June 02, 2014

A Guide to Applying for a Driver’s License in the Philippines

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  • UPDATE: As of  January 7, 2019, LTO-NCR office will only be accepting medical certificates submitted online by accredited clinics and doctors.

    Whether you’re a foreigner or local, applying for a Philippine Driver’s License is pretty easy if you know the procedures and the requirements needed to be submitted. Here are the procedures you need to know in getting a driver’s license as a foreigner in the Philippines:

    Drivers
    Converting your foreign driver’s license to a Philippine driver’s license

    Obtaining a Philippine driver’s license will not be difficult if you already have a valid driver’s license from your country. As stated in the first paragraph of Chapter III, Sec. 21 of the Republic Act (RA) 4136, otherwise known as the “Land Transportation and Traffic Code”, foreigners will only be allowed to convert their foreign driver’s license to Philippine driver’s license if they have stayed within a period of 90 days from the day of their last arrival in the Philippines.

    Applicants can apply through the main branch of Land Transportation Office (LTO) at East Avenue, Quezon City. The type of application must be under the Non-Professional Driver’s License if you are not driving for a living (e.g. coach drivers, chauffeurs, etc.). Applicants must bring and complete the following requirements:

    • Duly accomplished Application for Driver’s License (can be obtained at the office or downloaded here)
    • Original and 1 copy of foreign license (if such license is not written in English, you must submit an official English translation from the consular or Embassy of your country)
    • Original and photocopy of foreign passport with an entry of at least one (1) month and visa duration of at least one (1) year from the date of application
    • Medical Certificate issued by LTO accredited clinics and doctors submitted online
    • Fees for Non-professional classification:
      • License Fee – Php 585
      • Application Fee – Php 100
      • Conversion Fee – Php 100
      • Computer Fee – Php 67.63

    Procedures:

    1.  Proceed to the Customer Service Counter to get your checklist of requirements. Get a queue number and wait for your number to be called.
    2. When your number is called, proceed to evaluator counter and submit all the required documents and have it checked for completeness and authenticity.
    3. Go to the Photo-taking/Signature Area to have your picture and signature taken.
    4. Proceed to the Cashier and pay the required fees and get an Official Receipt.
    5. Present the Official Receipt at the Releasing Counter and claim the Card type license.

    Applying for a student’s permit and new Philippine driver’s license

    If you do not have an existing driver’s license from your country and wish to apply for a new one in the Philippines, your application will follow the regular procedure. One must acquire a Student’s permit first. To apply, you must submit the following requirements when applying for a student’s permit:

    • Duly accomplished Application for Driver’s License (can be obtained at the office or downloaded here)
    • Original and photocopy of foreign passport with visa duration of at least five (5) months from the date of application.
    • Medical Certificate issued by LTO accredited clinics and doctors submitted online
    • Valid ACR (Alien Certificate of Registration)
    • If a student, present an original and photocopy of school ID
    • Fees for Student’s Permit:
      • Student’s Permit Fee – Php 150
      • Application Fee – Php 100
      • Computer Fee – Php 67.63

    Procedures:

    1. Proceed to the Customer Service Counter to get your checklist of requirements. Get a queue number and wait for your number to be called.
    2. When your number is called, proceed to evaluator counter and submit all the required documents and have it checked for completeness and authenticity.
    3. Go to the Photo-taking/Signature Area to have your picture and signature taken.
    4. Proceed to the Cashier and pay the required fees and get an Official Receipt.
    5. Present the Official Receipt at the Releasing Counter and claim the Student Permit Card license.

    Student’s permit is valid for one (1) year and can be used to apply for a non-professional driver’s license after one (1) month. The process of applying for a new one will be similar to converting a foreign driver’s license. However, you are required to take a written and practical examination as standard procedure.

    Please note that when applying for a driver’s license in the Philippines, you must be clean, neat and presentable for photo-taking. Wearing of t-shirts, short pants and slippers are not allowed.

    For more information, you may visit the official website of LTO at lto.gov.ph.


    Source: Land Transportation Office, Official Gazette, ABS-CBN News

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