Whether you need certifications from the government or opening a bank account, you’ll almost always be required to have acceptable IDs.
So, if you’re planning to stay in the Philippines, you’ll most likely have transactions. Most organizations or commercial establishments often ask at least two valid IDs that you have with you at all times.
There are several legitimate IDs issued by the government in the Philippines that you should be aware of and you should get.
What Are Valid IDs in the Philippines?
Valid IDs (also known as identity documents) prove a person’s identity. It usually includes the person’s real name, birth date, address, and signature.
While other countries have standard national identification cards, the Philippines has acceptable forms of identification from different government agencies.
Following is the regularly used government-issued identification cards in the Philippines:
Primary Valid IDs
- Passport – Valid for 10 years. Cost of processing is P950 – P1,250.
- Driver’s License – Valid for 5 years. Cost of processing is P320 – P820
- SSS UMID – Lifetime validity. Free of cost.
- PRC ID – Valid for 5 years. Cost of processing is P1,050 – P1,320
- Voter’s ID – Lifetime. Free of cost
- Senior Citizen ID – Lifetime. Free of cost
- PWD ID – Lifetime. Free of cost.
- PhilHealth ID – Lifetime. Free of cost.
- TIN Card – Lifetime. Free of cost.
- Postal ID – 3 year valid. Costs P500 – P650
- GSIS eCard – Lifetime. Free of cost.
Secondary Valid IDs
- NBI Clearance – 6 to 12 months validity. Cost of processing is P170.
- Police Clearance – 6 months validity. Cost of processing is P160.
- Cedula – 1 year validty. Cost of processing is P5 – P5,000 (income based).
Passports are required for going abroad. However, apart from being the most common form of travel identification outside the Philippines, it’s also a recognized and approved identity document.
Any regional office of the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) can help you get a Philippine passport.
First, you must obtain a confirmed online appointment on the DFA website, where you need to complete the application form.
Then you’ll need to show up with your supporting documents on the scheduled appointment day.
Your passport will be valid for ten years from the day you receive it.
Call (632) 8920-6446 ext. 55 for additional information.
In the Philippines, there are three different driver’s licenses, each indicating the level of the driving ability of the holder. Student, Non-Professional, and Professional.
Any branch of the Land Transportation Office (LTO) can help you get your driver’s license. Suppose this is your first time applying for a driver’s license; you must first apply for a Student’s Permit before proceeding to the other options. It is valid for five years and costs between P318 and P820.
SSS UMID Card
The Philippine national ID, also known as the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS), PhilHealth, and Pag-IBIG ID, is the Unified Multi-Purpose ID (UMID) issued by the Social Security System (SSS).
To apply, you’ll have to go to an SSS or GSIS office in person. Fill out the application form given at the site. You need to pay a minimum of one month’s SSS contribution to be eligible for the card.
Bring the completed SSS UMID application form, as well as the original or certified true copy of your passport, driver’s license, PRC card, or Seaman’s Book, while applying for the card. Your photo, fingerprints, digital signature will be captured and scanned.
Licensed professionals who have passed their respective licensure tests, such as registered nurses, physicians, architects, and engineers can get the PRC ID. The ID serves as both identification and a professional license.
The Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) Central Office can provide this ID to licensed professionals. For those getting it the first time, go to prc.gov.ph and fill out the first registration form. There, you must fill out all of the relevant fields with all of your information. Your Oath form will be ready once you’ve finished it, and you’ll be given a reference number.
You must pay the Baccalaureate Fee and submit your Oath Form and supporting documentations to the PRC Central Office. It usually takes 3-5 business days for the PRC ID to be issued. It has a five-year validity. The processing costs from P1,050 – P1,320
To be eligible for this identification document, you must be at least 18 years old. It is distributed to all eligible voters in the Philippines. Voters ID is commonly accepted for any purpose across the country.
The Commission on Elections can provide you with this ID. You must go to the COMELEC office with a valid identifying document to become a registered voter. You need to fill out the application form if you’re already a registered voter.
It takes a few months for the voter’s ID to be processed, but it is valid indefinitely.
Senior Citizen ID
This ID is only for Filipinos over the age of 60. In addition to being a legal ID, this card enables the bearer to a 20% discount at restaurants, retail stores, supermarkets, pharmacies, public transit, and medical and dental treatments, among other locations and services.
The Office for Senior Citizen Affairs can provide you with this. You’ll need to fill out an application form and show an ID photo along with a valid ID. It is unrestricted and good for life
Anyone with a permanent handicap in the Philippines can apply for a Persons with Disabilities Identification Card (PWD ID).
Persons with long-term physical, mental, intellectual, or sensory impairments that interfere with their interactions in society are defined by Republic Act 10754.
The bearer is eligible for a 20% discount on various businesses and services, similar to what elderly citizens receive. It also includes educational help, mandated coverage from government agencies such as SSS, PhilHealth, Pag-IBIG, and additional city-specific benefits.
While the specifics of obtaining a PWD ID vary by local government units, you can generally apply for one at the following offices:
- National Council on Disability Affairs or its regional counterpart
- Department of Health Online Registration System
- Department of Social Welfare and Development
- Office of the Barangay Captain
- Office of the Mayor
While the PhilHealth ID is required before you can claim benefits, it’s free and functions as a legal ID.
If you work for a company, you can request that your HR department complete your PhilHealth membership and deliver your ID. You must register as a Voluntary Member if you’re a self-employed individual.
To do so, go to any PhilHealth Local Insurance Office with two completed PhilHealth Member Registration Forms. Also, bring two 11 ID photos and at least two valid IDs or a photocopy of your NSO Birth Certificate.
Even though taxpayers aren’t needed to carry this ID with them, it is valid for ID transactions in most organizations.
The Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) can provide you with your TIN card. Your NSO birth certificate, valid ID, and TIN are all you need. It is unrestricted and valid for life.
The Postal ID is one of the most accessible valid identity cards to obtain.
Any PHILPost branch can provide you with a Postal ID. You need to completely full in two copies of the Postal ID application forms. Bring a valid ID or your NSO Birth Certificate.
They will also ask for your proof of address such as Utility Bill, Barangay Certificate of Residency, Certified True Copy of Lease, or your Bank Statement. The processing costs P500 to P650. It is valid for 3 years.
The GSIS eCard is also a recognizable government-issued ID. It is used as a GSIS transactional card, disbursement card.
Visit the GSIS office to receive your GSIS eCard (or its counterpart). Fill out the enrollment form and bring two government-issued identification cards.
Secondary IDs in the Philippines
In the Philippines, there are other secondary IDs.
Although some of the following documents are optional, they are frequently requested as supporting documents when applying for legitimate identification.
- NBI Clearance – This indicates that the bearer is not currently involved in any criminal cases in the Philippines at the time of the request. Costs P170 and valid for 6 mo’s to 1 year.
- Police Clearance – This is based on the Philippine National Police (PNP) database. The document verifies that the bearer has no criminal or other unfavorable record from any police precinct in the Philippines. Cost P160 and valid for 6 mo’s.
- Cedula – This is also called the Community Tax Certificate, this certification comes from your barangay. Processing costs based on income. One year valid. Just go to your Barangay to get your cedula.
- Student’s ID
- Company ID
- Alumni ID
- PSA Birth Certificate
- PSA Mariage Contract
- Firearms License Card
Make sure you bring everything you need such as supporting documents when you apply for IDs. You don’t want to waste a travel to an office by forgetting to bring your documents with you. Prepare everything you’ll need the day before your scheduled appointment.