In the Philippines, the OFW ID, known as the OFW e-Card, is a valid identification document for overseas Filipino workers. You can use the card to facilitate transactions with the Office of the Overseas Workers Welfare Administration. If you don’t know how to get this OFW ID card, in this article we will show you a complete guide on the requirements and how to get an OFW ID.

What Is an OFW ID Card?

The OFW e-Card is a physical identification card that can be used to access OWWA ‘s services, such as scholarship applications, training and other benefits. It contains your basic information, such as the OFW id number, full name, date of birth, sex, photo, date of issue and place of birth. When you hold this ID card, you can enjoy many benefits:

  • You can enjoy faster transactions with OWWA.
  • You can use this card as a valid government ID.
  • It is a permanent identification number.
  • When you leave the country, it is your exit clearance, proving that you are a legitimate OFW.

Who Are Eligible for OFW E-Card?

To obtain the OFW E-Card, you must be an OFW under the Blik Manggagawa (Returning Worker) program with an active OWWA membership. For example, you are Filipinos who have recently completed or are currently completing your offshore employment contracts and are ready to work with the same employers. To apply for the OFW E-card, you must meet the following eligibility requirements.

  • You have an active OWWA membership for more than 90 days.
  • You have a valid passport.
  • You have a valid OEC, OFW Pass or an OEC exemption number. 

If you are a direct hire, new hire, or employee of the Government Placement Branch or GBP, you are not eligible to apply for an OFW ID card.

Requirements for OFW ID Card Application

If you are eligible for an OFW ID card, you must prepare all necessary documents for the OFW ID card application before you can apply for an ID card. The following are the requirements:

  • A valid Overseas Employment Certificate or Exemption Number
  • A valid passport
  • A completed OFW ID card application form
  • A recent 2×2 photo taken within 6 months
  • In addition, your OWWA membership must be active, or still active, for the next three months.

How to Get an OFW ID Card Online

After you have prepared all the necessary documents, you can apply for the OFW ID card online. However, the OFW eCard application page on the OWWA website is not working at the time of writing as it is undergoing the transition from the old system to the new system. So you need to visit OWWA’s local office close to your home in person. Here you can follow the steps below and get your OFW card. 

  • You must visit OWWA’s regional office with all the required documents.
  • Tell the officer that you want to apply for an OFW card
  • Complete the application form provided by the officer.
  • Submit the application form and other required documents.
  • They will process your application and send you the tracking number. 
  • Pick up your physical OFW card at the OWWA regional office when it is done.

If the online application page for the OFW e-card works, it is faster for you to complete the application and obtain the digital OFW card. Here you can follow the steps below and complete the online application of the OFW e-card when the online application system is running.

owwa website
  • You must visit the OFW e-card application page on the OWWA website.
  • Provide basic information and the necessary requirements, such as membership ID, passport, and digital photo.
  • You need to select the OWWA regional office where you want to collect your ID. 
  • Click “Accept Data Privacy” and check the CAPTCHA box
  • After you have checked all the information, you can submit the application.
  • Once done, you can copy the tracking number to check the status of the application.
  • You can type the Facebook profile link if the system asks, or you can provide the email address.
  • If you receive a message from OWWA, you can go to the OWWA regional office and get your ID.

How to Get an OFW ID Card Outside the Philippines

If you are currently outside the Philippines, you can apply for an OFW e-card when you meet the requirements. Here you can follow the tips below and obtain your OFW ID card in other countries. You can ask your family or relative to claim it on your behalf by giving them an authorization letter along with a copy of your passport information page. When your authorized representative claims your OFW e-Card, they must also provide a valid photo ID. They must bring their required documents and submit the application form to the POEA Regional Office.

Process Time & Fee for OFW ID Card

Regardless of whether you are applying for the OFW ID Card in the Philippines or outside the Philippines, it is free for first-time applicants. The processing time is usually two weeks. However, it may take longer to receive it when you are abroad. The online application process time for ID cards may be delayed due to application loads and a shortage of officers.

How to Track the OFW ID Card Status

After you submit the OFW ID card application, you will receive the tracking number from the regional office. You can track the status of the OFW ID on the OWWA tracking system. However, it is not working now because it is still being updated. When the website overhaul is running, you can follow the steps below and track the status of the application.

owwa tracking system
  • You need to visit the ID tracking page on OWWA website.
  • You need to enter your tracking number.
  • You are then required to complete the CAPTCHA test.
  • You can click submit and get the result.
  • The result will be displayed on the page telling you whether the ID card is ready for release or not. 

If your ID is ready to be collected, you can now visit your nominated regional office at opening time to obtain it. If your application does not go through, you can reapply for it. Before applying, you must correct the error that caused your application to be rejected.

How to Renew OFW ID & OWWA Membership

If your OWWA membership is no longer active or your OFW ID has expired, you must renew it as soon as possible. You cannot apply for the OFW ID if your OWWA membership is not valid. Here you can follow the methods below to reactivate your OWWA membership.

log in owwa app
  • You can activate OWWA membership through the OWWA website or mobile app or by visiting an OWWA office near you. (If you are abroad).
renew owwa membership using an app
  • You need to complete the OWWA form. 
fill out the owwa membership renewal form
  • You must prepare the required documents, such as proof of employment and a copy of your Oath Certificate.
pay for owwa membership renewal
  • After your requirements have been assessed, you will receive an email with payment instructions.
owwa payment instructions
  • After you complete the payment, your membership will be activated immediately.

Benefits of OFW e-Card

When you have the OFW e-Card, you can enjoy many benefits. Here you can check the list below:

  • A government-issued identification card can be used to prove your identity.
  • It can be used as an exit clearance when you want to go to another country.
  • You can enjoy discounts on products and special promotions.
  • You can enjoy priority access to OWWA Services.
  • You can easily access programs and events.
  • The OWWA/OFW membership number is permanent. 
  • Eligible to apply for the OWWA scholarship if your kids meet certain requirements.


➡️ How long is OWWA membership valid? 

OWWA membership is valid for 2 years. If it has expired, you must renew it as soon as possible. Because you are not allowed to apply for the OFW e-card if your OWWA membership is not valid.

➡️ What to do if I lose my OFW ID card?

If you lose the OFW ID card or it is damaged, you must renew it immediately. You can visit the local office to apply for a new one.

➡️ Will the OFW e-Card be delivered?

No. You must pick up the OFW e-Card at the OWWA Regional Office near you. Therefore, once the card is completed, you must visit the office with your valid document to pick it up.

➡️ Is the OFW ID Free? 

If you are applying for the OFW for the first time, it is completely free. However, if your OFW ID gets lost or stolen, you need to pay for the application renewal.


In conclusion, it is important for you to know the requirements and benefits of the OFW card. You must prepare all necessary documents when applying for OFW ID to avoid rejection of the application. For Filipinos working overseas, you should keep your OFW card in a safe place to avoid the re-apply process.

By Erin Lo

My passion lies in the intersection of technology and storytelling, and I'm thrilled to explore the world of AI and its impact on passport photography. I strive to make complex concepts easy to grasp for readers, sharing the wonders of AI in our everyday lives. Beyond writing, I find inspiration in art, diverse cuisines, and outdoor adventures. Contributing to AiPassportPhotos' innovative approach is an exciting journey, making passport photos and more creative pictures simpler and more efficient through the power of AI.