September 24, 2014
DFA Megamall Office
I always tell friends, people I work with and clients that it is always good to be travel-ready (meaning your passport is valid and you have support documents) – because you wouldn’t know when an opportunity to travel will come. I know friends who have missed travel opportunities because of expired passport. Sometime last month. I forgot to remind that very lesson to myself. Five years ago, I was in the same situation! Argh.. I was booked to a trip in Hong Kong and I didn’t know if I were flying or not!
A travel opportunity was presented to me with flight schedule of October 9th. I jumped for joy but there was a force inside that was pulling me down – I know my passport is expiring on April 9, 2015 – which makes it less than 6 months valid at the time of my departure.
- I wont be granted a visa with less than 6 months passport validity
- I could renew my passport and get it on October 3rd, but that means, I have to wait for October 3rd before I could apply for visa (my flight is on October 9th!!!!)
- I could apply for visa with old passport and if (I get lucky) they grant me a visa, I could fly with passport of less than 6 months validity – there’s a risk that airlines and immigration would deny my entry or departure.
These questions were haunting me. I couldn’t sleep for nights. I hate deadlines and dependencies on government offices.
I almost cried. (** excitement!!!!)
What does it mean to me?
It means that I could apply for my visa with an old passport while DFA is concurrently processing my passport renewal!
After a month, I am now here, in my bed and my thoughts are filled with London memories! Yes, I got my passport renewed, yes, I got my UK visa!
I just want to share that you can request DFA to keep your old, expiring passports (which you can use to apply for Visa) when applying for passport renewal. Part of DFA’s process is to cancel the old visa when you apply for renewal (which would make you “passport-less” for 7 or 15 days).
Make sure that you bring all required documents. What you need for passport renewal:
1. Photocopies of the first 2 pages and last 2 pages of your passport.
2. Photocopy of valid ID.
3. Old passport
4. Printed Passport Renewal Application Form
* No need to submit NSO Birth Certificate for passport renewal
If you need to schedule a passport renewal appointment, check out http://www.passport.com.ph/
If you are keeping your old passport, you have to claim the new passport personally, in order for them to cancel your old passport. When I claimed my new passport, the rep forgot to cancel my old one. I have to request for it to be cancelled (meaning for them to punch holes in it). I was worried that immigration might question two passports under my name (the old one has my UK visa).
The whole passport renewal process took me 2 hours. It is convenient and cool in the SM Megamall office. For girls, make sure that you don’t wear too much make-up during appointment because they would ask you to take them off, including heavy eyeliners (they do live announcements and reminders :))
Next, I would share how I got my UK Visa (and maybe the stories of London and my tour of Harry Potter studio 🙂