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osisgerd29

Driving in PHIL

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Philippines
Timeline

Yes you can, but if you are planning on renting a vehicle, be prepared to surrender your passport until you return said vehicle.


MEETING

April 7th, 2017: Met Maricel in a Facebook group created by a friend of mine.

May 17th, 2017: Flying to Manila to see Maricel for the first time.

May 18th, 2017: Met Maricel at the airport in Manila.

May 24th, 2017: Proposed to Maricel and got engaged.

May 30th, 2017: Returned to the USA from the Philippines.

January 25th, 2018: Next trip to the Philippines! Chicago-Taipei-Manila

February 6th, 2018: Return back to the US

April 9th, 2018: Next trip to the Philippines, this time to spend time with Maricel's family and bring her back to the USA!

April 18th, 2018: Departing the Philippines for the USA! POE: Chicago, Illinois

June 16th, 2018: Wedding day!

I-129F / K1 VISA APPLICATION PROCESS

June 1st, 2017: Completed and mailed the I-129f package.

June 6th, 2017: Received NOA1. Petition routed to the California Service Center

September 9th, 2017: 100th day in the visa process. Still waiting for NOA2. #989 on the VJ queue...

September 14th, 2017: Maricel attended her morning CFO seminar in Manila.

December 3rd, 2017: Day 180 in the visa process. Still waiting for NOA2

December 31st, 2017: Received RFE from USCIS - Needed G325a from both of us.

January 5th, 2018: Mailed back RFE reply

January 8th, 2018: California Service Center received our RFE reply.

January 23rd, 2018: Received NOA2!

February 2nd, 2018: NVC received our petition, assigned MNL case number and forwarded our petition to the US Embassy in Manila.

February 3rd, 2018: Submitted the DS-160.

February 5th, 2018: Paid embassy fee at BPI

February 12th, 2018: Medical exam at St Luke's Extension Clinic in Ermita, Manila. -PASSED

February 26th, 2018: Embassy interview in Manila at 7:10am -PASSED

March 1st, 2018: Visa in hand!

March 5th: Going back to CFO to get her sticker. -PASSED

ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS PROCESS

July 13th, 2018: Mailed I-485, I-765 and I-131 to USCIS Chicago lock box.

July 31st, 2018: AOS case accepted by USCIS, and routed to National Benefits Center for Processing.

August 14th, 2018: Received RFE for I-485, sent response.

August 24th, 2018: Biometrics appointment in St Louis, Missouri

August 30th, 2018: E-mail notice that her interview is ready to be scheduled!

March 11th, 2019: Interview day! - PASSED

March 14th, 2019: Green card has been mailed!

March 18th, 2019: Green card in hand! (Next step not until 1 year and 9 months from issue date. AKA Removal of Conditions)

 

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A foreign dl is good for 90 days, or was when I was there.

I didn't have to leave my passport, and if they wanted to keep it, I'd find someplace else to rent from. I did have to leave a hefty deposit though.

On edit:

Driving in the rual areas, smaller towns is easier than some places(ahm, Manila), if you're going to a big city, might be better off hiring a driver you can trust, at least for a few days, till you can observe for yourself how things work there, if you've not seen it before, as traffic in some places makes even some of the best drivers say, "nope".

Edited by bendinlar

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On edit:

Driving in the rual areas, smaller towns is easier than some places(ahm, Manila), if you're going to a big city, might be better off hiring a driver you can trust, at least for a few days, till you can observe for yourself how things work there, if you've not seen it before, as traffic in some places makes even some of the best drivers say, "nope".

bendinlar is being very polite. The fact is that driving in Manila (and some of the provinces) is NUTS! I have been driving for 35 years--in New York City, The Jersey Turnpike, Los Angeles, and Honolulu---there is NO WAY I ever drive in Manila (or even other parts of the Phils!) Just my 2 cents.


Mahalo/Salamat!

Steve and Joan
Met on Facebook 2/24/12
Met in person 6/5/12
Second visit 10/2/12
Engaged 10/3/12
NOA10/15/12
Third visit 12/10/12
Joan got her passport! 2/20/13
NOA2 4/24/13
Fourth visit 5/28/13
CFO 5/30/13
Embassy Interview APPROVED 6/6/13

Joan passed through immigration in Hawaii! She's home! 6/13/13

MARRIED 8/24/13

AOS, EAD and AP petitions sent to Chicago via Express Mail

EAD/AP Received 11/13/13

AOS Interview APPROVED 11/26/13

2-year Green Card in hand 12/5/13

ROC (I-751) sent to CSC via USPS Express Mail 8/31/15

ROC check cashed 9/4/15

ROC Biometrics 10/1/15

ROC Approval 4/6/16 (waiting for actual card)

Permanent Green Card Arrived 4/14/16
Naturalization Interview 2/22/17 APPROVED!

Oath Ceremony 3/21/17--Joan is a US Citizen!

Kayak small lagoon crop 10 72 for VJ.jpg

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Philippines
Timeline

bendinlar is being very polite. The fact is that driving in Manila (and some of the provinces) is NUTS! I have been driving for 35 years--in New York City, The Jersey Turnpike, Los Angeles, and Honolulu---there is NO WAY I ever drive in Manila (or even other parts of the Phils!) Just my 2 cents.

I agree. I would never drive in Manila. I -am- planning on renting a scooter when I go to Cebu in November, though. Places like Palawan, Boracay and Bohol wouldn't be as bad to drive in.


MEETING

April 7th, 2017: Met Maricel in a Facebook group created by a friend of mine.

May 17th, 2017: Flying to Manila to see Maricel for the first time.

May 18th, 2017: Met Maricel at the airport in Manila.

May 24th, 2017: Proposed to Maricel and got engaged.

May 30th, 2017: Returned to the USA from the Philippines.

January 25th, 2018: Next trip to the Philippines! Chicago-Taipei-Manila

February 6th, 2018: Return back to the US

April 9th, 2018: Next trip to the Philippines, this time to spend time with Maricel's family and bring her back to the USA!

April 18th, 2018: Departing the Philippines for the USA! POE: Chicago, Illinois

June 16th, 2018: Wedding day!

I-129F / K1 VISA APPLICATION PROCESS

June 1st, 2017: Completed and mailed the I-129f package.

June 6th, 2017: Received NOA1. Petition routed to the California Service Center

September 9th, 2017: 100th day in the visa process. Still waiting for NOA2. #989 on the VJ queue...

September 14th, 2017: Maricel attended her morning CFO seminar in Manila.

December 3rd, 2017: Day 180 in the visa process. Still waiting for NOA2

December 31st, 2017: Received RFE from USCIS - Needed G325a from both of us.

January 5th, 2018: Mailed back RFE reply

January 8th, 2018: California Service Center received our RFE reply.

January 23rd, 2018: Received NOA2!

February 2nd, 2018: NVC received our petition, assigned MNL case number and forwarded our petition to the US Embassy in Manila.

February 3rd, 2018: Submitted the DS-160.

February 5th, 2018: Paid embassy fee at BPI

February 12th, 2018: Medical exam at St Luke's Extension Clinic in Ermita, Manila. -PASSED

February 26th, 2018: Embassy interview in Manila at 7:10am -PASSED

March 1st, 2018: Visa in hand!

March 5th: Going back to CFO to get her sticker. -PASSED

ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS PROCESS

July 13th, 2018: Mailed I-485, I-765 and I-131 to USCIS Chicago lock box.

July 31st, 2018: AOS case accepted by USCIS, and routed to National Benefits Center for Processing.

August 14th, 2018: Received RFE for I-485, sent response.

August 24th, 2018: Biometrics appointment in St Louis, Missouri

August 30th, 2018: E-mail notice that her interview is ready to be scheduled!

March 11th, 2019: Interview day! - PASSED

March 14th, 2019: Green card has been mailed!

March 18th, 2019: Green card in hand! (Next step not until 1 year and 9 months from issue date. AKA Removal of Conditions)

 

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I never drive.

If we're in our town, we just walk outside and catch a trike. If we need to travel to different cities, we just rent a van. Either way, I just sit back and let somebody else do all the work.


 

 

 

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Hi,

I am planning to go to the Philippines , just wanted to know if I can use my US Drivers license to drive around the country? Thanks for all the answers. Mabuhay hehe

The answer to your question is yes. And although I would agree with the guys not to drive in Manila unless you're going on a road trip (e.g. Manila to Subic, Manila to Baguio, or Manila to Batangas), I would give you some tips if you still decide to DIY. :-)

We have number coding in Metro Manila which means you cannot use your vehicle on the following days depending on the ending number on it's plate.

Mon - 1&2

Tues - 3&4

Wed - 5&6

Thurs - 7&8

Fri - 9&0

In Makati (Downtown) we have what we call yellow boys, they would be waiting under a tree or any shady place with an eagle eye to catch the slightest violation they would see and either give you a ticket or ask for money. So if you're driving avoid Makati under any circumstance.

Other than that, practice defensive driving all the time. The jeepneys & UV vans will cut into your lane every chance they get. Private vehicles would change from one lane to another like it's a game. And most driver's don't use turn signals especially the buses. Avoid EDSA too if you can especially during rush hour or do not travel during rush hour at all. Enjoy the happy hour in your hotel's lounge. Waze "was" helpful when I was driving in Manila, I'm not sure if it still is.

Good luck! And I hope you enjoy your vacation.

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Filed: Timeline

The answer to your question is yes. And although I would agree with the guys not to drive in Manila unless you're going on a road trip (e.g. Manila to Subic, Manila to Baguio, or Manila to Batangas), I would give you some tips if you still decide to DIY. :-)

We have number coding in Metro Manila which means you cannot use your vehicle on the following days depending on the ending number on it's plate.

Mon - 1&2

Tues - 3&4

Wed - 5&6

Thurs - 7&8

Fri - 9&0

In Makati (Downtown) we have what we call yellow boys, they would be waiting under a tree or any shady place with an eagle eye to catch the slightest violation they would see and either give you a ticket or ask for money. So if you're driving avoid Makati under any circumstance.

Other than that, practice defensive driving all the time. The jeepneys & UV vans will cut into your lane every chance they get. Private vehicles would change from one lane to another like it's a game. And most driver's don't use turn signals especially the buses. Avoid EDSA too if you can especially during rush hour or do not travel during rush hour at all. Enjoy the happy hour in your hotel's lounge. Waze "was" helpful when I was driving in Manila, I'm not sure if it still is.

Good luck! And I hope you enjoy your vacation.

Yeah, I heard about the coding lol

Thanks all for the tips and reminders. I'll keep them in mind. Godbless!

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I go to the Philippines to visit my wife while we wait for the CR-1 to be processed and I drive there all the time. Cars and motorcycles with side cars (aka tricycles) are actually more courteous to sneak in, but watch out for the buses. They will barrel you down if you try to cut them off.

Whether it is in the city or in the province I HIGHLY RECOMMEND to get an International Driver's License. Besides the fact that it is more intense as you have to be very aggressive to drive in Manila because many people don't follow the rules...there are a lot of "traffic cops" hiding and waiting to catch you doing something wrong.

I drove several times in the Philippines without a Intl DL and I got stopped. It happened to me while driving in the city going from Makati to Quezon City where I was following Waze and it was updating too slowly. I took another road to avoid the traffic. One or two turns later I ended up going the wrong way on a one-way street. :oops: Of course there is no signage like how it is here in LA or most big cities in the US.

I got pulled over and I showed them my CA DL. They asked for my Intl DL. Didn't have one. They asked for my passport... I showed it to them holding tightly to it but they wanted to take it. I said NO! But my wife insisted and I gave both DL and passport. Later another traffic officer comes up and is talking to my wife holding my passport and CA DL...I am panicking. :unsure: My wife explained to them that I'm leaving that night back to the states. After some convincing from my wife they let us go. Whew!

The next time I returned I had an Intl DL with me and I carry it with me all the time. It's pretty easy to obtain. You can get it from AAA where you fill an application and pay a small fee and it is good for one year. If you have other class DLs - I have a moto DL - it can be added to your Intl DL.

Good luck and stay clear of those buses!

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Also, be aware of traffic rules especially when you're driving in Metro Manila, particularly EDSA, like don't drive in yellow lanes or take service roads etc.. coz those police/traffic enforcers can be brutal with fines especially if they see you're a foreigner. Like when my USC husband would drive and get pulled over for some reasons, they would never give you a ticket but they would ask for as much as 6k. So better yet, find someone you trust, a local, to drive you around.


(L) TEAM AWESOME (L)
CR1 Visa Journey via DCF (US Embassy Manila)

Apr 15, 2016 - Filed petition I-130 at USEM
Apr 22, 2016 - Petition Approved/Received NOA
May 2, 2016 - Received MNL Case Number, filed DS260
May 3, 2016 -   SLEC (Day1)
May 5, 2016 -   CFO Seminar
May 11, 2016 - SLEC (Day2) + release of med records
May 12, 2016 - Received email with instructions re: IV
May 23, 2016 - Interview at USEM Manila - APPROVED!!!
Jun 7, 2016 -   Visa home delivered by 2GO
Jun 8, 2016 -   CFO sticker and registration
Jun 13, 2016 - POE at Chicago Ohare

Jun 20, 2016 - Social Security home delivered
July 25, 2016 - Green Card home delivered

Apr 19, 2018 -  Petition 1-751 sent to USCIS California Service Center

 

 

 

:dance: For a more detailed step-by-step walk-through with photos of requirements, you can check my blog entry :dance:

 

 

 

CR1 Visa Process via DCF

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Philippines
Timeline

I'm an OTR Truck driver in the US. I've driven a big rig in 48 states and 2 Canadian provinces. I've been to the Philippines 5 times and never once did I even consider driving over there. The people are super friendly as long as they're not driving. When they are driving, they're crazier than New Yorkers. And the lane lines are only suggestions.

When a street with 4 painted lanes each way has 8 lanes of traffic going one way and 4 lanes of traffic going the other way -- and everyone is jumping back and forth all over the place -- that means I don't need to drive. I'll get a trike or a jeepney or a taxi, then close my eyes till it's over. :)


K-1 Application sent 2-16-16

Received at Dallas lockbox 2-18-16

NOA1, sent to California 2-23-16

NOA2 4-21-16

NVC shipped to Manila 5-12-16

Consulate received 5-16-16

US Embassy Interview -- APPROVED!!! 8-24-16 :dancing: :joy: :dancing:

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