An ideal retirement haven brings to mind warm weather, powdery beaches, scenic views, heavenly dishes and friendly people. A large number of people are retiring in the Philippines mainly to experience a great life in a tropical paradise without spending too much.
World-class and affordable healthcare, high quality of standard living for a very low cost, wonderful and hospitable people and minimal language barrier are factors that attracts foreigners to retire, reside and invest in the Philippines.
Healthcare in the Philippines is of good standard. There are Joint Commission International (JCI)-accredited hospitals like St.Luke’s, Medical City, Makati Medical Centre and Asian Hospital. Practically speaking, hospital costs and medicines are cheap in the Philippines. The amount of co-pay in the US may be practically equal to the amount of the whole medical procedure in the Philippines. With this kind of healthcare system a foreign retiree will be able to save a lot from their funds. Also, the doctors and nurses are well trained, highly skilled and professionally competent and capable of giving excellent health services.
The cost of living in the Philippines is with no doubt cheaper relative to many places in the world. This is the perfect place if you want your money to go a lot further. Most foreigners live comfortably in the Philippines for about $800 to $1,200 a month and that is already a pretty great deal of leisure and luxury. Food is abundant and pretty affordable. One would be able to savor international and local cuisines. A foreigner may also enjoy affordable, fast and stable access to the internet which is an absolute necessity for them, not only to get a hold of all the important information on visa requirements, public transportation, local events, etc., but also to keep in touch with their relatives abroad. Cable television is attainable for just $12 a month with the option of adding foreign channels for a minimal cost.
Further, the Philippines is the only country in Asia that uses English as their second official language. It is easy to integrate with Filipinos. English is very widely spoken even in the provinces. Signages and instructions are in English, and daily newspapers are in English. There are also newspapers in Chinese, Japanese, Korean etc.
Its tropical climate is nature’s blessing especially to those who dream to escape harsh winter seasons. It is very favorable to the elderly who have ailments that are triggered by a colder climate. Also, the society is innately respectful and caring for the elderly.
For active tourists/retirees, the Philippines offers many sports adventures/activities. One can snorkel with the gentle giants and whale sharks in Cebu or Sorsogon. Explore the beautiful corals of the famous and world class diving sites of Puerto Galera, Batangas, and Cebu. Brave the waves of Baler, Siargao and La Union. Join the Philippines’ most popular festivals like Cebu City’s Sinulog, Aklan’s Ati-Atihan and Iloilo’s Dinagyang. The serene blue waters and white sand beaches of breath-taking islands like Coron, Boracay and Bohol are choices to enjoy and experience the whole year round.
The attitude of Filipinos towards foreigners and fellow Filipinos are exceptional especially when it comes to hospitality and being friendly. Aside from the country’s stunning natural assets, one thing that makes a foreigner’s stay extraordinary is their interactions with Filipinos.
Because of these factors, the Philippines is dubbed as one of the world’s leading retirement destinations.
Last but not least, the retiree has visa options depending on his situation: dual citizenship, 13A (for those married to Filipinos), and PRA’s Special Resident Retiree’s Visa (SRRV).
SRRV is a non-immigrant multiple-entry, indefinite-stay visa. With the SRRV, the holders may stay in the Philippines for as long as they want without giving up their citizenship. Other benefits include: multiple-entry privileges, exemption privileges, access to greet and assist programs, discount privileges from services offered by PRA Merchant Partners, and assistance in obtaining documents from other government agencies, among others.
The Philippine Retirement Authority, a government agency dedicated to lead the retirement agenda of the country designed the retirement visa based on varying retiree lifestyles and needs. The basic features of the SRRV are:
- SRRV SMILE – for active / healthy principal retirees 35 years old and above who would just like to maintain their Visa deposit of US$20,000.00 in any of the PRA designated banks;
- SRRV CLASSIC – for active / healthy principal retirees who would opt to use their Visa deposit of US$10,000.00/US$20,000.00 (50 years old & above) or US$50,000.00 (35 to 49 years old) to purchase condominium units or use for long term lease of house and lot;
- SRRV HUMAN TOUCH – for ailing principal retirees, 35 years old and above, who are shown to have medical/clinical needs and services. Under this option, the retiree only needs to have a Visa deposit of US$10,000.00, a monthly pension of at least US$1,500.00 and a Health Insurance Policy; and
- SRRV COURTESY – for former Filipinos (35 years old & above), and foreign nationals (50 years old & above) who have served in the Philippines as diplomats, ambassadors, officers/staff of international organizations. The visa deposit is US$1,500.00.
There are many reasons to retire. Some retire to experience utmost comfort and enjoyment after long years of working while some retire to begin a new life. Whatever it is, retiring in the Philippines is an experience one will never forget.
Come and retire in the Philippines!