Bureau of Immigration

2014 BI Annual Report {26}

2014 BI Annual Report

It’s a new year, Happy New Year, and time for the visit to the Bureau of Immigration for the Annual Report required for my 13a Resident Visa.

Being that I like to be prepared, and I was close to the office anyway, I stopped by the Bureau of Immigration a week or so ago to check on this year’s requirements. They seem to change every year, and as noted last year, by office. I was pleased to find out they were the exactly same as last year. I secured a copy of the correct Annual Report form and went on my way. I was set to show up after the first of the year with all required paperwork.

I keep forgetting – this is the Philippines, we aren’t in Kansas anymore.

Lost Wallet In Cebu {8}

Lost Wallet In Cebu

What are the odds of getting your wallet back if it’s lost or stolen in the Philippines? That’s one of the first thoughts that went through my head as I realized, while on a business trip in Cebu, that I had left my wallet in the taxi. Of course it would depend on the circumstances, but I figured my odds somewhere between 0-5%.

I didn’t have any information on the taxi or the driver. In my hurry to leave the hotel, I didn’t wait for them to help me either. With their help I know they notate the vehicle number and taxi company. No, I had no information other than I knew where I was picked up, dropped off and the approximate time. The term needle in a haystack comes to mind.

Bureau of Immigration Annual Report {19}

Bureau of Immigration Annual Report

As a holder of a 13a Permanent Resient Visa, I’m required to check in with the Bureau of Immigration every year within the first 60 days of the new year. Having just moved here in August of 2012, this was my first time to go through the process.

It seemed like it was going to be a fairly easy process. The main issue I had heard about was the extra crowds at immigration due to this requirement. Many had told me to wait awhile, until the crowds settled. Actually, almost everyone I spoke to indicated that they waited, just for this reason. I decided, since I had plenty of time, to go the first day and see how it really was.

ACR-I Card Davao Completion {0}

ACR-I Card Davao Completion

The final step of acquiring my 13a Permanent Resident Visa was accomplished last week with the issuing of my ACR-I card. I’m not the first to get my ACR-I card through the Davao office of the Bureau of Immigration. That is actually quite common. My situation was a little more unique, as very few actually complete their US issued 13a visa in Davao. Almost everyone does that in Manila.

The main reason for that, I surmise, is that there really isn’t any information out there stating that you can complete this any place other than Manila. The Philippine Consulate in San Francisco told me to take the packet to immigration in Manila. The instructions on the outside of the packet also stated to present the immigration officials in Manila. So that is what (almost) everyone does.

Finishing the US Issued 13a Visa In Davao {11}

Finishing the US Issued 13a Visa In Davao

Not long ago I wrote about my experience with acquiring my 13a Permanent Resident Visa in the United States. Specifically I dealt with the Philippine Counsulate in San Francisco, as that was the consulate that is assigned to Washington State, the area I lived in up to just recently.

Overall it went well with just a few issues, the cost ending up to be the biggest, as it was a lot more than I had anticipated. Most of the extra cost came from the required medical examination and tests. Come to find out that was still going to haunt me once I got here and finished my requirements in Davao. Yes, I said Davao and NOT Manila.

The Visa Question {18}

The Visa Question

If there is one topic that every person moving to the Philippines will have to eventually research, it has to be “what to do about a visa”? There is so much information on this subject that I have no intention to try to tackle it again in this article. No, I have a good idea already which visa I would prefer to get.

I wish it was as simple as figuring out which one you want and/or qualify for. That is complicated in and of itself. The fun only begins when you begin to look into the options. As much as some will tell you not to be concerned about it, it does take some thought and planning if you don’t want to be scrambling later on.