MANILA - Filipinos are urged to apply for the e-Passport before their green or maroon passports expire, the Department of Foreign Affairs said.
"All Filipino nationals holding Machine Readable-Ready Passports (MRRP; green passports) and Machine Readable Passports (MRP; maroon passports) will no longer be allowed to apply for an extension of the validity of these passports after October 31, 2014," the DFA said in a statement.
The e-Passport, which is also maroon, was first issued in 2009. It has the logo of a microchip just below the cover.
"They must instead apply for a new e-Passport as soon as possible before the expiry of their current MRRP (green) or MRP (maroon) passports. Those who fail to do so will likely encounter difficulty at immigration checks when traveling through any ports of entry around the world after October 2015," the DFA said.
The new e-Passport is in compliance with the standards set by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).
The DFA added that all non-machine readable passports may no longer be extended beyond October 31, 2015 and must be completely phased out by November 24, 2015.
Passport holders are also reminded about the strict rules for applying for an extension of the validity of expiring or expired passports.
Passports that are valid for less than six (6) months or those that have already expired may be extended once only in the following instances:
- death in the family requiring the OFW and members of his/her dependent family to urgently travel to the Philippines;
- medical emergencies requiring the OFW and members of his/her dependent family to urgently travel to the Philippines or another country for medical treatment;
- OFWs returning to their employers abroad with valid employment contracts processed by the POEA; and
- those going home on final exit visas (for Filipinos in the Middle East).
"In these instances, proof of urgency such as a copy of the death certificate, medical certificate, valid employment contracts processed by the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) or any of the Philippine Overseas Labor Offices (POLO), along with plane tickets with confirmed flight details should be presented," the DFA said.