A Comprehensive Guide to Renewing Your Driver’s License

Renewing your PH Driver’s License now can take as short as 30 minutes or less. Here’s how.

Despite the many trials and tribulations brought about by the LTO, you cannot deny that they’ve been improving gradually over the years. There was a time when getting a driver’s license meant that you had to camp out early in the morning in front of the LTO office like a concertgoer if you didn’t want to go through a fixer. I was part of the generation where there wasn’t even proof of driving needed when getting your license and you needed to have a drug test as part of screening. It was also the time when getting flagged down by an enforcer sometimes meant they’d confiscate your car plates, depending on the severity of the charge.

Thankfully now it has improved a lot. Probably the biggest hassle was the shortage of actual plastic cards. I effectively “lost” an official ID because they only provided paper copies after this renewal. Currently, you can now claim your plastic cards from the LTO office by showing your official receipt.

Nowadays, the act of renewing your driver’s license is the easiest it has ever been. If you prepare beforehand, you can now finish everything in 30 minutes, possibly an hour depending on the number of people doing their business aside from you.

Preparing for your Driver’s License Renewal

You need to do these before going to the LTO office. It will save you lots of time:

  1. Take the CDE Online Validation Exam in the LTMS. There is a reviewer on the site to help you prepare. Although, you can actually search for the answers on Google while the exam is going on. You need to have a passing score (>50%) to be eligible to renew. There are PCs in the LTO office if you want to take them there, but more often than not it is a hassle because there would likely be a queue to use them.
  2. Take note of your LTO Client Number (your login in LTMS) and your CDE exam score. Better if you could print your certificate or take a screenshot of both.
  3. Bring a pen and cash. You will need Php 500 for the medical assessment and Php 585 for the renewal fee. The cashier only takes cash and doesn’t support any other payment methods.
  4. Wear pants and shoes. As LTO is a government office, they are strict with the dress code.
  5. Plan which LTO office to go to. Check if there is an accredited clinic nearby first, and also check how busy the office is on the day you plan to go. Plan to go to alternate locations if needed.

Steps for Driver’s License Renewal

  1. Go to the LTO-accredited clinic to have your medical assessment. Accomplish the forms they will be providing and pay Php 500 for the service.
  2. During the assessment, they will be getting your height and weight, testing your sight and hearing, and asking you about some disorders that may affect your driving. Expect to have eye tests, including those for color blindness and spatial hearing (pointing to where the sound is coming from two separate speakers).
  3. After the tests, wait for your assessment results.
  4. Once you have the results, you can now go to the LTO office. Accomplish the form they will be providing and don’t forget to put in your LTO client number and CDE score, or attach the certificate if you printed it. Submit the form, the medical results, and your old license.
  5. Once submitted, they will process it and you will need to pay the cashier. They will also be asking you if you want to update your biometrics.
  6. You will be receiving your new driver’s license and your LTMS will also be updated. You will be receiving a soft copy and a QR code of your license.

How much did I spend on the driver’s license renewal?

As of this writing, you need Php 1085 in total. The medical assessment costs Php 500, while the renewal fee is Php 585.

Some Other Notes

  • You may be eligible for an upgrade to a 10-year valid license if:
    • You have no traffic violation recorded in the LTMS
    • You passed the CDE Exam
    • You renewed before your license expiration date
  • If you received a paper version of the license, keep a soft copy on your phone and also the QR code just in case you need to show it to traffic enforcers. While there is no actual ID, you also need the official receipt as your proof.
  • Once the plastic ID is available you can visit your LTO office to have it printed. Please bring your official receipt with you.


I talked about how to have your PH driver’s license renewed in around 30 minutes. You need to take the CDE Exam beforehand and take note of your LTO client id and score. On the day itself, go to the LTO-accredited clinic to have your assessment. Then submit this assessment to the LTO office including your old license. The wait time to process and to pay may vary, but without any major interruptions, you can finish in record time.

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