I just picked up my passport today and it did not even take me more than 30 minutes! Unlike back then when you had to wait for hours before you can pick it up, the process now is so much faster and easier.
Planning to renew your passport? Here are some things I can share based on my experience.
Book your passport renewal appointment online
This is important. DFA does not accept walk-in applications anymore. You can do this by going to the Passport Appointment website. Read the instructions carefully and follow accordingly. The website can be very, very slow and errors may occur. You need a lot of patience for this if you really want to get your passport renewed. Take note of your chosen date and time slot.
Confirm your appointment
Don’t forget to confirm your appointment because unconfirmed appointments can be cancelled and your slot will be open for someone else to take. The PDF file of your application form will be sent to your email so be sure it is a working email address and that you can access it with no problems. It is highly recommended to use a Gmail or Yahoo! email address. Have your application form printed on an A4-size paper.
Prepare your requirements
I had a brown passport. They only required me to bring a valid ID and my old passport. When I arrived, I was anxious because I saw people in line holding on to their original birth certificates and I did not have any. Good thing brown passport holders weren’t required to bring an original birth certificate. To avoid the hassle and stress of looking for a photocopier at your chosen branch, be sure to photocopy the front page and back page of your passport along with your valid ID.
Come at least 30 minutes before your schedule
I arrived more than 30 minutes earlier than my scheduled 1pm appointment. There was no long queue for the processing and verification booths but the encoding and photo taking section had quite a long queue though it wasn’t really stressful waiting because it was well-organized and we were seated accordingly. The flow was pretty speedy too. By 3pm, I was finished with the process and had more time to hangout with my friends at the mall!
The details I have mentioned above were based on my experience with DFA East branch located at SM Megamall. Some branches may differ in process so you may want to ask people around for more deets. Ciao!