15/03/2011: Consulate appeals for understanding due to delay in passport releases
The Philippine Consulate General in San Francisco appealed for the understanding of the travelling public, as it announced that the delay in passport releases could last for a few more weeks as a result of technical concerns in Manila and the worldwide surge in the demand for the ePassport.
“We apologize for the inconvenience caused by the delays, but we would like to assure our Kababayans that we are closely coordinating with the Department of Foreign Affairs to resolve the issues as soon as possible,” Consul General Marciano A. Paynor, Jr. said.
According to the Department of Affairs, the delay in passport releases is primarily the result of maintenance work and upgrades on equipment in the ePassport Personalization Center at the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) facility in Quezon City. This also coincided with the seasonal increase in passport applications as Filipinos start making preparations for summer travel abroad.
The Consulate advises Kababayans to allocate 8 weeks lead time for renewal of passports prior to making travel arrangements. The Consulate is confident that the waiting period presently at 6-8 weeks will return to 4-6 weeks soon.