I have been following this thread and i believe some of the posts have been well intentional but confusing.
Setting up a bank account here is easy on tourist visa. I did without acr however would probably be easier with one.
When you come here you can get a visa extension for 6 months but I just extend every 2 months because I don't know when I need to go home(Oz) again due to family situation. After you have extended your 1 mth tourist visa by an extra month you need to extend again for 2 months at a time. Your next extension requires the ACR. At my immigration branch( Cebu-Island Mall) it is P7000+ for the extension incl ACR.
Regarding money transfer I use OzForex (http://www.ozforex.com.au/) and have been for a while. Rates are far better than any of the banks and service is A1. Very competitive with the money changers here also. You track your money and they deliver to any bank here. Yes easy to bring money into the Phils but not so easy to take out...but hey, that is just the way it is here for many things. PM me and i can say more.
Hope I have not muddied the water further.