At last, after months of waiting, I finally got my new passport!
Getting a passport appointment from the DFA website was a long wait. I was waiting for a slot since September to renew my passport, but the schedule was full until December! I made it a habit to check the website for a slot, but there was no luck, every time, not until I saw a post from an FB group which I am a member of. In that post, it says that there was a site where you can access the DFA real time calendar. I click the link and lo and behold it shows a calendar that has a number of available slots. I immediately click the earliest available date in DFA Alabang which was December 5, a month away from the time I booked it. When I clicked the date, I was directed to the official DFA website and I was able to book my appointment. I couldn’t believe that I already had a passport appointment after waiting for months. I visited the site last week and checked if still works, I noticed that when I click some of the dates it doesn’t direct to the DFA website anymore. I also noticed that the dates were already synchronized to the DFA official website, which is good. As of today, there are no available slots anymore.
I was so excited to go to the DFA to renew my passport, but when I got there the personnel told me I needed to get a CFO (Commission of Filipino Overseas) certificate because my husband is a foreign national. They told me I had to get this before I can renew my passport. I panicked a bit because I thought I had to get another appointment but to my relief they extended my schedule for a month and I could come anytime within that time frame. Same goes to the people who didn’t have valid ID’s, so make sure you have the requirements needed to avoid delay. Check my post about requirements for updating your civil status and getting valid IDs with your married name.
I got my CFO certificate last December 12 but I decided to go back January 4 to take advantage of the 10-year passport validity. I advise you to come an hour before your appointment because the line is really long. The guard will check the time of your appointment so you can’t enter too early. My original appointment time was 3pm but I went there at 12 noon and the guard let me in because I got extension written on my application.
After all my requirements were confirmed complete, I was asked to pay the fee. You have two options, pay 950 for regular processing time (15 business days) or 1,200 for express processing (7 business days). I was not in a hurry so I paid 950. After that, my information were encoded in the system and my photo was taken. The man who came before me was given a hair clip cause his bangs keep on falling, so gentlemen, make sure your hair is not covering your eyes and ears. Get a clean cut if you don’t want to wear hair clips. After my photo was taken I was directed to pay for the delivery. You have the option pick up your passport so you don’t pay or have it delivered to your door. You need to pay an extra 150 for LBC delivery. Mine was delivered on time.
So here’s the comparison of the old and new Philippine passport.
The covers have the same color but there’s a little difference with the seal.
In the first few pages, you will immediately notice the difference in color. The new passport has more of a bluish color. The Philippine flag is replaced by the Philippine eagle.
The signature is now signed on a separate page. When you scan the pages of the new passport, they are not plain anymore. You will see the different famous landmarks of the Philippines and the lyrics of the National anthem.
Here is the famous Mayon Volcano in Page 20 & 21.
At the back of the new passport, you will see a Pawikan,
So overall, the new passport is better not only because it has a 10-year validity but it’s also way better aesthetically. Good job to DFA with this one. I hope they will also make the passport appointment system better.
What can you say about the new Philippine passport? Share your thoughts in the comment section.