Please note that this entry is based on my own application for visitor visa online, and may not apply to other types of visas and non-Filipino residents of the Philippines.
Step 1: Research, Research, Research.
I cannot stress enough how important it is to get information from other Filipinos who have applied for Australian Visitor Visa in the past.
Visitor visa (subclass 600) Information, Features and Requirements – Why subclass 600? Filipinos are not eligible for the eVisitor visa. This website gives you information on Australia’s different types of visitor visas and who are eligible.
The embassy does not conduct interviews so be as thorough and as concise as possible.
Step 2: Gather all necessary documents.
This should be a helpful guide: Visitor visa (subclass 600) Application document checklist
I submitted the following documents:
a. Invitation Letter from my friend in Australia along with a copy of his passport, copy of his Driver’s License, copy of his employment ID, and copy of his Tenancy Agreement. I included a copy of his tenancy agreement as proof that he can sponsor my accommodation while in Australia. You may refer to my invitation letter here.
b. Bank Certification.
TIP: get your certification from the bank where you’ve been with the longest. I have a friend who works in a bank and she mentioned that for visa applications, it is important that you’ve been with the bank for a long time so as to avoid being questioned. BPI charges P100 per certification. Good thing about it is that you can get it right away and from any branch.
How much show money should you have in your bank account? It depends and I’m in no position to say how much. If your trip is sponsored by your Australian contact, you can present his/her financial documents. Since I’m travelling on my own, I had to prove to the embassy that I can support myself during the entire time I’m in Australia so I had about 6 figures in the bank during the time when I lodged my application. (no longer 6 figures. That’s why it’s called show money. harhar.)
d. Credit Card Statements (3months) – proof of financial capacity
e. Income Tax Return (3 years) – proof of financial capacity and employment history
f. certified true copies of Payslip (6months) – proof of financial capacity
g. Certificate of Employment – proof that I have a reason to return to the Philippines
h. Letter of Leave of Absence from my manager – proof that I am required to return to the Philippines
i. Driver’s License – proof of identity
j. Passport Copy – proof of identity
k. USA Visa – proof of identity
l. Life Insurance – proof that the Australian government will not incur costs during my stay
m. Personal Accident Insurance -proof that the Australian government will not incur costs during my stay. I don’t think it is really required to have 2 insurance policies. However, this personal accident insurance was given to me during an event I took part of so I included this to my application.
n. Proof of Travel (passport stamps) – I enumerated the countries I’ve visited in the last 5 years
o. Roundtrip Plane Ticket – proof that I will return to the Philippines
p. Passport Photo – required