The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has opened more slots for passport application appointments until September 2022.
Atty. Brigido Dulay, DFA Undersecretary for Civilian Security and Consular Affairs, said starting June 5, they opened more appointment slots in all the 36 DFA consular offices (CO) and 20 temporary offsite passport services (TOPS) at the malls nationwide.
DFA Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. ordered this “to ease passport backlog.”
Passport applicants need to go to the passport portal https://www.passport.gov.ph/ to apply for passports—whether for new or for renewal.
Filipinos applying for passports have earlier complained that it was difficult to get a slot online. Some who badly need to get one resort to hiring online “passport fixers” who will watch out for opening of passport slots and apply on their behalf.
The DFA explained that since the pandemic, the Inter-agency Task Force for Management of Emerging Infectious Diseases had restricted them from accepting more applicants, creating a backlog of around four million applicants.
Dulay hopes that with the opening of more slots, they can now meet the demands of the public.
“There are now available slots this June all the way to Sept 2022. No need to wait! Apply now!” he tweeted.
The DFA reiterated its advisory discouraging passport applicants from using fixers and social media accounts.
“Passport appointments are free and should only made via https://passport.gov.ph. Please be warned that engaging such services is at your own risk and expense,” the DFA Office of Consular Affairs said.
Image credits: Official Gazette