Losing one’s passport can be a traumatic experience. A passport is more than just like a ticket that punches your way into a country where you are allowed to enter. It also serves as proof of identity. When it’s lost, you lose those privileges for a moment. Worse, if it’s stolen and used by someone else, it could mean more trouble.
Having to declare the passport lost and applying for a new one as soon as possible is therefore a must.
At present, the Philippines already has an electronic passport system (ePassport). This is available for all Filipino citizens that meet the requirement for getting a passport. The ePassport boasts of the latest microchip technology, and other state-of-the-art security features that ensure each Philippine passport from being tampered. The International Civil Aviation Organization or the ICAO also recognized the Philippine ePassport since it has complied all of the security standards of the ICAO.
All of the essential data that verifies the identity of the passport holder are in the integrated circuit (chip) that is embedded within the Philippine ePassport. The information in the chip also include the biological information that are written on the ePassport’s data page. The other information that can be found in the chip are the biometrics of the passport owner, the ID number, and the digital signature that is used in verifying the data’s authenticity. On every international port of entry, there is a special chip reader that scans all of the information in the Philippine ePassport.
All applications for ePassports are received and processed by the Philippine Embassy / Consulate General. The same application is also sent to the Department of Foreign Affairs in Manila for the ePassport to be printed and issued. The whole process will take at least 8 weeks.
For passport holders who have passports that will expire within the next 6 months, please renew your passports if you have any plans to travel within the stated period. There is also no need for those who apply for passports to submit photographs since the picture, fingerprint and signature will be taken on site. Therefore, all of the passport applicants should appear personally.
Below are the requirements applicants need to comply:
1. Passport application form that is duly-accomplished, and is typed or with information handwritten legibly in black or blue ink. The “Affidavit of Loss” portion on the form must be filled in.
2. Photocopy of government issued IDs, such as driver’s license, SSS ID, and other photo identifications.
3. A clear photocopy of the Philippine passport that was lost. While it’s impossible to do this when passport is lost, this shows the importance of securing copies of passports. For those who fail to produce a photocopy of the lost Philippine passport, please present a Birth Certificate authenticated by the NSO (for those born 1950 onwards) or a Certification of Non-Availability of Birth Record from the NSO (for those born before 1950)
5. For female married applicants, NSO Marriage Certificate, or a report of marriage. The NSO marriage certificate can also be applied for online at www.e-census.com.ph
6. If your lost passport is still valid, you may present a police report.
7. An envelope that is self-addressed, with the appropriate stamps for express or priority mail with tracking numbers via US Postal Service, is required.
8. The passport fee for the Machine Readable Passport or ePassport is $160. The passport fee for the Manual Passport is $100. The fees are non-refundable, and can be paid in cash, bank draft, certified check, cashier’s check, or money order modes of payment and should be made payable to the “Embassy of the Philippines” or the “Philippine Consulate General”. Personal checks and credit card payment are not accepted.
Please note that the Philippine Embassy and the Philippine Consulate General will assume no responsibility for the delay or the loss of the passports in the mail. This responsibility is to be shouldered by the courier service. The applicants should ask for the tracking numbers of all the envelopes they have submitted.
There is a 15 day waiting period in addition to the 6-week processing period and will be imposed to all the valid and unexpired passports that have been lost.