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Gator last won the day on March 16

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About Gator

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    USA - Former resident Cebu City

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  1. In Cebu - Mega Therapeutic and Wellness Center - Tipolo Mandaue Branch, Mandaue City. Rm 201-202 Arcada5 Bldg., Tipolo Mandaue City Cebu Call/text 09225104169 They offer various packages and do cost a bit more then some of the other massage places, but it’s well worth it. Well trained staff and very clean place. Nice little bistro in the same plaza called Woori (or something like that), great place to relax a little after getting a nice massage. Disclaimer - I have no vested interest in either business nor am I acquainted with the owners and I do not receive any commissions for referring them. Naturally YMMV at either place.
  2. I stand corrected. But I’m pretty sure it still says 10k pesos on the form. Maybe they just haven’t gotten new forms printed yet.
  3. Agree, best to have the pesos ahead of time. I’ve arrived in the wee hours before and was able to get the visa extension. If anything, it’s likely to be quicker as long as there’s not several flights arriving at about the same time.
  4. As it’s a bit unusual is why I pointed it out. It’s printed on the customs declaration form and I read it twice as I thought it was wrong. Then I just chuckled to myself when I remembered what country we’re talking about and some of the other silly rules there.
  5. It’s actually both - 10k pesos and/or 10k USD. I know it doesn’t make sense, but this is the Phils after all, lol.
  6. I’ve rented a “self-drive” car a few times in Cebu and just recently in Leyte. No problems at all, just do a thorough inspection when you pick up the car and take pics of any damage. Also check the fluids - once a car I got in Cebu was quite low on oil. I’d also request that to have a car without full tinting on the windshield - had one of those once and could barely see the road at night.
  7. Yes, they are in the main part of the terminal after immigration (and customs too). I had to get some pesos in the USA once. Did it thru Bank of America about 8 years ago. Took a few days as they had to order the pesos and the exchange rate really sucked. If I recall correctly the spot rate at the time was around 53 pesos to the USD and the rate I got was around 43. Later I found out that an immigration officer (in Cebu) could escort you out to a bank in the terminal to exchange pesos and then bring you back in. But I don’t know if they offer that courtesy all the time or not. I wouldn’t count on it and would just bite the bullet and take the hit on the exchange rate at a US bank. That way you’d have the pesos and not have to worry about it. From then on I always made sure to take about 8-9k pesos out with me - enough for when I returned to pay for a visa, taxi fare, a meal and some extra for any incidentals. It should be noted that you’re not allowed to take more then 10k pesos out of the Phils.
  8. It’s cheaper (and faster) to do it at the airport. Plus no round trip FedEx or UPS fees to pay nor do you pay an express fee (so it’s actually about 500-800 pesos less then going to an immigration office) or have to fill out any forms and provide photos. Simply give them your passport and the roughly 2,700 to 3k fee (it’s never been the same amount, lol; and they will need to have pesos) and that’s it. Over the years I’ve done it often and the longest I had to wait was about 15-20 minutes. And every time I’ve been escorted to the front of the line (usually lane 1; which is for crew and diplomats).
  9. No, I don’t know where it’s at. I’d just approach an airport or BOI official and inform them of what you need to do, then follow their instructions.
  10. Gator


    Rarely seen on birds under 60kgs, but seek and ye shall find!
  11. For those who are unaware, the process is roughly the same at the Manila Airport. Perhaps one day they’ll also make it possible at Clark too.
  12. I had already booked my flight when the trouble began and was worried about it myself. My fight was just a few days after the worst of it. As it happened I transited thru without a problem. It seems the protesters were in the arrival and domestic flight areas. The international transit flights are in the secure area of the airport and the protesters never made it that far - nor, according to an Air Canada official anyhow - would they. Never the less, I was still apprehensive about it and was grateful I had travel insurance.
  13. If it’s a drug related killing then, given the amount of extra judicial murders, that would be the logical conclusion by ill informed locals. But perhaps their involvement was that they were paid to stay away from that area at a certain time?
  14. My dream when I retire to the Phils was to bring one of my Harley’s - probably my Sportster as it’s not too heavy and easy to maneuver in traffic. Once I looked into the hassles involved in importing it, I decided to just bite the bullet and get a new one there. When I looked at Harley’s at the dealer Cebu I was told the country of origin also comes into play, but I’m not sure if that only applies to new vehicles or used ones as well. For example the 750cc Harley Street model is made in India, so the import tax is substantially less then those imported from the USA (10% vs. 50 to 100%). I also have a 64’ kick/electric start Panhead - an old Tampa Police Dept bike that ’d hate to sell. It’s currently disassembled and in storage so I could easily crate it and ship it. Even in that condition it’s valued at 25-30K USD (or more). I was told by an agent for Maersk Shipping that it would run me well over 20K USD to ship that bike and a Sportster; and that I may run into issues as I only stay on a tourist visa (he wasn’t certain about that). As much as I love my old Panhead I’ll likely sell it. Or maybe I could send it piecemeal, assemble it, put it the sala and stare at it (declare it as a work of art???, lol) as I’d never be able to register it there without all the proper documents. Bottom line = it’s probably not worth the hassle and expense to import a motorcycle. Besides, there’s not many roads there where you can really enjoy a big bike like yours.
  15. That and to assess if any income tax is owed on it or any interest income earned on the account(s). As well as to track any income earned outside of the US that is not reported to the IRS. FBAR = Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts. But I like Dave’s definition better as it best describes the IRS and it overly complicated rules.
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