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  2. I understand you have to put money aside for a SRRV and that you can use some of the set aside money for a “long term lease”. What I haven’t seen anywhere is what the government means by “long term”. Is it one year, five years, or twenty-five years? And is there a minimum rent associated with it?

    1. Good question and I have SRRV but my money is just a deposit and cannot be used for a lease. I don’t know they consider long term. I’d like to know. Also if you have money deposited for an SRRV make sure you have appoint a beneficiary in case you pass away here, otherwise I don’t know what happens to that 10 or 20K.

    1. Most of what the IRS has done has not even revealed where the rich are hiding their money.  Most of what has happened is attempting to double tax business owners, who have made the sad decision to renounce their American citizenship.

    2. Willy M 💯 It’s unfortunate but foreign banks do not want to deal with the red tape and added expense of annual reporting to the US IRS which has recently adopted strict reporting of all offshore accounts to curb the concealment of taxable income.

  3. Great video! Question,I can get a BDO bank account in California, connected with Cebu. Do you know if this bank would still serve in the Philippines, or does it have limitations? Eventually I will go to Downtown Los Angeles and ask them, I just thought it may be helpful for others to know.

    1. @Reekay’s LifeBeyondTheSea

      PayPal requires 2 separate accts .. I would think a bank has the same rules

    2. @Reekay’s LifeBeyondTheSea i have pnb card i got from toronto pnb (remit) and i just load it up before i go to ph and money is already sitting in bank,no fees,voila…..but for long term use(like living there for a year etc) and other features,im not sure how it all works…..i just know it works in any atm machine there and no fees if i use a pnb atm…..

    3. no idea. ‘logically’ it would seem you could use it in the ph without fees.

      but then again, ‘logically’ a person with a BDO account should be able to replace their ATM card without returning to the exact same branch where the account was opened. yet another time-consuming experience i had with BDO. in the end, i had to fly from cebu to dumaguete just to get my new ATM card… AFTER waiting 6-weeks for them to never get around to mailing it to my local branch in cebu.


  4. Why bother? Just exchange it for pesos and spend it. This BS is why the Ph will always be a third world country. I long for the day when Filipinos have their revolution.

    1. im waiting for PH to explode like chile recently did
      but filipinos are more tolerant and resilient
      there is not a class struggle or elitism like in chile

    2. I was there during edsa2 and exchange rate went from over 50 to 1 usd to 40 overnight

  5. To get your license now in the Philippines you will need to stay in the country for 1 yr and then you can apply. Another way is if you are married and on a Balikbayan Visa and have been here for 30 days you can then convert your license. They consider the BB Visa that you will be staying for a year. The other items you will need if you are using the BB Visa is, a copy of your marriage license, passport (showing the BB Visa) and your drivers license from your country in English. Some LTO offices are easier than others to deal with. Hope this helps someone.

    1. @WOW TECH HD The ‘easy to get” visa extensions appear to be a scam to me. I’m told one thing up front and then i find out, there is another problem in the way. I easily get my visa extensions for a price and then everything else is an issue. I also am forced to walk, take jeeps and taxis and pay cash for everything. no rights.

    2. @drew crav Hi Drew i think your mistaken ,its not that you have to be in philippines for 1 year before getting drivers license. The truth of the matter you must prove via your tourist visa at the time of applying that you will be in the philippines 1 year from that date. And there is no one year visa here. Im in your boat as well,im stuck between a rock and hard place. I have been here over 3 years & i still drive. I want to abide by the law,but when philippines rules dont make sense .What is a guy to do.

    3. @Philippine Fandango
      Go to the LTO office in Lapu Lapu by City Hall, believe me *No B.S. getting your Drivers License there.

    4. They are really pushing these Retirement Visa’s at LTO… I think you are mistaken about being here for one year… They asked me at a couple of locations in Cebu City for proof that I will be here for another year.. I had my passport showing I had been here over 2 years, and they would not budge… Sir you need proof that you will be here for 1 more year.. They will not take your word for it, no matter how long you have been here.. The only way to prove to them that you will be here for another year is the BB visa, or one of the two Retirement visa’s.. I believe they are forcing your hand to hand over, or invest more money… It is ridiculous…

    5. yes this is the real truth here and this was even 3 years ago…u cannot get a philippines drivers license unless you can prove you have been living there for a year….maybe different if your married with BB visa and of course if you know the right people,,international license is waste of time and money….so not sure what you do if your there for over 3 months

  6. I am married to a Philippine. When I enter teh country with her I get a one year visa. They require a one year visa to get a drivers license. If you apply right after you enter that works. I got my drivers license. With the one year visa I do not get an ACR card. I have wanted to open my own bank account so I have gone to immigration at G center mall each year when I come. I get a slightly different story. The last time I was told that it would take two trips to Manila to get it. Or he happens to know someone and if I gave him 8,000 pesos he could take care of that for me. I could however not enter the country with my wife and eventually get an ACR card that way by paying for regular extensions. I have sort of lost my interest in getting a bank account.

    1. Try different banks at different locations and towns..either they have different rules or some don’t follow the rules..sometimes immigration offices are the same way also..

  7. OMG Reekay, you have a lot of patience. An hour and a half do deposit your money?How they do things in the Philippines is two different worlds. And the amount of red tape just to open an account?

    15 years ago, all the bank needed was my passport and a Filipino address. Just a few minutes of my time.

    The one thing that’s funny at Phillipine banks, to withdraw cash at the counter, my ID is verified by my signature, not my ID. And if your signature is deviated just a little they’ll ask you to sign your name again until that matches what’s on their file.

    1. Filipino, no matter what job try to feel more important than what they really are.. That’s why delays

  8. 08:00 – wow, at this point the story passes from annoying to incredulous. This story is emblematic of foreigners being treated as potential criminals in SE asian countries.

    1. so far, I am told one thing, then another thing. A former bank manager told me it is because of the suspicion of money laundering….really?!

    1. Metro Bank just wanted me to show proof of funds that I have.. Like a US bank account or if you have a pension

  9. That SRRV is way to expensive for me, so what about the 13a, or a Balikbayan privilege? will that be sufficient to get a driver’s licence and bank account?

    1. I live here on an SRRV. The cost depends on which category you want and qualify for, if you are retired military. I’ll admit it is expensive. However if you want to live in SE Asia Cambodia also has a retirement visa for those over 55 and it’s cheaper. Vietnam doesn’t have a retiree visa but you can go there for 90 days and do the border runs if you want. I’d look into Cambodia if you want Asia.

    2. I expect at some point the BB not being sufficient since it’s not a visa, it’s a visa-free stay.

    3. Site You Own… no, that is not the case. the balikbayan visa also extends to the expat spouse and children. an expat who enters the PH in the company of his filipina wife can get a balikbayan visa.

      quote: “The visa-free stay privilege is extended to the balikbayan’s non-Filipino spouse and children, on the two conditions that (1) they enter the Philippines with the balikbayan and (2) they are citizens of a country listed below.”

  10. Magandag Gabi Kuya! WoW! Loko Loko Bruha!! No Way I would have the patience to deal with banks.
    But eventually we need access to our one Pera.
    Maraming Salamat Great 411.

    1. my thought was to overlap the bills so that just the serial #’s are photo-copied.

    2. good point. although, the need to even copy down the serial numbers on ‘cash’ is another issue. it’s cash. it says, “legal tender’ right on it.

      they ‘should’ be able to just verify it’s not counterfeit (takes 1 minute with a highlighter made for this purpose) and then credit it to the account.

      and instead of having the bank employee provide the service.. the customer now has to sit there and do this tedious task of copying down the serial #’s by hand. in pen.

      sometimes, it’s just #lessfuninthephilippines

  11. I have a Philippine drivers license and US passport. BDO, BPI, METRO BANK, in the Philippines will NOT let a foreigner open a bank account if you are in country on a tourist visa, more specifically if your ACR card says tourist on it you will be denied. This was effective in early 2018. I’ve tried at several branches in the province as well as Metro Manila all with the same result.

    1. Wayne A Did you show proof of funds and open an account? Because let me tell you, when I went to the different banks and different branches every bank gave me a different criteria and the run around and even the manager came out at BDO Sta. Ana Metro Manila branch and told me that I met all the criteria for opening an account and gave me a number for their que, but in the end it was always the same “sorry sir”, “we cannot open an account for you”.

  12. Back in March I went into a BDO with my Filipina partner to exchange a couple thousand dollars into Pesos and was instructed to write down all the serial numbers for 100 $20 bills… Ha! No way! I complained and walked out, went straight to a money changer. No problem. You won’t convince me that the these fairly new regulations are something other than a regulated way for Philippine banks to make more money by sitting on your deposited cash. I’ll keep the adjectives to myself. Also, I found some time ago that transferring funds directly from my Wells Fargo account to our BDO account is fast, easy, and fairly inexpensive, and up to now problem free. I hate dealing with banks in the Philippines. Always takes a whole lot of time.

    1. And do u think open bank account ur country is easy,specially when u r foreigner?🥴

    2. @Stephen Gallagher yeah me too
      i have an account at bdo and went in 6 years ago to change money
      and they too took forever and wrote down all serial numbers etc
      i never went back
      i simply went to the corner money changer or the one in the mall
      and change in seconds and get the same rate

    3. @CajunDave79 A couple times I have deposited a check from my US bank to my Phils BDO. There may of been a small processing fee but I don’t recall. They don’t do anything for free usually & it will take almost exactly 6 weeks for your funds be available. This is another BDO scenario where u MUST deposit the check at the branch that you opened your acct. at . So if u opened it at Makati & u now live in Cebu there may be problem. I was also told that cash can be deposited in acct. at any BDO branch but not same for checks………

    4. It’s not the Philippines that causes the problems on this one. It’s the United States

    1. Anthony USA
      Xerox of US Currency is in no way illegal… only when the xerox is attempted to be passed as US Currency dose it become illegal..

  13. I may have run out of patients Reekay and possibly got myself in trouble,some stupid thing which was a waste of time for both parties and treated you like your some kind of criminal. Well thanks for the video.

  14. if you take it $10,000 with you when you travel to the Philippines is it going to be hard to convert that large amount to Philippine pesos?

    1. NO
      i agree with henry
      just go to money changer
      but 500 at a time in case of theft

      and 10 grand ? im the cousin of your girlfriend BTW
      dont forget my gift !


    2. $10,000 is the limit airlines will allow you to take in cash, you can take more but then you have to declare it at customs. (where they will also ask for the source of the funds.)

      as for converting it, it would be wise to convert it in smaller amounts for safety reasons. and convert it at the mall where there is the better rate and more security around. but it is very easy to go to the money exchange services in the mall and convert it into local PH pesos.

  15. Seems crazy to me that I can’t deposit dong into my Timo account anymore. I only used it to credit my Grab electronic wallet so I could get the lowest fares. You’d think the authorities could allow smaller amounts like say 500000 dong a month to be deposited. It’s not like a criminal gang is going to deal with such small funds. Just set up my first Transferwise payment from my Aussie bank to VPBank yesterday. Hope there’s no glitches with the transfer. Guess I’m lucky I set up the Timo account early this year thanks to Reekay making that video.

    1. i do all my deposits into my Timo account through Transferwise, no issues and credited within hours, same day. if i sold my motorbike and had a bunch of VND on-hand, i would just exchange it at the money-changers rather than deal with a deposit at the branch. http://bit.ly/transferwisereekay

  16. Hey, Hen…. Reekay. Good vid, as usual. Quick question: In one of your latest videos you mentioned a website where a guy could send load from the US to PH. For the life of me I can’t find that again. Would you mind directing me to that vid, or giving the site. Thanks for all you do, man.

    1. @Reekay’s LifeBeyondTheSea Thanks, man. Very much appreciate what you do for the expat community.

  17. An opportunity to test your ability to control your emotions and be a patient non-judgmental person. Even in the 1980’s it took time as I had invested in Philippine CD’s and would spent much time waiting but the employees kind of became my friends and did the best they could as we chatted and made some jokes. I was once even invited to an employees home as an act of friendship.

  18. lol. Smile , try to chat a little & always be VERY patient in these situations. Nothing moves fast in the Phils. If you can’t do this avoid coming here and being totally miserable….

    1. I had some kind of similar incident in Mexico in the 80s. I remarked in disgust- as if this is a fucking civilized country. LOL. I’m a little more reserved nowadays.

  19. Many of the banks now here in the Philippines now require that you have a permanent resident visa before you can open a new account.
    And the new rule from the LTO is when you apply for the driver’s license you have been in the country for at least one month AND must still have one year or more STILL remaining on the visa to get the license. The only type of visa that will have at least 13 months is a permanent resident visa 13A or SRRV.
    But of course with many things here it all depends on what bank or LTO Office you go to. Some will still do things the old way and a tourist Visa will be just fine for getting both.

  20. The LTO change went into effect quite a while back, but it takes a while to spread throughout the country.

    1. yes, with banks, LTO and immigration.. any policy change ends up in flux for about a year or two, which causes a lot of confusion.

  21. Be careful witht BDO in the Philippines. While I use their ATM’s mostly to withdraw cash their banking and customer service isn’t very accommodating. I’ve used them for my deposit for my SRRV and they always refer me back to the “maintaining branch” where it was opened which is in Makati and I live in Cebu. I’m not sure why since they’re a national bank but either it’s their customer service that’s lousy or their computer system. Other than that I have no personal accounts here. I’d go with another bank if I did.

  22. Enrique: why not just do a direct bank-to-bank money transfer versus using Transfer Wise at the middleman ? Thank you. (fr USA)

    1. things ‘may’ have changed since i last used WF to move funds to BDO, but 2 years ago the fees on the WF end were higher than the flat-rate at Transferwise. i hear now that WF and BDO are working together now, so that may be another option if it’s less than the $7 i usually pay Transferwise.

  23. I think that is only for expats .. I being deposit cash in my GF account all this 6 years and never they ask her nothing ..to her .. and latly she is deposit large amounts and still nothing ask …is easy to have some extra cash in a Philippine debit card , YES watt you tell is true and they don’t have all that things and they are really inchapelotas en esas cosas yo nunca habri una cuanta en estos pelotudos bancos ,,y le encontre la buelta muy bien ,, //ahora este pedo esta en THAI y Seguro esta llegando a VIET …si estubiera solo como vos ,, tendria que ver otras alternativas .. MUY Buena la informacion .. saludos

  24. Henry, the only thing I can think of over the hassle is, they are trying to insure that you are not a money launderer.. Being from the States, I have never seen a bank that will refuse to take your money.. That is how they make money, by using yours to make investments or loans, so they can make money from their investments or interest on loans… The ordeal you ran into at BDO was ridiculous.. The that’s above my paygrade excuse she gave you is an easy out.. No place it seems in the Philippines wants to use their paper for Zeroxing, and they want you to do the work.. I have a Bank account here with the Development Bank of the Philippines.. I opened it before all of the BS, as I was not required to have a drivers license… I cannot get a drivers license, as I cannot provide proof that I will be here for another year… They are forcing your hand to get one of the retirement visa’s… It is crazy, but it is what it is… Good video, and thank you….

    1. @Reekay’s LifeBeyondTheSea Yes Sir.. I don’t know what the banking institutions in the Philippines are thinking… They may not have an amount limit, who knows… The magic number in the states is $10,000.. When I came here to live, I withdrew $9,000 to bring with me, because I didn’t want any problems coming here… You notice when you fill out the declaration form when arriving, they want you to declare anything over $10,000…

    2. i understand that. but it would seem more practical to focus on large amounts of cash being moved. not a mere $300 transaction. real drug-dealers are trying to move hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of dollars around.

  25. It’s not the counterfeit issue that is being tracked….it’s YOU. Welcome to the police state that is tracking what you’re doing. Even the money exchange has to write down the bill numbers and register the transaction with your passport.

  26. I received my Philippines plastic drivers license about two weeks ago. I am on a Tourist Visa…but I hear that some LTO offices might not have granted me a license, so I might have lucked out. It also takes eight (8. really) months to get the plastic license in the Philippines.

    1. Hello Sir! Who told you that you thay getting your plastic (license) will take 8 months? That’s just absurd. That’s what the problem here in PH. You can take your plastic whenever you’re done processing your license that same day. If you know people you can get it right away. That’s just BS talk to prolonged or wanting more money from you to get it.

  27. Honestly I can’t believe this behavior either, and they won’t let you open a bank account with (tourist) ACR card. I tried open one last week.wow

  28. I opened a BDO acct in Iloilo 5 months after moving here in ’17. Passport & ACR were all that I needed & I still don’t have a Phil DL. If you have issues at certain LTO, BI or bank branches you may want to consider a different one. From my experience it seems that they often do things differently at different locations & none of them are ever really on the same page…..

    1. very true. banks, the LTO and the BI. it makes things confusing since there is not universal policy applied at all branches at the same time. it “rolls out” slowly, branch by branch. so it becomes hard to know what is what.

  29. It takes a special kind of stupid, to not be able to fulfill basic requirements. Western Union spring to mind, in endless games they play, to inconvenience both foreigners and Pinoy. The Philippines is a third world country, for numerous reasons, with endless bureaucratic paperwork.

    1. western union… geez, i’ve heard so many expats say they’ve had problems with them. often getting their accounts shut-off from moving money, with no explanation and no appeal process.

  30. Luckily when I make the move to the Philippines, they have my bank(navy federal credit union), in Manila, so if I ever need to go into a branch…a ferry ride away isn’t so bad..better than not having a branch here in Thailand, and the atm eats your card..lol

    1. @Reekay’s LifeBeyondTheSea luckily my bank allows western union for a fee ofcourse..held me over until my new card came , about a week

    2. my son had an atm in mexico eat his card. fortunately he had his buddies with him to work it out, as he called and canceled his card.

  31. These are all procedures to guard against money laundering and terrorist financing. There is no concern if the money comes from another bank account because source of funds should have been verified already.

    1. money changers are the same as ANY other business. they provide a service to make a profit. otherwise, they’d be doing it as a charity. nobody is going to pay their employees a salary just to exchange money for the public for free.

      even someone with a hotdog stand is selling that hotdog with a profit attached. that is not the definition of a rip-off.

      now, ‘some’ businesses are rip-offs. but most are not. if you go to some shady money-changer in a bad part of town, yah.. expect to get ripped-off. but the ones in the mall do provide the best rate. i did a video where i compared the rates from the airport, the bank, and the mall all in the same day. can see it at this link.

  32. i have NEVER had a problem in the Philippines with scammers fixers etc !
    i have many documents too
    even the Pro driver license , i took the exam legally , no tip or fixer

    other filipinos pay 2k to 4k for a driver license to avoid test !
    i think my wife paid 2k

    she has a license to drive a car and motorcycle and could legally and easily travel to another country and rent a car even though she has never driven a car in her life ! SCARY

  33. Hello acually in order to open a bank account in the philppines even bdo you need to have a acr card that doesnt show tourist on it permanent residence visa or they will not open a account some might do it without acr. And lto requires 1 yr for you to be in the Philippines to get a drivers lic. Conversion great video by the way.

  34. Hello Reekay, I did understand, that you suggested transferwise as a deposit credit card in the Phils. Did I get you wrong? Isn‘t it possible to rely only on that to get Pesos from the ATMs if I do not need a local Bank Account? Thank you for all the good informations you allways provide!

    1. transferwise does not issue a, “deposit credit card”. they issue a debit card.

      this debit card is best as a back-up or for partial use at an ATM since there is a 1% charge after $250/month in withdrawals.

  35. BDO Banks are not very good banks. A few years ago my Wife and I opened a BDO Bank Account. I weekly opened my account to see if my amount of money had changed. It was always the same amount. We went to the US for 5 mos. then came back. We went to put more money into the account and found out that BDO was taking money away from our account for service charge. We where so MAD went into the BDO Branch and asked why. Their response was we where not putting money into the account so were putting service charges on account each month. So I was MAD and asked why then did it not show up on our account that you where doing that? We got the deer looking into headlight look. We then closed account that day. The BDO Manager asked why we closed account. Because your bank was taking out money for not using my account each month. In the States I have had money in a savings account for 1 year without the bank doing anything with MY money. Will never use a bank in the Philippines again. Will just transfer money from Bank to Zoom.

    1. my ‘first’ BDO account (2012).., i went to calif for 7 weeks. when i returned, they had shut down my account. they said, “for lack of activity and bank charges.” ugg.

  36. If I have an ACR card can I leave PH and then come back a few weeks later without having to buy the throwaway ticket out of the country?

    1. upon re-entering the PH, you will need the onward flight ticket again. also, any time you had on your visa renewal before you left is forfeited when you exit. the ACR card will still be valid for a year from when you got it.

  37. Reekay – I saw the link for TransferWise on your site:
    To get cash money/ check
    1- Can I use TransferWise to get cash money/ check from my bank account in US to Philippines? if yes, where do I get the money in Philippines, since I cannot open bank account for 4 months stay there?
    I prefer not to use fidelity or Charles Schwab ATM card
    Let’s say I do have bank account in Philippines
    2- While living in Philippines, transferring money from US to Philippines, using TransferWise, do I initiate the processes from my bank in US or through TransferWise website?

    you always come up with the useful topics, Thank you,

    1. transferwise has no fee for the first $250 per month withdrawn from an atm in the ph. after that there is a 1% fee. (still a pretty good deal.) apart from the transferwise debit card, they do bank-to-bank transfers. so you’d need to get a ph bank account to make use of that.

      the bank-to-bank transfers are done at the transferwise website. http://bit.ly/transferwisereekay

  38. I don’t use a bank in the Philippines I just use a debit card from Etrade banking .There is no ATM fees. no matter how often I use it. And yes Etrade will transfer money for free Electronically from my accounts should I open a BDO account. .But this works for me.

  39. I will not be dealing with any Philippines bank.  My 2 Credit Unions do not charge International Transaction Fees on ATM withdrawals.  However, they do charge a 1% Foreign Withdrawal Fee if I withdraw in Peso currency from an ATM while in the Philippines.  I only use Metrobank ATMs in the Philippines and have never had an issue in over 12 years of traveling there.

  40. Sorry for this Trivial Pursuit question. On the subject of Legally being able to drive for the first 90 days. How was the policeman going to know if he pulls you over on the 91st day? What documentation will he use to determine when you got in country?

  41. Hmmm, I’ve worked in the fraud department for a couple of major US Banks.  I guess they are looking for counterfeit bills or even tracking money laundering operations.  I’m sure someone has thought this through.  As for the requirement to have a Philippines drivrs license, what if you choose not to drive in the Philippines?  What if someone has a limitation that prevents him from obtaining a drivers license or from safely operating a motor vehicle?  What document will they accept?

  42. Didn’t watch the whole video yet, but what is the minimum amount they want reporting for?

  43. Thank you for this video! I’m looking at opening an account in Singapore. It is crazy expensive there but apparently very secure. If you have any information on Singapore I’d love to hear more…

    1. Hi, I have lived in Singapore for the last 15 years. Singapore does not allow tourist with no proof of residency either by work, marriage, or retirement to open a bank account here. Sorry for the bad news.

  44. Many (if not most) banks here in the Philippines have signs posted that Only Permanent Resident Visa holders can open bank accounts…I have a joint BPI account with my gf that was established many years ago however it would be very difficult to find one that would open an account for me now (I’m on a Long Stay Tourist Visa)…I’ve done some checking and recently heard from some fellow expats that they were able to open an account at a BDO branch here in the Pampanga area and I also heard that Security Bank is also Tourist friendly and will open an account for tourists however it might be a branch to branch decision…I have been told that this is NOT a Central Bank Policy but an individual bank policy handed down to the branches on a corporate level so who knows the reasons why they are becoming difficult to work with…So you would just have to shop around to see who will do what for you…I’m heading off to Guam to open a “secondary safety net” account in the event things really go sideways here banking wise (My brokerage recently cut off its ATM/Bill Pay services to all clients so I’m off to see The Bank of Guam)…I think the Long Arm of the US Law is reaching out globally to make sure they get every stinking taxable penny that they can get their greedy little hands on (as well as tracing money laundering)…Big push going forward to become a “cashless society”…But that’s just in my humble opinion…

  45. What is this??? Chinese subtitles?? Why not Korean or Japanese?? There are more Koreans in the Philippines than Chinese… And the CCP is an enemy…

    1. aside from english, there are 10 languages available, not just chinese. use the menu bar and you will see the list.

  46. Please advise: How to receive cash from the west and what to do with the cash when first arriving as a tourist? Thank you.

  47. Lucky for me, I have recent atm receipts in my wallet.  It’s fine, because atm receipts don’t have pins or full account numbers anyway.

  48. Hello Henry, This topic is interesting but a major problem for me right now. I’ve been in Greater Manila for just over two months. I am not married to a Filipina.

    I walked into Metro Bank in late September after I arrived. They said, “Come back after you get your ACR card. At GBC, in the Taguig BI office, i had no problem getting the ACR card along with my “over 59 days” Visa extension, but the price was a lot. I went back a couple days ago with my new ACR I card. The bank agent then told me that I need a permanent resident card. Two days later, I went to BPI/Bank of the Philippine Islands. I had already checked their site for the requirements of ID. Passport/including foreign passport and ACR card were two of the documents on the list. I produced both. I was also getting lectured with much of what you talked about before I was told that they will not allow me to open up any type of account, savings included. I then told her my reason for needing a checking account is because condo owners require 11 pre-dated checks to collect one year of rent. She apologized and suggested I try other banks. None of this was indicated on their website. Needless to say, my reasons for staying are dwindling. I am somewhat demoralized at this point.

    1. with the way things are, until an expat gets married i’d say using bank cards to access your money is the best solution. i use bank cards that reimburse me for the atm fees. i no longer will pursue a PH bank account for my times i am in the PH. i will just do ATM pulls.

      i did a video on this in more detail here..

      by the way, banking in vietnam is much easier if you are american and have a 1-year visa. i covered that here..

  49. I us citi bank in the usa they have banks also in the Philippines.. when I’m in the Philippines I can go to the bank and deposit or withdraw or use many of their atm’s located in the Philippines… money exchange issues problem solved ….

  50. Hi, I’m a dual citizen but I don’t drive. How can I open an account if I don’t have a driver’s license?

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