I got a lot of responses (and new information) relating to FilipinOnline's new Philippine passport article (July 23 post) that I thought it would be best to address some questions and give out a fresh batch of hopefully helpful info today. At the bottom, you will see the upcoming Philippine Consulate-LA outreach schedule - they will be in Arizona, San Diego & Las Vegas in the coming weeks so you don't have to travel all the way to L.A. Just apply for your passport when they're in your neck of the woods. (Before that, read also a disclaimer to a forwarded e-mail that you might've received from your friends & family that has wrong information on passport validity - mga kababayan, it doesn't automatically expire in 2010!)
Reader Question: I just missed the outreach here in Houston, Texas, just wondering if they will be going to have another one soon. If not then I guess I have to fly to LA to renew my passport... I'm planning to go on thursday Oct 2, 2008 (I hope they're open...trying to call the office, no one's answering) & fly back the next day, just to renew my passport.
Answer: No new Texas schedule yet, sorry. The consulate is open on October 2. They will be closed on October 13 (Columbus Day). The holiday notices could be viewed at their "Contact Us" page on their website - http://www.philippineconsulatela.org/. All other announcements are posted regularly on the site.
Q: very resourceful blog! thank you very much! i'm getting my passport renewed in Texas on the 9th, which part of the recent passport must i photocopy?
A: Here's what the consulate said: "...from green passport to MRP, the applicant should submit photocopy each of the following data pages (the page with photo and name), the page with entry visa (or the green card) and the last page (with the signature of the approving officer).
Q: I live in Dallas and I recently went to that outreach passport program here. 3 weeks after having submitted my application, I got a call from the consulate that my picture was rejected by Manila and that I need to mail a new set of pictures... Can anyone suggest a place/shop in Dallas where I can get royal blue background photos that will have a greater chance of being accepted by DFA?
A: I'm asking around for any suggestions as to where to get the fotos in your area but so far, no one has given me a lead.The initial response that I got from the consulate about your situation is that you should contact the PNB remittance center who contracted the photo service, but I could tell from your comment that you've already done that. The consulate is not affiliated with nor can they promote any photo company. But I understand your frustration - that blue background thing & the other requirements can really be a headache for applicants. And I hope a Texas reader can help you. I will post here any response I get.
Recently, I received an e-mail that has this subject: "GREEN PASSPORT - No Longer Valid Effective January 2010." The rest of the e-mail with the photo requirement list is correct but that subject line is INACCURATE. If you get that e-mail, respond with a link to this article so you can properly inform your friends and family.
Per consulate: "The green passports remain valid until its expiration date."
Finally, here is the latest OUTREACH SCHEDULE:
1.) SAN DIEGO - Sept 20 - 9:00 am until 4:00 pm at the Council of the Philippine American Organizations of San Diego County, Inc. (COPAO) Center, 832 “E” Avenue, National City, CA 91950
2.) CHANDLER, ARIZONA - Sept 27 - 9:00 am until 4:30 pm at the Barrio Fiesta, 941 West Elliot Road, Chandler, AZ 85224 (Tel: 480-855-4646).
3.) LAS VEGAS - Oct 4, 9:00 am-4:00 pm/Oct 5, 9:00 am until 2:00 pm at Seafood City, 3890 S. Maryland Pkwy, Las Vegas, NV 89119 (Tel: 1-702-851-0021).
Some reminders when you go:
1. All Applicants for any of the above consular services are requested to set up an appointment with the Consulate either through fax (213) 639-0990 or through email at firstname.lastname@example.org or at telephone no. (213) 637-3010.
2. Passport Applicants should send an advance copy of their passport application forms and data page (bearing the name and photo) of their passports to the Consulate either by fax or by email. Incomplete forms will not be processed.
3. Dual Citizenship Applicants should also send an advance copy of their application forms and supporting documents. Incomplete forms will not be processed.
4. Confirmed appointments of all applicants will be posted at the Consulate’s website (http://www.philippineconsulatela.org/).5. While walk-in applicants will also be entertained, priority will be given to those with confirmed appointments.
5. The Consulate will only accept payments in cash, postal money order or cashier’s check. Personal checks will not be accepted.
[Sources: Eric Sierra, PIO of Philippine Consulate-LA/press releases/ http://www.philippineconsulatela.org/.]