19 Apr

Before my trip to Hong Kong last month, my passport was less than six months valid. I had to call several travel agencies to check on their rates for passport renewal. Most would charge 1000 php and the processing would take 30 working days. To expedite it to 15- 20 working days, the charge would be 1500 php. I also called DFA Cebu. They charge 500 php for 14- day processing and 750 php for 7- day processing. I decided to just brave the DFA office since going through an agency would still require me to make an appearance. I expected the worst knowing how things usually work in a government office. But this is how it went:

1. I arrived at the DFA office at 6:30 AM on a Tuesday. There was already a line but with fewer people than I expected.

2. There were people in the area who provided passport application forms. There was also a photo booth for your convenience if you have not prepared your passport- sized photos. In my case, I downloaded the application form online and printed it in a legal- sized paper. I also had four pictures ready.

3. These are the things that I brought with me (aside from the application form and pictures):

* My old green passport and photocopies of its pages. Since there was no single stamp in it, I only photocopied the first three pages.

Old passport

My old passport

* Photocopy of my credit card statement. I am not originally from Region 7. My old passport was issued in Region 6. I thought this would cause a problem. However, I just provided them a proof of my residency and no questions were asked.

* A black pen. This came in handy when I realized I forgot to sign the application form the night before.

* Glue. Any adhesive will do. I used this to paste the pictures onto the form.

4. The office opened on time. 8:00 AM. Everyone with application forms were allowed inside. By this time, we were still forming a line. This was to pass the requirements to and get a priority number from a guy at a counter.

5. We had to wait before the employees started taking their posts. The wait was bearable since adequate seats were provided and the air conditioning system was actually working.

6. By 8:30 AM, they were ready. Nobody was putting on make up or talking nonsense to one another. Numbers were called. This was where I had problems. The photos that I brought with me didn’t show my ears. Apparently, the photos should have your ears showing. The good thing was that the photo booth inside the DFA office was not busy. I was able to have my pictures taken (150 php) and got it in 10 minutes.

7. The lady approved of it and told me to proceed. This time it was for the encoding of information. This was fast since there were a lot of practicumers tasked to do the job.

8. Next, I had to sign some documents and put my fingerprints on them.

9. I waited for my name to be called at the cashier and paid.

10. I gave my receipt to the representative of LBC. Their table was near the photo booth. I paid 100 php for them to just send me my new passport once it was released.

11. And I was out of the DFA office by 10:00 AM.

Had I provided photos that were in accordance to their guidelines, the length of my stay would have been shortened by 30 minutes. But it’s okay. I was still impressed that finally a government office has a proper system to effectively and efficiently get things done in the shortest time possible.

Note: My passport was delivered to me a day after its scheduled release. Yes, there were no delays.

New passport

My new passport

Disclaimer: This entry was based on my own personal experience. I have read from other blogs that DFA had stopped issuing Machine Readable Passports (which is what I have) in March 2010. They are now issuing e- passports. I am not certain if this is also the case for DFA offices outside Manila.

UPDATE: I just called DFA. MRPs are no longer issued. For e- passports, regular processing (22 days) is 950 php while overtime processing (12 days) is 1200 php. Only the old passport and the photocopy of the first three pages will be needed.

If you are from Cebu, it would be better to contact DFA Cebu first.


Causing Lozada Building
Osmena Blvd. cor Lapu-lapu Street
Cebu City, Cebu 6000


Location map for DFA Cebu from Google Maps (Please click to enlarge)



  1. Leah June 20, 2010 at 4:11 pm #

    Dear Sir,

    Please advice how many days i can get a urgent passport for my daughter if i will submit the documents on monday.

    • wanderingandhappy June 20, 2010 at 6:58 pm #

      Hi! The last time I checked with DFA Cebu, it will take them at least 12 business days. I would suggest though that you call them beforehand. They answer the phone very early in the morning. =)

  2. roy August 24, 2010 at 3:34 am #

    GREAT!!! I just come across ds site and it reminds me of past lakwatsa in Philippine islands but never been documented. Nice to see the pictures and feel the experience as narrated including the renewal of passports and perhaps during the travel.

    • Kat August 25, 2010 at 5:50 am #

      Thanks for dropping by, Roy! πŸ˜‰

      • STEVE August 29, 2010 at 12:23 pm #

        thanks cat.

      • Kat August 30, 2010 at 4:22 am #

        You’re welcome, Steve.

  3. Connie August 27, 2010 at 12:16 am #

    My son is a student at USCTC and a dual citizen. He is dual by virtue of me being a Filipino citizen when he was born here in Florida. He is frustrated w/ the agents who are trying to help him apply for Phil passport bec. his Report of Birth which was registered with the Phil. Embassy in Washington DC is still not in the NSO system.
    The Phil Embassy insists that his original copt of that Report of Birth document is all he needs to apply for passport, and the agents in Cebu insist on getting something from the NSO.

    My son has not been to DFA (Dept. of Foreign Affairs) yet, he prefers to work w/ an agent since he’s in school during the week.

    Do you know anybody from the DFA who we could personally talk to about this NSO requirement?

    • Kat August 30, 2010 at 4:30 am #

      Hi! I am not affiliated with DFA so I really don’t know anybody. But I checked their site and it says there that the Birth Certificates they require are either issued by NSO or authenticated by NSO. I suggest you give them a call through the number I posted here to confirm. Also, maybe you can try this. Good luck! πŸ™‚

  4. roy tamar September 3, 2010 at 3:44 pm #

    what proof of residency did you present?where did you get it?

    • Kat September 3, 2010 at 4:30 pm #

      Hi Roy! I just presented them a photocopy of my credit card statement.

      • roy tamar September 4, 2010 at 10:23 am #

        thank you know the other proofs of of residency that is acceptable in dfa-cebu?

        may i ask what are those?tnx.

      • Kat September 4, 2010 at 2:22 pm #

        You are welcome. You can present any bill (phone, internet, etc..) under your name that contains a Cebu address. If I am not mistaken, you can also present an Employment Certificate. But just to be sure, please contact DFA Cebu. πŸ™‚

  5. roy tamar September 6, 2010 at 11:27 am #

    tnx kat.i don’t have any of those and i can’t use my employment certificate since i’m still 2 months employed.i heard that you should be at least 8 months.

  6. roy tamar September 6, 2010 at 11:34 am #

    actually,my problem is my place of birth is region 5 and i heard that you should be a resident of region 7 for at least 8 months to get a passport in cebu.i’m in bohol now and i’m planning to get a passport in cebu but i am only 3 months here in bohol.that’s why i’m looking for a proof of residency that i can get easily and present in DFA-Cebu to get a passport.i completed all the requirements except that proof of residency.i hope you can help me.

    • Kat September 6, 2010 at 6:39 pm #

      I am not sure if they will accept a Barangay Clearance. Have you tried calling them?

      *I just called them. The woman who answered said you can present your company ID and payslip.

      • roy tamar September 7, 2010 at 9:05 am #

        really?thank you so much kat.i’m going to cebu this evening.

      • Kat September 7, 2010 at 11:39 am #

        You are welcome. Let me know how it turns out. πŸ™‚

  7. Lelit September 11, 2010 at 8:54 am #

    Hi! Thanks for this. I just want to ask if the appointment system found on the DFA website,, is applicable here in Cebu?

    • Kat September 11, 2010 at 9:05 am #

      Hello, Lelit! You are welcome. I think the appointment system is only applicable in Manila.

  8. Kammy September 12, 2010 at 11:20 pm #

    will overtime processing really take only 12 days? i have to leave for China 2nd or 3rd week of october, and i need an epassport asap. 😦

    • Kat September 13, 2010 at 5:34 pm #

      Hi Kammy! I am so sorry but I cannot answer in behalf of DFA. However, mine was released on the date they said they would, so I say it is possible. πŸ˜‰ Please do give them a call to confirm. πŸ™‚

  9. Paola November 15, 2010 at 9:04 am #

    hello! I would like to ask if the processing would really take 12-days??..I am really hoping to get it on a shorter period of time…and what is that 7-day processing on the first part of your post???
    *i’m actually just a new passport applicant*

    • Kat November 20, 2010 at 7:49 pm #

      Hello, they can expedite the process so you can get your passport in 7 days. πŸ™‚

  10. Dianne Nicolle Boholst November 20, 2010 at 7:03 pm #

    Hey! Thanks for the information. And, i want to know if where did you download the application form. I was planning to go there this Tuesday…. please reply!!! :((

    • Kat November 20, 2010 at 7:51 pm #

      You are welcome, Dianne. Please check their website if it is still available there. That’s where I got it. πŸ™‚

      • Dianne Nicolle Boholst November 20, 2010 at 9:54 pm #

        Thank you soo much! Ahhmm, can i really get my passport in just seven days? I would like to go to Singapore this coming December 2. And, airline promotion for Singapore’s ticket is just within this month. I would like to make it sure if i can really get in just Seven days?? I’m just renewing my passport..

      • Dianne Nicolle Boholst November 21, 2010 at 8:06 pm #

        hey! please answer me.. what if i dont have a credit card statemnt? I’m just 16.

      • Kat November 22, 2010 at 12:00 pm #

        I really can’t answer that. It would be best to call them so you can confirm the shortest time possible that you can get your passport and what other documents you will need. πŸ™‚

  11. Leanne Shantelle January 4, 2011 at 11:07 am #

    hi, is it okey to renew my passport in cebu city since i’m from region 9, zamboanga del norte? what are the requirements of the renewal? it’s always red alert in zamboanga city and i’m afraid to travel there. looking forward for reply miss kat, thanks.

  12. Bing January 5, 2011 at 10:57 pm #

    Hello Maam, may I ask if DFA appointment system is applicable here in cebu? Do I need to bring a passport size ID in DFA? thanks!!

    • genevieve tan January 10, 2011 at 1:03 pm #

      Hi i just got off the phone with a DFA rep from Cebu and here are the following details:

      1. no online appointment required. the office opens at 730am-5pm

      2. inquired whether US would still accept green passports and was advised to renew it since US will only accept MRPs (machine readable passports)

      3. requirements needed for renewal: your old passport, photocopy the the first 3 pages and the last page of your passport. no application form needed as advised by DFA rep.

      4. regular processing is worth 950php to be processed in 25 calendar days

      5. overtime processing is worth 1200php to be processed in 12 days.

      please call the number shown in the article for more details. by the way, i would like to thank KAT for posting this article. it’s very informative. πŸ™‚

      • Kat January 10, 2011 at 2:54 pm #

        Hello Genevieve,

        You are welcome and thank you so much for the added information. Clearly, there are a lot of changes especially to the price and processing time. Ang mahal na pala and it takes longer now. Hehe But, thank you. I’m sure the readers will find this very useful. πŸ™‚

  13. Roselyn February 10, 2011 at 7:42 pm #

    hello I just want to ask if is it complicated to get a passport if my fathers family name has an error when he acknowledge me at the back portion of my birth but in a first page all information is correct and i want to ask if i can get a passport on that coz the only problem there is my fathers family name instead of Relasa its Telasa,,,

    Looking forward to your Answer here please

    • Kat February 27, 2011 at 1:35 pm #

      Please contact DFA directly regarding this concern. πŸ™‚

  14. A. Dy February 27, 2011 at 9:21 am #

    Thanks for the tips! I’m a little worried because my old passport’s about to expire and I need a new one by June 2011. The place of issue is Davao City and I’m from there but have been residing in cebu (renting a place only). Not sure if it’s possible for me to just renew my passport in Cebu.

    • Kat February 27, 2011 at 1:34 pm #

      You are welcome. πŸ™‚ By the way, just provide a proof of residency and you will be able to get a new passport in Cebu.

  15. Aleihs November 15, 2011 at 3:02 pm #

    hello po, tanung ko lng po,
    upon releasing na po yong passport ko, tapos yung official receipt ko po nawawala. PAAno po yun, makukuha ko po ba ang passport ko which is scheduled tomorrow upon releasing?

    badly need your reply on this matter please..

    • Kat November 15, 2011 at 3:39 pm #

      Hi! It would be better to give them a call and explain your situation so they can properly advise you on what to do.

      • Aleihs November 15, 2011 at 9:33 pm #

        thank you!

  16. junexpress December 13, 2011 at 4:17 am #

    I would like to get my first passport but I don’t know the process and what to do. Honestly, I’m innocent into this matter. Thanks and Godbless

    • Kat December 16, 2011 at 11:56 pm #

      Hi! Since I have written this entry a while back, there are already changes to the system as DFA is now issuing a different kind of passport compared to the one I got. But to get you started, please visit this link: And may I suggest that you call DFA for questions that you may have. πŸ™‚

  17. louie de los santos December 13, 2011 at 6:51 am #

    hi kat, good day. you said you got the application form printed online. do you happen to have that link still? i’d like to process my passport and would rather print the form online coz my place is too far from the DFA office. it will save my time filling out the form at home than doing it at the office.

    this forum is really a big help and made your visitors’ life easier. thanks for this post much and looking forward for your response.

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