How Important is Show Money for Visa Application?

Departure

“How much show money should I have to have to be approved?”

This is one of the most asked questions visa applicants have, when they start their journey to get that stamp to travel outside the country. As a person who is a citizen of a third world country, it is far more difficult to get out and travel to countries that require visa. Immigration and Border Protection of each countries have their own set of guidelines for tourists; this will ensure safety, socially and medically. So you will likely to have to be asked to get police checks and medical examinations.

But how do we get a higher chance of a visa approval?

  1. Travel – and yes I mean get your feet off that couch, now! Start small, travel to countries that does not demand visa.

You will be surprised that there are 25 countries you can travel to without a visa. Isn’t that amazing!!! gmanetwork.com/…/pinoys-can-visit-at-least-25-countries-without-visas-dfa. HongKong, Malaysia, Thailand to name a few. How about basking in the sun in Brazil??!!  or having a sip of pinacolada in Maldives? But you might think, it’s expensive.

Why not travel in one of these Asian countries without visa first for the next 2 or 3 years – this is an achievable goal. Here are are few tips:

  • Save for a year or so- put that Php1000  every payday in a savings account and stay true to your goal. That’s Php2000/permonth* 16months = Php32,000. Once you have that safe and sound. Get ready !
  • Stay tuned for LowFare Promos – take note of the usual dates / months airlines advertise cheaper fares. Do you know when Philippine Independence Day is? Mark that and make sure you start stalking their website as early as June1.
  • Since you already have that travel money in the bank – it’s easy to pay for the return ticket. Don’t worry about having a credit card to pay for tickets, most airlines use 3rd party  payment centers like LBC, etc. Please see following links philippineairlines.com/…s/OfflinePaymentscebupacificair.com/…/booking-payment.aspx
  • Once you booked that ticket, travel period is usually a few more months before you get into the plane. Which means you can save more. Resist that urge to dine out and focus on knowing your destination at the moment.
  • Research about the country – plan your trip. This will help you create an inexpensive travel itinerary. Read blogs of those who have set a budget in their travels and stick to it. Whether you are travelling solo or with a company of two, knowing where to go for accommodation, food and sight seeing, planning will help you appreciate the experience more.
  • Leave your 13th month and SL/VL conversion pays alone – think of spending Php 3000 to 5000 pesos only from these additional savings. Imagine getting Php22000 (13thmonth) + Php7000 (SL/VL) = Php30,000 . Multiply it in 3years and you have Php90,oooo. Stop! Don’t think of buying a go-pro at the moment..:) This will help you create a more solid track record of savings for your future visa applications.

Once you traveled to at least 2 or 3 countries within 3-4 years; start saving for your trip to South Korea, Japan, or Australia. Remember, you can still travel while saving for your next big trip.  Philippines is a great country with a lot of scenic beaches, amazing sunset and gorgeous landscapes.  With these I mean, Nayong Pilipino, National Museum,  Majayjay Laguna, Antipolo, Cagbalete Quezon, Burot Beach, Cavite,  – search the web for budget travels of less than Php1500 every 3months to keep a balanced life.

       2. Get ready for your next BIG TRIP. Think about the money you saved at the moment. This will give you power and motivation to start planning your trip to South Korea or Japan. Remember to save more and continue your 2K monthly travel savings, give yourself a year. Plan one budget travels every 3months for less than Php2000 at this stage. Remember you still have that 90K savings. Get your bank account to 6 figures without the decimal points 🙂

        3. Finally, get your visa application ready. Search the web and get all information and requirements before applying the visa. Start with Asian countries that require visa. This time, you will be confident that you have strong track records of money in the bank, have experience travelling overseas and a bit of planning to make your trip worth while.

For countries like USA or Australia, travelling solo means having more credentials that you are a genuine tourist.

  • Having strong and long history records of money/savings in the bank helps, not the money you just deposited or borrowed a few months before applying for the visa.
  • Have visa stamps on the passport. That is why it is important you start with other countries that are easy to apply visa for.
  • It means saving more for the next 2-5years and sacrificing expensive wants; Focusing on your big trip to Australia or USA or France. Continue to save Php3000 permonth * 12= Php36,000 for 2-5 years. This will be Php 180,000.00 Or more if you can.
  • Start acquiring assets – open bank trusts and time deposits. Your next 5years will help you. Think about saving your 13thmonth and SL/VL conversion for the next 5years.  Php 30,000 * 5 = Php 150,000. It can be in the province where you grew up, a piece of land or a house and lot as prices are lesser in the provinces.
  • Having goals to travel will also help you, stay on the same company longer and will motivate you strive to better at what you do, getting more skills to be promoted or to get bigger incentives.

There it is folks, who said show money is important? I guess in one side of the story it is, but there are other factors as important as having 6 digits in your bank account.

I’m happy to see your comments or questions below 🙂

Let’s go and travel!!

See you xoxo

 

 

 

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Visa: Land Down Under

Applying for Australian Tourist Visa is easy breezy. Whether you have a family member, partner / boyfriend / fiance to sponsor or you’re someone who loves to travel, there are a lot of information online to help you get the visa to the Land Down Under.

First, there are two ways you can submit your application, online or personally in VFS.Global Philippines – through courier / postal (if you live away from VFS offices in Cebu and Manila). I  applied online through Australian Government: Department of Immigration and Border Protection. Advantages in  doing this includes: no courier / handling fee and avoiding traffic to travel to VFS office. Your sponsor can also help you upload documents if both parties are aware of the log in details.

createImmi

After creating my account, I prepared all documents needed to be to be uploaded. Here’s the list of requirements philippines.embassy.gov.au/…/Subclass 600 Tourist Stream checklist – updated 24-06-2015.pdf.

In uploading your documents, please click border.gov.au/Trav/Visa/Atta. 60 documents are allowed in a TV SubClass600. However, I collated similar information in each category to upload more in one go. You can see below how I named one file as Sponsor_Financial_Proof and included in that file are documents like bank statements, payslip and proof of accommodation from my sponsor. You can save each file in PDF, word or JPEG with maximum 5MB size per file. Please label each documents and photos accordingly. You may experience uploading documents twice like proof of identity (passport , BC), it’s normal, just put them in when needed.

UploadingFiles

I scanned all documents and some needs to be notarized like:

  1. Passport
  2. Statutory Declaration (Commonwealth statutory declaration form [DOC 53KB]) from the sponsor
  3. Birth Certificate

There are a lot of notary public in the Philippines and it cost from Php50 to Php150 per document; price depends on the type of document. You can use your smart phones to take photos or scan documents. Free applications you can download on your phones itworld.com/…/8-best-scanner-apps-for-ios-and-android

Payment was done using credit card. Check this link for fees border.gov.au/Trav/Visa/Fees.  I started uploading documents after that; and also got an email confirmation from Immigration. I didn’t worry about completing the whole application in one go, as they allowed adding documents. I did go back a few times to add bits and pieces. I do recommend though to get the all important requirements be uploaded within a week.

My tourist visa SubClass 600 was sponsored by my fiance. Applying for a sponsored TV means;

  • your sponsor must be eligible (financially & must be Australian citizen / resident) to support your stay in Australia – expenses, tickets, travel insurance etc. Documents that will prove this are: birth certificate, passport, statement, payslips, his/ her rent receipts / contract, or papers to prove that he/ she owns the house you’ll be staying. Other things that might help is a statutory declaration from the sponsor, stating that he / she is in relation to  you and that he’s the sponsor(please see above form)
  • you are related to your sponsor – whether he is a family member, friend,  fiance, proofs are important. This includes, photos together, letters / emails for each other, messenger/skype/viber convos. If you are in a relationship (bf/gf, fiance) a brief history of the relationship will help. Birth Certificates if you are related by blood.
  • Most importantly – the applicant’s strong ties to go back to his home country. This will include family, work and assets.  Family – photos, BC. Work – Certificate of Employment, letter from your manager that you’re allowed for a vacation leave  (include the dates),  payslips. Assets  – bank statement, investments, land / car / house titles / registrations.

Here are other things that might help:

  1. CoverLetter – from the applicant stating relationship with the sponsor, itinerary and reason for applying for the said visa.
  2. If you are already have a Fiance Visa application, you may indicate reference number in your letter. As having it doesn’t allow you to marry in Australia, until  the Fiance Visa is approved. It also needs to be granted when the applicant is outside Australia.
  3. NBI

Medical is only required when you are staying for more than 6 months. You have to wait for their advise when to get one. Or if you haven’t received any information about it within 2-3 days, you can click the HAPID button and get your reference number, email them that you applied for Visa for more than 3months stay and medical is needed. Usually they will reply within 5days and you may complete the requirements on the following accredited hospitals / clinics: border.gov.au/…/Help/Location/philippines. Applicants will undergo – x-ray and medical exam: border.gov.au/…rement/health-examinations. They will advise if the results are good or whether you need to do some additional tests. Results are forwarded to Immigration within 3-5 days. This clinic will advise you if there’s a need to go back for another check. You can also follow up if the results have been forwarded.

Tourist Visa can be a long wait. I received my visa grant notification after 35days .Others get it in less than two weeks. This depends on a lot of factors. People who apply need to make sure they have genuine motive of being a tourist and follow visa requirements and conditions.

I basically have to send email to immigration.manila_permanent@dfat.gov.au and follow-up after 25days. Immigration does not recommenced booking the ticket / accommodation prior to application as this doesn’t guarantee approval, but we did it anyway and used it as one of the proofs. If you think that you have all documents and proof then you may do so.

Overall, applying is not as dreadful as it may seem. It’s the waiting game that gives you a bit of a nervous breakdown. I have never felt so nervous reading an email, but it’s worth it 🙂 opening the attachment was terrifying, but when I saw it was a visa grant, it was such a big relief.

Please feel free to comment or ask questions. I’d be happy to answer them 🙂

 

I’m Back

“A new day has come..”

Yes, I’m singing as I’m writing on this new post.

It’s been a while since I’ve written on this blog.

I don’t know what happened. A few things have been in my life that distracted me from allowing online creativity. I’ve been lazy I guess. For the last three years, a lot has changed. I almost lost a job, almost and yes, Oh! I had to admit I had to quit, when I think about it, I never thought I’d go through that in my professional career. I’ve always convinced myself to be tough in every situation, not shedding a single tear. Cebu changed me, i can say – to be better.

Lessons learned.

Charge to experience.

Just few of the phrases I kept repeating.

Found the courage and thought about a new beginning. I had to start all over again. Back to the polluted, fast-paced life of Manila. That was August 2013. Found a new role in a telecommunications company. Back to coaching in the world customer service .

I had the time to write a few notes here because of a requirement on the online university and that was it. Several attempts to consistently make this site my own, but I failed.

Fast forward to 2016, here I am, going through steady motions in life and I have heaps of things to share, and write and I want  these letters to be silent, no more.

 

 

Check and Balance

My Educational philosophy has always been bonded for improvement. I can see how I’ve written the words improvement numerous times in this blog regarding education. It is for a human being’s growth intellectually and to make sure he transcends this to his purpose in as a living creature in this world. Education’s goal is to make this happen, to have a strong foundation and philosophy for the betterment of human’s ability to think and act for himself and in the community he lives in.

Education must have schools that reflect this belief, an institution where students can acquire the wisdom need to prepare them for the future.A schools that has enough references of classic and modern books and knowledge and is conducive to learning with activities that  incorporates an environment of what they can see outside the classroom.

Curriculum should be a combination of what is basic and classic and modern. It should be based on human beings needs for survival for today and the future. There must be subjects of  ethics and values, 3Rs, developing in more complex subject matter and more application needed. It will be divided to a 30% General Education, 40% Core / Major Subjects with  30% of the activities where students can have Application.  Students should be exposed to various activities so they can lead them to where they can excel and share their expertise, they are to decide with the 30% activities related to, Sciences, Music, Arts, Economics, examples of which are painting, piano lessons, sports or simple activities that toddlers and pre-adolescent can go through leading to more complex lists like research, experiments, theater design, creative writing, introduction to film, photography etc. There must be a discussion involving current events and what is happening around to create awareness because they are a part of society.

Method of instructions must be open for change, though this must be predesignated and pre- designed based on intensive research and  studies, if an educator need to change or add methods as necessary for students’ learning, them so be it.

The teachers are educators who believes that their students are human beings needing for honing their intellect and therefore must help them, the best way they could by being creative in methods of teaching, doing research to add topics helpful in discussion, and instilling character and personal development . They must have the end goal of students grasping the knowledge and applying it as well.

Below show my first result on (http://highered.mcgraw-hill.com/sites/dl/free/0073525901/419185/sad25901_ch08.pdf)

21 Essentialism
19 Perennialism – Lowest
22 Progressivism -Highest
20 Social Reconstructionism
21 Existentialism

Current Total

21 Essentialism
18 Perennialism – Lowest
24 Progressivism -Highest
21 Social Reconstructionism
18 Existentialism

Based on the current and previous results, they both show the same high and low, Progressivism and Perennialism. My belief in education was made stronger after taking EDUC 101 course. I fully gained knowledge of the importance of philosophy of education. This acts as your foundation as an educator, something you use as guide in your journey to make sure you deliver your aim and goal.

I also strongly believe in Idealism and Realism view of education, where knowledge is innate and therefore can be drawn from a student by asking questions, hence this can be improved based on the level of questions and method used. In realism where senses  are used and outside forces / experiences are used in learning and knowing the truth.

My Idea of Education

Education is the idea created by our mind to improve the way human beings think, act and live. It is the best representation of an image that is applied through studying and learning.  It should be anchored with strong philosophical foundation so it can be open for improvement, It should support  human needs improvement of intellect and character development and should go through innovation based on environment and current situation as well.  Schools are the structure that holds the education’s goal. It must be aligned with education’s purpose and should always be filled with materials, references, teachers that embody the same belief. It should be where the students get the optimum knowledge they need to be ready for today and for the future.

I aspire to become a teacher because I believe that I can be an instrument to carry on the evolution that education endures, that I can contribute to the system as a whole for improvement and embody the belief that knowledge and education can be shared and passed from one person to another.  I believe that I, as a teacher,it is my responsibility to strive for an educational system’s excellence..

My students are the same human beings as I am that go on through this life for individual improvement in terms of intellect, skill and character; thus, I will make sure treat them as the people who are needs knowledge and wisdom.

I want my students to reach their optimum potential, I want them to be able to realize their purpose, their follow own belief of existence.   With all these in mind, a learning environment suitable for me and my students is an environment that has a balance of student-centered and teacher-centered environment because i have always believed that one can not survive without the other. An environment with missing factor of any from the two will create a pillar that collapse easily as their are no inputs from the student or vice-versa. The balance would come from the implementation where there should be an open discussion for the teachers to accept that they can tweak a module if they deem necessary for a number of specific students to cope with their learning. This indicates an intensive research and study of Human capability, intellect, behavior, environment so educators can have a structure beneficial for learning. There should be a combination of Classic and Modern knowledge and references, activities, experiences together with Theories. An idea coming from students should be heard as this is helpful in innovation, they are the end-receiver of the educational system Educators put up so it is imperative to take it for improvement as they see fit. 

My educational perspectives most likely be influenced by 40% Idealism, 30% Realism, 10% Essentialism and 20% Progressivism.

 

Nothing in Between

Black or white.

Yes or No.

Right or Wrong.

 The world revolves around different idea, structure, community, religion and culture but human beings thrive in the community who have the ability to think, feel and act. They are people who have the gift to choose the way their life can be.

We are to choose what is best for us and the choices we make are from previous experiences, learning we acquired from other people and ideas we gather through time. These are like compartments embedded in our subconscious that we pick up when we need to feel, decide and act. In our community we see elders and our parents as our guide and examples who do what is right as they are viewed to have more experiences and wisdom than younger people. We respect their opinion and seek their advice. 

From home, I was brought up to be a good girl thus explains that I should only do good things. Respect, Integrity, Honesty, Hard work, loyalty, God-fearing and all of the values may parents like me to have as I grow up. These are still within me, I carry these values at work. It is also seen in every company’s values. These are guidelines to help us have a harmonious relationship with others.

These  also are beliefs  that we got from institutions like school.

We mostly spend our time outside home, particularly more of it in School from 5years old to 22 years old and others continuously pursue other field of education to hone their skills and intellect.  In school our teachers as second parents. They posses values that reflect the same view with our parents – they like us to be hard working, honest, loyal, courageous & respectful.

A teacher is a living example of a hero, students look up to. They represent the biggest chunk of people who can give and share knowledge, to enhance intellectual and moral and character of a student. 

The whole ethics and values are present in every corner, it is an influence of Confucianism. Our belief in good and bad is the same with the philosophy that anchors itself on human beings for our improvement not just skills and wisdom but primarily on behavior since this is something we can have control of and is innate in a person. The question just lies on what to chose?

Good or Bad?

Right or Wrong?

A Way to Revolutionize

History reveals that civilization started from people migrating from one place to another to survive. Once they settle and acquired their skill in adapting to their environment, they create a society that has its own culture, economic schemes, religion,social stratification and political strategies to continuously define their existence generation to generation. This is how it all started. The structure may be different from one society, country to another but they believe in the system that they live and thrive in.

However, No structure or system was perfect. They either collapsed or is now written as a part of history because of war or greed for power. 

In today’s era, where we have stronger social, economic and political structure, we still experience chaos, we are sometimes caught up in the middle of the war – the strife between two countries. And it’s not all that, there are lots of of social, political and economic issues within a country and these are prevalent today. Read the broadsheet, you will see crimes. Listen to the radio, you will hear stock prices going down & interest rates going up. Watch the television and you will be feeding your vision with government officials in trial, people accused stealing, poverty and hunger.

Is there any way to stop this?

It must be that history repeat itself as they say, but people have also evolved and their thinking had brought has different avenue to cope and possible eliminate these issues.

Education is one part of this system used to resolve all of these – it is the primary institution where people start to gain their perspective in life, where they develop their intellectual ability. In today’s modern times and advanced technological age, Social Reconstructionism as one of the Philosophies of education that started in Western culture,has its primary goal of is to start the revolution within school, where a student starts with understanding, exploring the issues and formulate solutions to the problems in real life. They get into action!

In the Philippines, this philosophy is not prescribed in our curriculum. Reconstructionists believes in putting ideas to resolve social, political and economic issues into actions. They want students to immerse themselves in real life situations. In this setting, students might do a research on human trafficking but if they want to continue then the teacher acts as a guide on how they can get into resolving the issue. They can coordinate with government officials, get lawyers to help them or be involved in investigation.

This is a far cry from what we have in our country. Being in the field already signifies a career of a person after graduating if he pursue his degree in the same field. However this is still subject to the person’s actual job description if he will really be involved in resolving these problem, If he is a soldier by profession then he might be sent to Zamboanga to help, if you are a lawyer then you might be a part of Napoles’ trial. What we have are practical, on-the-job training on our major subject for us to be set-up in the field and be ready for the work but still not even close to being a student and being directky involved in resolving the countries’ current hustle and bustle as the Reconstructionist view.

What we have is tackle this current events in Social Studies and History and formulate insights of the effects and resolution but educators are not pushing ideology of political or economic revolution. We are asked to read news to be aware of what is happening. Though we see people in the march to fight for what they think is right, these are not prescribed activities in school. It is the student and educators and other people’s choice to join these revolution / activities etc. These are the ways of sending messages that their view and philosophy is not inline with what is happening and they sought to have it ceased. 

Yes, there might be some unsung heroes who takes part of helping our country, but imposing revolution and social reconstruction in school is viewed as unethical  and too radical and is considered brain-wash where it is not beneficial to the people but only to the organization, system or structure.