naia terminal 3

NAIA TERMINAL 3, PHILIPPINES: What to Do Before an International Flight

Cebu Pacific Air and PAL Express flights, domestic and international, fly in and out of NAIA Terminal 3. If you’ve flown out of the country before, then you’re probably familiar with the whole pre-flight thingamajig. But if it’s your first time,  read on as I discuss in detail the whole check-in and boarding processes so you could breeze through them.

One of the biggest mistakes that you will make if you’re flying to any other foreign destination is to assume that everything would go well exactly like how it does with domestic flights. Many travelers who have flown domestically before make that mistake and it results in stress caused by trying to beat the time and sometimes missing the flight altogether.

The check-in process for international flights is very similar to domestic in many ways but there are also many differences. For starters, you need to be at the airport at least 2 hours before the scheduled departure time for international flight as opposed to 45 minutes for domestic. This is because there are additional steps and paperwork that need to be done before anyone is allowed to board the plane.

“Things to Bring” Checklist

Whenever I travel abroad, I always have a checklist of items I MUST NOT forget. This is also why it is important to go to the airport early, like 2-3 hours before the flight. This allows you time to sit down and check your things. And in case you forgot something awfully important at home, you still have time to go back and get it. Allow me to share with you my checklist.

  • Passport – The last thing you want to happen is to unintentionally leave your passport at home.
  • Printed Flight Itinerary/Tickets – Make sure you print out the tickets. When I fly domestic, I usually just show the check-in agent the tickets on my phone. They accept it. But for international flights, you will be showing your tickets too many times (check-in counter, travel tax counter, departure fee counter, immigration, etc) that it would be impractical and ridiculously annoying to whip out your phone every step of the way. A printed ticket will make it a lot easier for you and the people who will check it. Besides, a piece of paper does not need to be charged.
  • Company ID – Immigration Officers sometimes ask for a company ID as a proof that you would return to the Philippines and would not seek employment opportunities in your destination country.
  • DSWD Clearance – Only when I’m traveling with my nephew or niece and their parents are not joining the trip.
  • Money – Of course! Make sure you have enough. My usual budget for a 3-day or 4-day trip abroad is US$600 but I usually just spend less than USD400. Having not enough cash is a common reason why travelers are denied entry even when they are already at the airport.
  • Credit card – Some airports require a copy of the credit card used when the tickets are booked online. You might also need it as a safety net in case you run short of cash. Some hotels also ask for credit card for deposit.
  • Travel Itinerary – Make a clear plan of what you want to do and write them down. In case the Immigration Officers pick you for a random check, a printed itinerary will help convince them that you will really go to your destination to tour and nothing else.
  • Hotel address and contact number – You will need it. If you’re traveling with a kid or someone who doesn’t speak English (or the language spoken in the country you’re visiting), give them the address and contact number of the place you are staying in. In case they get lost, it will be easier for them to find their way to you. You will also need the hotel address when filling out immigration forms.
  • A Pen – Yes, the humble pen is important. You will be accomplishing forms.

There’s a reason why teams competing at the Amazing Race all have a fanny pack with them. Though they might look unfashionable, they are absolutely helpful.

What NOT to Bring

The obvious ones, of course — drugs, firearms, explosives, endangered wildlife and the like. But there are also some completely harmless things that might have adverse consequences if you’re flying abroad as a tourist. It pays to check the regulations of the country you’re visiting. For example, if you’re flying to Singapore, here are items you should NOT bring with you:

  • Chewing gum – It’s banned and illegal in Singapore!
  • Pistol-shaped lighter – You’ll get in trouble for this one.
  • Resume – Just in case you get invited for a random check or inspection, this would prove you will not just go to Singapore as a tourist.

For a list of items prohibited to be imported to Singapore, click here.

What to Do Upon Check-in

Once we were sure we had all the important items with us, it was time to check in. Here’s the step by step guide.

  1. Get a copy of an Immigration Form (aka Departure Card) at the Check-in Counter. Accomplish one copy per person. You will need the exact address of your hotel here.
  2. Pay the Travel Tax. The Travel Tax counter is at the far end of the terminal. It’s P1,650 per person. They will give you a receipt. Don’t lose it.
  3. Check in! Present the Departure Card together with the Travel Tax receipt, printed ticket and passport to the check-in agent. If you’re checking in baggage, make sure they have locks. The Agent will give you your boarding pass.
  4. Proceed to the Departure Fee Booth. You will have to pay P750 per person here. (Update: It’s now only P550.)
  5. Go to the Immigration Booth to have your passport stamped.
  6. Final security check. Remove all gadgets and metal items (including belts and coins) from your body. Remove your shoes, too.

After the final security check, head to the Pre-Departure Area. Check your boarding pass to see what gate you should go to. You should be fine here. All you need to do now is wait for the boarding call.

During the Flight

At one point on board the plane, flight attendants will distribute arrival cards to all passengers. Accomplish it immediately to save time. Here’s an example of an Arrival Card. This one is for Hong Kong.

Don’t forget to fill out these forms because you will have to present it at the Customs/Immigration booths in the country you’re visiting.

Frequently Asked Questions

Since a lot of people are asking, I’m adding this section and it covers both counters here in the Philippines and those in your destination. Every country has their own Immigration rules. Some require visas from Filipino visitors, others don’t. Some have stricter rules, others don’t. It is important that you know these rules and requirements before your flight.

But here are some frequently asked questions that I thought I could answer. Again, I can’t be too sure but I’m only relying on experience.

  • Do I need to have a hotel reservation before my flight? 
    It is BEST to always book accommodations first before your flight. You will be required to indicate the address of your hotel on your departure and arrival cards, and Immigration officers on both sides sometimes ask for hotel reservation. Even when I’m backpacking across more than one country, I usually make sure I have at least booked accommodations on my first night in the next country I’m visiting. Again, you could go there without prior preservations but if you want to avoid the hassles of getting asked too many questions and the stress that comes with it, better book in advance.
  • I’ll be staying at a friend’s house, do I need an invitation letter?
    If you could produce one, go ahead. They might just ask for one if they deem necessary. You will be asked to indicate your “address abroad” so make sure you have that. To be on the safe side, be sure you have your friend’s contact number, too.
  • Is there a show money? How much do I need to have for them to let me through?
    I have never been asked to show money. I have never been picked for a random inspection or questioning but I know people who have been. My pocket money depends on the destination country. Some are more expensive than others. For example, the cost of living in Singapore is definitely higher than in Thailand. In countries like Singapore, Hong Kong, and Malaysia, I usually bring USD400 for a 4-day trip, USD500 for a week-long trip. But that’s way more than I actually spend. In cheaper countries like Cambodia and Thailand, I allot USD50 per day. Again, that has a big allowance.

View more FAQs here. :)

Enjoy your trip and have a hassle-free journey!


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Yoshke Dimen

Captain Dreamer at PhilippineBeaches.org
Yoshke is a part-time digital marketing consultant, part-time travel blogger, and full-time dreamer. He has three passions in life: social media, travel, and --- wait for it --- world peace. Yoshke has won 3 Philippine Blog Awards and received 9 nominations. Learn more about his personal journeys at Yoshke.com.

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  • http://pinayshopper.blogspot.com pinayshopper

    kaylangan bang ipakita ang cash mo sa immigration? maliit lang kasi dala kong cash since i’m travelling alone and would be unwise if i have the cash on-hand. baka mahold-up or malaglag. all the money are with my BPI card (which is international) and credit cards.

    also, my hubby is sponsoring the trip, so i don’t actually need that much cash.

    takot lang baka kasi need ipakita talaga… hala!

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Pinayshopper! Nope, only when they ask and they rarely do. But I always bring enough cash to be on the safe side. :)

  • Jeff

    thank you! It is my first time to travel(going to Hk).
    Very Informative :)

    • The Poor Traveler

      No problem, Jeff! Hope to see you again on this blog! :)

  • Svetlana Padil

    Very informative.. best for first timers and travel dummies.. great job.. keep it up..=)

    • The Poor Traveler

      Thank you! Glad to help!

  • Andrei

    Going to Singapore as a touris, Is it a major requirement to have this Invitation Letter? Saw while browsing.

    http://www.sugarpinoy.com/2010/10/todays-hottest-issue-pinoys-travelling.html

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Andrei! Been to Singapore 5x already. I never brought invitation letter. :)

  • Elisse

    Thank You very much, this is very informative especially to a first time traveler like me. :)
    I just want to ask about this:
    “Having not enough cash is a common reason why travelers are denied entry even when they are already at the airport.”
    so i am going to declare the amount i have for the entire trip, are they going to ask for a proof of the amount i have?

    • The Poor Traveler

      Only when they ask you. They usually don’t ask but sometimes, they do random check. :)

      • http://yahoomail princess

        it is a great help for me first time traveller in jeddah saudi arabia as of now i feel like fear..my visa is a tourist visa i don’t know what to do when inside NAIA..

        • The Poor Traveler

          Hope everything will work out fine for you! :)

  • http://staff.com Jerald

    Thanks for this one.
    I will have a flight locally but these things will surely help me (specially the ball pen and the IDs)
    I wanted to add that If you wanted to bring a laptop, make sure that it has a genuine OS (Windows 7) otherwise, you will not be able to have a flight.

    • The Poor Traveler

      Thanks for the comment, Jerald! And thanks for sharing a tip, too. :) Enjoy your trip. :)

    • Aben

      how about Linux OS laptops. is that ok to bring?

  • Jane

    I want to ask about the money. Before going to a trip, should you first have your money exchanged to the currency of the country you are travelling to? Like for instance, if you’re from PH and going to SG, should you have your peso money changed to SGD? Thanks so much for this post btw, very helpful for first time travellers. :)

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Jane. I’m not sure if this is the wisest way to go about it but this is what I usually do.

      1. At Changi airport, I exchange just enough pesos to SG dollars to get me through the day.
      2. When I have the chance, I would exchange more money at Mustafa or other changers with better rates.

      Ayun. Hihi. But I think the exchange rate shouldn’t bother you unless you’re exchanging big amounts. Baka kasi yung iba-byahe mo to the money changer is mas mahal pa dun sa matitipid mo. :)

      Hope this helps. :)

  • http://twitter.com/StevenAndKarla Kalai

    Hi, I am a first time flyer and we will go to Hong Kong on July to spend our vacation with my fiancee. It will absolutely be my first time to step in the airport. I already have all the travel documents and beside, we will only spend 12 days in Hong Kong. However, I want to know if it’s okay that I don’t have any dollars? But my fiancee have and he’s the one holding our money and cards, we will be travelling together. Have you heard such case? Do you think the immigration offices would stop me from flying? Magkasabay naman po kami sa flight. Also, is it necessary na may hotel receipt na agad? Balak kasi namin pag dating nalang sa HK maghahanap ng hotel para mas adventurous daw.

    A reply would be very much appreciated.

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Kalai! Usually, they don’t ask tourists to show how much money they have or even ask about it. They just check your passport, some times your airline tickets, and ask standard questions like:

      – Who are you traveling with?
      – How long will you be staying?
      – WHERE will you be staying?

      They only ask more in very “special” occasions, like, when they do random questioning or when they suspect you’re not entering their country for leisure purposes/business trips.

      That said, I strongly encourage you to book hotels even before the trip. Departure cards and immigration forms that you will need to fill out before facing the immigration ask you to indicate the exact address of the hotel or house where you will stay. If you leave this field blank, you might be giving the Immigration officer a reason to ask MORE questions. But that’s just my two cents.

      Hope this helps. :)

  • Ray Anne Castor

    hi i want to ask if i need to pay the travel tax and the 750 if i have owwa… Kumuha po kasi ako nun dito sa singapore before umuwi sa pinas… Para sa pagbalik kO… Tnx

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Ray Anne, i have no idea. :( You might want to call OWWA directly?

  • Fred

    Hi,

    It’s my first time to travel to Singapore. I will be there to look for a job and I will be staying at my cousin’s place. Do I still need to book for a hotel since I will register myself as a tourist? or just tell the officer that I I will be staying at my cousin’s place? Thank you so much. :)

    • The Poor Traveler

      You can say that you’re staying at your cousin’s place. Make sure you have the address. :)

  • http://yahoomail princess

    when having a tourist visa what to bring po idea sana please di na po need ng PDOS? ung seminar what to do when your flight day arrived I have no idea po kasi its my first time..thank you po

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Princess, I dunno. :( I haven’t traveled to another country that requires a visa.

  • Son

    I’m planning to take my vacation in Bangkok, Do I really have to put the exact address of the hotel?I’m planning to stay in hotel when I get there, I don’t have hotel booking in Bangkok. What should I tell to Immigration about my stay?

    • The Poor Traveler

      It’s always best too book a hotel ahead of time. The Immigration is gonna need the exact address of the hotel. :)

    • Mike

      When is your flight to bangkok?

      • The Poor Traveler

        Hi Mike! I just got back from my SEAsia backpacking trip and I visited Bangkok. :)

        • Anonymous

          ei… im emie its my firstime to to travel out of the country and i wanna visit thailand, the problem is i have my hotel accommodation but there is no exact address in the voucher is it fine if i just write the name of the hotel in the departure card??

          please reply thanks

          • The Poor Traveler

            You may call the hotel and get their address.

          • Anonymous

            i have another question, do i need a hard copy of the hotel address and contact info to present the immigration?? or is it fine if I’ll get all the info over the phone and just write it down in my departure card?? still they need everything in print out???

            appreciate youre reply
            tnx

  • Pinay Isla

    Yes, Son, you need exact address of the hotel or place you want to stay. The officer ask me @ NAIA and you need it to for the departure card. I just been to Thailand last week. Got awed by Amazing Thailand! Better go to Khaosan Road in Bangkok for affordable place if you’re planning for long stay. I stayed there! Cool and lively place!

    • The Poor Traveler

      Thanks for answering the question above! :) Just got back from Thailand and it is indeed amazing! :)

  • Josh

    Thanks for the info. Ask lang. Nid ba talaga to indicate the exact hotel address? My friend and i will be going kc to hondkong. We dont have a hotel yet. Ang balak namin is to get a hotel na lang when we arrived at hongkong na. Ok lang ba un? Thanks

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Josh! To be safe and to make it easier for you to go through the Immigration of both Hong Kong and Manila, I strongly suggest that you book a hotel before your flight. :)

  • http://yahoo.com Francis

    Hello. Is it advisable to book the tourist attraction in SG before the flight? Im thinking there would be days that tickets will be sold out. And can u give me an idea what are the things to do when we fly back to manila in changi airport? Thanks.

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Francis, best if you just buy on site. :)

      Re flight back to Manila, same process as flying in. Except, less fees. :)

  • Hans

    Nice post! I’m very excited na for my trip abroad (first time). Ask ko lang kung gaano kaimportante ang mga valid IDs bukod sa passport? Passport lang kasi ang meron ako since (unfortunately), naholdap ang wallet ko with my IDs. Hindi na ko makakuha ng replacement IDs since next week na ang alis ko. Do you think it’s just fine?

    • The Poor Traveler

      Your passport serves as your ID but to be on the safe side, bring another ID kahit school or company ID. Sorry to hear about what happened to you.

  • arvin

    hi!, hindi pa terror ung immigration natin lalo na dun sa may cebupac? first time ko kasi magabroad this november sa malaysia. may ticket na ko na pinurchased last january during seat fare. ung place na pagiisteyan ko is ung apartment kung saan nakatira ung friend ko dun. ayos lang ba un?

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Arvin. Yes, it’s okay. Just explain that you will be staying with a friend. It would also help if you already have an itinerary ready to prove that you will go there to tour. :)

  • Jan Delera

    Hello there! I just wanna ask re: credit cards. Do the officer just look at the credit card to match the CC number and the name or do the passenger have to give them a photocopy of the cards? If they need to have a copy of the cards, can I give them a copy with the numbers covered-up or blackened-out? Thanks in advance!

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Jan, the Immigration officers won’t need a copy of your credit cards. The check-in agent of the airline MIGHT ask for it if you booked your ticket online and yes the numbers have match. You don’t have to worry because they WILL NOT keep the photocopy; they’ll just look and give it back to you. :)

  • jamilla

    hi i will be flying alone to bangkok i wil be styng thre for 6 days i already booked for my hotel accmodation.. wat is the other possible thing or papers they wil ask for me i will be seeing my bf also their, im afraid they will ask for my COE ciz im unemployed

    • Chaw

      Hi Jamilla, As of this posting time have u visited bankok already? If yes, how was ur experience facing the immigration officrs at the naia did they ask u questions about ur unemployed status? Im also planning to tour bangkok and like u im also unemployed… hope you can reply on this. Thank you…

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Jamilla and Chaw, just got back from Bangkok and the Immigration process was smooth. They didn’t ask me any questions. But that’s just me.

  • Athan

    Hi,

    Thanks for the info.
    My girlfriend will go to SG for work — She’ll be staying there for two weeks. I am planning to surprise her.
    Is it OK to go there over the weekend?
    This would be my frist time to fly out of the country.
    I have my passport. I have her apartment’s address.
    Am I good to go? I have my ID too.
    I can buy plane tickets online.

    Shall I declare that I am a “Tourist”..
    What about the itinerary? What shall I do about it?

    aM I good to go?

    Thank you so much

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Athan! Yes, if you have a passport, you can visit Singapore. To be on the safe side, prepare an itinerary and take note of your GF’s address. :)

  • Bianca

    hello, first time traveller here. i will be visiting macau with my cousin in December. So at the airport, we just have to pay the travel tax P1,650 and the departure fee P550 right? How about when arriving and exiting Macau, do we need to pay anything too?

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Bianca! No need to pay anything in Macau. :)

  • arvinparedes

    thanks for the big help. i appreciate ur post :D

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Arvin! No problem! Happy to help!

  • piyen

    hi! my husband and i will fly to SG for a tour next year already have my e-tickets…i used my married name in my ticket but my passport is still my maiden name…will i be having problem with that…

    • The Poor Traveler

      Oh, I’m not sure. Usually, airlines require that when you book an international flight ticket with them, you should use the name in your passport.

    • Rose

      Hi piyen,
      You will have a big problem with the airline co and immigration if your name in the ticket is not the same with your passport. I would suggest that you get a new passport , any way you have time to change your passport(Express Php 1,250), you need only authenticated NSO marriage cert.. Another option is to change the name at the ticket. Some airlines allow this for a fee but not all airlines.
      Hope this help you.

  • Sheryll

    Hi! Thanks for this post. Very informative. =)

    • The Poor Traveler

      No problem Sheryll! Thanks for visiting!

      • http://yahoo.com marivic p. sanchez

        Hi there!thanks so much for those post it helps me so well!Godbless!

  • Alia

    Hi there, bless this blog!

    What was the longest trip you had outside? It’s gonna be my first time touring around SEA from Vietnam to Cambodia to Thailand, then a side trip to India, and Lastly, Malaysia. It’s a month-long itinerary. I already booked hotels. Do I have to give them the full list? Or can I just show them the Vietnam part since I’m directly flying there from NAIA.

    Hope to hear from you :)

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Alia! Longest is a month so far. Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, and Vietnam. (Would have been 2 months but I had to cut it short for budget reasons but I’ll continue the trip in January.)

      Anyway, better prepare and print out EVERYTHING (hotel reservations if you have already booked them, plane tickets, and tour itineraries) but just give them the Vietnam part. Present the rest if (and only if) they ask for it to keep it short. Actually, when I left for my month-long trip, they didn’t even check my return ticket or hotel reservations. They just asked if I was going there for business or pleasure, and I answered “pleasure”!!! Haha

      I’m surprised that you booked hotels already. I usually just book hotel in my first city coz I usually end up extending in one city, cutting short my stay in another, skipping some altogether, and messing up my itinerary, ahhaaha.

      When is your trip? Have a safe one! Enjoy! :)

  • Alia

    Wow thanks so much:3 the trip’s actually for August next year. I’m just so way ahead of myself. LOL. Really, you’re a great help :)

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hahhaa, you really are way ahead but good for you! haha :P No problem

  • http://www.yahoo.com Chris

    Hello Sirs,

    I (filipino) am travelling at 2nd of November going to Singapore. My father is Singapore citizen. Do i need invitation letter and how much is the show-money? i only have about 200USD in cash, I have credit card but not visa type( cannot use outside phil). I am very worried now as my flight is near, I know the exact address of my father, It is my first time to visit him and i am alone. the last time was when i was baby. I really need your suggestion, thank you so much. the only means of communication my father is only letters and nothing else, i tried to ask for email address and phone number, but he is not giving it. I wil wait for you reply, thank you so much.

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Chris! An invitation is not really a requirement. But you will need your dad’s address. :)

  • Lee Palisoc

    Hi! Matanong ko lang, aalis na kasi ako papuntang Canada this Saturday, kasi no’ng in-orient kami sa CFO, sinabi ‘yong about sa mga pirated chuba ekek. Ang na-explain nga lang nila is ‘yong sa mga external hard drives na may laman na illegal downloads. Though, wala akong external HDD. Tapos may mga naririnig na rin ako na titignan daw OS ng laptop mo kung licensed or hindi. Licensed naman ‘yong sa akin. Pero kasi, may mga downloads ako sa laptop ko, bubuksan ba ang laptop mo kapag iche-check nila sa airport? Or hindi na nila ichecheck?

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Lee! I dunno how strict Canadian Immigration is. The experience I had related to it was in Singapore. I brought my laptop and they asked me to open in and turn it on. After logging in and the desktop image appeared, the Immigration Officer was already satisfied and let me through. I guess they just wanted to check if it was indeed a laptop. But they were very nice and kind. Nothing terrifying. I was scared, though. Haha

  • Sky

    hello,
    just wanna ask, how much would i bring ( incase only) as show money?,got a schengen visa for 30 days to germany,been invited to visit the country all expenses paid by my sponsor, i have the documents ready on my side eg( printed plane fare -roundtrip,passport-with visa stamp,invitation letter,formal obligations authenticated by the host country,my COE,approve leave of absence),Do all these documents make me calm so that i wont be offloaded? Makes me creep reading lots of our kababayan being offloaded for questionable issues. Your reply will sure make me calm to deal with IO officers at NAIA. Thanks….

  • Bino

    Hi!

    Magtatravel kami sa Malaysia this coming Nov 19. Nalilito lang ako sa money. Kasi sabi ng friend ko na tutuluyan namin dun, pesos daw ang dalhin. Okay lang ba na dalhin ko in hand eh 20k? di ba kukuwestiyunin ng immigration?

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Bino, nope. Di kukwestiyunin yun. :)

  • Michelle

    Hi its my first time to travel abroad, I’m going to Malaysia and will stay for a month purely for vacation purposes. I’ll be staying at my cousin’s apartment. No need for a visa if one month stay only. I’m a housewife, will that be questionable since I’ll be staying there for a month?

    • The Poor Traveler

      Michelle, as long as your stay does not exceed 30 days. :)

  • kristhel

    HI PO 1ST TIME KO TO TRAVEL papunta korea anu po ba step by step n ppuntahan ko pag kapsok ko plang ng airport ?help me po tnx

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Kristhel. The best advice I can give you about traveling and about life in general is to READ. I detailed the step-by-step process in the post above. Thanks.

  • rocky

    thank you for this post, i just wanted to ask, kung mahigpit ba sila sa may mga atraso sa bank, malalaman ba ng mga imigration officers? thanks

    • The Poor Traveler

      They wouldn’t ask that. Maybe when you’re applying for a visa but not at the Immigration booths at airports. At least, not usually.

  • Raemon27

    Hi, me and my family will go to hongkong on september. 5kami, I just want to ask pano kung magstay lang kami sa house ng employer ng lola ko? do we need any documents po? saka how much po ang standard pocket money.? thanks

    • The Poor Traveler

      No, just indicate the address on the Arrival Card. :)

  • Jaejae

    Hello guy’s –
    We will be going to Macau this coming March 17 2013, Me and my girl cousin. Concern ko lang Sabay kaming aalis diba, Pero magkaiba yung Surename namin. Sa tingin nyo ba na ki-questionin kami ng immigration officer dto sa NAIA about that?? Much better ba na magpa book kami ng HOTEL?
    ko-contakin ba nila yung HOTEL kung san kami naka booked?
    tour only. And we will bring 30k CASH. [ NO CREDIT CARD ] Unemployed kami parehas.
    Well thank’s for the INFO above.

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hello. I highly recommend booking a hotel first before flying. Other than that, I don’t see any problems. :)

    • marion

      kamusta po tour nyo? tsaka kamusta naman sa immigration? kc first time ko din abdroad tour lang din and i’am unemployed as well. Wala nmam bang naging problem sa phil immigration. Thanks

      Thanks sa blog very informative blog!! thumbs up!!

  • silver

    Hello i just want to ask kung bukod s NAIA n bbyarang 750 b un plus 1650 eh may bbyaran p rin po ba s changi airport pauwi?

    • The Poor Traveler

      Hi Silver! Wala na. :)

  • christine

    Hi thanx for this very informative blog I’ll keep this notes. This is my first time to travel outside the country and also my first time traveling alone :( .

    Im going to visit my boyfriend in SG worried lang aq kasi baka hassle bumyahe pa pntang SG but then thanks sa mga tips mo.

    • The Poor Traveler

      Thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment, Christine! Have a safe trip!

  • Liah Marcelo

    Hi,

    I would like to ask your opinion lang kung saan ba maganda magexchange ng SG dollar? sa mga Money Changers, sm forex exchange etc, or sa NAIA Terminal 3 or sa SG Airport na mismo?

    I am considering factors like best value for money, safety and easy access…

    Will appreciate your response!

    Thank you very much!

  • Mayzel Torre

    Hi
    Very informative article you have! good job! Btw, i have a question. I will be assigned by my company for 4 months in SG but temporarily lng toh. And I decided to invite my father who is at 54 and my brother, a college student, to visit me sa SG for 2 weeks. Wala ng work si papa. Purpose is to have a tour around SG and at the same time to visit me. They wanted to have it on the last 2 weeks of April. Would you know what r the other requirements needed? And is invitation letter enough n yun?kelnagan ba din ng COE ko as a proof na may trabaho ako? Sagot ko nman yung stay and food and other related expenses sa kanilang dalawa. DI b gaano strict is Immigration Officer for that? Hoping for your reply soon. =)

    Thanks!

  • jayson

    hi, thank a lot, that is very informative. i have a question, is it possible to fly from vietnam then to cambodia then to manila?

    thank you very much for the reply!

  • mariel7

    Hi! Thanks for the tip.. this indeed is very helpful for me as I’m about to leave the country and ride a plane for the first time. I’ll be having my vacation in Malaysia. I’m actually a little worried since I’ll be staying there with a friend for 4 weeks. Just want to ask what the “Invitation letter” should be like and if the Itinerary should be detailed, as in yung may date and time pati length of stay mo sa certain place for the tour?

    Thanks a lot!

  • Che

    Hi there!

    Just wanna ask, what if I made a booking in one of the backpacker’s hostel in SG but no hard copy (e.g. receipt or printed document stating I’m booked) about it. Does the immigration need one or simple address and contact number of the hostel will do? And about the itinerary, does it need to be printed (from a tour guide company even when you’re not traveling with a tour guide) or simple plan for the day (handwritten) can suffice the immigration?

  • Anonymous

    Very informative! Thanks a lot! :)

  • nicky

    Hi its my 1st tym to travel out side d country.my sister invited me in dubia.she apply me a visit visa gud for 3months.asked ko lng pgdating sa immigration sa naia wat r the posible question.my posible din bng madenie?all d documents r complet some r denie by d immigration officer

  • Dave Cosca

    Thank you for the information you Posted. It is a really big help for me.

    cause Its my first time to go abroad ;)
    and just dropping by ;)

    Thanks

  • RAYMOND

    Hi, I am travelling to Hong Kong with my family on September 2013. Bale, 4 kami. (Lolo, Mom, Sis and I)
    Tanong ko lang, individual ba ang pila sa immigration? or okay lang na 4 na passport na agad un ipresent namin para sabay sabay? Un ticket kasi namin hiwahiwalay nun pinurchase. Pati okay na ba un 50,000 for at 3days in hongkong? Salamat po.=)

  • DD

    hi..thanks much.. very informative.. traveling next month to kuala lumpur, aside from the travel tax and 550, is there any other fees to pay in NAIA 4 ( via zest air) ?

    how about exiting KUala lumpur airport, do i need to pay anything?

    thanks..

  • Zaniel

    Hi! I would like to ask if I needed to fill up the immigration card if my destination in Hong Kong would be likely just to wait for my next flight (Germany). If ever, What shall I put in my ‘Place in Hong Kong’? My flight is on Aug. 16, 2013 and I’m still naive on what to do as it is my first time to travel. I hope to receive an answer from you. By the way, you are such a helpful person and I am proud of you as your fellowman :) cheers!

  • mariya

    hi. additional tip lang. if you are working for a government office at magtatravel ka abroad, hahanapan ka ng travel order / authority to travel sa immigration.

    • http://www.thepoortraveler.net/ The Poor Traveler

      Woot! Thanks for sharing this, Mariya!

  • Mc

    Hi.i just need some help..i am a filipina..i was offloaded two times already in naia because i dont have poea clearance kc nakita nila na nagwork ako ng macau but resigned na ako so wala ako mapapakita sa kanila na clearance kc hnd na ako working..but anyway now i manage our family business..my brother,his fiancee and i are planning to go in hong kong for 3days only and we have now a plane ticket round trip and hotel accomodation..i also have our business permit and bank cert to prove that i have money to have a good life here in philippines..im just afraid kc may record na ako sa knila na two times na ako na offload..baka maoffload na naman ako ulit..but this time i have the requirements as a tourist..my question is,enough na po ba requirements ko para makalusot sa immigration or my kulang pa?at kung meron man plz tell me..napagastos na naman kc ako at my brother also..please reply..thank you

  • Lwie

    First tym po nmin mag ina mag travel abroad dis coming dec.22 to jan.4 papuntang brunei don po nagwork husband ko.. meron n po kmi invitation galing sa company ng husband ko. Ask ko lng kung ok n po un at xa rin ung nag pa booking samin. Then ask ko pede ko baipakita ung oec ng husband ko para may discount kmi pgbbyad ng travel tax or terminal fee ba yon. Ano p po kelangan nmin excepts cnbi ko.

  • kim:-)

    Tanung ko lang po punta kami phuket Thailand this coming wed 3 kmi family holiday for 7days 1st tym kasi namin and ung baby ko 1 yr old long my invitation kami at my packet money do naba ko dapat kabahan pag dating sa immigration sana po my makasagot skin salamat pro

  • Guest

    Hello!

    Quick question. I read that in some cases they require you to show a copy of the credit card used to book the airline tickets. I booked a ticket to Japan using my friend’s card, but she’s not coming to the trip with me. Would this be a problem?

    Many thanks for your help.

    • yoshke

      A photocopy/scanned copy of the credit card you used is enough. They won’t keep the copy, don’t worry. They’ll just check and then give it back to you. :)

  • Pammy Astadan

    Amazing! Your post is very detailed and helpful for a first-timer like me. Thank you very much for this! Cheers! :)

    • http://www.yoshke.com yoshke

      No problem, Pammy! Glad it’s useful! :D

  • http://www.petitemomma.com Petite Momma

    Thank you, Yoshke for another informative article. We’ll be travelling to SG (first time! yay!) this week and your site is such a blessing. God bless and more power! :)

  • A.

    hi there,

    I would like to know how much money you need to have in your wallet kapag paalis ka na going to japan? First time traveler outside PH. I am planning to bring Y30,000 $200 and P10K. Is that a safe amount?

    • http://www.yoshke.com yoshke

      Hi A. Depends on how long your trip is gonna be :)

  • Anika May

    Hello,

    Thanks for the info. I’m going to SG, should I have my pocket money exchanged to USD or SG dollars? Thanks!

  • Yael Esperat

    Hello! Stumbled on your blog today and I would like to share something.

    In your list of valid IDs to present, perhaps you can add the employee ID? On my first trip outside the country the immigration officer at NAIA asked for my employee ID. I didn’t bring it with me because I didn’t want to risk losing it in another country. It became a bit of a problem since the officer was really looking for proof of my employment. My guess is that she wants proof that I will go to Singapore as a tourist only and not to find work illegally. I offered to give my calling card, which has the company logo. Fortunately, she accepted the calling card and allowed me to proceed.

    Since then I’ve always brought my employee ID with me when traveling, kahit local destinations lang. Maybe other first-time travelers can learn from my experience. :)

    • http://www.yoshke.com yoshke

      Hi Yael! Added Company ID to this post. :)

  • Eden

    Good day.I just want to ask about this agony of mine.Im planning to go to Hong Kong for 4 day vacation on December 2014.By that time I will be unemployed.But I have my roundtrip ticket already ,enough fund for my trip and hotel reservation. will the embassy allow me to go on board?.
    Thank you.Im hoping for your response.

    • kaye

      Hi Eden, by the time you travel to HK, you won’t have any company ID with you. Be sure though to bring an ITR with you to show that you have earned enough to support yourself for a leisure tour.

      I’m a freelancer and it was my first time to travel abroad last month. SInce I don’t have a company ID with me, the IO asked me a lot of questions like: “Ano tinapos mo? Saan ka nag-aral? Patingin ng school ID? May government IDs ka ba? Magkano kinikita mo?, etc…”

      The key really is to be confident and to show the IO that you have money to support yourself. In my case,I have my ITR with me so the IO immediately saw my earnings. After I answered (with confidence) all of her questions, I was through.

  • Rizza

    Thanks so much for this, Sir!
    Sobrang helpful nito saken. I’ll be traveling to Cambodia solo for the first time.
    Glad i found this article. :)

    Just want to ask po kung saan pwede magpapalit/money changer ng peso to US Dollar? First time ko kasi, sa bank ilang days pa bago ma grant ung dollars. Thanks po.