What You Need To Know When Applying For A Passport
You need to get a passport before traveling out of the country. The process can be complicated for both new application and renewal. Most people tend to wait till the last minute to start applying. This guide will give you the process of applying for a passport.
It is essential there be a facility where the passport will be posted such as a local government office, public library or a post office. For the process to go on smoothly, ensure that you fill out all the needed documents well. You need to have a birth certificate, identification document, colored passport photo, a DS-11 form and passport fees. It is important you make photocopies of all the needed documents. Take time and recheck if you have all the required documents. The processing of the passport to the time its mailed to you will take four to six weeks. This is why you need to apply for one at least two months before your travel date to avoid disappointments.
As for passport renewal, it is advisable that you renew your passport at least nine months before its expiry. The process of renewing your passport is not as complicated as applying for a new one. You just need the document to be in good condition, and details need to be the same. Include a filled out DS-82 form, passport photos, and renewal fee. However, if there are name changes, make sure you include proof. It takes the same time as a new passport to get it renewed. Your old passport will get returned but with holes punched on its cover. You can include a stick note just as a precautionary measure if you want your old passport back. In case you have lost your old passport, you will have to apply just like it’s the first time. You have to go in person. Remember that you can’t just use your passport until the expiry date.
Also, majority of countries will not accept you to enter if its expiry date is in three or even six months to your departure. It has to be valid for the whole duration of your visit. It is your responsibility to meet the requirements. There are some countries that you need to have a valid passport and a visa to gain entry. A visa is valid even if your passport is expired. However, this does not mean that you don’t renew your passport. It is important you research to know the passport plus visa requirements of your destination country. There is an expedited passport that you can get if you have to travel within days and your passport is expired or is about to.