The passport application process is usually not as quick and effortless as we’d like. Passport delays are a popular problem, potentially affecting travel plans. But – there are some things to do that can save you the trouble of a prolonged passport application process and even get you your passport quicker. In this article, you’ll discover the best 11 tips for getting your passport as fast as possible. The tips result from the findings from a survey conducted by a passport photo service Passport Photo Online.
It might seem like a basic tip, but in reality, many people leave their applications for the last possible moment. Sure, this way, your passport will be valid for a longer time after your trip, but is it really worth it? Last-minute applications are risky, with many things potentially going wrong – which can even lead to a canceled trip.
Sometimes, rushing with your application can lead to some errors. Typos happen especially often, and they can be a big problem when it comes to getting your passport. To avoid unnecessary delays, make sure to double-check your application form before submitting it. Pay extra attention to the spelling of your name, date of birth, and any other personal information.
Make sure you are using the correct application form for your situation, whether it’s a first-time application or renewal. Sometimes, people forget to provide all the necessary documents, so make sure to double-check the list provided by the US Government.
The U.S. Department of State offers expedited services for those who are in a hurry to get their passport. The U.S. Department of State claims that for an additional fee, you can get a passport in 5 to 7 weeks instead of 8 to 11 weeks. However, be sure to check the current processing times and fees on the State Department’s website, as they can vary.
For an additional fee, you can get a faster delivery and return for your passport application. You can purchase Priority Mail Express from the US postal service to send your application to the U.S. Department of State. To receive your passport faster, you can pay $19.53 for 1-2 day delivery. You must include the fee with your passport fee in your check or money order payable to the U.S. Department of State for the fastest return shipping. But – don’t submit a return envelope to us with postage pre-paid.
Incorrect fees can delay the processing of your application, so make sure you pay all the required fees in full. It might get complicated for some, so you should check the U.S. Department of State’s website for the fee calculator and the most up-to-date information on passport fees.
If you’re already outside the U.S. and need to renew your passport, consider renewing it at a U.S. embassy or consulate. The process can sometimes be faster abroad than it is in the U.S. However, it’s essential to check the specific requirements and processing times of the embassy or consulate where you plan to renew your passport.
According to the US Department of State, bad passport photos are the first reason why passport applications are put on hold. Most people take their passport photos at places that ensure legally compliant photos. However, over 26% of people take their passport photos themselves or with the help of their friends and family members. This might often cause these photos to miss some legal requirements, which leads to a denied passport photo and a prolonged application process. So – make sure your passport photo meets all the requirements.
In some cases, the U.S. Department of State will significantly shorten a passport application due to a life-or-death emergency or urgent travel needs. These services can allow you to receive a passport within a few days. However, there are specific criteria and documentation you must provide to qualify for these services.
Paperwork that is damaged or otherwise in poor condition can result in delays. It probably doesn’t happen often, but it’s better to be safe than sorry, right? To avoid this, make sure to put all of your paperwork, including your application form, passport photo, and any other required documents, in a manila letter-sized envelope. This will help to protect your documents and ensure they arrive at the passport office in good condition.
If your passport application is taking longer than expected and your travel date is approaching, reaching out to an elected member of Congress can sometimes help expedite the process. Many members of Congress have dedicated staff to assist constituents with federal agency issues, including passport delays. They can often contact the U.S. Department of State on your behalf to help resolve any issues and get your passport processed more quickly. Just be sure to provide them with all the necessary information, including your application number, travel date, and any other relevant details. However, it’s important to note that it’s your last resort, and you shouldn’t use this option without a good reason.
Applying for a passport doesn’t have to be a stressful process. By following the tips we’ve shared, you can ensure your application goes as smoothly as possible. Remember to start early, review your application carefully, and provide all necessary documents to avoid any delays. Also, consider using expedited services and faster delivery options if you’re in a hurry. And, if you find yourself in a real pinch, remember that your elected officials might be able to help. By taking these steps, you’ll be holding your new passport in no time, ready to embark on your next adventure with one less thing to worry about. Safe travels!
Martyna Inkielman is a content writer at ePassportPhoto – a service that allows you to take 2×2-inch photos for passports and visas. She enjoys writing about traveling and social media. In her free time, Martyna can be found exploring new cuisines, painting, or taking analog photos.