In the last four years, I have been applying for Saudi Arabian visas to visit my husband working in the Kingdom. So far, all my visa applications were granted. Basically, the initial application was done by my husband online through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs who issues the pre-approval visa slip. This document alongside with my passport and DFA and Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Embassy Manila authenticated proof of kinship (marriage certificate) were given to my agent for visa stamping. The stamping took three days then I was good to go.
VFS TasHeel in the Philippines
However, in my recent resident visa application, I was told by my agent that there have been changes in the visa stamping procedure. Personal appearance of the applicant is required for bio metric enrollment that includes collection of finger prints, facial image and other biographic details reflected on the applicant’s passport. VFS TasHeel Visa Service Centers have offices in Manila, Cebu and Davao. The above mentioned centers will process various categories of visa permits including resident, educational, personal, commercial visits etc., with the exception of Hajj, Umrah and Work visas.
Listed below is the complete list of resident visa requirements:
- Original and copy of the passport.
- Passport should be valid for at least six months.
- Passport must contain at least two blank facing pages.
- Passport must not contain any restriction and authorizes its holder to return to the issuing country.
- 2 recent photos with white background. The photograph size should be 2 inch x 2 inch (51 mm x 51 mm), no uniform, with white background, and frontal view, and should not be more than 3 months old
- Enjaz Form, filled by the Visa Service Center and signed by the Applicant.
- Residence visa slip or its copy containing visa number and date of its issuance. The validity of residence visa is one (1) year effective from the date of its issuance in the Kingdom. Arabic translation showing on the right side should be evident on the document.
- Proof of kinship or marital relationship (marriage contract with regards to wife, birth certificates for children), duly authenticated by the Philippines Department of Foreign Affairs and Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Manila. The age of the children should not exceed (18) years old and the daughters should not be married.
- Valid Medical Certificate issued by one of the medical centers accredited by the Embassy. Children whose ages are below (12) years are exempted from medical examinations.
For details about other visa types, please visit http://www.vfstasheel.com.
The initial steps of my application were done by my husband. He had our authenticated marriage certificate and his degree certificates attested and translated in Saudi Arabia. He was charged 200 SAR ~ PhP 2,800. He then submitted all the documents to his company’s liaison officer for processing. The application fee cost was 2000 SAR ~ 28,000 PhP. Two weeks after we got the visa pre-approval slip (this will be one of the documents needed for visa stamping).
Next step was obtaining my medical certificate in the Philippines which took just over a week. It cost me roughly PhP 5000 on all medical tests.
Here is the list of the accredited clinics in the Philippines:
American Outpatient Clinic
Angelina Apostol-Punzalan Medical Clinic
Angelus Medical Clinic
Arguelles Medical Clinic
Cebu Physicians Diagnostic Services Center Inc,
Christian E. Cango Medical Clinic & Laboratory
Davao Physicians Diagnostic Services Center Inc,
HYATT Diagnostic System Inc,
International Diagnostic Center
L-R Medical & X-ray Clinic Inc.
Mabini Medical Clinic, Inc
Medisense Laboratory Center, Inc. Manila 1
Medisense Laboratory Center, Inc.Cebu Branch 2
Medisense Laboratory Center, Inc. Davao Branch 3
Medisense Laboratory Center, Inc. Bacolod Branch 4
My Health Clinic
Our Lady of Fatima Medical Clinic
Philippine Medical Test System
Physicians Diagnostic Services
RGO Laboratory and Industrial Diagnostic Center Inc,
Safeway Diagnostic Services
SM Lazo Medical Clenic, Inc.
St. Martin Polycinic, Inc.
St. Patrick’s Healthcare System
St. Peter-Paul Medical Clinic, Inc
St. Peter-Paul Medical Clinic, Inc. Cebu Branch
YGEIA Medical Center. Inc.
Booking an Appointment
It was time to book my appointment! Luckily, if you are living close to one of the visa centers mentioned above then you wont have to travel far like I did. Although I was close to Davao and Cebu but the posting time of my passport would take another 7-10 days because they have to send it to Manila office and then back. I was really short of time because I had my flight to Saudi Arabia booked on the 1st of February.
Anyway, they have a lounge service should you want to avoid long queues, like myself. 😉 They had nice soft seats and give you a drink or two. I noticed they have put Wi-Fi access too in the lounge service facility whilst booking my appointment online but ironically, all phones have to be turned off upon entering the center.
Normal PhP 2,651.00
Lounge PhP 4,307.00
Please note though that the type of service does not affect the length of visa stamping.
My appointment went painless and done in less than an hour. The staffs were so friendly too.
Now, this is the crazy thing. I forgot to inform the clinic who issued my medical certificate to upload my files in the system as instructed by the VFS personnel who managed my application. I did not realize this until two days after my appointment date. Phew! What a pain I was, wasn’t I? That had put me into a greater risk of missing my flight, two flights in fact.
So, I had to contact the courier service (2GO) and fortunate enough they were able to fish out my parcel from the plane in NAIA and had me pick it up in their office in Pasay before I head over to catch my Saudi flight. It was literally just hours before my flight! Crikey, what an adventure. Thank you universe!
Whatever you do, be reminded of my forgetfulness fiasco!
HORRAY! Im now back in Saudi with my luvva!
P.S I have been encountering enquiries about a personal agent who could process their visa applications for Saudi Arabia in expat.com. Her details listed below;
mobile: +63 999 884 1489
However, I would do it myself if it were me unless bio metric enrollment isn’t necessary. 🙂