Down Under Visa Logo

At Down Under Visa sometimes we have a prospective visa applicant telling me that his Filipina girlfriend could certainly apply for a tourist visa to Australia, because it was just for a one-month holiday. Maybe I come across as a bit blunt, but I normally say that I would give her a 95%+ chance of refusal!

For a Filipino to get an Australian tourist visa he needs to prove a genuine reason to visit Australia and that they will return

In cases where couples have known each other for only a month or two and haven’t met in person, they would have no chance of getting a visa grant at this stage, but like many they often assume it would be an easy process. And whilst I may be sorry that it’s hard for a couple to get together, I understand the need for Australian border security (or “border protection” as per the name of the Department these days).

I had another client the other day wanting to get tourist visas for a nice Filipino couple that they’ve known for years, and I had to tell them that I didn’t want them to waste their money and end up with a visa refusal.


Why is it hard to get a tourist visa?

In order to get a tourist visa to Australia, the delegates at the Australian Embassy need to be satisfied that the applicant has a “genuine reason to visit Australia”. They also need to be convinced that they will comply with all visa conditions, eg not working, as tourist visas have no work-rights, and that they will return home when the visa expires.


Genuine reason to visit Australia

Hard one to quantify, definitely! It means a purpose that matches with the purposes that the visa was designed for, and lacks any ulterior motives!

What’s the most obvious concern? Working, obviously. You can work picking zucchinis in QLD at $22.00 an hour! Picking tomatoes, if you’re a quick worker and they pay by the bucket? Might earn $50 – $60 an hour! In Pesos, would be over P100,000.00 per month! Compare that to someone who works in a bank earning P9,000.00 a month! Teachers in Philippines earn less than P20,000.00 a month generally.

And why wouldn’t they believe that the bank clerk would want to take a holiday in Australia for a few months? A hotel room in Sydney (as long as you didn’t eat or drink anything) might cost a month’s salary to him or her. Why would somebody spend what could be their life savings taking holidays? Would you?

The bottom line is that for an average Filipino to look at spending that sort of money on sight-seeing and patting koalas is simply not realistic plus highly unlikely, and the Embassy know this too. So of course they are worried they plan on doing some pre-arranged work for somebody. Maybe babysitting for a relative, or helping with some renovations, or some farm work. Cash-money sent back to the family, and it could result in quite a nest-egg to go back to. Or worse, they could disappear and live under the radar for many years before getting caught and deported.

What if you vouch for the visa applicant?

Whilst you may well know them very well, and you may trust them absolutely, the Department don’t know you at all and they certainly don’t know them. And unless they make home-imprisonment legal, you have no way of holding onto somebody to ensure they do the right thing. You may promise and you may submit statutory declarations ‘til you’re blue in the face and it will mean nothing, because you lack the power to enforce what you say.

And as for the lady you’ve been chatting to for the last 3 ½ weeks, you have even less power to ensure she does the right thing. How many men out there have been lied-to and tricked by a pretty girl? *I’m putting MY hand up!* What’s to stop her from arriving at the airport, going straight out the front door and heading off into the city never to be seen or heard-from again? It does happen and it will always happen. They can’t prevent this, but they can certainly lessen the likelihood by keeping up the standards and raising the bar that you need to jump over. Might seem tough in the short term, but it may also save you from making a few dreadful mistakes too!

We specialize in not only partner visas, but also tourist visas for Australian Filipina couples who are not quite ready for taking that plunge and getting a partner visa…..yet. These are not holiday-makers. These are couples in love who want to spend some time together, and we are delighted to help them. We base our applications around the stability of their relationships together and the genuineness of their intent to enhance their existing relationships. Almost like a practice-run for the partner visa that is around the corner. If the relationship is sound, we can usually demonstrate this very well to the delegates of the Department.

If we are not convinced ourselves? We would rather not waste your time, and we will tell you this. Let your relationship mature a bit, and more than likely we will be willing and able to help you in a couple of months time.

Down Under Visa – Helping Filipina lady visa applicants
Partner Visa - Journey from Philippines to Australia - Part 1


  1. Tony foster

    Hi Jeff. Thank you for your article and sort of sums up my situation at present. My now fiancé and I have been in a relationship or rather commuted to one at Xmas time last year. We have been in contact since this time last year and I have now been back over there in Davao 3 times. I know this woman very well and her immediate family cousins and close friends as well as their rich family friends who are all elated for us.
    My partner rejean has applied for her passport after attaining the required ID and submitted this at the Gensan office on Mindanao. The Davao office always has about 2500 people on the que hence why the application at gensan.
    She lives in the province at a town called Pantukan. Ot has now been 3 months with no word on the passport. Annoying yes but this is something o have become used to in Phil. We have made plans as to what we want out of life and she is of course commuted to our relationship as I. Ideally a working visa for 12 months could be an option of at all possible the apply for defacto or prospective partner. Given the time taken for approvals I would rather have rejean here sooner rather than later.
    Given my short story here what would be the best way to approach this with a good success outcome. Yes we are serious about the relationship and want to take it to the next level.
    Please advise.
    Kind regards
    Tony Foster.

  2. Rodney Francis Witte

    And How much do you charge for the tourist visa service? And what happens if an application is refused? Do you still charge for that service…… I certainly hope not.

    • Jeff Harvie

      Rodney, we did an assessment for you a few months ago. Let me know if you still need our help?

      As for what we do if it’s refused? Look at the bottom of the assessment email you received. Cheers.

  3. Minkie Mrtin

    Hi, Thanks for sharing! Can i know how much do you charge for the tourist visa services?

  4. Hines Huet

    Hi I have the same dilemma with regards to acquiring a partner visa. I actually am already in Australia on a tourist visa, married in the Philippines but only in papers because the relationship as husband and wife no longer exists. This was since 2010, with 3 grown children who are all employed and where youngest is 22 years old. I am a well traveled person visited about 30 countries in the world and now in Australia trying to complete my book then normally in the process met someone who could make me happy and eventually get developed. The relationship just started over a month after I personally met him 3 months ago. He is inviting me to live with him in his abode after my travel in New Zealand. My visa allowed me to stay in Australia until September 29th. In this case can my boy friend who is an Australian citizen originally from London can apply an extension of my visa or he should apply a Partner Visa instead? Please advise.. Jo

    • Jeff Harvie

      Jo, suggest that you complete our online assessment form. I don’t know enough about you and your situation to comment, and this isn’t the right place for private discussion either.


Questions: Please search our BLOG menu or Visa Knowledge Base

Submit a Comment

NOTE: Please restrict your comments to what's written on this page.

PLEASE NOTE: You may comment on posts, and you may ask general questions about the visa topic. However requests for “how-to?” information on how to lodge visas or how to deal with specific problems will not be answered. Please engage the services of a professional Registered Migration Agent for actual assistance or advice. Thank you.

Your email address will not be published.

Questions about visa types we don’t handle, or about countries we don’t apply for visas from, will not be answered, Philippines to Australia visas for couples and families only.

Do you have suggestions for topics you would like to read an article about? Click HERE and we will see what we can do!



How does it work?

How It Works Image

Search Our Site

Happy Couples

Happy Couples Image


Google Reviews

See All Reviews

Facebook Reviews

Subscribe to our BLOG


Want the latest in Australian Visa information?

SUBSCRIBE to the Down Under Visa BLOG Page

Never miss a single important update!

BONUS EBOOK! “Philippines to Australia – Australian Visas, Frayed Emotions and a Journey You Will Never Forget” by Jeff Harvie RMA

Just want to buy the book? Purchase directly from Amazon by clicking HERE

We never share or sell your data

Migration Law

Registered Migration Agent Details Image

Should you use a Registered Migration Agent or not?



Migration Alliance Image

Latest Posts

Useful Links

Filipina Wives Image Down Under Visa - Visa Q & A Image Online Filipino Weddings Image
Online Weddings for Australian Filipina couples