How to Expedite Your U.S. Passport Application

Passport applications can take anywhere from a few weeks to a few months—but there are ways to speed up the work. From an hand brake travel to last planning external locomotion again after months of staying closer to home ( hem, COVID ), there are numerous situations that might require a immediate passport reversion. parcel this article

flipboard Whether it ’ mho last-minute travel plans or a big international trip that ’ second here before you know it, it ’ s not uncommon for travelers to have to expedite their U.S. passport applications. Rush services always cost a sting more but are sometimes necessary. The process ( for both regenerate and getting a raw passport cursorily ) is fairly similar to the regular application process, which can take anywhere from a few weeks to several months. unfortunately, wait times for regular and rush passports became even less predictable throughout the class of the pandemic and that lack of certainty can be nerve-racking for travelers .
respective other situations might require a new or renewed passport in a hurry. For case, some countries don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate permit introduction if your recommendation has less than six months of cogency. Others, like South Africa, require that you have at least two back-to-back blank pages. It ’ mho best to check the State Department ’ s web site for each country ’ randomness visa and pass requirements or contact your airline or change of location means before you hit the road .
here ’ s what you need to know to get a recommendation in your hands ampere cursorily as possible .

How long does it take to get an expedited passport?

During the pandemic, even expedited services experienced a slowdown. thankfully, both even and rushed recommendation march times started declining toward the end of 2021 .
If you apply for an expedite passport directly though the U.S. State Department, processing times were approximately 5 to 7 weeks, according to an October 29 update —but that doesn ’ metric ton include mail delivery times .
“ We are no longer using door-to-door timeframes to describe routine and expedite service, ” the State Department reported. “ Our processing times begin the day we receive your application at a pass agency or center, not the day you mail your application or apply for a recommendation at a local acceptance facility. ”
The 5-to-7-week timeframe is down from the 12-to-18 weeks the agency had estimated for expedite pass service earlier in the pandemic. For a faster turnaround, an expeditor like can take six to seven business days for confirm travel within 2 weeks, but it alone has a restrict total of spots for that firm service. At press time, ’ sulfur average expedited recommendation service was 4 weeks .

If you need it within 7 weeks, you can still do it yourself

There have been several changes to the pass lotion action over the course of the pandemic .
To start : in-person services at pass agencies were distillery fairly limited as of late 2021. The State Department has been prioritizing in-person appointments for travelers with life-and-death emergencies. A small number of in-person appointments is besides available for those with pressing and at hand travel within three occupation days .
rather, the State Department is encouraging travelers to apply via mail when possible. The window for expediting is 5 to 7 weeks, but as mentioned above that doesn ’ t necessarily include chain mail rescue times, which can vary widely across the state .

To apply for a rush recommendation, begin at the State Department ’ s web site, where a handy checklist will keep you from making a error that could slow down the procedure. The $ 60 expediting fee ( plus overnight transportation ) is not refundable, indeed make sure you have dotted all your one ’ sulfur and crossed all your thymine ’ south when applying. This tip is in accession to the standard $ 110 application fee—so $ 170 total for the expedite passport servicing ( not including shipping ) .
If you want the expedite service, you need to send your application using Priority Mail Express with the U.S. Postal Service. The State Department recommends that applicants send their application via traceable mail, so that applicants can know precisely when it arrives and enters the system. Travelers can besides opt for one- to two-day return manner of speaking of their passport for an excess $ 17.56, to help speed things along reasonably .
If you score an appointment to apply in person, you must use shape DS-11. To apply by mail, you ’ ll need to use the shape DS-82 ( you can download these forms here ). Submitted forms must be single-sided and printed distinctly. Complete the application on-line before printing it out or by hand in total darkness or blue ink ; remember to write “ expedited ” on the envelope and include two late photos that meet the pass photograph specifications. If apply by chain mail, you must include a check ; if applying in person, find out what methods of payment are allowed at your specific toleration facility .
You can renew your recommendation by mail and can begin the serve on-line deoxyadenosine monophosphate long as you are in possession of your expired or expiring passport ; your passport was issued when you were age 16 or older ; it was issued within the past 15 years ; and it was issued to your current name or you have documentation to support a name change. Children under 16, all first-time applicants, and applicants who have lost their recommendation or had it stolen must apply in person .
You can make a free appointment ahead of fourth dimension but spaces are highly limited right now—passport agencies and adoption facilities are not accepting walk-in services and require overture appointments. Acceptance facilities include post offices, clerks of court, libraries, and local politics offices. If you want to apply at a post office, you need to make an appointment at early adoption facilities may be requiring advance appointments as well .
Passport means appointments must be scheduled over the call by calling 1-877-487-2778 or 1-888-874-7793 TDD/TTY between 8 ante meridiem and 10 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday. The on-line system was temporarily disabled after an belowground grocery store developed ; third base parties using bots would secure pressing appointments and then sell them to travelers in a bind. many of these are not even legitimate appointments .

You will need proof of locomotion if you pay for an expedite passport service and can secure one of the express appointments available for within three business days of travel. Remember that if you are missing any software documentation your application won ’ metric ton be processed, which is why an expeditor can prove valuable .

How an expeditor can (and can’t) help

Expediting agencies are companies that assist with rush pass applications. They charge an extra fee ( on acme of the standard passport application fee and expedited recommendation service fee ) but can frequently help navigate the ins and outs of the expedite pass action .
Services like double-check your lotion before it gets submitted and catch any errors or snags that might slow it down. A 24-hour business day turnaround is presently not available, and no expeditor is able to offer such a service for immediately. The fastest reversal time offers is one week for $ 799 or a two-week option for $ 599. even these are very restrict in handiness since expeditors besides rely on a subset of appointments being available. representatives say that things can change quickly and the company hopes to be able to offer faster processing times soon .
David Alwadish, CEO and founder of ItsEasy Passport & Visa, agrees. As of late summer 2021, his ship’s company was able to submit up to five recommendation applications a day with the option of a three-to-five-day expedited turnaround time. Those slots go cursorily, but he says that as more recommendation agencies start to reopen, his company will be able to submit more per day. It costs $ 550 for an pressing expedite passport refilling or $ 595 for an pressing first-time pass applicant because the process is more complex. Do-it-yourselfers can besides use his ship’s company ’ south ItsEasy Passport App to submit applications for standard pass serve .
Don’t wait until you’re at the airport to find out your passport isn’t travel ready. photograph by Africa Studio/Shutterstock
Don ’ t wait until you ’ re at the airport to find out your pass international relations and security network ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate travel fix .

If you need it within 24 to 72 hours, try going to an agency in person

If it ’ s a life-and-death emergency, such as an illness, injury, or a death in your immediate syndicate, getting an emergency appointment at an agency in person is the only option. rather of wasting a day with overnight shipping, you can save valuable time by going in-person—even if you have to fly to a passport means in the departure city of your external flight. In these circumstances, it can take anywhere between 24 and 72 hours depending on where you apply and if you can provide accepted documentation, such as a death certificate or signed software documentation from checkup personnel.

One final tip. . .

The best thing you can do to avoid paying extra for expediting your passport is to set a calendar admonisher for nine months before the exhalation date of your stream valid pass, for those who have one. At that point, you can look ahead at your travels and figure out the best 18-week period to apply—one where, ideally, you know you won ’ thyroxine be heading abroad. Let ’ s hope that staffing levels and process capabilities continue to increase so we can say adieu to lengthy delays and hello, once again, to abroad travel .
This article was in the first place published in 2019. It was updated on November 23, 2021, to include current information .
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