There are various reasons why the demand for US passports is at an all-time high.
For starters, the law (Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative of 2007) requires anyone traveling to the US to show a valid passport before entering the country. This includes crossing the border by water or land from Mexico, the Caribbean, or Canada.
In the past, the only requirement to re-enter the US from these areas was a valid US driver’s license. As a result of this change, the state department issued over 18 million passports in 2007. Now a majority of these passports are up for renewal.
So, are you planning to renew your passport or apply for a new one? If yes, consider visiting a passport office near me to file for these travel documents. Be careful when selecting the passport office as it will affect how long it takes for you to get your passport.
Well, this is dependent on various factors, which include the location you’re applying from, and the application form that the passport service has to process. Take a look at each one of them and how they’ll affect the time it takes for you to acquire a passport.
1- The Passport Processing Times
The processing time by the department of the state varies depending on the number of applications submitted at a given time. Other factors like international events, natural disasters, inclement weather, and closure of processing centers for renovations affect the passport processing times.
For instance, as the holiday season approaches, many Americans apply for Visas in preparation for their vacations. These applications are high during the summer vacation or winter break. Natural disasters, like the earthquakes in Haiti, also have the same effects. International events like the World Cup and Olympics lead to an increase in passport processing time.
In the past, there were times when the passport processing time could take up to three months. However, thanks to technology, this has been reduced to 4-6 weeks for routine services and 6-8 weeks during peak travel periods. If you want an expedited passport, then you’ll have to wait for 2-3 weeks to get your passport. Remember, applications will be processed faster when the demand is low; if the demand is higher, then you’ll have to wait longer.
2- Places Where You Get Your Passport
The place where you submit your application document will determine the time you take to get your passport. For instance, sending your application via mail or passport office will take you 6 weeks of standard processing. Expedited processing takes 3 weeks. It’s worth noting that processing time is dependent on the factors listed above.
If you want to get your passport faster, place your application at the regional agency. You can apply yourself at the regional agency or via a competent passport expediting service. With this, you can get your passport in a day. However, if you’re in an emergency, you can get the document within hours.
If you need a passport urgently and cannot visit a processing center, seek assistance from The Passport Office, a leading firm in expedited passport service.
3- The Type of Passport Service
Do you know that the processing time for a new passport application is almost the same as that of passport renewals? The only difference is that for a new application, you have to visit the processing center in person. It may take you a day or weeks to get an appointment to the application acceptance facility. For renewals, you only need to mail the application without any need to get to a passport office.
For an adult US citizen, their passport lasts for 10 years and 5 years for kids. So, once you get this document, do not wait until it’s too late to renew it. Some countries will not accept a document with less than six months of validity remaining. If possible, start the renewal process at least nine months before it expires. But what happens if you don’t, and the passport is almost expiring? Don’t worry. Look for The Passport Office near you and have the document expedited in no time.