The Overseas Workers Welfare Administration (OWWA), a hands-on agency for the labor department, launched the OFW e-CARD. This identification card was designed to improve the delivery of government services to Overseas Filipino workers. The OWWA OFW e-CARD is a response to President Rodrigo Duterte’s directive to further serve our modern heroes–the OFWs.
Also Read: OWWA Mobile App Registration Guide
The OWWA OFW e-CARD serves as proof of active OWWA membership and allows easy access to OWWA’s welfare services, scholarships, training programs, as well as social benefits that an OWWA member can get. So it’s not just a government-issued ID, it has a lot of purposes.
According to OWWA’s Administrator, the OWWA OFW e-CARD allows instant verification of OWWA membership and reduces documentary requirements, which is very time-consuming. This is considered as the first phase of the coverage of the 250,000 Balik-Manggagawa actions of the government. The OFW e-CARD includes a unique OFW membership number and QR code as security features to prevent data breaches.
OWWA members can apply for an OFW e-CARD by visiting the OWWA website at www.owwa.gov.ph and presenting an authorization letter and a copy of the OFW’s passport identification page when they return to the Philippines or through a family member. All Balik-Manggagawa OFWs with an active OWWA membership, a valid Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC), and a valid passport are eligible for the OFW e-CARD.
OFWs may present their OFW e-CARD at any OWWA Regional Welfare Office in the country, as well as at Philippine Overseas Labor Offices and Embassies/Consulates in their workplaces, to access OWWA programs and services. OWWA has also established OFW e-CARD Help Desks in all of its regional offices across the country, as well as overseas posts around the world, to address OFWs’ questions and concerns.
The OWWA e-CARD will benefit OFWs in many ways since, it’s not only for proving their identities, but it also allows every member to have easier access to different OWWA programs wherever country they are.
- Easier access to OWWA programs and services.
- It will be accepted as a valid government-issued ID.
- The OFW ecard will be accepted as a valid exit clearance.
- It will function as a Digital OWWA OFW ecard on the OWWA Mobile App.
This e-CARD can also serve as a valid ID for the POEA (Philippine Overseas Employment Administration), DFA (Department of Foreign Affairs), OWWA, Bureau of Immigration, and Philippine Overseas Labor Offices (POLO).
- Must be an active member of OWWA
- Must be under the Balik-Manggagawa program with valid overseas employment certificates (OECs).
- Valid Overseas Employment Certificate (OEC) or Exemption Number
- Valid passport
Note: Your OWWA membership must have at least 90 days of validity from the day of your application of OWWA OFW e-CARD.
How to Apply for an OWWA OFW eCard
The process of applying for the eCard is quite easy. You simply need to fill out the OFW card application form online, get the tracking number, and then pick up the eCard when it is ready. Please follow the steps below for your reference:
STEP 1. Visit the website and fill out the online application form.
Visit OWWA’s official website at ecard.owwa.gov.ph and fill out the OWWA E-Card Application form. Here are some of the details you need to provide:
- Full name
- Contact Number
- Passport Number
- POEA OEC Number
- Collection Point)
STEP 2: Get the tracking application number.
Following the submission of the OWWA E-card application, a tracking confirmation will be provided. It usually takes 3-4 weeks to be ready for pickup. To check the status of the OWWA E-Card, go to the website for e-availability. Enter the necessary information
- Tracking Number
- Passport Number
- Birth Date
STEP 3: Collect the OFW eCard at your location of choice.
When the OWWA E-Card is ready to be picked up, go to the nearest pickup location.
How to Get OFW eCard Online
- Go to the OWWA OFW ecard Application Page
- Enter and fill out all the required information.
- Select your pick-up location.
- Please submit your application.
- As proof that you have successfully submitted an OWWA application for the OFW ecard, you will be given a Tracking Number.
- To receive a notification or update on the status of your application, enter your email address.
- After receiving notification, you can now pick up your OWWA OFW e-CARD at your preferred OWWA Regional Office.
OFW ECard Application Form
You only need to access the OFW ecard application form online in order to sign up. You can easily access this via the link here – https://ecard.owwa.gov.ph/
Please check out the screenshot below of the eCard online form:
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some common questions and answers about the OFW e-Card so please be guided accordingly:
1. Is the OFW e-Card a free service?
The e-card is free and can be claimed at any OWWA regional office nationwide upon return to the Philippines.
2. Can a member of my family apply for it?
A family member may also apply for it if they bring an authorization letter and a copy of the OFW’s passport identification page.
3. Is it possible for new OFWs to apply for an OFW e-Card?
As of this moment, only OWWA OFW under Balik-Manggagawa can issue can apply for an e-CARD. Maybe in the future, it will become available to all their active members.
4. Who are Considered as Balik Manggagawa?
Balik Manggagawa, according to POEA, is an OFW with a completed or active employment contract who:
- Will work for the same company in a similar location abroad.
- Will work for the same company in a new location abroad.
Note: Employees hired recently, directly, or through the Government Placement Branch (GPB) are not considered Balik Manggagawa.
5. Can I get my OWWA OFW eCard even if I’m abroad?
Yes, you can claim your eCard while abroad. You may ask family members and have them present an authorization letter with a photocopy of a proper valid ID. They may claim the card on your behalf.
6. What if I lose my OFW eCard?
The first issuance of the card is FREE. Please coordinate with the nearest OWWA Regional welfare office in order to secure a replacement for your OWWA OFW eCard.
The first rollout of e-cards is expected to benefit an estimated 250,000 Balik Manggagawa workers. Since OFWs are the country’s new modern hero, they deserve faster transactions or services when it comes to accessing their memberships and programs.
This e-CARD proves that OWWA is joining the digital world’s innovation, which can then give a positive impact on many OFWs around the globe. Never miss the chance to get this e-Card because it’s not just an ordinary government-issued ID, it has all the means for convenience. The good thing is there are no bulky documentation or requirements for applying or getting an e-CARD. This one is completely free!