It might be common knowledge and not new, but I found out only today. If/when your Filipina GF/Asawa/other family members wish to apply for a Schengen visa, they do not need to show up in person at VFS (the visa service organisation) in person IF they applied for a Schengen visa in person less than 59 months ago already and had their fingerprints and picture taken at that occasion. In that situation, you can then use the services of an agent to apply. Saves a lot of money and hassle I would assume, not having to fly to Manila, stay at hotel etc. So next time I'll bring the family to Europe (hopefully next year) the visa application should hopefully be a lot smoother.