How to Register Your Vehicle in the Philippines

So you got your new vehicle, a car or even a motorcycle--now what? You have to make your ownership formal and official by registering your ride. But how do you register your new vehicle in the Philippines? Carmudi PH has compiled the step-by-step process to register your vehicle in the Philippines.

Ready your papers

Car documents ©[/caption>

Most brand-new car owners let their dealers take care of car registration to save time and hassle. However, if you prefer to do it yourself, the first thing you need to do is to prepare the necessary documents needed in order to register your car. Based on the 2018 requirements set by the Land Transportation Office (LTO), you should have the following documents for car registration:

  • Commercial invoice of Motor Vehicle (MV) issued by the country of origin

  • Bill of Lading

  • BOC Certificate of Payment

  • Certificate of Stock Reported (CSR)

  • Sales invoice of the MV

  • PNP-TG MV Clearance Certificate

  • Duly accomplished and approved Motor Vehicle Inspection Report (MVIR)

  • Appropriate Insurance Certificate of Cover (COC)

  • Valid Certificate of Public Convenience duly confirmed by the LTFRB, in case of for hire Mvs

  • Valid Motorized Tricycle Operators Permit (MTOP) for TC only

  • Taxpayer’s Identification Number (TIN)

Carmudi PH has listed some of the more popular car insurance companies in this post. Do note that LTO requires you to have a CTPL of at least P950.

Know your schedule based on the plate number

Philippine license plates ©[/caption>

If you bought a second-hand vehicle from a used car or used motorcycle dealership, you are not allowed to change its license plate. This rule is under the provisions of the Batas Pambansa Blg. 43: An Act Providing Number Plates to Owners of Motor Vehicles and Trailers.

This basically means that the car’s license plate is meant to stay with it for its lifetime. However, reclassifying your car- from government to private, or from private to “for hire”, etc. is permissible. When renewing or registering a used car under your name, your schedule is based on the license plate number:

Plate Number’s Last Digit Month
1 January
2 February
3 March
4 April
5 May
6 June
7 July
8 August
9 September
0 October

Plate Number’s Middle Digit Weekly Deadline (Working Days of the Month)
1,2,3 1st to 7th day
4,5,6 8th to 14th day
7,8 15th to 21st day
9,0 22nd until last day of the month

Do note, however, that practices in the Philippines do not necessarily require re-registration of a used car under your name. Most of the time, a deed of sale will suffice.

Stencils, Emission testing

Smoke emission testing center ©[/caption>

Going to the LTO requires preparation for the long lines ahead inside their office; bringing snacks is preferable. Then head to the emission testing center (or have it accredited at any emission center) and pay the emission fee of P460. Stencilling is also part of the LTO service or of the government affiliated emission firm. It is usually free (unless you give the LTO personnel a tip).

Car testing usually takes around an hour to an hour and a half. Get the results before going to the next stage.

Present your documents

LTO office Philippines ©[/caption>

Go to the LTO inspector officer, who upon showing your emission test papers, will show you to the LTO cashier. Give the teller your documents (OR, CR, CTPL, emission result) and let it be processed. Wait for your number to be called and pay the registration fee, which will be based on the type of vehicle, class, and weight.

Remember to always follow the LTO deadline discussed above, as a late registration can cost you a penalty of PHP200 if you have missed your deadline by a week. However, if your payment is delayed by more than a month, the LTO will fine you a 50 percent MV User Charge (MVUC).

Do note that you can also renew or register at any LTO District Office in another district, say for convenience sake (i.e. shorter lines). However, you need to pay PHP100 for change of venue of your vehicle registration.

Motorcycle registration fee

Registering your motorcycle also follows the same procedure. However, their fees can be different, depending on your TPL provider and the LTO office location. One motorcycle registrant in Lucena, for example, posted his payment as follows:

Emission test P450
TPL (tricycle) P700
LTO registration fee P442
Change venue P100
Total P1,692