Passport Processing Made Easy With These Tips
Having a passport means you have a ticket to travel to different parts of the world. While many think that acquiring a passport is a tedious task, it can be easy if you know what is required of you and where to take different paper works.
Here are some of the tips and steps to follow to make sure that your passport processing process is as easy as possible.
Confirm Your Eligibility
For you to have a travel passport, you need to meet the minimum age as specified from the passport office. You also need to be a citizen or a non-citizen national. In this case, you will be required to deliver evidence of your eligibility through the provision of the right documents. Your eligibility will depend on the information you provide to prove your status whether you are;
• Born in the country (citizen)
• Born outside of the country (citizen)
• Born outside of the country (naturalized)
• Born outside of the country (adopted)
In case you were born outside of the country to citizen parents, then your parents are required to fill a form and take it to the nearest embassy of your home country. This will help in securing your citizenship.You will also be required to submit your identification, and therefore it is good to be prepared with this document too. Proof of identification is easier than proof of citizenship because you only need an official document carrying your photo and your signature.
After assurance that you are eligible to acquire a passport, start your application process by filing the formal application form. Pay close attention when filling out every field and avoid signing it until an authorized agent tells to because you might be required to fill it again in case of an error. You can print the application form from home or a local library.
If you are a person who travels a lot, go for the extended 52-page passport but if not, go for the standard 28-page passport.
Passport Photo Requirements
A passport photo is not a cute photo of you but a photo that fulfills certain criteria. The photo has to have been taken within the last six months, be of high quality and have a 2X2 measurements in size. You should be wearing regular clothes and without glasses or headdresses unless it’s won for religious purposes and must be indicated so. It is advisable you allow a professional who understands passport photo requirements to take this photo.
The passport fee is usually stated on the state of department website. You can pay the fee using a check, credit card, cash or even money orders depending on the place you submitted your application. In case you would like your passport to be expedited, you will be required to pay an additional fee. For overnight delivery service after approval of your passport, an additional fee will be required still. In case you have a problem locating some documents required to prove your citizenship, you will be charged an agent fee to help in record search.
In most places, passport processing takes about three to four weeks for standard delivery. However, in some unfortunate cases, it can take up to two months or more. The length of the delivery time depends on where you submitted your application, whether you expedited it or not and how busy the passport offices are. If you work with a passport agency, it is possible to get your passport in less than ten days and if it’s a private company then expect it in about 48 hours.
In some states, you can actually get your passport the same day you applied for it. For instance, if you are in Florida, you can go for the same day passport in Miami, and all you need to do is call for an appointment to avoid the long queues at the Miami Passport Office
If you do not need your passport right away, keep checking online from time-to-time using your date of birth, your last name and the last four digits of your social security number.
Technology has improved efficiency in many areas and passport application, and processing is one of the areas that have greatly benefited from its advancement. Information on the same is also effortlessly accessible making the process much easier for every applicant. The good thing is that many passport offices have embraced technology and are always willing to help applicants in every step in their effort to acquire a passport. These improved services have made passport processing a simple and fast task for everyone.