- OFWs, PWDs, and senior citizens no longer need to set an appointment to get a passport
- DFA reminds OFWS (both new and renewing applicants) that they may avail of priority lanes
- A special website for new OFWs will be launched by DFA soon in order to quicken the processing of passport applications
Overseas Filipino workers (OFWs), people with disabilities (PWDs), senior citizens are given a special privilege by the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA). These group of people no longer have to set an appointment in order to apply for a passport.
In an interview in DZMM on Wednesday, January 10, DFA Assistant Secretary Frank Cimafranca of the Office of Consular Affairs clarified that OFWs aren’t required to have an appointment with the department regarding passport application.
OFWS, PWDs and Senior Citizens can visit any DFA Consular offices to apply for passport/passport renewal. As walk-in applicants, they just need to bring the necessary documents and valid IDs for identification purposes. They will be prioritized and be separated from the regular applicants through DFA’s priority lane.
Aside from OFWS, PWDs and Senior Citizens, the following may also avail of the priority lane: solo parent with a valid Solo Parent ID, pregnant women with medical certificate and seven years old and below kids.
Online methods of registration and application are also being developed by the agency for first-time OFWs this January to help minimize the volume of walk-in applicants and expedite the processing of their passports.
Passport fee is P1,200 and is expected to be processed within 10 working days. Senior citizens however, are given a special privilege to avail of optional processing fee of P 950.00 but requires longer processing time of 20 working days.
For regular applicants, setting up a passport appointment is done online through the DFA website. However, DFA is now being criticized because many applicants couldn’t set an appointment since the schedules have already been filled during the 1st quarter of the year. This is mainly due to the overload of applicants in the agency. An estimated number of 12,000 to 15,000 passports are being processed every day.