Winning the DFA Passport Application Challenge

First Tip: Do your research!

Don't go to the battlefield unarmed. There are numerous blog posts/articles on the Internet that talks about the requirements, tips, and real peoples' experiences. It is important to learn from these people's experiences so that you know what to expect. Doing your research can also minimize the need to ask questions from people (who might just turn out to be fixers). Remember that asking questions from strangers (except guards or the MMDA people) can make you easy prey.

Second Tip: Beware of Fixers!

As I have mentioned in a previous post,I was conned by these people. One thing that might put off these people is an mp3 player. Using earphones, fixers would hopefully be discouraged in trying to con you. Also, if you are a person who find it hard to say no or find it hard to ignore other people, then using an mp3 player would definitely help you. This is exactly what I did earlier when I went to the DFA office to claim my passport. Even with all the tugging on my shirt and call outs of Sir, Sir, I was able to completely ignore them and focus on getting inside the DFA complex. A good practice is to be on guard all the time. Never lose focus. Maintain a sharp look. No eye contact. Look smart. Remember that during this challenge (aside from your fare), the only time that you need to shell out money (P500) would be the time that you are inside the DFA office in front of the cashier window. Anything besides this P500 processing fee that you would pay in front of the cashier INSIDE of the DFA office should arouse suspicion. Just a heads up, some fixers are dressed as DFA employees.

Third Tip: Walk!

If you took the train, do NOT take a trycicle going to the DFA. What happened to me was I took a trycicle going to the DFA and it turned out that those trycicle drivers are part of the grand conspiracy. Even the stall owners are probably in it too. The driver stopped his trycicle right in front of the fixers' "office" making lil' ol' innocent me easy prey. For directions on how to go to the DFA, click here

Fourth Tip: Being Late is Good

In this situation, it really is. In my case, my passport was ready to be claimed last May 5, 2009. But knowing about the frequent delays in the releasing of passports, I went there just today (May 12, 2009). This saves you from the frustration you might feel when the DFA employee tells you to just come back another time since your passport is not yet ready for releasing.

Just a disclaimer: I am not connected to any government office so I won't be able to answer any questions that you might have regarding procedures and processes on how to procure documents such as an NBI clearance, an NSO authenticated birth certificate, and etc. All the information that I have is already presented above. The information presented in this post was gathered when I transacted with the Manila branch/office.