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Passport PSA

Part of my job as Library Director is to be a Passport Agent and Facility Manager for the library. And, as such, I’m here to tell you . . . if you are planning or even thinking about any international travel, get your passport application in ASAP. This advice is relevant whether you need a new passport or you have a current passport that will be expiring.

Routine processing, which is what applies to new applications and renewals, is currently taking between 10 and 13 weeks. Expedited processing, which will cost you an extra $60 per passport, is at 7 to 9 weeks. The volume of applications is very high right now, at my library and across the country and I’ve never seen such extended processing times.The cost of a passport is $130 for an adult, $80 for a juvenile (a person 15 and under in these circumstances, and there is a $35 processing fee which goes to the acceptance facility. That fee is not applicable for renewals done within 15 years of the original issued date of the passport. A fun fact is that my library gets to deposit every passport fee into a revolving fund for book purchases.

And one last thing . . . always use the official state department website, for passport information and questions. There are many 3rd party services which will offer to get your passport for you, they will claim it will be faster, and they will charge you loads of money you don’t need to spend. Any acceptance facility can offer you the same services without extra fees. Leave me any questions about all of this in the comments. It feels complicated but it’s really quite straightforward and I’m glad to help if I can.

This Post Has 9 Comments

  1. And if you live in NJ you might want to make sure your passport is renewed even for domestic travel. We are one of the last states to issue the TSA-compliant Real ID license and our DMVs are such a mess that they are hard to get in NJ. I still don’t have one because the state and I disagree about my points of ID (but I just don’t have any more to prove that I’m me)! I’m glad I’m no longer flying to CO on a regular basis but thanks for the PSA Carole!

  2. thankfully, I renewed mine a few years ago and hope the lead times are a little shorter when I’ll need to renew again!

  3. And once you get that shiny new passport, immediately apply for trusted traveler status if you want it. That process is also swamped. I was renewing mine and it took me almost three weeks to schedule my interview months in advance. I did pay for one month of appointment availability notification service and it was worth the $12. I went from no appointments available to late July to early June to be sure it was done before travel in September. In the end, they processed my renewal without an interview, but it isn’t always waived.

    1. I never heard of Trusted Traveler Staus. What website would l access for that please?

  4. Also some countries want your passport to be valid for 6 mos prior to expiration. Double check your travel dates with your expiration dates.

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