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What Are the Best Tips for Renewing a Passport?

It's best to renew a passport at least nine months before it expires.
A passport.
A passport photo.
Article Details
  • Written By: Lainie Petersen
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 06 April 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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When renewing a passport, travelers should make sure they thoroughly understand their country's passport renewal requirements, including which documents or photographs they must present with the passport renewal application. It is also important for travelers to pay the appropriate fees for renewing a passport, and they should have these fees in the form that the government requests, such as a personal check or money order. Finally, travelers should ensure that they apply for renewal well in advance of their passport's expiration date.

Even if an individual doesn't plan on completing extensive travel, having a current passport can be very useful both as a method of identification as well as allowing that individual to travel outside the country as needed. In the United States, travelers are advised to renew their passports nine months before they expire so as to allow for any potential problems that may occur during the process. Travelers should contact the passport agency in their own country to ask for recommendations about advance passport renewal.

In many areas, passport agencies place extensive information about passports in their renewals online. This information can be very helpful for someone who is interested in renewing a passport. These individuals should pay attention to the exact process for renewing the passport in order to avoid making mistakes that may cause delays or additional expense. In many places, it may be possible to renew a passport by mail, although in-person passport applications may be scheduled for those with special circumstances.

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Some countries offer the option of renewing a passport through an expedited process. This usually requires extra fees and the willingness to pay for overnight mail services. It may also require the traveler to visit a government passport agency for the fastest service. These agencies may be located only in major urban areas, so individuals who live far away from urban centers may want to be more careful about planning a passport renewal.

Passport applicants in the United States are required to provide their own photographs along with the passport application or renewal. In general, passport photographs are subject to some strict requirements. As a result, travelers are generally advised to have a passport photo taken at a business that specializes in passport photos. If a passport renewal is accompanied by an unsuitable photograph, it will generally be returned to the applicant. Another thing to consider is that if a passport agency requests certain identity documents, such as a birth certificate, divorce certificate, or evidence of a court-ordered name change, those documents must typically be certified by a government agency and bear a raised seal.

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