DFA Hassles: Things to Know About Passport Renewal

Please be guided accordingly…

I am excited about my trip to Malaysia and Singapore but I was disappointed with all the inconvenience and hassles I went through during my passport application.

I came to Department of Foreign Affairs at exactly 9:30 AM, as specified on the schedule confirmation, that’s thirty minutes before the appointed time. I was with my boyfriend and we managed to avoid every fixer that came our way. The DFA staff on duty ushered us to go inside and even shoved the fixers away but to my dismay, he informed us that we have to head to DFA Consular Office at the Macapagal Boulevard since we have our schedule already. Fine.

But wait, there’s more! He asked if I have completed all the requirements including passport photos so I said YES, except for photos because I was informed that it will be taken during the application. He insisted that the machines are not yet available on-site so he had me seated in front of the camera and PC then there goes the 1-2-3 click equals to one hundred fifty pesos. With his ID (too bad, I did not catch his name) and uniform, why would I have doubts? Of course I had, but I did not entertain it because I was in a hurry to meet my 10 AM schedule at the consular office.

Multicabs were still waiting for passengers so we’re forced to take the tricycle for a fare of P100 for us two. That’s because we didn’t want to wait for 3 more passengers. Fine. We should have hailed a cab. Tsk.

DFA Consular Office

DFA Consular Office located at ASEANA Business Park, Bradco Avenue corner Macapagal Boulevard, Paranaque City

When we arrived at the DFA Consular Office, there were lots of people waiting outside. Escorts are not allowed. The guard on duty wouldn’t allow me to go inside because I did not have my application form printed. But I have my appointment number written down so he finally let me in. When I asked another guard where I should fall in line, he pointed me to the 10AM queue. Yipee, I made it! Only to be back at the bottom of the queue because my application form was not VERIFIED aka signed with STABILO BOSS or whatever marker/highlighter they have. Oh my! I can’t find the right lines of people and I have to start all over again. Fine. Patience… patience…

I checked my name on the bulletin board of daily schedule and it was there. I informed the front desk about it and they signed my application form. Because of that, I was included in the bulk of late comers falling in line for the 10:30AM appointment. There’s good and bad thing about it. Lucky are those who are entertained despite their tardiness and how unfortunate for those who came on time only to be delayed by these people hence the domino effect.

DFA Queue

Sea of People (Sorry, this photo was taken using my C50)

I was applicant number 4831 and I noted the time stamp on that piece of paper – 10:32AM. Guess what time my number was called… Almost 2PM. Despite the long wait, I still consider myself lucky for being seated within 4 hours after few minutes of standing. After paying the passport fees, I endured another hour of waiting for the data capturing. By 3PM I was out of hell.

My boyfriend was waiting for me at the nearby McDo all through out the day, that’s my only consolation. So after literally devouring the food he ordered for me, we took a cab on the way home. And the story of mandarambong-gatari started. The taxi driver chatted with us and we talked about corruption even in the smallest unit of society, from the cops to the fixers and on how we can let the President know about it. The weather synchronized with our sentiments thus resulted to heavy downpours.

My thoughts drifted even at home…
I was really disappointed about this new system. I know where DFA is WAS located at, their SOP and the annoying fixers. I’ve been there before with my college classmate. So when I went there on the appointed date and time, I was really surprised to know that their good office has been relocated. I did not get it on the confirmation email. For sure it’s somewhere on their website but it does not concern me that much anymore. What enraged me are the illegal operations going on at the old DFA office. Is there something that can be done with those photo booths and greedy fixers? Why are they still operating their dirty business in broad daylight? Why? Should those establishments be demolished?

I’m really worried about other people that might be lured in this trap. That place is now full of sh!t. I’ve seen several others who were totally clueless about it and still making transactions with fixers and unauthorized officers.

If you wish to renew your passport or to apply for new one, read the Passport Application Appointment System carefully. If you don’t have a schedule yet, start the Individual Appointment Process rather than paying P300 or more for merely scheduling your appearance.

Comments

  1. tsk!

  2. Hi! I’m sorry you went through hell with all this. I know that the DFA was relocated in Parañaque April pa. One of the hospital staff asked me to assist her in the e-passport application. Also, I know the routes and rides because I stayed in Pasay before.

    Dapat ma-closed na yung old DFA para wala nang business transactions dun. Be it legal or illegal.

  3. i was just abvout to renew ny passport …i dont know the neew system…sems that it still the same old traps and trickery…too bad…maybe the P-noy regime will get rid of them ‘hope so!

  4. tsk tsk tsk.. ganyan na ata talaga sa pinas.. haaiiizzzzt

  5. mabuti na lang i applied late 2009 ang bilis lang bumagal lang nung binago nila this year.

  6. It is a great blog.

  7. This is the same complain of my officemate who recently renewed her passport. Very disappointing. I wonder myself why those fixers are still operating. They have been exposed several time on TV. Hmm… I already thinking that there is a BIG one behind these.

  8. I feel you sis. I think this things happened not only in DFA but other government agencies. I am hoping that this will be stop. Ma stop pa kaya ito?

  9. Sino kaya dapat icontact para dito. Kasi parang paulit ulit na eh. I googled DFA fixers, andaming result. At pati daw sila hi-tech na.

  10. Hi,

    I had a very different experience with my passport renewal. I can say mine was smooth and very fast. I got the earliest schedule which is 7am and it only took me an hour to get it all done :)

    I think for those who are going to renew their passport needs to research more before going there. All information are in their website http://epassport.com.ph

    For passport renewal you only need your old passport, xerox copies of the first and last page plus the page with your last departure and arrival stamps and some ID just to be sure and that’s it. Btw, didn’t see any fixers in the new building though.

    • @ Dmazlin
      Good for you. I will be accompanying my sister and bf this Oct 11 and hopefully, it would be as fast and smooth as your experience. :)

  11. I think this things happened not only in DFA but other government agencies. I am hoping that this will be stop.

  12. Ang tagal na pala ng post na ito, 2010 pa, pero meron pa ring mga manloloko sa old DFA. Me and my bro went there last Aug 22, 2011, first time to apply for a passport. Same thing, out picture was taken, may nag-check ng requirements at may tricycle na naghihintay. I admit na hindi dapat nagpapaloko, pero dapat wala na rin yung mga gumagawa nun sa dating DFA. More than 500 ang naloko smen.

    Pero after ng transaction nmen sa new DFA, binalikan namen yung lugar, pero may kasama ng pulis kaya nabawi namin yung niloko nila smen.

    • As in, meron pa rin! Grabe naman! Pero buti naman nabawi nyo yung ginastos nyo. Kung may pulis din kayong kasama, it should end there. Dapat wala na silang maloko pa. Pero I doubt it. Malamang yung mga fixers naghihintay na naman ng mabibiktima! Sana may mga magreport pa at ng matigil na operasyon nila!

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