Our appointment was at 10am (we secured the slot as early as November last year).
We arrived in Alabang Town Center around 8:45am (we were given a tip that we should be there AT LEAST an hour before our actual appointment) but we couldn’t find parking as understandably, the mall was still closed (it opens at 11am on weekdays) so we settled for a slot by Makati Supermarket (no, we are still clueless as to why it is not called Alabang Supermarket).
We had to walk under the heat of the sun before chancing upon the throngs of people by the Metro Gaisano entrance.
The line was not organized so you just have to ask the last person on the line (there will be several) what line he is in and pray that the first person in the line actually is in a line.
The guard starts to let people inside the mall at exactly 9am. You go through the grocery store and form another set of lines past the grocery payment counter.
This is where the line gets organized (or organized the Pinoy way, at least).
They separate the 9-10am and the 10-11am and other time slots.
The security guard there and kuya DFA (one wearing blue polo barong and another one wearing green polo barong) will be happy to entertain your questions (please don’t forget to say “thank you”).
Make sure to bring your requirements, namely:
They also accept walk-ins if you are an OFW, PWD, pregnant and a senior citizen. You can ask the guard and kuya DFA again for where the line for this is.
Once we were told by the guard to go up, it was smooth-sailing after.
First, the verification counter will check if you really have an appointment then they will point you to the processing area where they will receive and check all your requirements.
After punching a hole on your old passport (if for renewal), making sure your information is correct and asking you what type of delivery you wish to avail, you will then be given a payment form and told to go to the cashier.
After paying at the cashier, you go to the Encoding section where your photo will be taken and your fingerprints and signatures captured. Here, they will double-check your information.
You then proceed to the Courier counter to pay for the shipping of your passport if you choose that option.
Then you’re done!
We were done in 30 minutes after we were asked to go up.
And the next time we need to do this is after 10 years, all right!
Good job, DFA!