot issue you a boarding pass unless you show me an onward ticket"

Me " Yes you can"

Agent " You need an onward ticket"

me " No I do not"

Agent " Yes a tourist needs an onward ticket"

Me " That is correct"

Agent " Then show me your ticket"

Me " I do not have one"

I will let this go a few rounds, then tell the agent that he is making an unwarranted assumption, that I am a tourist.

Hopefully they will learn that not everyone traveling to the Philippines is a tourist and needs an onward ticket.

It is not my responsibility to educate the gate agents on the travel requirements for a flight that they are checking people into. Unfortunately the "official" airline site does a very poor job of describing entry requirements.
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