Tag Archive: passport appointment


Jan 31

Securing a passport appointment online with the DFA has become a laborious task for Filipinos as of late.  It has become close to impossible to snag a date and time to visit your preferred DFA branch for your passport application or renewal to be processed.  Pinoys, especially those who travel frequently for work and business, could not help but vent their frustration (and desperation!) through social media, blogs, and random television and radio interviews.  And why not, when one’s right to travel abroad is practically hindered simply because the Department of Foreign Affairs could not accommodate the volume of applicants.

This practice, however, of airing grievances in public opens doors to more problems than solutions.  While the DFA heeded the public’s clamor to open more appointment schedules (and soon!), scalawags also found an opportunity to earn fast, dishonest cash out of the public’s desperation to get their travel documents.  It wasn’t long before social media channels became tools for fixers to start working their charm to unassuming Filipinos who could not wait to get an appointment with the DFA online.

Of course, the DFA was quick to respond to the alarming number of scams happening right under its nose.  Through the help of investigators, they were able to uncover four types of scams that fixers employ to pick on passport applicants.

To spread awareness and warn the public from falling into the traps of these heartless crooks, we lifted some important information about passport appointment scammers and fixers and are sharing it in our page.  We still believe that awareness and vigilance will help us get ahead of these criminals and save us the trouble of wasted time, money, and effort.

Types of Passport Fixers

  1. Fixers who offer slots for a fee but do not actually get the promised appointments.

Applicants will be asked to pay a certain amount that supposedly buys them an appointment slot with the DFA.  They are given application forms to fill out, complete with barcodes and other appointment details.  Everything looks authentic except that the entire process is a hoax.  Come appointment date, the poor applicant is informed by the DFA that he or she does not have an appointment and the documents given to her by the fixer are fake.

  1. Fixers who sell courtesy lane passes.

The DFA accommodates Senior Citizens, PWDs, pregnant women, children 7 years old and below, Solo Parent ID holders, and migrant workers in its Priority Lanes.  These applicants no longer need to set an appointment online and can simply visit any DFA office anytime for their passport application.

Crooks sell this privilege to people who cannot get an appointment online.

Of course, the trade is illegal and the privilege is non-existent.

  1. Obtaining endorsements from government agencies.

This is more commonly known as an inside job where the fixer (who stays outside the DFA offices) are in cahoots with a government employee who supposedly has access to the appointments.  They sell these endorsements to passport applicants – endorsements could be genuine, but the fact that it is being sold makes it illegal.

  1. A fixer fills out an online application form using the personal information of their clients.

No one should apply on your behalf, not even fill out your online application form.  If anyone offers to do this for you for a fee, know that you are already being scammed.

Ultimately, the idea is to make the applicant believe that he or she has been given a confirmed appointment with the DFA, minus the hassle of waiting for dates and times to be freed up online, in exchange for a few thousands of pesos.  The DFA does not sell these appointment slots and so anyone who does is automatically considered a fixer.  And any transaction made with these crooks will not be honored by the DFA, no matter how much money you spent to get the appointment confirmed.

As the famous saying goes, walang manloloko kung walang magpapa loko. 

Don’t be any of the two.

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Jan 22 (1)

Now that you have finally set an appointment for your passport application, it is time to begin preparing the requirements you need to bring.  Here’s a summary of all the things you need to know when applying for a Philippine Passport at any DFA office:

  1. Personal appearance is required for all applicants.
  2. A confirmed appointment is required for all applicants except senior citizens, infants, and minors below 1-year-old and OFWs. For OFWs, sufficient proof must be submitted such as a valid employment contract or OEC.
  3. Earrings and contact lenses are not allowed during data capture. Smiling with visible teeth is also not allowed.
  4. Check all the data in the computer monitor and in the Enrolment Certificate before signing it.
  5. Only immediate family members are allowed to get the passport on behalf of the applicant. Immediate family members include father, mother, brother, sister, spouse, and children of legal age.
  6. The passport shall be released to an immediate family member only with the proper authorization letter. Passport of a minor applicant shall be released to parents only or to an authorized representative with Special Power of Attorney and Affidavit of Support and Consent.
  7. Passports unclaimed after six months will be canceled per Department Order No. 37-03.
  8. Check all data in the received e-passport upon release.
  9. The number of processing days may vary depending on the location of the Regional Consular Office where the application was filed.
  10. The Department may require additional supporting documents as may be necessary, especially for applicants with dual citizenship and with foreign-sounding family names to prove citizenship.

PASSPORT FEES:

For First-time Passport Applicants:

  • Regular processing (15 working days): P950.00
  • Express Processing (7 working days): P1,200.00

For Renewal of Passport:

  • Regular processing (15 working days): P950.00
  • Express Processing (7 working days): P1,200.00

For Replacement of a lost expired passport:

  • Regular processing (15 working days): P950.00
  • Express Processing (7 working days): P1,200.00

For replacement of lost valid passport:

  • Regular processing (15 working days): P950.00
  • Express Processing (7 working days): P1,200.00
  • Please take note that there is an additional fee of P200 for a lost valid MRRP/MRP or P350 for a lost valid e-passport.

Source: www.dfa.gov.ph

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Jan 02a

Unlike most other improved products and services, the Philippine passport that now boasts of a 10-year validity period which took effect on New Year’s Day, January 1, 2018, will not increase its price.  Passports will still be issued at Php 950.00 for regular processing and P1,200.00 for rush processing.  The former takes 15 working days before it is made available to the applicant while the latter takes only 7 working days.

That’s one good news you can be happy about on the second day of the year!

When the proposal for the passport’s 10-year validity was in full swing last year, one concern raised was its price.  They said that if the passport is to be used for a decade then there should be more pages and that would essentially mean more cost.  Aren’t we glad this problem was nipped in the bud?

Passport applicants may continue to set their appointments online at the www.dfa.gov.ph website.  Take note that Senior Citizens, children that are 7 years old and below, pregnant women, and PWDs are given priority at the ASEANA DFA office (satellite offices may have different policies on children’s exemption); this means that if you fall under any of these categories, you no longer need to set an appointment online.  Just make sure that you have all the requirements needed for new passport applications or renewal of an expired one.

For the complete list of documentary requirements and acceptable IDs, read our previous article here. 

Also, the 10-year validity will not be applicable for Filipinos below 18 years old.  According to the DFA, facial features could still change during these ages and so it is better for them to come back for a new passport after a shorter period.

If you have questions about passport application, send us a message and we will do our best to find the answers for you.

Reference: www.dfa.gov.ph

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09 - 20

The government has declared Thursday, September 21, 2017 as a National Day of Protest as the country commemorates the 45th year of the declaration of Martial Law.  Effectively, work in the executive branches of the government, local government units (LGUs), as well as classes in all levels of public schools are suspended.  This is to allow militant groups to exercise their right to demonstrations of protests, reminding them only to “act within the bounds of law and maintain a peaceful conduct of rallies.”

Suspension of work and classes in private firms, schools, and other businesses are left to the sound discretion of their respective heads.

If you have a scheduled appointment at the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), there is no need to seek a new appointment as consular offices all over the country will remain open on the said date.  Applicants who are entitled to the DFA’s courtesy lanes (senior citizens, pregnant women, PWDs, and OFWs) are likewise encouraged to proceed with their planned visits as DFA personnel will be ready and waiting to attend to their applications and other concerns.

It is business as usual at the DFA.  Only take note of the routes that may be clogged with protesters so you don’t waste your time in traffic.

Share this with your friends and family!

Reference: http://www.dfa.gov.ph

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New Requirements for Green Passport Renewal

Para sa lahat ng naka-schedule at nagbabalak pa lamang magpa renew ng kanilang Green o Machine Readable Passports, importanteng malaman na may bagong patakaran ang Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) sa prosesong ito.

Simula noong Lunes, June 6, 2016, lahat ng domestic applications para sa renewal ng nasabing Green o Machine Readable Passports (MRP) ay mangangailangan ng mga karagdagang IDs at documentary requirements:

  • Ang aktwal na MRP o Green booklet passport
  • PSA Birth Certificate
  • At least one (1) valid identification document.
  • Iba pang supporting documents (i.e. PSA Marriage Certificate kung married ang aplikante at ginagamit ang married name sa passport.)

Siguraduhing dala ninyo ang mga dokumentong ito sa araw ng inyong appointment para maiwasan ang delays sa inyong application for passport renewal.

Tandaan din na simula noong June 1, 2016, ang sino mang hindi sumipot sa araw at oras ng kanyang naktakdang appointment for passport application and renewal ay hindi mabibigyan ng pagkakataon na mag set ng panibagong appointment sa loob ng 30 araw.  Kaya’t markahan ang inyong mga kalendaryo ayon sa appointment na inyong hiniling online para maka-iwas sa abala.

Source: http://www.passport.com.ph/info/requirements/for/renewal

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Dedicated Passport Center for OFWs

Bilang pagpapahalaga at pagbibigay prayoridad sa ating mga kababayang OFW, ang Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) ay maglalagay ng dedicated passport application center para sa mga OFW sa consular office sa Robinson’s Galleria.  Ito ay malapit lamang sa opisina ng Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA).

Ang mga OFW ay hindi na kailangan pang mag set ng appointment para mag apply ng passport o magpa renew.  Bukas ang dedicated passport application center sa lahat ng mga OFW, kahit unang beses pa lamang niyang umalis o dati nang bumibiyahe para mag trabaho.

Habang hinihintay ang official launch ng nasabing passport application center, ang mga OFW ay patuloy na gagamit ng mga courtesy lanes sa mga DFA consular offices.

Isang paalala lamang sa mga OFW na naka schedule magpa renew ng kanilang passport:  Phased out na green-colored at machine-readable passports.  Kung ganito ang huling passport na gamit at ngayon ay ipapa-renew na, ituturing na New Application ang dapat sana’y renewal lamang.  Dahil dito, kailangang mag dala ng mga documentary requirements ang aplikante tulad ng PSA Birth Certificate at iba pang documents na naka lista sa DFA website.

I-share natin ang article na ito sa lahat n gating mga kamag-anak at kaibigan na nagpa-planong mangibang bansa para mag trabaho.

Source: http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/568247/news/pinoyabroad/dfa-creates-dedicated-passport-center-for-ofws

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DFA Imposes 30

Setting an appointment with the DFA to apply for a new passport or have an old one renewed, is free of charge.  All you have to do is log on to the www.passport.com.ph website, choose a DFA branch nearest you, and block off your preferred date and time for the passport application.  It is a convenient means to secure your slot with the DFA and save yourself from waiting in line like before.

The DFA receives an average of 15,000 passport applications daily.  Sadly though, only about 53% of the appointments are fulfilled while the rest simply do not show up.  Essentially, the dates and hours these “no-shows” blocked off are wasted when it could have accommodated other passport applicants.  Since there are no fees involved in setting an appointment, anybody can just block off a schedule and then simply ignore it later on.  If they fail to make it to their original appointment, they can easily set another one, no sweat.  As a result, hundreds of applicants are left with no choice but to wait for as long as two months to be accommodated by the agency.

To address this issue, the DFA announced that those who will fail to show up for their set appointments will be barred from re-applying for 30 days.  This move aims to discourage applicants from taking their appointments for granted and not waste the available slots on the website.

The policy takes effect on June 1, 2016.

Help spread the news to your families and friends.

http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/567660/news/pinoyabroad/starting-june-1-no-show-passport-applicants-to-face-30-day-ban

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Online Scam

Ang mga balitang hindi gaanong magaganda ay karaniwan na nating naririnig o nakikita sa TV, radio, at sa internet. Madalas na balita ang holdup, nadukutan, nabudol-budol (panlilinlang), at kung ano-ano pa. Nagsisilbing warning ang mga ito sa mga hindi pa nakararanas; ikinu-kwento sa mga kaibigan at kapamilya para mabigyan din sila ng babala.

Ngunit minsan, gaano man ang gawin mong pag-iingat, mangyayari at mangyayari sa iyo ang mga bagay na pilit mo sanang iniiwasan. Minsan dahil sa sobrang pagtitiwala o dahil sa pagmamadali at kapabayaan.

Ganyan ang karanasan ng kaibigan kong si Manny nang mag tiwala siya sa isang nagpakilalang serbisyo na makakapag-bigay sa kanya ng kopya ng kanyang NSO Birth Certificate (NSO pa noon, PSA Birth Certificate na ngayon. Ang PSA ay ang Philippine Statistics Authority).

Papalapit na ang Pasko noon at gusto sanang dalhin ni Manny sa Hong Kong Disneyland ang kanyang mga anak. Kailangan niyang makakuha ng kopya ng PSA Birth Certificates para makakuha sila ng passports. Nakakita si Manny ng isang Facebook page kung saan maaaring mag order ng mga kopya ng PSA Birth Certificates. NSO Help Online ang pangalan ng serbisyo at sa halagang P350 bawat isa, maide-deliver na sa iyo ang mga documents. Hindi na nagdalawang isip pa si Manny at dito na nga siya nag order.

Nag fill-out siya ng online order form at sinabihan ng ka-chat niya sa NSO Help Online Facebook page na ipadala ang bayad sa Cebuana Pera Padala at ipangalan sa isang Ronald Guevarra. Umabot ng P700 ang orders ni Manny para sa dalawang birth certificates. Dalawa hanggang tatlong araw lang daw ay matatanggap na nila ang mga documents.

Ngunit sa kasawiang-palad, walang natanggap na birth certificates si Manny. Sinubukan niyang mag follow up sa Facebook page pero hindi na siya sinasagot. Na-realize ni Manny na hindi lehitimong serbisyo ang NSO Help Online. Sa kanyang research, nadiskubre niya na kinopya lang ng NSO Help Online ang mga logo at images ng NSOHelpline (ngayon ay PSAHelpline.ph) – isang serbisyo na authorized ng NSO (ngayon ay PSA) na tumanggap ng orders at mag deliver ng mga birth certificates.

Hindi na nabawi ni Manny ang naipadalang pera sa mga bogus operators ng NSO Help Online. At kahit na anong follow up pa ang gawin niya sa Facebook page, hindi na siya kailanman binalikan ng kausap niya.

Dahil nadala na si Manny sa online transactions, pinili niyang tumawag sa hotline ng PSAHelpline.ph para sa kaniyang birth certificate orders. Makalipas ang dalawang araw mula nang siya ay magbayad sa Metrobank, natanggap na nila ang kanilang mga birth certificates.

Para sa impormasyon nating lahat, narito ang link para makita ang NSO Help Online, ang nagpanggap na nagde-deliver ng PSA birth certificates.

Iwasang maging biktima ng online scamming. Kung balak mong mag transact online, ugaliing mag verify ng mga importanteng detalye tulad ng website pages, landline numbers, at partner companies. Maging sensitive din lalo na sa mga payment options na kanilang ibinibigay; ang mga lehitimong serbisyo ay kadalasang may corporate bank accounts at partner payment centers – hindi ka pagbabayarin sa personal bank accounts at money remittance centers basta-basta.

Marami nang proseso ang pinasimple ng teknolohiya at social media, ngunit marami din ang gumagamit nito para manamantala ng kapwa. Kaya’t kailangang maging mapanuri at maingat sa lahat ng transactions na gingawa natin online.

Ingat!

Passport for Dual Citizenship

In yesterday’s blog, we talked about the possibility of re-acquiring Filipino citizenship after becoming a naturalized citizen of another country. Such Pinoys have dual citizenship.

Today’s blog will focus on how a Filipino with dual citizenship can apply for his Philippine passport. Yes. They can have two passports – one from the country where they were naturalized and one from the Philippines.

Here’s how:

  1. Prepare the documentary requirements you will be needing; below is the list as published in www.passport.com.ph:
    • Duly accomplished passport application form
    • PSA Birth Certificate in Security Paper (SECPA) or
    • Certified True Copy (CTC) of Birth Certificate issued by the Local Civil Registrar (LCR) and duly authenticated by the PSA. Transcribed Birth Certificate from LCR is required when entries in PSA Birth Certificate are blurry or unreadable.
    • If born abroad, Report of Birth Duly Authenticated by PSA.
    • Valid picture IDs and supporting documents to prove identity.
    • Identification Certificate of Retention or Re-acquisition.
    • Oath of Allegiance
    • Order of Approval
  2. List of acceptable IDs (at least 1 of the following):
    • Government –issued picture IDs such as the following:
      • Digitized SSS ID
      • Driver’s License
      • GSIS E-card
      • PRC ID
      • IBP ID
      • OWWA ID
      • Digitized BIR ID
      • Senior Citizen’s ID
      • Unified Multi-Purpose ID (UMID)
    • Other acceptable picture IDs such as the following:
      • Old college ID
      • Alumni ID
      • Old Employment IDs

You may proceed to the DFA Aseana for your Philippine passport application. Their address is: ASEANA Business Park, Bradco Avenue corner Macapagal Boulevard, Paranaque City. Best to inform the guard of the building that you are applying for a Philippine passport as a dual citizen so they can direct you to the office where you may transact.

Dual Citizenship

When a natural-born Filipino acquires citizenship through naturalization in a foreign country, he essentially “renounces” his Filipino citizenship. In August 2003, such Pinoys were given the option to re-acquire their Filipino citizenship by virtue of Republic Act No. 9225. They can file for a petition to re-acquire their Filipino citizenship, subject to the approval of the Consul General (if petition was applied abroad) or by the Commission of Immigration (if petition was applied in the Philippines). Once approved, they are granted dual citizenship – in their home country, the Philippines and in the country where they were naturalized.

What are the Benefits of Having Dual Citizenship?

a. They may now acquire real properties in the Philippines.

The new Philippine Constitution states that aliens (foreigners) are prohibited from owning real properties in the Philippines. The term “foreigners” or “aliens” include Filipinos who have acquired foreign citizenship through naturalization.

When you are granted dual citizenship, you essentially “re-acquire” your natural-born Filipino identity – you are again a Filipino citizen and therefore now have the right to own real properties and have these listed under your name.

b. Right to engage in business or practice profession.

This works best for Filipinos who intend to make the Philippines their place of retirement. Their dual citizenship will allow them to engage in businesses or maybe even seek employment.

c. Right to travel with a Philippine passport.

A blue passport (if you are a naturalized U.S. citizen) tells you that “you own the world” (it’s written on the attached letter when your US passport is delivered to you). And quite figuratively, you do! You can come and go to over 170 countries and territories without a visa or with visa on arrival – just hop on a plane and take off!

So what would you want a Philippine passport again for?

If you sought to re-acquire your Filipino citizenship, chances are, you are looking at staying in the Philippines for an extended period, invest on a business, work, or study here. And a Philippine passport will help you achieve these goals easier as it serves as a valid identification and reference of your citizenship (albeit reacquired).

d. Right to have citizenship benefits extended to one’s spouse/children.

A Filipino’s foreign spouse may be issued an immigrant visa so he / she can stay in the Philippines for good. Their children are likewise automatically awarded Filipino citizenships. Unlike when Filipinos migrate to the U.S. (for example), they will have to work and wait until they are able to successfully petition for the entry and residency of their children to the U.S. When a Pinoy reunites with his mother country, his immediate family is included in the picture without too much paperwork.

e. Right to vote and or hold public office.

These have become national topics as of late. If you wish to know more about these rights Balik-bayan Pinoys, you may visit the website of the Commission of Filipinos Overseas: http://www.cfo.gov.ph/

I would like to share with you the processes involved in re-acquiring Filipino citizenship; you can file your petition here in the Philippines or in the country where you are currently residing (and holding citizenship). Hope you find these of value.

Dual Citizenship 1

Dual Citizenship 2

What are the requirements when filing for re-acquisition of Filipino citizenship?

Here is the list provided in the CFO website (www.cfo.gov.ph)

  • Duly completed verified petition (R.A. 9225 Form No. 1)
  • Notarized Oath of Allegiance
  • Two (2) recent 2” x 2” colored photographs of the applicant (over white background)
  • Application fee
  • Proof as natural-born Filipino citizen, an original and photocopy of at least one of the following:
  • Photocopy of foreign passport
  • Photocopy of certificate of naturalization or an original affidavit stating how foreign citizenship was acquired.
  • Two (2) self-addressed and stamped legal-sized envelopes

Kung mahal mo, babalikan mo is a famous #hugotline from a popular teleserye in the Philippines. We know how much this means to us Pinoys, wherever we are in the world. There will always be a heartstring being tugged in us, no matter how far we’ve gone, pulling us back to where we came from.

Tomorrow, I will focus more on Pinoys with dual citizenship and how they can apply for a Philippine passport. See you then!

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