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Saturday, September 29, 2012

Applying for Taiwan Tourist Visa

This October, I'm set to visit another wonderful country. Taiwan, Formosa as it was formerly called, is my second overseas trip this year!

Photo Credits: http://images.matt-gibson.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/swallows-grotto-taroko-gorge-taiwan.jpg
Of course, before anything else, the visa is an important document to prepare before going. So I wanted to share to you to the process of how I went through it.

It is highly advised that you consult the official Taiwan Embassy Page as this post is just to account my own experience in applying for the Visitor's Visa.

In my case, I have prepared the following:

1. An online Visa Application Form (please access https://visawebapp.boca.gov.tw to fill up the Form and print them out) *when you print it out you just need to sign it on the last page, no other hand written details are to be entered on the form
2. Two (2) passport size photos 1.5”x2” with white background (taken w/in the last three (3) months)
3. Passport valid for at least six months and old passport showing previous travels
4. Birth Certificate issued by NSO
5. Supporting documents related to the purpose of VISIT such as :
A. Confirmed round trip Air ticket or Booking Certificate
B. Certificate of Employment and Letter of permission to leave from the employer
C. Financial statements of the applicant such as:
(1) Income Tax Return
(2) Bank Book or Bank Statements

Make sure all documents submitted should be Original and with 1 photocopy. Don't forget to also photocopy the first page of your passport.

Important information:
Visa Fee: P2,400.00 (Single entry)/ P4,800.00 (Multiple entry)
(NON-REFUNDABLE) payable upon filing of application
Processing Time : 3 Working days * but you can expedite as well

Filing Time : Monday to Friday 8:45AM to 11:45 AM
Releasing Time : Monday to Friday 1: 45PM to 4:45PM

On the day of filing our visa, I went to their office in RCBC Plaza. The reception doesn't open before 8:30. So I waited until the reception accepted us. The lady had us sign the log and directed us to wait outside for our names to be called and then a number be given to us. I got number 15.

After getting the number, head back to the reception inside the Tower 1 building and leave your ID. If it's not the acceptable ID, you will need to deposit 1,000 pesos.

So I went up to 41st floor and waited for my number to be called. I was called but the lady informed me to photocopy the first page of my passport! And that wasn't even indicated in the requirements. I went downstairs to get it photocopied. As me and my other CS friends entered the office, the security guard noticed that one of my friends online form is not the updated form. Therefore we decided to go back the next day.

On the next day, I was really early as I had to get back to office immediately. This time I got number 7. Once my number is called the documents were checked. The lady returned some copies of my bank statements and Employment Certificate. She also asked me if it's regular or expedite. So I opted for the regular.

Next step is for the payment. I had to wait until may name is called and then paid 2,400 for the fee. After that I was given a receipt with the claim date 3 days after.

Claiming of Visa:
After three days of lodging, we finally got our passports back with the visa sticker on it! The process is almost the same, get number, surrender an ID and wait til number is called. Easy! However, there were too many people in the afternoon claiming their passports so it almost took as 2 hours waiting for our number to be called.

Anyway, all's good and we are now set to go to Taiwan for four days!




More Sydney Sidetrips

We headed to Darling Harbour after dropping by Circular Quay and met our colleague. We took another train from Circular Quay to Town Hall Station.

Town Hall station is only a walking distance from the Darling Harbour.

We met our friend and she gladly toured us at their office building found within the Darling Quarters. It's a new building if I may say.

The CommBank Place is a one of a kind, really spacious, hip and nothing I've have seen before in terms of the design and interiors. It really looks like a nice place to work in.



I really liked the very wide space within the building. There are spaces for hot desks where you can just sit and plug your laptop and voila work there.
We went up to one of the floors and saw more interesting sights within the building. I'm really enjoying it.


Loved the interiors and the mix of colours. Even I would think it doesn't look like an office!


There's a pool table too! How wonderful is that!


And this is me, enjoying a nice afternoon outside and with the view of Darling Harbour!


More dining area. Really funky seats!


I have to thank my good friend Nors, for taking time to tour us around. It was a really nice work place by the looks of it!


Sunday, September 23, 2012

Sydney Sunday Treat

It was Sunday, our second day in Sydney. My colleague and myself decided we would first drop by our office in North Sydney so she could get used to the directions since it's her first time.

Travelling from Chatswood we took a morning train. It was a chilly morning and wasn't used to it so I had made sure I'm kept warm by my sweater.

We met another Filipina waiting on the train. It was nice to have some quick chat with your kababayan and we had a few photo ops with her.

When I was in Sydney the first time, I was in awe to find out about their train system. It quite looked complicated if you check out the train map. But I have familiarised myself well enough so on my 4th time in Sydney I still knew the way around. :)


Our office in North Sydney is a few minutes walk from the train station.

Here is a photo just in front of the building.


After that we head to the city to drop by Paddy's market and buy pasalubong. I know! It's just our second day and we are now buying stuff. Yeah, we realised since we will be spending the whole weekdays at work, there wouldn't be enough time to get pasalubong. The weekend is just about right to give us time to get those Koalas and keychains!

We spent until lunch time getting the stuff. And since we were hungry took lunch at the Market City, which is just above the Paddy's Market.

Here's a good meal from Paddy's. Believe me, I wasn't hungry that I finished this plate!


We went to have some sight-seeing again in Circular Quay. I was also meeting a college classmate.

One of my favourite spots in Sydney. You can see the buildings, the ferries, water taxis, Opera House on this side and the Harbor Bridge on the other side. I enjoy the sights in Circular Quay and just walking around.


And here is a photo of the Sydney Harbour Bridge in the background. It is a well-known structure. During new year, the bridge is the highlight and center stage of the fireworks. I have yet to see that!


It was such a lovely day at the Opera House. Although, there were some constructions during the time we were there. It was also packed with tourists and people hanging out on a weekend.


I was quite tired and thought I'd take a rest at the Royal Botanical Garden. Really nice to have a picnic here!


The Royal Botanical Garden is a nice place to relax and unwind. A lot of families with their kids are there playing and just enjoying the weather and scenery.

Such a lovely day isn't it. After meeting my friend, we head next to Darling Harbour to meet another colleague. Oh yeah, this day has a lot of meet-ups and catching-ups... :D