Complete Guide to Car Registration & Renewal in the Philippines

Last Updated on – Sep 23, 2020 @ 8:28 pm

Owning a car comes with its own set of responsibilities. And one of them is making sure it is registered each year.

Based on my own experience, it was a pretty uneventful affair. Which was a good thing. In this article, we’ll share some of the most important things to keep in mind to make renewing your car’s registration as smooth as possible.

What is a Motor Vehicle Registration?

In the Philippines, a car or motor vehicle registration is basically a process used by the government to establish a link between vehicles and its owners/users – through registered plate numbers. And it is mandated by the Land Transportation Office of the Philippines.

Related: How to Get (or Renew) a Driver’s License in the Philippines


LTO Car Registration Process (for Brand New Vehicles)

The following instructions apply for registering a brand new, locally assembled/manufactured and imported Completely Built Units (CBU).

In the Philippines, the registration of brand new cars is typically handled by the dealer. However, if you would like or need to handle it yourself, here are the steps.

Step 1: Bring all the required documents

Here are the car registration requirements for brand new cars (Locally, Imported, Registration of Light Electric Vehicle (LEV) (AO-2006-01), Registration of Low-Speed Vehicle (LSV), Three Wheeled Vehicle, Tax Exempt):

  • Original Sales Invoice
  • Appropriate Insurance Certificate of Cover
  • Original Certificate of Stock Reported (CSR)
  • Original PNP-HPG MV Clearance Certificate
  • Tax Identification ID

For imported vehicles (purchased outside of the Philippines), here are the requirements (via CarMudi):

  • Commercial Invoice of 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-TMG MV Clearance Certificate
  • Duly accomplished and approved Motor Vehicle Inspection Report (MVIR)
  • Appropriate insurance certificate cover
  • Valid Certificate of Public Convenience duly confirmed by the LTFRB, in case of for hire MV’s
  • Taxpayer’s Identification Number (TIN)

Step 2: Visit the nearest LTO office.

Proceed to the appropriate transaction counter.


Step 3: Submit all required documents.

The evaluator will assess the documents and compute the fees.


Step 4: Submit the MVIR you completed.

Have your vehicle tested for emissions. Obtain all the necessary documents containing the results.


Step 5: Pay all the necessary fees at the cashier.

Get your OR (official receipt).


Step 6: Wait for your name to be called on the Releasing Counter to get the Certificate of Registration (CR), plates and stickers.


When to Renew your Car’s Registration?

Your car’s license plate number is your guide. 

To determine when you are supposed to renew your vehicle’s registration, the LTO utilized your plate number’s digits. 

The last digit determines the month when your car was registered. Here’s a table of LTO’s monthly schedule for car registration renewal :

Your Plate Number’s Last DigitMonth your car should be registered
1January
2February
3March
4April
5May
6June
7July
8August
9September
0October

But that’s not all. You should also be aware of the weekly schedule showing the dates of the month you can actually have your car renewed.

For this, check the second-to-the-last digit of your plate number. Here’s a table for reference:

Second-to-the-last digit of plate numberDays of the month you should renew
1, 2, 31, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 (week 1)
4, 5, 68, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 (week 2)
7, 815, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21 (week 3)
9, 022, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31

LTO Car Registration Renewal Process

Renewing your car’s registration is fairly easy.

Recalling from memory from my last renewal, the emission test took the longest. However, the process should be quick after that once you obtain all the necessary documents.

The following is a summary of the general steps required to renew your vehicle’s registration based on LTO’s official website. I included some notes right after documenting the process based on my own experience last year.

Step 1: Complete all the required documents for your Car’s Registration Renewal

The following items will be required to renew your car’s registration:

  • Photocopy of Certificate of Registration (CR) and Official receipt of payment
  • Tax payer’s ID number
  • Certificate of Emission compliance (CEC)
  • Duly accomplished and approved Motor Vehicle Inspection Report (MVIR)
  • Appropriate Insurance Certificate of Cover (COC)
  • Photocopy of Certificate of Registration (CR) and Official receipt of payment

For “For Hire” vehicles, the following additional requirements are required:

  • Confirmation of Franchise from the LTFRB
  • Valid Motorized Tricycle Operator’s Permit (MTOP) for tricycle (TC) only

Related: How to Get a Car Insurance: Top 8 Car Insurance Companies in the Philippines


Step 2: Go to the Nearest LTO Branch

Here’s a list of LTO locations for applying for renewal of registration for your vehicle.

Branch NameAddressContact Number
LTO Diliman1200 East Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City921-9017 or 709-3053
LTO La Loma3 Biak na Bato Street, corner P. Florentino Street, Barangay, Sta. Mesa Heights, Quezon City711-4444 or 416-3052
LTO MakatiButel Bldg., Pililia St., Makati City895-8678 or 897-5198
LTO Las PinasFrancisco Motors Compound, Talon I, Las Piñas City875-2030
LTO MalabonGovernor Pascual Avenue, Malabon City351-7628
LTO NCRNo. 96 Mirasol Street, San Roque, Cubao, Quezon City440-6424 or 356-0708
LTO Mandaluyong121 Shaw Boulevard, Mandaluyong City532-2726
LTO NavotasGen. Gas Plant Bldg., Fishport Complex, North Bay, Navotas City283-3510


Step 3: Go to the transaction counters to submit all the requirements to the evaluator


Step 4: Have the vehicle inspected, provide duly accomplished MVIR

Although, LTO has recently announced that they will no longer require stenciling for new cars for both registration and renewal.


Step 5: Wait for your name to be called on the cashier’s area and pay for all fees and get the original receipt (O.R)

Below are the following fees you need to prepare for renewing your vehicle’s registration:

  • Initial fee: P1,000/category
  • Renewal fee: P400/category
  • Stickers and tags: P50 each
  • Regular plate: P450
  • Tip for the Stencil Aide: P50-P100 (as stenciling aren’t performed by LTO employees)

In case of penalties, here are the Penalty Fees:

  • Late registration: Php100 for motorcycles, Php200 for other vehicles
  • More than a month late (but not beyond 1 year): 50% of MVUC rate plus renewal
  • More than 1 year late but without any apprehension records during this period: 50% of MVUC rate plus renewal
  • More than 1 year late and with apprehension/violation records during this period: 50% of MVUC rate plus renewal for each delinquent year

Step 6: Proceed to the releasing counter and wait for your name to be called.

You will be provided with the Certificate of Registration (CR), plates, and stickers

While the above steps give us a general idea of the process, you’ll notice that the part where you have your vehicle is tested for emission seem to have been skipped.

In my case, the emission test was the first step. Upon arrival at the LTO office in East Ave, I asked the guard where I can park the car, I told him I’ll be renewing my registration. He asked if I had the car tested for emission already, to which I replied “No”.

So he called a guy, which I’ll learn a few seconds later was someone from the emissions center. We drive out of the LTO compound and proceeded to a nearby LTO-accredited emissions testing center. Aside from the actual emissions test, they also offer TPL insurance which I availed.

After getting emission test approval and getting all the corresponding paperwork, including the stencil on the vehicle, I then drove back to LTO’s lot and parked there to finish the remaining steps.

From there it’s simply a matter of submitting all the required documents and going from one window to another to pay and get the necessary receipt and official documents.


NEW: How to Renew LTO Car Registration Online

In June 2020, the LTO has launched an online portal called the Land Transportation Management System (LTMS). The new online portal is meant for scheduling an appointment for renewals of driver’s license and car registration. This is to lessen transaction times in LTO offices and help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

As of this writing, however, the car registration service of the LTMS (https://portal.lto.gov.ph/) is still being pilot tested. Only driver’s license-related transactions are currently available on the new online portal.

According to the LTO, motorists can renew their vehicle registration using the LTMS starting in September 2020.

So for now, car owners may use the LTO Online Personal Appointment & Scheduling System (PASS), which was launched in 2018 and is still working, to set an appointment for car registration renewal.

Step 1: Access the LTO Online PASS.

Go to https://www.lto.net.ph/ and select “LTO Online Appointment” (under the “LTO Online Services” section)

And then choose “Motor Vehicle Renewal Online Appointment”.

This will take you to the Terms of Use page. Read and agree to the terms and conditions. Enter the Captcha code and click the Continue button.


Step 2: Enter your vehicle, personal, and contact information.

Have the following details ready, as you’ll be required to input them in the online form:

  • Your 15-digit MV File Number (found on your Certificate of Registration)
  • At least one of the following details: Plate Number / Chassis Number / Engine Number

You’ll also have to provide your full name, home address, email address, and mobile number.

Double-check your info. If it’s all good, click the Next button.


Step 3: Book your appointment.

Select the LTO office where you want to complete your transaction for vehicle registration renewal. Ideally, the branch is the one closest to your home. Click the Next button.

Then click the Submit button. On the calendar, pick your preferred date and time slot for your LTO transaction. The green boxes indicate available slots. 

Confirm your appointment schedule by clicking the Yes button. You’ll receive a confirmation message from the LTO via email. If it’s not in your inbox, check your Spam folder. 

Click the provided link to confirm your reservation.


Step 4: Prepare for your car registration renewal.

Print the appointment slip that was emailed you. If you have no access to a printer, you may take a screenshot of it using your smartphone, which you’ll present during your appointment schedule.

Gather all your supporting documents for your car registration renewal. You can find the list of requirements in the confirmation email.


Step 5: Renew your vehicle registration at the LTO office.

Go to the LTO branch on your appointment schedule and complete your car registration renewal transaction. Submit the requirements, pay the renewal fee, and claim your new Certificate of Registration, vehicle plates, and stickers.


Quick Tips for Car Registration and Renewal

Here are some quick tips to ensure that you’ll have a hassle-free experience in renewing your car’s registration:

1. Be early to avoid long lines.

You can get through the emission testing and getting your TPL (third-party liability insurance) quicker. There are several ones located nearby that offer these services in most LTO branches.

2. Have your vehicle tested out before your scheduled renewal dates.

Make sure that your vehicle is in top shape, from lights to its engine. As you won’t be able to move on to the succeeding procedures if you fail the inspection.

3. Make sure to have a photocopy of all your requirements/documents before proceeding.

4. Ready your cash before going to LTO.

I personally prepared P5,000 the first time I had to renew my car’s registration, as I didn’t have any idea with all the fees (and penalties, if in case there were).

Good thing that I brought more than enough, as I didn’t realize that I also had to pay for the emission tests and TPL (ranges from P700 – P1,000).

5. Don’t forget to bring your early warning device.

Although, the last time I renewed my car registration, they didn’t bother to check it. But it’s still best to have everything prepared!

6. Don’t pay fixers.

LTO’s process has improved a lot this year, and you won’t really need them.


Car Registration & Renewal FAQs:

Here are some answers to the most common questions about car registration and renewal in the Philippines:

Below are some of the most frequently asked questions related to car registration in the Philippines:

1. How long is the initial registration good for?

The initial registration is good for 3 years. After that, you are required by law to renew it annually.

2. Can I request for change of my plate number?

No. By law, it cannot be changed within the vehicle’s lifetime. It’s only allowed when there’s a change in denomination of the vehicle’s registration type (private to for-hire, government or private)

3. I’m late with my registration. How much will be the fine?

It depends on how long you are late. There’s a weekly fee of 200.00 that accumulates until you renew. If you’re late for more than a month, you’ll pay 50% of the MVUC (Motor Vehicle’s User’s Charge)

4. I plan on buying a second-hand car. How will I know if it’s OR/CR is legit?

Visit the LTO office in East Avenue and have the OR/CR checked for authenticity

5. I lost my OR/CR. How can I obtain a duplicate copy?

Get a notarized affidavit of loss for the OR/CR. Visit the LTO office where you have it originally registered and present the affidavit. Present 2 valid IDs. Your request will be processed upon presenting these requirements.

6. How can I request for a duplicate plate or sticker?

Visit the nearest LTO branch and present the following:
– Original Affidavit of loss/mutilation
– Certified True Copy of CR / Original CR
– Certified True Copy of OR/Original OR of latest payment of MVUC and other fees
– Duly accomplished and approved Motor Vehicle Inspection Report (MVIR)
– Proof of Payment (OR) for the cost of replacement plate/duplicate plate / lost sticker
– (In case of For-Hire MVs ) Certification from LTFRB that plates have not been surrendered
– (In case of sole proprietorship) Secretary’s Certificate in case of MV is in the name of a corporation or DTI certificate
– PNP-HPG clearance

Read Next: Car Loans: How to Get Approved Fast in the Philippines [Complete Guide]

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About Amiel Pineda

Amiel is the lead business & finance columnist of Grit PH. He escaped from the shackles of BPO life and now pursues his dream of writing full time. He shares his best tips and insights for aspiring homebased workers and freelancers on his site: Homebased Pinoy

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Sonny Ison says

    Will an expire car insurance can be an issue in my car registration renewal?
    Due to financial issue, I did not renew my car insurance last year July 2018.

    • says

      Hi Sonny,

      No – you’ll just need a TPL insurance to get your registration renewed – it costs around P800 – P1,000 for the entire year. You can find some TPL providers near most LTO branches, just ask the guards (that’s what I did last time I renewed mine’s).

    • dex trin says

      hello! thank u for the detailed information.
      i just have a question though. we just had our car’s registration renewal, and we were not issued new CR. should we have been issued a new CR?

  2. George Amoroso says

    Hi Amiel. My car had been registered last feb 22,2016 by the car dealer.its been 3 years now. And my conduction sticker is 1608. Shall i renew it now or shall i based it on my conduction sticker last digit number 8.which will be on august 2019? Thank you very much

      • Fred says

        Hi. I havent renewed my registration for 3years. How much would it cost? It states that(More than 1 year late but without any apprehension records during this period: 50% of MVUC rate plus renewal) Does 50% of my registration would be the penalty? Or does it mean 50% of registration per year? Thank you

      • jerald lik says

        can i ask for something my cars first registration dated November 2019 and my plate number is ending is 4 what would be my next step?

  3. Dan Diamante says

    Hi. I bought my brand new motorcycle in October 2017 and paid in full. The dealer had it registered initially on the same month and year. Since initial registration is good for 3 years, does it mean that I still have until October 2020 to renew my registration? Because just a few days ago when a police officer checked my OR-CR at a checkpoint, he saw the date on my OR and told me that it was already more than one year expired (or something like that) and that I’m in violation of something and wanted to give me a ticket. I didn’t know what to do so I told him that if he lets me go, I will go straight to LTO and register but I didn’t. Now, I’m afraid of checkpoints because the officer took note of my license details and told me that the next time he saw me and I still haven’t renewed my registration that my penalty would already be doubled. Do I really have to renew my registration now? What should I do? Thanks.

    • says

      Hey Dan,

      Yes, you should have a valid registration for three years. Have you checked back with your dealer to ask about your registration? I think you should ask them about it too, just to make sure that you have it registered until 2020.

    • Tony says

      Very informative…
      Choosing simple and easy to understand terms makes this blog highly recommended for newbies.
      May the writer continue to create new write ups. 2 👍🏼 up

      • Ralph says

        That is not correct Dan. 3 years only applies to new cars, not new motorcycles. New motorcycles registrations are only good for 1 year.

  4. Jay says

    Hi, I’m process of buying a quality second hand vehicle, what is required to change ownership and approximately what transfer costs?, the previous owner has just recently registered it

  5. Bobby says

    Hi, my car issued last 2016 November with the conduction sticker last digit number (8) eight and now my plate number has been issued to last number “1” one. Which one they will follow, the conduction sticker or the new plate number? Thanks in advance for your reply.

    • Carlo says

      My brother’s car is on installment,5 yrs,,inclusive of 3yrs paid registration,on its 4th yr I was asked to register the car,,what O.R and C.R should I bring to the LTO,the one issued by the bank,that provided the installment plan or the one issued by the car company,the 2 car registration issued by the bank and car company bore different C.R numbers..

  6. bernard john marquez says

    Hi.
    Good day,
    how much is the total cost of car renewal, emission and TPL insurance?
    and is there any hidden charges?
    thank you in advance.

    • says

      From what I can remember when I renewed my car registration last year, I brought around 5K just to be sure, but only spent around 3K (TPL costs P900 – P1000, just ask the guards, there are TPL insurance offices nearby LTO). Emission testing around P500. And the fees for the actual processing for your car registration renewal wouldn’t even reach 1K (if I remember it correctly).

  7. says

    Hi Jason, Just got confused. Was reading through some Q&A’s. Could you confirm if they would follow the new plate or conduction plate?

    as per prev Q&A with the same scenario but diff answers.

    “Hi Amiel. My car had been registered last feb 22,2016 by the car dealer.its been 3 years now. And my conduction sticker is 1608. Shall i renew it now or shall i based it on my conduction sticker last digit number 8.which will be on august 2019? Thank you very much

    Reply
    jasonacidre says

    February 25, 2019 at 4:04 pm

    Yes, George. That’d be last week of August 2019.”

    • Georgia says

      My car was registered aug 15, 2016 by distributor with plate number 3451, will i renew the registration on jan 2020?

    • Ryan says

      Mine is april 2016, and ending of conduction number is 9. Lto told me that i need to renew last april 2019, so im paying the penalty now..

      • Gee says

        My car also was registered July 2016. My plate ends in 4. Based on previous vehicles we had, it should be renewed this April 2020. Have they changed rules now?

  8. Jt says

    hi jason,
    I got my car in Apr. Of 2016 and is scheduled for registrati0n this year. i already got my plate n0. W/c ends in 7. W/c am0ng the two am i going to follow, the 3 years free registrati0n w/c ended last m0nth or the last digit of my plate? TIA

      • philip macapagal says

        i was not able to register my car last march because i was not able to use it due to a busted computer box and was only replaced this dec. can i still register it or just wait for nxt yr.?

      • Ryan Lualhati says

        Our car was registered November 2016 but then the plate number we got ends in 64 (for April 2nd week registration renewal). Since the 3 yrs registration would expire November 2019, I tried to set online appointment for November 2019 but can’t get a schedule and “was not due for registration” according to the LTO site. I called LTO Lipa which told me that our registration is “still valid” until April 2020, extending in to 5 months. We simply can’t register it in November 2019. We now have scheduled online appointment for February 2020 (you can renew 2 months prior to what the plate number indicates). I called the LTO hotline and told me we should have gone to LTO NCR (where it was originally registered) to correct this mismatch last November. This was in contadictory of what LTO Lipa told us, that we can renew anywhere. Now I still feel uneasy if there will be late registration renewal penalties.

  9. Johann Liebert says

    Hello, I had my car registered by the dealer on March 2017. I’ve got the new plate with 2nd to the last and last digits 86 which means I should register every 3rd week of June. Could you please enlighten me if I have to renew my registration June this year(2019) as the existing 3 year registration will expire March of 2020?
    Thank you.

  10. Rudy de los Reyes says

    Hi. My car was wrecked in an accident and is at the Casa undergoing repairs. How may I renew its registration if I cannot bring the car to LTO?

    Thanks for your help.
    Rudy

  11. Benjo says

    Hi Sir. Can I renew my registration sa province? nabili kasi namin siya dito sa manila. since sakto sa renewal pag uwi namin this august ng province pwede ba dun na lang namin irenew? NC* ung plate namin.

  12. Jenny Aguilar says

    Hello sir, i have a car in the Philippines and currently I’m residing in the US. That car’s 3yr registration is about to expire but i cant come home to renew it. Can my girlfriend renew it for me even if she is not the owner of the car? I would appreciate your answer, thanks! And another question is do i need to get a comprehensive insurance to be able to renew the car registration after the insurance expires? Or the basic insurance will work?

  13. norbert says

    i register my vehicle august 2015 and renewed it every august until august 2019 the plate no is released but it ends in 2.
    meaning it is expiring again on february?
    i dont think thats right
    does LTO doesnt consider your first time registration

  14. Mark Agas says

    Hey bro,
    My car was released last Nov 2016 and the last number of my plate number is 4. Should I suppose to renew my registration last April?

  15. Richard says

    How can I accomplish MVIR? What shall I do to have it? Is this service already available in any LTO offices nationwide? Thank you for the help.

  16. jenjoe says

    Hi, I bought a surplus car and it was almost 2 years already but still I dont have the plate no. everytime I ask them about it but they are keep on making same excuse that the LTO branch where they registered that vihicle is too far, They already took the original CR and OR to claim for it but still they dont have it and i dont Know if they consider it as one of thier priorities .
    Can you give any helpful advice in this matters, or should I raise complain against this japanese surplus? and if possible to raise a complain what would might be.

    Please help,

  17. che says

    where i can get true certified copy or cr REGISTRATION of car loan which is LTO need it so i can renew my car.

  18. eliz cornelio says

    Hi! Does the LTO online portal allows cashless payment for renewal of motor vehicle registration?

    • Marikina boy says

      Hi, My uncle finished the Emission testing last week and we’re going to LTO Branch tomorrow for the the actual registration.

      So we don’t need to bring the car tomorrow???

      I don’t really want my uncle to drive my parent’s car. Mainly because he’s not really good at it(mayabang lang pero mahina) and he is reckless driver(too many to mention). But my Mom doesn’t want me to drive the car either because she knows that I literally race(but in Private Road and I’m a law compliant) she just doesn’t want to trust me even tho I’m the most experienced driver in our family.

  19. tatay digong says

    Worthless system. While Covid is still here, Why not renew car online with the ability to pay credit /debit card. No need to go to LTO . MVIS inspection is a reflection how this agency is so corrupt. This government is full ot $hit.

  20. Neil says

    Hi question, we recently bought a new Motorcycle (in cash) and we were told by the dealer that regardless if its cash or installment, the processing time for the registration is 4-5months. Can anyone confirm if its the normal processing time? Thank you

  21. Gil says

    Anu po ba ang reason bakit kailangan ang mga sasakyan sa Pilipinas dapat iparehistro sa LTO kada taon ? Di ba pwedeng ipakansela ang registro ng sasakyan kung di nmn gagamitin para walang penalty. Halimbawa nasira ang sasakyan at natambak ng maraming taon. O kya nmn nasa garahe lng for restoration. Meron po bng ganyan na option sa LTO? Salamat po sa makakasagot.

  22. Kristine Molina says

    Hi Jason,
    My car’s was initially registered Jan 2018, conduction sticker ends with 1 and my plate with 8. Should I register Jan 2021 or Aug 2021?
    Also, do I need to bring the car on registration? So it looks like I only need to bring OR/CR (photocopy) and the rest can be bought/accomplished during registration correct?

    Thanks,
    Kristine

    • says

      Hi Kristine,

      Your’s would be on August (official plate).

      I just had my car’s registration renewed this year, and yeah, there’s no need to bring your car. Not entirely sure if they totally removed the stencilling as part of the requirements (as previously announced by LTO), or just due to the pandemic. They only required the usual documents (OR/CR, emission testing results, and TPL).

  23. Apascaa says

    Hi! Do you know if we can renew our registrations “anywhere” near? Originally registered for example in Mandaluyong and you moved to Marikina, can the renewal be in Marikina instead?

  24. Michaela says

    Thank you for this article I think it is helpful. I just wanted to drop a question regarding the ‘Appropriate Insurance Certificate of Cover (COC)’ for the MV renewal requirement, if I already have comprehensive insurance will that be good to cover for this requirement?

  25. Jaizelle says

    Due to pandemic, I was not able to renew my Car Registration last October. IF I renew today, how much will it costs me including this year’s Registration fee. Thank you.

  26. Vernie says

    Hello..How much money have you spent in all for the registration? Ours will be expired next month and searching for possible amount😊 I hope my question will be answered. Thanks🤗

    • says

      Can’t remember the exact amount, I brought P5,000 just to make sure, but I think I spent less than P2,500 for emission testing, TPL insurance (which was around 1K – but I think depends on the size of your vehicle), and the actual car registration renewal fees.

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