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Balikbayans – any overseas Filipino returning to the Philippines, including former Filipinos who have acquired foreign citizenship – can stay in the Philippines without a visa for a period of one year. The balikbayan visa-free stay privilege is extended to the balikbayan’s non-Filipino spouse and children, provided they enter the Philippines with the balikbayan.

Former Filipino balikbayans traveling to the Philippines are advised to bring either their old Philippine passport or copy of Philippine birth certificate as proof of their former Philippine citizenship. Accompanying family members of the balikbayan can bring appropriate supporting documents:

  • For the spouse: copy of marriage certificate
  • For each child: copy of birth certificate
  • For adopted children: copy of adoption papers

Philippine Law (R.A. 9174) provides benefits to baikbayans:

  • Tax-exempt maximum purchases in the amount of USD 1,500, or the equivalent in Philippine and other currency, at Philippine Government–operated duty free shops
  • Exemption from Travel Tax, provided that their stay in the Philippines is one year or less. If their stay in the Philippines exceeds one year, Travel tax will apply to them.