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Complete guide to obtaining a retirement visa in Philippines, eligibility criteria, requirements and best places to retire

The Philippines are perfect for retirees who want to get away from the loud city lifestyle and enjoy the crystal clear beaches and beautiful tropical weather. There are currently more than 64,000 foreign retirees living in the Philippines.

Foreign nationals who want to make the Philippines their second home can easily obtain a retirement visa through the Special Residence Retiree’s Visa (SRRV) program. 

With a Philippines retirement visa, you are eligible to work, study or invest in the Philippines.

Who Can Apply For a Philippines Retirement Visa?

You can apply for a Philippines retirement visa under the SRRV program if: 

  • You are at least 50 years old and have a pension; or
  • You are at least 35 years old and make a deposit of at least $50,000.
  • You have no criminal record.
  • You can financially support yourself and any joining family members.

Benefits of Philippines Retirement Visa

Retirement in the Philippines comes with many benefits:

  1. Indefinite stay with multiple-entry and exit privileges.
  2. Exemption from the Philippine Bureau of Immigration ACR-I Card (Annual Report).
  3. Exemption from customs duties and taxes for importing household goods and personal effects worth up to $7,000. 
  4. Exemption from Student Visa/Study Permit. Your children can study in the Philippines without a visa.
  5. Access to the Greet & Assist Program at selected Philippine airports.
  6. Free subscription to the PRA Newsletter.
  7. Discount privileges from PRA accredited Merchant Partners.
  8. Free assistance in transacting with other government agencies.
  9. Entitlement to PHILHEALTH benefits & privileges.

Deposit for the Philippines Retirement Visa (SRRV)

To receive a Philippines retirement visa, you must make a deposit and meet the monthly income requirements, as follows: 

Applicants aged 50 and above who receive a pension
Deposit USD 10,000 
Pension for a single applicantUSD 800 (monthly)
Pension for a coupleUSD 1,000 (monthly)
If you are bringing more than one child as dependentAdditional deposit of USD 15,000 per child
Applicants who do not receive a pension
Deposit for applicants 35 to 49 years oldUSD 50,000
Deposit for applicants aged 50 and aboveUSD 20,000
Deposit for former Filipino citizens (at least 35 years old)USD 1,500
If you are bringing more than one child as dependentAdditional deposit of USD 15,000 per child

Can My Family Members Join Me?

Yes, if you obtain an SRRV visa, your family members can accompany you to the Philippines. Eligible family members include:

  • Your spouse (legally married to you).
  • Your child (biological or adopted), unmarried, and under the age of 21. In case your spouse is not joining you, you can take two children with you, without an additional deposit.

How to Apply For a Retirement Visa in the Philippines?

To retire in the Philippines as an expat, you must register for the SRRV Retirement Program. The procedure for applying for a retirement visa in the Philippines is:

  1. Schedule an appointment at the Philippine Retirement Authority (PRA).
  2. Choose the appropriate retirement option.
  3. Collect the documents required for a retirement visa.
  4. Submit the application to the PRA. 

Schedule an Appointment With the Philippine Retirement Authority (PRA)

The PRA allows only one person per appointment. You are advised to check for available schedules and book an appointment through the PRA official Facebook page.

Choose the Appropriate Retirement Option

Depending on your lifestyle, qualification, and retirement status, the SRRV program (also referred to as the SRRVISA) offers many options that you can choose to apply for:

SRRV SMILEFor active and healthy retirees who choose to keep their SRR Visa deposit of $20,000  in any of the PRA Accredited Banks.
SRRV CLASSICFor active and healthy retirees who choose to use their SRR Visa deposit into active investment (purchase of condominium unit, long-term house lease, etc.)
SRRV HUMAN TOUCHFor retirees in bad health conditions from the age of 50 and above who need medical or clinical care. 
SRRV COURTESYFor former Filipinos and foreign nationals aged 50 and above who are retired officers of International Organizations recognized by the  Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA).
SRRV EXPANDED COURTESYFor foreign nationals aged 50 and above who are retired Armed Force officers of foreign countries with existing military ties or agreements with the Philippine Government. 

The SRRV Classic and SRRV Courtesy are the most popular choices due to their flexibility and affordable terms. 

Collect the Documents Required for a Philippine Retirement Visa

To apply for a Philippines retirement visa, you must collect the following documents:

  • An original and valid passport with an updated Temporary Visitor’s Visa.
  • Completed PRA Application Form.
  • Original and valid medical clearance.
  • Original and valid clean criminal records from your home country and an additional NBI clearance (if you have stayed in the Philippines for over 30 days).
  • Eight photographs in the 2-inch by 2-inch format.
  • An inwardly remitted SRR visa deposit.
  • Proof of paid fee.
  • Marriage certificate for accompanying dependent spouse.
  • Birth certificate for accompanying dependent child.

Additional requirements might be requested depending on the SRR Visa option you choose.

Note: All documents issued outside the Philippines must be translated into English and authenticated by the nearest  Philippine Embassy/Consular Office.

Submit the Retirement Visa Application to the PRA

You must submit your Philippine Retirement visa to one of the PRA Satellite offices in the main cities of the Philippines. The Philippine Retire Authority (PRA) requires you to travel to the Philippines to submit the application in person.

Philippines Retirement Visa Fee

When applying for a Philippines Retirement Visa, you will be required to pay the following processing fees:

Principal applicant$1,400
Dependent applicant$300
Principal & two dependents$360 (Annual Fee)

Duration of a Philippines Retirement Visa

Holders of the Philippines retirement visa (SRRV) are entitled to multiple-entry visa and the right to reside in the Philippines indefinitely. This type of visa grants you permanent residence in the Philippines.

How Much Money Do You Need to Retire in the Philippines?

The Philippines has a generally low cost of living. However, the amount of money you need for a nice retirement in the Philippines depends on where you decide to settle and your lifestyle. One person can spend around $516 per month, not including rent.

The living costs in big cities like Makati, Quezon, or Pasig are higher, so you will need to spend a higher amount of money if you decide to spend your retirement in one of them. 

Healthcare For Retirees in The Philippines 

Philippines provides free healthcare to all residents under the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth). The PhilHealth program covers the entire population, granting free lifetime coverage to foreign retirees and pensioners who have legal residency status in the Philippines. 

PhilHealth is a government-owned insurance corporation and offers coverage and medical benefits that include:

  • Inpatient and Outpatient services
  • Ancillary services
  • Catastrophic coverage
  • Maternity benefits
  • Surgeries

You can always choose between private or public health insurance companies. Private health insurance companies offer more features and benefits.

See some of the best international health insurance companies. 

Best Places to Retire in the Philippines

The cost of living is one of the key factors when looking for a place to retire. The Philippines is not an expensive destination, which makes it a top choice for retirees all around the world.
To help you decide where to locate, we have selected some of the best places for retirement in the Philippines. 

Makati City

Makati City is ideal for retirees who want to enjoy a luxurious retirement. The city is known for shopping malls, restaurants, and hotels, and it is considered the financial, commercial, and economic hub of the Philippines.

If you choose Makati City as your retirement home, prepare to spend a higher amount of money than what you would spend in smaller cities.

Baguio City

Baguio, also known as ‘The Summer Capital of the Philippines’, offers a warm and friendly vibe. The locals are kind and polite and welcome everyone to their hometown. You will enjoy the cool climate, tropical pine forests, and the city’s romantic atmosphere.

Tagaytay City

Tagaytay is one of the most frequented places in the south. The city is located in the rural region and has outstanding scenery. It is characterized by a cool climate, stunning views, and delicious cuisine.

Lipa City

Lipa is a combination of urbanized and rural cities. Retirees consider moving to Lupa due to the cooler climate and the ideal location. The city is close to nature and not far from Manila.

Iloilo City

Iloilo City is a great place to save money and live a quiet lifestyle. This makes it popular among retirees worldwide. The tropical wet and dry climate is dominant throughout the year. Salaries in Iloilo city are some of the highest in the Philippines.

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