October 01, 2019

How to Renew your Passport via DFA Courtesy Lane

I have tried different ways on how to apply and renew my passport. I’ve tried the walk-in process at DFA-Pasay, travel agency and online appointment. A few years ago, I learned about the DFA Courtesy Lane so last month I took advantage of it. If you are a senior citizen, PWD, solo parent, pregnant, minor, and OFW, you don’t need an appointment. You can just go to the DFA office and apply or renew your passport.

NO APPOINTMENT IS NEEDED for the following applicants in the Philippines:

SENIOR CITIZEN and one (1) travel companion
PERSON WITH DISABILITY (PWDs) and one (1) travel companion
SOLO PARENT and his/her minor children
MINORS SEVEN (7) YEARS OLD AND BELOW and his/her parents and minor siblings OVERSEAS FILIPINO WORKERS (land-based, or seafarers)

Read: How to Apply for PWD ID in the Philippines

Photo from Freepik
So last month, my son and I went to DFA-NCR South (Metro Department Store) to renew our passports. We were there before 9AM, the Metro Supermarket opened at 9AM. There are lines for Courtesy Lane, 10AM and 11AM appointment. So we fell in line at the Courtesy Lane and the guard gave us a number. I’m not sure if there is a limit per day for the Courtesy Lane so just to make sure, we arrived before the opening time.

At 10AM, the guard advised us to go up to the DFA office. There are separate chairs for senior citizens and for a group of PWD, pregnant, solo parent, minor and others. While waiting, the DFA staff give out forms. To make my life easier, I already filled-out and printed our forms at home. You can download the forms here.

New Regular Passport Application Form 
Renewal Regular Passport Application Form
Regular Passport Application Form for Minor 

Those with scheduled appointments went inside already, then sinisingit per row ang nasa courtesy lane. The guard checked our bags and documents and informed us to go to INFORMATION.

Information Counter 

We proceeded to the Information Counter, the staff checked our documents. She asked for some information and then she advised me that my 10-yr old son is not allowed to renew. I was surprised because I know that I am allowed to bring one travel companion. But the staff insisted na adult companion lang daw ang pwede for PWD. Kung may kasama pa daw ako na 7yrs old below, pwede daw magrenew ang anak ko na 10 yrs old.

I was so disappointed because 

1. I am allowed to bring one travel companion pero adult companion lang daw. So asawa ko pwede pero hindi pwede anak ko. Immediate family member naman anak ko.
2. Pwede lang anak ko magrenew kung may kasama pa ako na anak na 7yrs old. (e only child lang ang anak ko)
3. So kung 7 years old ang minor, ano definition nila ng adult children? Kawawa naman ang 8 yrs old to 17 years old kung sasabihin nila sa akin na 18 years old ang adult children.
4. No use ang courtesy lane sa akin kasi babalik din ako para magparenew ng passport ng anak ko. Dobleng pagod pa.

I can’t blame the staff because she is just following the policy na hindi ko alam na ADULT COMPANION or CHILDREN lang. But now I know because I researched about it, pagkalabas na pagkalabas ng ko DFA office. So lesson learned, I will just book an appointment next time and read more information. Pero sana baguhin nila policy nila na pwede + 1 basta immediate family member. 

People with disabilities (PWDs) with proof of disability o PWD is allowed one (1) companion 

1. The companion of the PWD must be an immediate family member, i.e. spouse, siblings, adult children, adult grandchildren, parents-in-law, and children-in-law of the PWD and must show proof of relationship.
2. If the companion is not an immediate family member, the companion has to show proof of travel arrangements (e.g. confirmed plane or hotel booking) with the PWD to be able to avail of the courtesy lane facility.

For more information, read the details here. Based on my experience, hindi ko binasa yung buong article, nung nakita na PWD + 1 travel companion, naniwala na agad ako without checking the conditions.  Anyway, since nandun na rin ako, tinuloy ko na rin kaysa sayang punta namin. So sinamahan ako ng anak ko para sa pagpaparenew ng passport and sasamahan ko siya next time.

After the Information Counter, the staff informed me to go to Step 1.

Step 1 - Processing 

Requirements for Passport Renewal (Adult) 

1. Confirmed Online Appointment
2. Accomplished Application Form
3. Personal Appearance
4. Current ePassport with a photocopy of the data page
5. Original PSA authenticated documents that will support the change of name.
- Marriage Contract
- Annotated Birth Certificate
- Annotated Marriage Contract to show annulment/divorce/court-ordered instruction
- Death Certificate of Spouse

Read: 3 Ways to Get PSA Documents

NOTE: If a woman opts to retain the maiden name, a Marriage Contract is not required.
*Additional requirements may be required.

I submitted the following 

Accomplished Application Form 
Photocopy of Current ePassport Bio Page 
Photocopy of Valid ID 

Step 2 - Payment 

It was Saturday so all applications are Express Processing; I paid P1200

Step 3 - Photo

There is a separate line for the courtesy lane so I’m done at 11:08AM. I chose pick-up so I have no idea about the delivery fee. I applied September 7, 2019 and I can claim my passport on September 19, 2019. It is supposed to be 7 Days Processing lang since Express ang binayad ko but I guess hindi naman nasusunod so it is better to apply early if you really need the passport.

Read: How to Book and Pay for your DFA Passport Appointment Online

September 27, 2019 

I did not claim my passport on the scheduled date para isang pagod na lang. Hinintay ko yung release date ng anak ko which is September 26, 2019. And para sure, the following day ko na kinuha.

1. I gave our receipts and wait for my name to be called.
2. The staff gave us our passports and I checked all the data on our new passport.
3. I went back to the counter and the staff canceled our old passports.
4. I filled out a form (Passport No., Name, Contact No, and Signature)

I claimed our passports in 5 minutes.

Important Reminders on the Releasing of Passport

1. Check the estimated passport release date on the receipt.
2. Bring the receipt and the old passport for cancellation on the release date.
3. Check all the data on the received e-passport upon release.
4. Affix signature on the space provided on the newly claimed passport to avoid problems at the entry/exit points when traveling abroad.
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. Passport shall be released to an immediate family member only with a proper authorization letter, and valid IDS (with photocopies) of the applicant and the representative with Special Power of Attorney and Affidavit of Support and Consent.
7. The passport of the minor applicant shall be released only to parents (PSA Marriage Certificate is required if the father will claim the minor’s passport) or to an authorized representative with Special Power of Attorney or Affidavit of Support and Consent and photocopy of IDs of the passport holder and the authorized agent.
8. Passports unclaimed after six months will be canceled per Department Order No. 37-03

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