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Although the ideal time to renew a Philippine passport is as early as a year before its expiration date, we all know that sometimes life gets in the way. We only realize that our passport has expired or is about to expire when it’s time to go back to our home country.
But with the Department of Foreign Affairs no longer extending the validity of expired Philippine passports, what are the other options left for Filipinos who urgently need to travel back to the Philippines?
One solution is to apply for a one-way travel document at the nearest Philippine Embassy or Consulate in your area.
A travel document is issued to Filipinos so they can travel back to the Philippines despite having an EXPIRED Philippine passport, provided that they have a valid reason for traveling. It can be due to an emergency or because they have already renewed their Philippine passports but can’t receive it in time for their departure.
Depending on the Philippine Consulate, you can apply for a travel document either through email or in-person so I recommend making a direct inquiry to ask about the process.
The requirements for a travel document may include, but not limited to, the following:
- Original copy of your Philippine passport and photocopy of its data page;
- Photocopy of your immigration documents like visa, work permit, PR card, etc.;
- Photocopy of your travel itinerary;
- 2 x 2 colored ID pictures;
- Self-addressed/stamped mailing envelope (if applying through the mail);
- Payment in the form of cash, certified cheque, or money order.
Upon receiving the documentary requirements, the Philippine Consulate will process your application and issue you the travel document after about 3 business days.
A travel document is valid for only 1 month from the day of issuance and the Philippine Consulate may give it to you on the condition that you’ll renew your Philippine passport upon arriving in the Philippines or, for those who have already applied for renewal, receive the new Philippine passport.
Do I need a travel document if my passport isn’t expired yet but has less than 6 months of validity?
Again, the travel document is only intended for those who are traveling back to the Philippines with an EXPIRED Philippine passport.
If your Philippine passport has less than 6 months of validity, you can still travel to the Philippines where you can renew it before you can return or travel to a foreign country.
According to the Bureau of Immigration website, travelers who are exempted from the “six-month passport validity” rule (meaning they can enter the Philippines despite having a passport with less than 6 months validity) are the following:
- Philippine passport holders;
- Former Filipinos and their dependents (i.e., immediate family members);
- Permanent residents and holders of special visa categories requiring temporary residents (with valid ACR I-Cards);
- Recognized foreign government officials;
- Visa under CA 613, Sec. 9, except Sec. 9(a), and 47(a)(2) where visa validity extends beyond passport expiration date, provided, an embassy or consulate is maintained in the Philippines;
- Those admitted by the Commissioner on humanitarian grounds; and
- Travelers from the following countries (pursuant to Operations Order No. SBM-2015-026): Angola, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Benin, Brazil, Cambodia, Canada, Chile, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Ecuador, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Kuwait, Laos, Mexico, Myanmar, Netherlands, New Zealand, Niger, Norway, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Portugal, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, United Kingdom, USA
Go back to the main article: How to Renew Philippine Passport: An Ultimate Guide