Traveling is something more than just a way to fill your free time. It is an adventure, which helps you to broaden your horizons and broaden your knowledge. In order to make your trip much easier and more pleasant, as well as to plan it thoroughly, you need to read this article. It is full of useful advices concerning vacation in the Philippines.
Vacation in Philippines is legendary for its many spectacular sceneries, and there are quite a few that tourists can’t resist the temptation to visit. The tour itineraries range from cultural travel to water sport adventure, city tour, beach and island hopping, lounge beachfront and many other exciting activities suited for every budget and vacation style.
The Philippines is one of the best vacation spots in the world. It is a country that offers its visitors a wide range of experiences, from secluded beaches to bustling cities and everything in between. Whether you want to stay at an all-inclusive resort or explore the local culture, there is something for everyone when it comes to visiting this beautiful island nation.
The first thing on most people’s minds when they think of visiting the Philippines is Boracay Island. This island is known for its white sand beaches and blue water, which make it one of the best places to spend your vacation in the country. There are also plenty of activities available on Boracay Island, including snorkeling, surfing, scuba diving and more!
Another great place for a vacation in the Philippines is Palawan Island. This island features beautiful scenery such as limestone cliffs and crystal clear waterfalls that make it one of the most popular destinations for tourists who want a relaxing getaway from busy city life back home.
If you’re looking for something more active than just lounging around on a beach all day long then consider taking a trip to Bohol Island instead! Bohol has plenty of great spots for hiking through mountains or exploring caves near where you stay at night time so you can enjoy both natural beauty as well as cultural experiences during your time here!
Requirements for vacation in philippines
If you’re fully vaccinated
If you are fully vaccinated, you can enter the Philippines provided you:
- have acceptable proof of vaccination;
- have valid tickets for your return journey to the port of origin or next port of destination not later than thirty (30) days from the date of your arrival in the Philippines;
- your passport is valid for at least 6 months; and
- have registered for a Bureau of Quarantine One Health Pass prior to your arrival. You will receive a unique QR code which you will need to present to your airline prior to boarding and on arrival at your airport in the Philippines
- present either a negative RT-PCR test taken within forty-eight (48) hours prior to the date and time of departure from the country of origin/first port of embarkation in a continuous travel to the Philippines; or a negative laboratory based Antigen Test taken within twenty-four (24) hours. See information on getting a test before entry. However, you are exempted from the requirement to provide a test result should one of the following apply:
- you are aged 18 and over and have completed a primary course of COVID-19 vaccination and received at least one booster shot;
- you are aged 12-17 and are fully vaccinated; or
- you are aged below 12 and are accompanied by a parent or guardian who meets the exemption requirement;
The requirement to hold a return onward ticket is waived if you are a spouse and/or child of a Filipino citizen or a former Filipino citizen with balikbayan privileges.
You are considered fully vaccinated if you received the second dose in a 2-dose series or a single dose vaccine more than fourteen (14) days prior to the date and time of departure from your country of origin. Your vaccine must either appear on the Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) List or Compassionate Special Permit (CSP) issued by the Philippine Food and Drug Administration or have received Emergency Use Listing by the World Health Organization.
Once you arrive in the Philippines you are no longer required to observe facility based quarantine but must self-monitor for any COVID-19 symptoms for 7 days from your arrival. You are required to report to the local government unit (LGU) of your destination if you develop any symptoms.
Proof of vaccination status
The Philippines will accept the UK’s proof of COVID-19 vaccination record and proof of COVID-19 vaccination issued in the Crown Dependencies. Your final vaccine dose must have been administered at least 14 days prior to travel. Your NHS appointment card from vaccination centres is not designed to be used as proof of vaccination and should not be used to demonstrate your vaccine status.
Acceptable proof of vaccination are:
- world Health Organization International Certificate of Vaccination and Prophylaxis;
- VaxCertPH certification if you were vaccinated in the Philippines;
- the national or state digital certificate of a country which has accepted VaxCertPH under a reciprocal arrangement if you were vaccinated elsewhere overseas;
If you are arriving in the Philippines using the visa free entry scheme you will be denied entry into the country and will be subject to exclusion proceedings if you do not meet all of the entry requirements.
If you are arriving in the Philippines with another type of visa and are fully vaccinated, but are unable to provide acceptable proof of vaccination, you will be required to undergo facility-based quarantine until the release of a negative RT-PCR test taken on the 5th day. You will then be required to undergo home quarantine until the 14th day after your arrival.
If you’re not fully vaccinated
Foreign nationals who are not fully vaccinated are not able to enter the Philippines.
Residents of Philippines
See the guidance for ‘If you’re fully vaccinated’ above.
If you’ve had COVID-19 in the past year
There is no specific requirements for travellers who have tested positive for COVID-19 in the past year.
Children and young people
Children travelling with their fully vaccinated foreign parent/s must meet the full entry requirements for vaccinated travellers, with the following 2 exceptions:
- children below twelve years of age traveling with their fully vaccinated foreign parent/s are exempt from the requirement to be fully vaccinated;
- children aged three and under are exempt from the requirement to obtain a negative RT-PCR test prior to travel
A foreign national child below twelve years of age who is not vaccinated for any reason and is traveling with their Filipino parent, must follow the entry, testing, and quarantine protocols of their Filipino parent traveling with them.
A foreign child from ages twelve to seventeen traveling with their Filipino parent must follow the entry rules based on their vaccination status. If the child is not vaccinated, their parents must accompany the child during their facility-based quarantine.
If you’re transiting through the Philippines
Transiting is when you pass through one country on the way to your final destination. Please consult Philippine Airline guidance for latest information.
There are no exemptions to the Philippines entry requirements.
Check your passport and travel documents before you travel
Your passport should be valid for at least 6 months from the intended date of entry to the Philippines.
UK passport holders are permitted to enter the Philippines visa free for an initial period of 30 days. Consult the Philippine Embassy before you travel.
You can apply to extend your stay at the offices of the Bureau of Immigration. Overstaying without the proper authority is a serious matter and can lead to detention pending payment of outstanding fees and fines and voluntary deportation at your own expense. The British Embassy is aware of cases where visitors trying to extend their stay in the Philippines by regular renewals of tourist visas have been challenged on arrival by Philippine immigration officials. If you wish to stay long-term in the Philippines, make sure you do so in full accordance with Philippine immigration regulations.
Emigration Clearance Certificate (ECC)
Holders of a Temporary Visitor Visa who have stayed in the Philippines for six months or more or holders of Immigrant and Non-Immigrant visas with valid ACR I-Cards who are leaving the country temporarily must secure an Emigration Clearance Certificate (ECC) at least 72 hours before leaving the country to avoid being denied departure. You should refer to the Bureau of Immigration website for instructions, and call +63 (02) 8465 2400 for advice if you can settle this at the airport before your departure.
All ACR I cardholders generally need to pay for the ECC upon departure. Those with approved visas but who are yet to receive their ACR I cards can show their receipt at the airport. Foreigners with approved visa applications which have not yet been is-sued can present their valid passport, DOJ endorsement or Certification from the approving office and receipt.
From 1 March 2021, anyone holding a visa issued by the Department of Justice (DoJ), the Board of Investments (BoI), the Philippine Retirement Authority (PRA) and the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA) must obtain a travel pass from the Department that issued their visa in order to leave the Philippines. Anyone holding an ECC issued by the Bureau of Immigration is exempt from this requirement.
Annual Returns for registered foreign nationals
All registered foreign nationals are required to report in person to the Bureau of Immigration and its office within the first sixty (60) days of every calendar year. Please visit the Bureau of Immigration for more details.
Evidence of onward travel
Entry to the Philippines may be refused if you’re unable to produce evidence of return or onward travel – for example an onward or return air ticket.
If you’re leaving the country from Cebu Mactan airport you must pay a departure tax of 850 pesos in local currency or the equivalent in US dollars. There’s no longer a departure tax at Manila airport. This information is subject to change and you should check with local authorities before you travel.
Visiting Boracay Island
If you’re planning to visit Boracay Island, you will need to have evidence of a confirmed booking with an accredited hotel. You should take local advice on documentation and port of entry to the island before you travel.
Living, working or studying in the Philippines
If you intend to live, work, or study in the Philippines you’ll need to have certain UK documents (eg birth certificates, marriage certificates, UK police certificates, school documents) legalised by the FCDO Legalisation Office. These documents do not need to be legalised or authenticated by the Philippine Embassy in London. Alternatively, the requesting local authority may wish to verify the Apostille certificate issued by the Legalisation Office at https://www.gov.uk/verify-apostille.
Children travelling to the Philippines without their parents
Non-Filipino children under the age of 15, who are not travelling with a parent or joining a parent in the Philippines, must apply for a Waiver of Exclusion Ground (WEG) for entry into the Philippines. You can do this at the Philippine Embassy in London or on arrival through the Bureau of Immigration. For either application, you will need to submit the right documentation and pay a fee. For more information and details of payment, visit the Department of Foreign Affairs’ website
If a minor under the age of 15 is travelling to visit a parent they should carry a copy of their parents’ resident visa.
Yellow fever certificate requirements
Check whether you need a yellow fever certificate by visiting the National Travel Health Network and Centre’s TravelHealthPro website.
UK Emergency Travel Documents
UK Emergency Travel Documents (ETDs) are valid for entry, airside transit and exit from the Philippines. If you plan to use an ETD to enter Philippines, the ETD should be valid for 6 months from the date of arrival and have a valid Philippine visa. Check entry requirements with the nearest Philippine Embassy before you travel.
If you apply for an ETD from the British Embassy in Manila, you should get the necessary stamps from the Bureau of Immigration and confirm your Philippine visa is up to date before attempting to leave the Philippines otherwise you’re likely to face problems at the point of departure.
Places for vacation in philippines
Siargao made its first claim to fame as the Philippines’ surfing capital, and recently as the “Best Island in the World” (awarded by Condé Nast readers for 2018).
This paradise has been on my favorites list ever since my first trip to the island a decade ago. What impressed me the most were the enchanting lagoons of Sohoton Cove, a natural wonder that’s well worth the 2-hour detour from the Cloud 9 surfing beach. The main island is filled with pristine natural spots as well, including white sand beaches, stunning islets, vast coconut forests, cool tidal pools & more.
If you want to enjoy a laidback island lifestyle, Siargao is one of the best places that tourists can go to. You’ll find a mix of “foreign” and “local” here. It is remote yet accessible, and not too crowded despite the coming of new developments in recent years.
You came to the country to see spectacular beaches and island views. El Nido in Palawan province will not disappoint. In terms of spectacular “over-the-water” sea views, El Nido is my favorite in the Philippines. Imagine hidden lagoons, uninhabited white sand beaches, and massive forest-covered limestone mountains rising out of pristine tropical waters. The “SEAnery” here rivals popular destinations in Asia like Phi Phi/Krabi Islands (Thailand) and Ha Long Bay (Vietnam).
The experience of spending a whole day out on the islands is nothing short of incredible. The area of Bacuit Bay is spread over a large area, so spend at least two full days for the island hopping tours (Tour A & Tour C are the best).
In contrast to El Nido’s amazing “over water” views, go to Coron for spectacular underwater views. Here, you can see colorful coral gardens, pristine waters, lots of marine life, and even sunken WWII Japanese shipwrecks. Don’t get me wrong, Coron can hold its own when it comes to scenic views over the water as well. This paradise is home to hidden emerald/blue lagoons surrounded by limestone cliffs. There’s no shortage of incredibly beautiful fine white sand beaches in Coron either.
Cebu is the country’s #1 most visited tourist destination, and for good reason. It is unrivaled in offering the widest range of things to do and attractions. Cebu is like the “Jack of all trades” among tourist spots in the Philippines.
You can enjoy scenic natural sites (waterfalls, beaches, mountain views etc.), have exciting wildlife encounters, join a colonial heritage tour, shop at some of the World’s largest malls, or indulge yourself in local food including the prized Cebu Lechon! You can do all of these easily while staying at a luxury resort in Mactan Island, centrally located hotel/airbnb in the city, or a peaceful beachfront resort in the countryside. Your choice!
If that’s not enough, you can easily hop to nearby islands like Bohol, Negros (Dumaguete) or other major cities. Take full advantage of Cebu’s strategic location in Central Philippines and well-connected flight/ferry network.
Boracay Island & Aklan
Boracay is a vacationer’s paradise. Taking center stage is 4-kilometer White Beach, prized for its incredibly inviting blue waters, fine white sand, and perfect sunsets. This island is the place to go if you want to take it easy and you’re looking forward to enjoying a tropical resort experience. As you can expect, Boracay caters to a more upscale crowd, but don’t fret, there are many budget-friendly options available.
Boracay is small but packs a lot of attractions. Here you can find excellent dining, a wide variety of places to stay, souvenir shopping, and lots of fun water activities, and some nightlife all in one sandy stretch.
Boracay’s White Beach is a class of its own when it comes to how fine and white the sand is. From my extensive travels in the country, there’s only one lengthy beach that has sand whiter and finer than White Beach. You can find it in the group of islands featured next on this list.
If you’re looking for the best beaches & most vibrant waters in the Philippines, look nowhere else. Balabac is worth a spot at the VERY TOP of your bucketlist.
Balabac is the southernmost group of islands in Palawan. It is so far south that Sabah, in East Malaysia is nearer to Balabac than Puerto Princesa, the provincial capital of Palawan.
Previously, many readers have asked me why I did not include Batanes as one of the best places to go in the Philippines. The answer is simple: I haven’t been there yet. It’s still on my bucketlist! But due to popular demand, I am including Batanes now. So, comment below if you have a place in mind that you think should be included! I might have to add it to my bucketlist too.
Batanes is the northernmost province of the Philippines. These remote islands are shaped by volcanic forces and strong typhoons. The natural landscape of Batanes is distinct from other parts of the Philippines. Here, you’ll find vibrant green rolling hills, grazing cows, steep seaside cliffs, sparkling clear blue waters, traditional stone houses, and iconic lighthouses.
Travelers often describe its Batanes’ beauty as wild, overwhelming, and incredibly scenic. Looking at pictures and vlogs, I can see why it’s a popular choice among adventure seekers.