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Step by step guide to applying for a US Visa in the Philippines, who can apply, types of visas Filipino residents and citizens can apply for and FAQs

All Philippine citizens will need a visa to travel to the United States. A USA visa is required for both immigrant and migrant purposes. Yet, if you are a resident of the Philippines, but not a passport holder, that does not mean that you automatically need a visa. In fact, it all depends on the country the passport of which you hold.

Do I Need a Visa for USA From Philippines?

If you live in the Philippines and you want to travel to the US, you will be exempt from the visa requirement in only two cases. These cases are:

  • You are residing in the Philippines but you are a passport holder of a country exempt from the US visa requirement.
  • You hold dual citizenship: Filipino citizenship and the citizenship of a Visa Waiver country.

Use our ESTA Eligibility Checker to find out if you are eligible for ESTA:


Tourist Visa in USA from Philippines

If you want to visit the US for tourism, then you should apply for the US Tourist visa from the Philippines. The B-2 Visa is for people wishing to enter the US for tourism or visiting friends/relatives.

To apply for a tourist visa from Philippines to USA you should mostly follow the guideline above. When it comes to the requirements, you will need to submit extra documents. A letter of invitation may be one of them.

How to Apply for US Visa from Philippines?

The US visa application in Philippines consists of some steps that you must follow to get a US visa. If you are planning to travel to the US and you need to apply for a US visa in Manila, follow these steps:

  1. Figure out which US visa type you need.
  2. Check where you should submit your visa application documents.
  3. Get the required documents for a US visa.
  4. Pay the visa application fee.
  5. Complete the application form for US visa.
  6. Schedule a US visa appointment.
  7. Attend the visa interview.

Check what type of US visa you need

According to the reason why you wish to travel to the US from Philippines, there are a few visa types. It is very important to know what your visa type is, for many reasons. Your whole US visa application process in Manila depends on the visa type. The type of application form, the required documents, the visa fees, and the interview as well.

Check where you need to apply

It is very important to know where you should file your US visa application. In the Philippines, all applicants should submit their applications at the US Embassy in Manila.

US Embassy in the Philippines

Address: 1201 Roxas Boulevard, Manila, Philippines 1000

Phone: (632) 301-2000

Fax: (632) 301-2017

Please note that this article is for those applying for a nonimmigrant visa to the US. If you wish to apply for a US immigrant visa in Philippines, you should check our article on “Immigrant Visas to the United States.”

Collect the required documents for a US visa from Philippines

After all these steps, now you should collect the required documents.

The standard required documents for a US visa application in the Philippines are as listed below:

  • DS-160 form confirmation page.
  • Your Passport. Check your passport’s validity and pages before you apply. The passport must be valid for at least 6 months beyond your date of planned stay in the US. It must have at least one blank page for the visa sticker.
  • A recently taken US visa photograph. If you have already uploaded a photo to your DS-160 application form, then there is no need to submit another photo. If not, submit a photo of 5 x 5 cm size, in color and taken within the last 6 months.
  • Interview appointment confirmation page (if applicable).
  • Visa fee payment confirmation.
  • Previous US visas (if you have any).
  • ACRO. This is a police certificate you get from the authorities in your country. It is a criminal record that shows if you have ever been arrested, cautioned or convicted.
  • Medical letter. The letter is required only if you have a medical condition that could have a bearing on your eligibility for a visa.
  • Invitation Letter for a B2 visa. If you are applying for a B-2 visa then this letter may also be required.
  • If you have ever been rejected from entering or deported from the US, you must also submit documents in this regard, which tell the reasons behind the deportation / rejection.

In addition to these documents, you will also need to submit other documents according to the purpose of your trip to USA.

You don’t have to wait until after you schedule your appointment to start collecting the required documents. You can start collecting them earlier, in particular, if some of them take time.

Remember:  Although it is not strictly required, getting US visa travel health insurance is highly recommended because the cost of healthcare in the US is very high. If you get sick or in an accident, the medical bills could reach thousands of dollars.

Pay visa application fee

The application fee for a US Tourist Visa application in Philippines is $160. When applying for a US visa in the Philippines, you have to pay the US visa fee upfront. To pay the visa fee in the Philippines, you have to download the deposit slip from the official website of the US Embassy’s Visa Information Service for the Philippines (here).

Then, you have the following payment options:

  • Paying by cash at the bank. Print out the deposit slip, make the payment in a Bank of Philippine Islands (BPI), and then save the payment slip/receipt for later.
  • Paying online. If you pay your Philippines visa online, you can do so if you are a client of Bank of Philippine Islands (BPI) or BancNet.

Whatever way you make the payment, save the fee receipt since you will need it later.

Complete the online application form

Your application form is the basement of your application for a US visa from Philippines. That is why you should pay special attention to this step of your application. For a US nonimmigrant visa, you should complete form DS-160.

You can fill the DS-160 form online through:

  • the Consular Electronic Application Center, or
  • by using the services of a third party company such as VisaExpress.

Keep the following information or documents nearby when you complete the DS-160 form:

  • Your passport.
  • Your travel itinerary (if you have already booked your trip).
  • The dates of your last five trips in the US. You may also need to submit your entire international travel history in the past 5 years.
  • For students and exchange visitors: Your SEVIS ID.
  • For petition-based temporary workers: Copy of your I-129.
  • For other temporary workers: Information about your employer, such as the address.

Schedule a US visa appointment with the US Embassy in Philippines

Once you complete the application form, you have to schedule your appointment with the US Embassy in Manila so you can submit your application. To schedule an appointment, you have to register here. Once you have logged in, you will see a dashboard. Click on “Schedule Appointment”, and proceed to complete the fields. When scheduling the appointment, you will need the following:

  • Your passport number.
  • The receipt number from your Bank of Philippine Islands (BPI) or BancNet receipt.
  • The barcode number from your DS-160 confirmation page.

You have to enter your personal information, choose a date for the appointment, confirm the payment of the visa fee, as well as choose a location where you want your documents to be delivered.

Note: Make sure to wait for at least one workday from the time you pay the visa fee to schedule your appointment so that the payment processes.

Attend the US visa interview in Philippines

On the day of your scheduled appointment, go to the US Embassy in Manila for your visa interview.

US Embassy in the Philippines

1201 Roxas Boulevard, Manila, Philippines 1000

Phone: (632) 301-2000

Fax: (632) 301-2017

You must have your passport with you (and any other previous passports which have US visas in them), your DS-160 confirmation page, your visa fee payment receipt, and a passport-size photo of yourself taken within the last six months. You must also have the documents listed above and any documents mentioned on the the “Schedule My Appointment” website, so make sure to check.

After You Have Applied for the US Visa in the Philippines

When your visa application is processed, the US Embassy will deliver your documents on the designated location that you selected when you scheduled your appointment.

US Visa Application Processing Time in the Philippines

The estimated US visa processing time in Philippines is three working days. Yet, there is not an exact answer to how many days it takes to get US visa after the interview in Philippines. This happens because in specific cases this period may be extended due to your personal circumstances or other.

How to Renew a US Visa in the Philippines?

Holders of nonimmigrant US visas can apply to renew their US visa if they are frequent travelers to US. If you wish to renew US visa from Philippines, you need to follow some procedures.

The process for a US visa renewal in Philippines goes as following:

  1. Pay the application fee for visa renewal.
  2. Complete a new DS-160 application form. Print the confirmation page after you complete the form.
  3. Register an account.
  4. Check if you qualify for an Interview Waiver. If you qualify then submit your documents for Interview Waiver service at any 2GO outlet. These documents are
    1. The Interview Waiver Confirmation Letter.
    2. Passport with previous B1/B2 visa.
    3. Two photos.
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