Fast and Easy Philippine Passport Renewal at DFA Aseana

Guys! Remember the news about the lack of appointment slots in DFA? It was shocking to know last July that the earliest appointment I can get was for November. That’s four months! I read that the new appointment system “had a bug” where the agencies and fixers can block the slots and sell it to those who badly needed them. Causing independent applicants to lose appointment slots. Some people are being charged as high as 5,000 for a spot the following month. When I also tried to call one agency, they said that they will “try” to get me a slot for first week of August for a fee of 2,000. I left my number but didn’t hear anything from them after the call.

Because of that, I checked for provincial DFA’s open slots hoping to get one at least before end of August. It was on the 2nd week of July then, but the earliest I got was still on August 29 at DFA La Union. I still booked it because I didn’t want to fly to Palawan anyway. Palawan has the most open and earliest slots up to now.
By the way, on August 25, Alan Peter Cayetano announced that they opened additional slots in DFA Manila for September. I cancelled our appointment in La Union and booked one in DFA Aseana.

Basically, the only thing that’s annoying in the whole process of passport renewal is securing an appointment!
Schedule your appointment here:

On to the Fast and Easy Passport Renewal at DFA Aseana

It took us about 1 hour to complete the entire renewal process in DFA Aseana. I could be faster depending on the number of applicants on your time slot.

STEP 0: Arrive at least 15 minutes before your appointment time with your printed application form + valid ID

Avoid the touts that assist you to fall in line. They will sell you brown plastic envelopes saying that the DFA requires you to have it for filing. It’s not needed. You should go directly to the gate and ask the guard if they are already accepting applicants for your time slot. Inspectors will ask for your printed application form + valid ID.

STEP 1: Appointment verification (20 mins)

This step should be very fast but due to the number of applicants, the line can be very long. The officers will scan the barcode in your application form and stamp it once confirmed. Also, they let latecomers cut in the line which was annoying.

STEP 2: New applicant or for renewal?

New applicants will be accommodated on the 1st floor, 2nd floor for renewal.

STEP 3: Submission of requirements (5-15 mins)

For renewal of machine readable passport, you will be asked for your old passport + a photocopy of 1 valid ID and passport’s data page (page 2). Your current passport will be canceled by punching a hole on the cover and the data page. They didn’t ask for any supporting documents but I brought my NSO birth cert to be sure. They’d also ask you if you opt for normal or rush processing. The release dates are posted too. In my case, I applied last August 31, and the release dates were September 13 (Rush) and September 22 (Regular). You will be issued with 4 copies of receipt (1 original for you, the 3 copies are for the next steps).

Useful links:
Renewal - There are different requirements for older passports
Requirements for New Applicants
Replacement of Lost Passport

STEP 4: Payment (5 mins)

Regular processing fee is 950.00, processing time is 20 working days. While expedited processing is 1,200.00, 10 working days.

STEP 5: Photo and Biometrics (20 mins)

There were probably more than 35 booths for photo and biometrics. After paying the passport fee, you will be issued with a number and a small slip that serves as a waiver. It says that if there’s something that needs to be changed after you’ve signed the new passport, you may be charged with a new renewal fee. Your number will be flashed in the screen with corresponding booth number for photo and biometrics.

For the photo - you can’t show your teeth :D Thumb and index fingerprints will be taken and the officer will ask you to verify the information on the new passport. You will provide a digital signature and you will also sign the waiver saying that there’s an additional fee should you need to amend the info in the new passport.

STEP 6: Courier (10 mins)

Courier fee is now 150.00 (used to be 120). If you want to pick up your passport in DFA, releasing is at 03:00 p.m. to 05:00 p.m. only (Monday to Friday).
STEP 7: You’re done!

Passport Renewal FAQs…

If I live in Manila, can I still apply for or renew my passport in a provincial DFA (like La Union, Cebu, Palawan etc)?

Yes, but take into account that processing time may be longer compared to DFA Manila, plus courier’s delivery time.

Can I apply for a new passport even if my passport is not yet expired?

Yes, but you will be asked for your consent to cancel your current passport. You cannot hold 2 valid PH passports at the same time.

Do I need an agency to get a passport?

Absolutely not. You can do everything online and by yourself. But since the law requires you to be physically present when you apply, you have to show up personally in DFA. Also, passport appointments are free.

Do they explicitly say when the passports will be released?

Yes. Release dates for regular and rush processing are posted conspicuously in DFA office.

Can I smile in my passport photo?

They recommend the “Mona Lisa smile”. You can smile but you can’t show your teeth or gums.

See other FAQs from the DFA website here.

Tip: Just Reschedule, and do NOT cancel!

The passport renewal process was painless based from my experience. The only thing that’s annoying for me was securing a convenient appointment date. So my tip for you here is to get whatever is the earliest, even if it meant 4 months! Check the appointment site daily if new slots are opened. There are times when people do cancel their slot. When you find the perfect appointment date, DO NOT CANCEL your current appointment… just RESCHEDULE it. Slots get taken easily. If you cancel yours you will end up losing your appointment too. So never cancel your appointment unless you will really ditch your appointment.

If you won’t be able to show up on you appointment, you have to cancel it as the system may blacklist you and only allow you to renew your appointment after 30 days. Nobody wants that :)

That’s it, guys! I hope you find this post useful. Please share your tips or questions below!
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  1. Hi Brenda! You're scheduled to receive your passport yesterday, did you already receive it? 10 yrs na ba?

    1. Hello Riche,

      Haven't received it yet. I'll update the post as soon as it gets delivered. All PH passports still have 5 years validity until further notice from DFA. So if you renew now, chances are you will still be getting 5 years.

      - Brenda

    2. My passport arrived late :( I received it 1 week after the supposed delivery date. Medyo nasayang yung +250 for rush.

  2. Meron pa ring nagbebenta ng ballpen at brown envelop sa labas. (July 28, 2018). Requirement daw yun at hindi tatanggapin yung papers. Bakit kaya hindi sinisita ng guard? It causes confusion para sa di nakakaalam. Maraming bumibili, kawawa naman..


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