Quick Guide to Getting Your Passport in Cebu
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Are you planning to travel overseas and you need your own Philippine Passport? Heres helpful tips on how to get your Passport in Cebu faster:
Preparing Your Documents
To avoid any problems at the Department of Foreign Affairs, be sure to comply the following requirements ahead of time:
- NSO Birth Certificate
- 1 Valid Picture ID (e.g. BIR ID, Driver’s License, GSIS E-Card, IBP ID, OWWA ID, PRC ID, Senior Citizen’s ID, SSS ID)**
- 3 supporting documents (e.g. Voter’s ID, NSO Marriage Contract, Community Tax Certificate or Cedula)**
- Application form (get from the guard)
- Personal appearance are required from minors as well as personal appearance and valid passport of either parent (if legitimate) or of the mother (if illegitimate)
*For complete requirements, check here.
Philippine Passport Renewals:
- Most recent passport
- 1 Valid Picture ID**
- 3 supporting documents**
- Application form
*For complete requirements, check here. Personally, I only presented my old passport and an NSO Birth Certificate and had no problems getting through the process.
**Check here for a complete list of acceptable IDs and supporting documents.
For lost passports, check here.
Visiting DFA – Quick Guide to Getting Your Passport in Cebu
There are two places to apply for a passport in Cebu: Pacific Mall (formerly Super Metro Mandaue) and the DFA Office in Cebu.
Both offices are open between 9AM and 6PM, Mondays to Fridays, and 9AM to 3PM, Saturdays.
A few years ago, people would line up as early as 3AM just to get a priority number from the guards as the office would only process 200 applications per day. The priority numbers are given out at 7AM at the mall entrance.
However, in my personal experience in 2014, asking help from a travel agency (through my former employer) made the process much faster. When my 2-year-old daughter and partner processed theirs back in 2015, they were also able to go through the process without a hitch. In both situations, we arrived at the DFA Mandaue Office at 3PM and the entire process took less than five minutes.
We didn’t even have to go through any special lines (children, pregnant women, persons with disabilities and senior citizens are obviously priority) but since there were only a handful of people around, the document-checking, paying and picture-taking process was a breeze.
As of 2016, only the following people are accepted as walk-in applicants:
- Senior citizens
- Persons with disabilities
- Pregnant women
- Minor children, 7 years old and below
Online Appointment System
Starting July/August 2016, DFA Cebu already accepts online appointment system for passport processing. You can check here for the instructions then follow through the process to Schedule an Appointment.
You can book up to five people through the group appointment system. Also make sure to show up on your appointment date as you will NOT BE ALLOWED to book another appointment online for the next 30 days if you fail to do so.
The Waiting Game
Regular Philippine passport processing takes up to two months to finish and you will have to pay PHP 950. Expedited processing takes only 10 days and costs PHP1,200.
The latter was not available during my daughter and partner’s passport processing but we only had to wait less than a month to get their passports. You can also have LBC deliver it to your doorstep for PHP 120 but you will have to leave your receipts with them.
Tips for a Quicker Processing
Want an even faster way to get your passports processed? Here are some tips:
- Be sure to photocopy all your documents prior to processing. There are also stalls outside the DFA Offices that offer photocopying services. Don’t forget to bring along the original copies as well.
- Make sure that there are no discrepancies with your documents and that your name and birthday are clear and legible.
- Double check and even triple check all your personal data after encoding. Avoid misspellings as you will be required to pay if amendments are to be made.
That’s it. Happy travels!