Student visa

A bonafide foreign student is one who has sufficient means for his/her education and support, and who seeks to enter the Philippines for temporary stay with the purpose of taking up a course of study higher than high school at a university, college or school authorized to accept foreign students. Only higher education institutions with programs accredited by agencies under the Federation of Accrediting Agencies of the Philippines (FAAP) or with equivalent accreditation by the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), either as Centres of Excellence, Centres of Development or STCW (Standards for Training, Certification and Watchkeeping)-compliant maritime schools and by the Bureau of Immigration, are authorized to admit foreign students.

The entry and stay of foreign students in the country is covered by Executive Order (EO) 285 of 4 September 2000, which amended the provisions of EO 423 of 1997 Re: Guidelines Governing the Entry and Stay of Foreign Students in the Philippines and the Establishment of an Inter-Agency Committee on Foreign Students for the Purpose.

An individual who wishes to study in the Philippines has two options in applying for a 9(f) student visa:

First Option:

Apply for a 9(a) tourist visa at the Philippine Embassy in your country of residence for an initial stay of fifty-nine (59) days. As authorized by EO 285, a tourist visa can be converted to a 9(f) student visa in the Philippines or a prospective student can be granted a Special Study Permit (SSP) by the Bureau of Immigration in the Philippines. Please contact the Philippines Embassy for the requirements.

Second Option:

Apply for 9(f) student visa at the Philippines Embassy in your country of residence before you travel to the Philippines. Please contact the Philippines Embassy for the requirements.


Immigration regulations are complex and subject to regular change. Before travelling to a country, always check the latest immigration and visa requirements from the authorities direct. The information provided in these pages is for informative purposes only and may not be up to date, applicable to your personal circumstances, or may not even be correct.

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