The government of the Philippines makes it very easy to live permanently in the country. The Philippines has fewer restrictions than most any other Southeast Asian country. In all, you have about four options if you want to live and retire in these great islands:
Special Resident Retirement Visa – SRRV
I you want to live and retire in the Philippines and you are not married to a Filipino, the SRRV retirement visa is a sound option for you. Basically you only have two requirements:
1) You have a basic pension/retirement of at least $1,000 a month
2) You have $10,000 to leave in deposit in a Philippines Bank
Once you posses the visa you’ll never have to set foot again into the Bureau of Immigration. You basically apply at any Philippines Retirement Authority office. The added advantages of having a SRRV are simply this:
1) Exempt from purchasing or carrying an ACR Card
2) Do not need an I-Card
3) You never apply for an Exit Clearance
4) You do not need a re-entry permit
The PRA will issue you a special photo ID card and an elegant looking PRA Visa that has a tropical motif, which is then inserted into your passport. For those looking to retire in the Philippines at a younger age, please note the following chart information as the initial deposit into a Philippines Bank is much higher.
Most new SSRV visas are now the newer “Smile SSRV.” The Classic SSRV is the best choice for those seeking a retirement and who have the appropriate pension in place. The “Smile SSRV” requires that the initial deposit doubles in price, costing $20,000 and is geared more to the young entrepreneurs’ and business minded Chinese and Korean applicants rather than retirees.
Here are some general thoughts and information for those that intend to apply for a SSRV, some requirements of from the PRA are as follows:
• You must be 50 years old or older to attain the SRRV retirement visa
• You must have a monthly pension of $1,000 dollars or more
• The application as of 2014 cost $1,400 dollars
• You must have a $10,000 deposit in a Philippines Bank
• And the annual fee is $360
• Those already applying and in possession of a 13a Visa are also eligible for a SRRV
• If you have everything in place, from bank deposits to documentation your time frame is approximately 15 days (PRA says five, but that rarely happens)
• For US citizens, the Social Security Administrations papers stating your benefits for the upcoming year are acceptable proof of pension in your application
• Anyone can apply for an SRRV retirement visa even if you are in balikbayan status – before you needed to downgrade to a tourist visa to apply, this is no longer the case.
Very Important: A factor in applying for an SRRV retirement visa if your spouse is a citizen of another country.
If your spouse lost their Philippine citizenship due to the fact they lived in another country for a prolonged period of time. She can reclaim his or her Philippines citizenship via the ‘dual citizenship programme’. Here are some factors if this is the case:
1) As a former Philippines citizen, your spouse can apply for an SRRV – “AND” include you in her application
2) Her application fee is the same $1,400
3) The additional spouse cost is $300
4) $1,500 must be deposited in a Philippine bank account by your spouse
If your spouse has become a citizen of another country, they will have lost her Philippine citizenship. It’s easy to reclaim citizenship through the dual citizenship program, but, as a former Philippine citizen, your spouse may apply for an SRRV and can include you in the application. The application fee is $1,400. Including a spouse costs an additional $300 for a total application fee of $1,700. Now for the good part — the required deposit drops down to $1,500.
A) For pension-based SRRV, one has to prove your monthly check is deposited into a Filipino bank. Nowhere does it state it has to be direct deposit, most here show proof it is entered into a bank within the Philippines along with a proof of deposit slip.
B) For SRRV holders, if you plan on withdrawing the money to invest you must keep the $10,000 on deposit. You must have at least $50,000 on deposit to convert bank deposits to investments – you cannot withdraw deposits without written permission from the PRA.
C) Unless you can show proof that you are medically incapacitated, you must therefore travel to the PRA offices at the Citibank Tower in Makati to receive your SRRV-ID card and visa. There you will be fingerprinted and given an affirmation which outlines your responsibilities as an SRRV holder.
D) Those that commit to the required deposit amounts for three years will be given an SRRV ID card that lasts three years (cost $20) – at the end of the three year period you apply for another three-year card (cost $30) and so on.
E) The PRA offers free assistance to those who are in need of a Philippines driver’s licence or employment permit.
F) If you leave the Philippines more than once a year, you are exempt from paying the Philippines Travel Tax. To exit the Philippines after your first time you’ll need to apply form PTA F356 from the Philippines Tourism Authority. The fee for the form is 200 peso.