10-year passport validity takes effect

The 10-year validity period of the Philippine passports took effect this month in compliance with Republic Act 10928, according to the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA)-Bacolod.

DFA-Bacolod Officer-in-Charge (OIC) Carolina Constantino said all applicants starting this year will enjoy a 10-year validity of their passports, while those 18-years old and below will still be issued with a 5-year validity passports.

“On the general, it is 10 years validity for same price, same booklet, taking from the instructions of President Rodrigo Duterte,” Constantino said.

Application fee is still at P950 for regular processing which takes 20 days and P1,200 for express 10-day processing.

“We have also been receiving comments specific on online appointments. We wish we could give everybody appointment all at one time, but we just cannot do that,” Constantino added.

DFA-Bacolod observed that Filipinos are really such travelers now, that even the DFA are overwhelmed where the applicants are coming from.

According to Constantino, travellers now who wish to secure passports from the DFA include children and senior citizens.

“We have applicants that bring along four to five children for passport application. That alone multiplies our clients three-four times more. Unlike before that applicants are travellers only for business trips and applies one at a time,” Constantino explained that even if DFA has been opening regional, satellite, even mobile offices and yet, they are not still able to meet all the demands at the time the clients want their passports.

“It is kind of hard to cope but the good news is, we may open online appointment slots for April soon and we will make that announcement,” Constantino disclosed also that the slots for online appointments at the DFA-Bacolod are filled up to March.

DFA advised that for those who are simply travelling without urgency, do not buy tickets if passports are not in place yet.

Travel agencies who booked tickets even without passport details can be blacklisted and penalized.

Constantino also said that there are now three kinds of application forms – one for minor, one for adult regular application and one for renewal.*(PIA6)