What You Need to Know about PDOS

Interview with employer, check. Medical exam, check. Submission of requirements, check.

Everything is complete and according to plan and the question now is when are you leaving. Before you leave the country, there is one step you need to do first: attend the Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar or PDOS. 

Do I have to? Why is it necessary? How long will the seminar take? What will I learn from there?

These are some of the many questions this post will answer, so make sure to read until the end.

What is PDOS? 

It all started in the early 80s. By virtue of POEA MC No. 3, Series of 1983, the Philippine government made PDOS or the Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar mandatory for all Filipinos working overseas. Up to this day, PDOS is a required one-day only seminar for all first-time Filipino workers of all skills leaving the country for overseas work.

The purpose of PDOS is to:

  • Provide OFWs with means and information to help cope with their new working environment, which are crucial during the first six months from deployment.
  • Addresses the basic needs and concerns for all OFWs, including adjustment difficulties.
  • Inform OFWs on who to call and what to do in case something happened abroad.

PDOS is country-specific and at times, skills-specific to ensure that you will be prepared by the time you were deployed. At present, PDOS is conducted by OWWA.

What are the modules involved?

  • Working Overseas – This tackles the cultural insights, Code of Discipline for OFWs, and religious policies of specific countries among others.
  • Employment Contract – It will discuss your rights and responsibilities as OFW, which must be embodied in your employment contract, as well as what to do in case of breach or violation of the terms in the contract.
  • Government Programs and Services – This includes both in-country and overseas services of the government, specifically the OWWA.
  • Important Reminders – This includes tips on financial planning, health tips, and tips when travelling.

What about PDOS for Seafarers? 

The Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar for Seafarers are, although mandatory, a bit different compared to other skilled workers. Modules include:

  • Government Programs and Services – Specifically OWWA services and other government-agencies involved in migration.
  • Standard Employment Contract – This will outline your rights and responsibilities as an OFW-seafarer as well as what to do in case of violation.
  • Financial Management – This will discuss financial planning and the importance of savings and investment.
  • Personal Health and Safety for Seafarers
  • Coping with Work and Living Conditions – This will tackle working hours and how to work in a multi-cultural environment
  • Travel Guide Do’s and Don’ts

What if you are rendering household work services? Instead of PDOS, Household Service Workers (HSWs) have their own version of PDOS called Comprehensive Pre-Departure Education Programs or CPDEP. 

This was established in 2007 and the purpose is not just to uphold and protect every HSW’s welfare but also to prepare them to stressful work conditions and environment while living in a foreign household. 

Modules for CPDEP includes:

  • Stress Management Seminar – This increases awareness among HSWs on causes of stress and its effects, mentally and emotionally prepare HSWs when facing challenges while working abroad, and the importance of having coping strategies and help in building new coping mechanisms.
  • Language and Culture Training – This will cover language courses for Arabic, Cantonese, Hebrew, Italian, and Mandarin.
  • Modules covered in the regular PDOS

Is it for free? 

The answer is yes, although you are still required to pay $25 OWWA membership fee.

Make sure you call OWWA hotline at (02) 891-7601 to ask for a schedule of country-specific PDOS. This is also on a first come, first serve basis, so make sure you ask for a schedule that is appropriate to your country destination.

At the end of the seminar, you will be given a Certificate of Completion, which you must also present at the airport upon departure.

More than the PDOS, it is imperative that you keep yourself informed about the country you’re going to. Make sure to read our OFW Guide to give you an idea on the living and working conditions in your country destination.

You can check out this PDF file to know more about PDOS.

76 Replies to “What You Need to Know about PDOS”

  1. Hi the agency hiring me does not have a partnership with a local agency in the philippines, is there another way for me to have a pdos? Thank you

    1. Hi Airyl! We’re not sure with this since there could be an internal policy sa POEA. Please contact POEA directly regarding this matter. Thanks!

  2. Hi,sa February na ang scheduled flight ko
    Immigrant visa yung akin
    Sa US ako magkakagreen card,kailangan ko din bng magattend ng PDOS seminars?

      1. example po nahire sa UAE tapos umuwi lang kasi naghihintay ng working visa. pag nareceive po yung working entry visa kailangan pa po ba mgPDOS. and dati na pong nagwowork sa UAE.

    1. Hi Anne. No po. Iba po ang PDOS sa visa. PDOS is a mandatory seminar po before umalis ng Pilipinas while ang visa naman allows you to stay and work sa country of destination 🙂

  3. Do i need to buy my own ticket going back to point of origin if i dont finish the 100 days probitionary period? Because i resign during my probitionary period indue of overworked.

    1. Hi Ann! What is the arrangement during the said probationary period? If the employer will shoulder the expenses, then you may require po your employer to fulfill its terms in the contract.

    1. Hi Lara, na PDOS na po ako last week ng october 2019 po, until now december 03, 2019 na po wala pa po update sa agency, there’s a possibility po ba na macancel or di tuloy un departure sa host country ko? Napagkabsigning narin po ako ng contract. Prang ang tagal po kasi, nakapag resigning narin po kc ako sa local work ko. I expecting po kc mga two weeks lng makakaalis na ako.

      1. Hello! We’re sorry to hear about that. Normally kasi mabilis lang po yan. Please coordinate with your agency regarding the status po. Thanks!

  4. Greetings! my employer hired an agency here in the Philippines to apply for accreditation since it is a requirement by the POEA for direct hire. Kasama na po ba dyan ang OEC at PDOS sa processing? Maraming salamat po.

    1. Hi Rommel. You will apply for the OEC po while PDOS, may mga available schedules, which you can see po sa POEA website. The agency could help you sa scheduling po.

  5. Hi. Already in NZ as permanent resident and planning to visit PH soon, will I still need PDOS to exit the PH coming back to NZ?

    1. Hi Stephanie. PDOS is for OFWs lang po with valid employment contract. We’re just not sure po as to the exact seminar you need to attend or if ever you need one since you are already a permanent resident.

  6. Hi All,

    Nag exit po ako sa PH as tourist and naka pag hanap na po ng work abroad, with all valid pass and contract from POLO office. required pa po ba ang PDOS para mka pag issue ng OEC? Thank you.

  7. Hello! I would just like to ask kung kailangan ko pa po ba dumaan ng CFO if dependent po ako ng isang worker sa Austria which is my husband. My husband is not yet a citizen and not yet a permanent resident in Austria. Thank you.

  8. hello po 1998 po ako nag pdos patungong saudi arabia ngayon po 2018 na. balak ko pong mag abroad ulit kailangan po kasi ng agency yun pdos ko kaso po nawala na po yun pdos ko. pwede po ba akong mag pa print out ng pdos ko.kung may file pa ako 1998 aug.

  9. Hi,

    Nag pa sched ako ng PDOS sa Clark, pero sabi nila hindi ako dun, dapat sa Manila. Im a direct hire and may Resident Visa na ko for Taiwan. Sa OWWA Ortigas ba ko kelangan mag PDOS and pano magpaschedule online?


  10. Hi, Ms. Lara.

    I am to have my Visa appointment next week. One of the documents required is POEA certificate. I can’t seem to find a reliable guide about it. Can you give any suggestions?

    Thank you.


  11. Hello po re hire po ako ng company ko from Australia. Ngyon po d napo sila nag consult sa dati kong agency. Paki guide nyo naman po ako how I can apply for OEC and PDOs now na wlang agency aalalay sakin. Salamat po

      1. Hi po. Pwede ba magpaschedule ng PDOS kahit ongoing process pa lang ang visa? Required po kasi sa registration online na iupload ang visa. Thanks

        1. Hello! If that’s the case, then you need to get your visa first. PDOS po kasi is among the last steps na po bago kayo makaalis.

  12. Hi po! I have a work visa for Canada (W-1) under spousal work visa and wala po akong contract or employer pa dahil doon na ako maghahanap ng work, do I still need to attend PDOS?
    Thanks po.

    1. Hello Elvie. Yes since PDOS is a mandatory requirement. Also, country-specific din ang PDOS so this time, they will inform you more about Qatar naman.

    1. Hi! If same destination, then hindi na po ata kailangan to attend again. Still, we advise that you check this with the POEA para makasiguro.

  13. Just wanna ask, after attending the PDOS, then do you need to leave after 3 months or so.. ?does it expire? I know visa expire after 3 months, but just dont know about the pdos? , IS IT GOOD FOR A LIFETIME? How many days should a person leave after attending PDOS? its maximum days bfore leaving?

    1. Hello! From what we know, this is among the last steps na po. We suggest that you coordinate with your agency as well since they are more familiar when it comes to this. Thanks!

  14. Hello! Are there any mandatory payments after this seminar? There were no payments disclosed by my agency. I just wanted to be prepared. Thank you.

  15. dati po ako ofw then nakauwi na ng pinas after a year. yung PEOS/PDOS CERTIFICATE /CLEARANCE ba kailangan siyang i renew kung babalik ulit abroad? salamat

    1. Hello Lorenzo. Yes, you might be asked to undergo another PDOS since this is country-specific and a mandatory requirement.

  16. Good day po! Naka alis na po ako before pa canada as a student tapos nakapag work din po ako ng mahigit 1 year doon, nag pdos po kami sa agency ko pero wala pong certificate na binigay.. umuwi po ako ng pinas at nag apply ng work visa, kailangan pa po ba ulit ako mag pdos?

    1. Hello Karlyn! Ang PDOS kasi ay country-specific. Kung hindi ka sa Canada magta-trabaho, maaaring i-require ka ulit na mag-attend ng PDOS.

  17. Ask lang po how many days po ba normal magkakaroon ng ticket after the PDOS ? need to know lang po ng mas maaga para makapagready . Thank you

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