Before I start, I’d like to apologize for not having pictures in this post. I didn’t have a camera nor my phone has a capability to take photos.
Anyway, first things first. What you need to know is there are no such thing as “renewals” anymore. Each and every one is treated as a new applicant. I overheard an old man asking if renewals are being processed and the dude in charge yelled “Wala na pong renewal!” The old guy was about to leave the queue until I explained it to him. Yes, hashtag it’s more fun in the Philippines.
Let’s get to the action! I went to the NBI clearance center in Robinsons Place Otis (RPO) since with what I’ve read in different blogs, RPO is the place with the least queue and fastest processing time. True enough, I got to the place at 8:30am and there were approximately 150 people lined up. I chit-chatted with the people in the line and found out most of us were from QC. The dude next to me said that lines in Robinsons Galleria (RG) starts at 2:00am which is just crazy!
The guard let the people in at exactly 10:00am since that’s the only time the mall opens. He led us to a waiting area which can seat around 100 people. The rest will have to either stand or sit. Some dude will then hand out the application forms for everyone to fill out and the rest is history.
Step 1 is payment (P115.00 for local employment), Step 2 is Data Input, Step 3 is Biometrics and Picture Taking, and Step 4 is Claiming of the Clearance itself.
Sadly, I got a hit which means I would need to go back to redeem my clearance but I was already done by 12:00pm. Which means from start to finish, not counting the waiting time outside the mall, I only spent 2 hours in getting my NBI clearance.
How to get there – RPO is just a stone’s throw away from Toyota Otis and near Santa Mesa. You can always use Google Maps if unsure.
Things to remember:
- Be there early. The mall opens at 10:00am but queue starts at around 6:00am. Based on what the other people said, it somehow goes like this:
If you arrive 6:00am to 8:00am, you will be between the 1st and 100th person in line; 8:00am to 9:00am 101st to 250th. If you arrive around 10:00am, chances are you will be processed after lunch.
- Bring your own pen, a book to read while waiting/music player (I’d prefer a book so you would have something to write on when they hand out the application forms), cash (of course), 1 valid ID is enough.
- There are food stalls between the waiting area and the actual NBI clearance center so you won’t have to worry about starving to death.
- The only place open in the early hours is Starbucks, I’m not sure if they’ll let you use their restroom but there’s a restroom near the escalator on the 2nd floor once they start letting people in.
- Bring a friend who needs an NBI clearance of his/her own, or talk to people. This is for the purpose of saving your spot as there are no numbers given out during the whole process. There are people who do cut in so be careful.