This day should have been the day that i could have had processed my passport. Unfortunately, nothing happened. What happened then?
The schedule would be, after the check up of my grandma, we would go directly to sm seaside because the wheels on passport has been extended until March 2. We have all the documents needed for the renewal of my grandma’s passport, so we went there at sm seaside. Unfortunately, the guard informed us that passport on wheels won’t accept walk in application unless the person has an appointment reserved through the DFA website for the reason that they don’t accept payment for the passport. I understand, but the thing is when you say passport on wheels, my idea is we don’t need to have an appointment especially that my grandma is a senior citizen and should be on the priority list. We were told to just go to the main branch of DFA here in Cebu which is located in Pacific Mall Mandaue, 15 km away from SM seaside. We didn’t have a choice but to travel to that place because we need to have it renewed as soon as possible.
We arrived in Pacific Mall around 2 in the afternoon and witnessed the long waiting line for the passport. At first, i approached the guard and asked him about the priority lane of the senior citizen and the plus one who would accompany the person. The guard told us that the accompany person for the courtesy lane should be an immediate family of the senior citizen so that means it could be a brother or sister or his/her child as explained by the guard. I was kinda disappointed because what is stated from the website of the DFA is this; https://www.passport.gov.ph/requirements/courtesy-lane
Courtesy Lane Guidelines
The following may avail of the Courtesy Lane Facility without need of an online appointment:
Senior citizens (60 years and over) with proof of age.
Senior citizen may be allowed one (1) companion
The companion of the senior citizen must be an immediate family member, i.e. spouse, siblings, adult children, adult grandchildren, and children-in-law of the senior citizen and must show proof of relationship.
If the companion is not an immediate family member, the companion has to show proof of travel arrangements (e.g. confirmed plane or hotel booking) with the senior citizen to be able to avail of the courtesy lane facility.
People with disabilities (PWDs) with proof of disability
PWD may be allowed one (1) companion
The companion of the PWD must be an immediate family member, i.e. spouse, siblings, adult children, adult grandchildren, parents-in-law, and children-in-law of the PWD and must show proof of relationship.
If the companion is not an immediate family member, the companion has to show proof of travel arrangements (e.g. confirmed plane or hotel booking) with the PWD to be able to avail of the courtesy lane facility.
Solo parent must present valid solo parent card, and his/her minor children
Minors seven (7) years old and below and his/her parents and minor siblings
If pregnancy is not visible, applicant must present medical certificate/recotds.
Overseas Filipino Workers (Land and Sea based) with valid proof of status, such as:
Valid iDOLE card
Valid Employment contract
Valid Work Visa
Seaman’s book stamped at international border less than 365 days from date of application
Senior citizens, PWDs, solo parents and their minor children, pregnant women, and OFWs have the option to choose from regular or expedited processing of their passport application.
The companions of the senior citizens and PWDs, minors seven (7) years old and below, their parents and minor siblings are to be assessed expedited processing fee because they are not entitled to use the courtesy lane; they are accommodated for their convenience.
All applications made on Saturdays — whether those entitled to use the Courtesy Lane Facility or those accommodated for their convenience – shall be assessed expedited processing fees based on the relevant provision of the Passport Act.
I told the guard about this but he just said no. So i was very disappointed and a bit aggravated by his response. Also, aside from that one, the guard told us that the line has been cut off already because the DFA could just accommodate numbers of applicants even if the person is entitled for the courtesy lane. I asked the guard how many person would they accommodate in a day and what time is the cut off. I was really exploding when he answered me that they don’t have a specific number of applicants per day and also with the time. I really thought that the processing is better now because of the new administration but sad to say, there are some agencies who have not progress in terms of getting better.
I stayed calm even if i was already exploding but it was my aunt who decided to speak to someone if she could beg them because they have traveled more than 3 hours just to get this done. They were given a chance but with those words of no assurance from their mouth because they said that it would still depend. Depend on what? So we decided to just go home and do it another day not on that place. We heard that DFA Dumaguete is way better.
So for those who’s planning to get a passport even if you are part of the courtesy lane, just make sure that you won’t be wasting your time and money travelling, better just reserved an appointment through the DFA website.