US Passport: Overwhelming Demand Results in Longer Processing Time

US Passport: Overwhelming Demand Results in Longer Processing Time

As the summer travel season approaches have resulted in higher demand for US passports

An increase in demand for passports has led to longer processing times, delays, and backlogs. If you’re planning an overseas trip that’s only a couple of months away, you need to ensure that your passport is still valid.

On 24 March, the US State Department warned travellers that it will now take 10 to 13 weeks for routine passport processing and 7 to 9 weeks for expedited processing, which costs an additional $60. The timelines don't include shipping, which could take several more weeks.

The processing of passports has been operating at a sluggish pace since the outbreak of the pandemic resulting in a substantial backlog that has proven challenging to overcome. Coupled with the surge of applications in the post-pandemic era, the agency has found itself in a precarious situation.

In light of what it is calling “unprecedented demand,” the US State Department tweeted an update Friday regarding the prolonged periods people are having to wait for their passports to arrive.

When To Renew Your Passport

It's essential to know the validity of your passport. If you do not know and you plan to travel overseas, check the expiration date printed on the data page of your passport. 

Many countries require at least six months of validity on your passport before you enter. So, if your passport is expiring soon, you might not be allowed to enter certain countries, even if it's before the ten-year mark.

To avoid any potential travel hiccups, we suggest renewing your passport at least nine months before it expires. This gives ample time for processing and shipping. So, don't wait until the last minute to renew your passport!

The US State Department website has a handy calculator to help you figure out your passport renewal options and cost.

If you are already travelling overseas and you've just realised that your US passport is missing. Don't panic! Losing your passport abroad is not an uncommon scenario, and there are ways to remedy the situation. Check how to renew your passport abroad here.

What are your thoughts on this issue? Talk to us in the comment section below. Or if you need more advice on the above, contact us for further travel & immigration advice.

Check out the deals we have found below and tell us your travel plans.

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And because of the pandemic, don’t forget to get your travel insurance, which will cover you for flight disruptions and pandemic related matters.

IaM can help with your visa application to Europe, the United States, the UK & other countries

If you need help with a US visa, a UK Visa, or a visa to Europe, including help with appointment booking obligations, IaM can help. For more information and advice on US immigration, UK immigration law and US visa applications or if you need any help or assistance please, reach out to your Visa Coordinator at IaM.

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