If you do any driving, you know having a valid driver’s license is a must-have. In the Philippines, driver’s licenses expire on one’s birth date after 3 years’ validity. One thing I am happy about that this administration has done, is the extension of the driver’s license validity from 3 years to 5 years. As for the fees, they basically stayed in the same range. Thankfully, they didn’t double the fees even if the validity period is almost doubled.
So last week, I renewed my driver’s license at the LTO beside SM Hypermart along Shaw Blvd, near JRU.
It was very quick, compared to decades ago when it would take the whole afternoon. This time, the whole process took less than an hour! 🙂 It just keeps getting faster each time.
HOW TO RENEW YOUR DRIVER’S LICENSE, 2018
Here’s a quick rundown of the process in case some of you might be wondering how to do it:
- This LTO has a helpdesk which really helps. They checked my old license then gave me a simple form to fill up. After filling up the form, I am supposed to go to the Medical area.
- In the medical area, they took my height and weight, and did an eye test (basically asked me to read the letters on the eye exam poster). For this, I was asked to pay P200!!! Wow, seriously. P200 for them just to take my height and weight and make me read letters on a poster.
- After Medical, I went back to the helpdesk. I can’t remember exactly, but I think they had me submit my papers to a Window, and wait for my name to be called.
- Just a few minutes after sitting down, my name was already called to go to a certain Window. I think this was for the first photo to be taken. I signed on a gadget and then had my picture taken. Then I was asked to sit down again and wait for my name to be called.
- I think the next part was for payment. I totally forgot about renewing my license before my birthday, and I only remembered it on my birthday itself, in the afternoon, and it was too late. And whether you’re one day late or 1 year late, the penalty is the same. The late penalty is P75.00. In total, I paid around P700+. It was only supposed to be P600+ if not for the additional P75 late penalty, so don’t forget next time! I’m already putting a reminder on my Google calendar for my next renewal.
- I waited for my name to be called again, and this time, it was to take another photo. I asked them why my photo needed to be taken twice, and they said that the first photo was for their system, and the second photo was for the actual card. This took a bit longer because the technician had a difficult time taking my picture. It was being cropped wrong by the system. Anyway, after 10 tries, we finally got a usable photo! 🙂 I looked like a ghost, but we both agreed puwede na yan, hahaha. After that, they also scanned my fingerprints.
- After waiting outside for a few minutes, my name was called again and my new driver’s license was ready! The whole process took about 45 minutes, which was faster than 3 years ago, which if I remember correctly, took about an hour and a half.
It was nice to see that my driver’s license already had a validity period of 5 years!
I rarely have any issues with this LTO branch – it is easy to get to, the staff are friendly, and through the years, they have been improving. In recent memory, I have not experienced any “fixers” here trying to approach me or anything. So far, so good, the processes seem straightforward and transparent. I also try to go there during less peak hours like early in the morning or right after lunch so there’s less chances of long lines. My only eye-rolling issue with it is the medical fee of P200 for basically recording my height, weight, and making me read the eye test poster. Pero fine, pagbigyan na. At least I don’t have to do this as often anymore 🙂
I hope you enjoyed this blog post. Please feel free to leave a comment below, I love hearing from you!