Land Transportation Office

OFWs soon able to renew driver’s licenses online

Michelle Abad

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OFWs soon able to renew driver’s licenses online
The new online service looks to enable Filipinos to have their renewed licenses delivered to them in their host countries

MANILA, Philippines – Overseas Filipino workers (OFWs) will soon be able to renew their driver’s licenses online without having to go back to the Philippines to claim them.

The Department of Migrant Workers (DMW) and the Land Transportation Office (LTO) announced on Friday, June 7, its OFW Driver’s License Renewal Program, where OFWs will be able to access an online platform for license renewal.

LTO chief Vigor Mendoza said that the office is looking to propose a pilot run beginning in July, which may run on the LTO’s online portal.

“We will launch [the program]. And through that, they will put in all their necessary data, which will go to the LTO. The licenses will be printed here in the Philippines, but through the portal, they will choose whichever courier they want to use, and the courier will send it to them,” Mendoza said in a mix of English and Filipino.

Some of the renewal requirements include a valid license that has not been expired for more than two years, and biometrics capturing.

Mendoza said the Department of Transportation plans to work with the Department of Foreign Affairs to share data on biometrics, since all OFWs give biometrics when applying for passports.

The LTO said the portal will cater to renewal first for OFWs, and then would “explore” other services later on.

At present, the LTO’s Land Transportation Management System has an option to renew OFW driver’s licenses. However, the applicants still need to return to the country to claim them at an LTO branch.

Mendoza was unable to pinpoint exact figures indicating demand for this service among Filipinos abroad, but said that it would be especially important for Filipinos working as drivers in other countries. The Philippines has reciprocity agreements with various countries, which allows Filipinos to easily apply for local licenses by showing their Philippine cards.

The LTO struggled with a months-long shortage of plastic cards. But Mendoza on Friday said the office was ready to take on the possible deluge of online applications from OFWs.

“We have enough [plastic cards]. In fact, our planning is for 2025 already…. The planning projection is more than enough to cater for 2024. We’re expecting a surplus for 2025, first two months. But with this project, we’re already budgeting around a million cards for this,” said Mendoza.

The program announcement was part of the activities at the DMW for National Migrant Workers’ Day on Friday. –

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Michelle Abad

Michelle Abad is a multimedia reporter at Rappler. She covers the rights of women and children, migrant Filipinos, and labor.