Getting a passport is essential for those who want to travel internationally. This article will teach you how to get a passport and apply for one if you don’t already have one. We’ll go over the application process steps, what it costs, and how long it takes to receive your passport once submitted.
Why Is A U.S Passport Necessary?
A U.S. passport is a vital document that should be obtained for all Americans who have one or two passports from other countries in their possession. The passport is a document that allows the bearer to cross the border to other countries and not need a visa for entry, so long as they may do so with identification from their home country.
The United States passport is not only a travel document for those that live in America but also holds all or some of the following benefits:
- A visa to enter other countries as listed on the inside cover
- An international driving permit as a supplement to be carried with it
A passport enables the right to vote in federal elections by absentee ballot, including all national and state primaries and general elections. Those who have an expired U.S. .passport may still apply for a Federal write-in absentee ballot from their last place of residency. They must do so at least 45 days before the next election date to allow mailing purposes. The request can take up to six weeks from being accepted by the officials regarding meaning before ballots are mailed back to the official.
The right to petition for family members to obtain a visa or be admitted into the U.S. from certain countries under an immigrant status
Passports grant the rights of the World Trade Organization Most Favored Nation trade tariff rates for export and import business conducted with other countries in the world. To obtain a WTO reduced trade rate, a passport must be used when importing or exporting goods through customs in another nation besides America.
How To Get A Passport?
First, locate the nearest passport office to you. You can do this by going on their website and entering your zip code or doing an Internet search for “Passport Offices (insert city name).”
Visit the site and find out how long it takes to process a new application, as well as what documents you need before submitting them. Ensure that you have everything with you when applying in person, so there is no delay from coming back later because of missing information.
If possible, schedule an appointment after reviewing the needed steps listed above – otherwise, show up at an opening time! It’s best not to wait too much longer than two weeks since applications typically take four weeks to be completed. Once submitted, passports are returned in between two and six weeks.
If traveling within one month, apply for expedited service with the U.S. Dept of State. This option costs an additional $60 on top of regular fees but will get your passport back to you anywhere from three to five business days after being submitted!
When applying for a new passport, it’s vital that be sure all information is accurate, or it could delay receiving your documents by up to twelve weeks while they determine if everything matches correctly.
Also, keep in mind that some countries have stringent policies about what documentation can be used as proof of identification, so make sure you do not bring anything too unusual when trying to enter another country, especially if it’s your first time doing so!
How Much Does Applying For a Passport Cost?
The fee for applying for a passport varies depending on what type of U.S. passport you are requesting and whether you have a birth certificate.
If you have a birth certificate, a new first-time U.S. passport fee is $140 or $110 for renewals if issued within the past 12 years. Without a birth certificate, the price is $175 or $135 with an expired passport issued within the last 12 years—fees for international delivery and expedited service range from $60 to $100.
If you lose your passport book or card, you will need to pay a fine of $110 if both documents were submitted with the application; the cost is $170 if only one record is included. For those who already have their U.S. passports, but those passports are damaged. They cannot be used (e.g., water damage); the replacement fee is $110 or $170 as well, depending on whether or not your birth certificate information was provided when applying for the original passport book/card.
If you want to make changes to this document (name change, address change), there is an additional fee of $82 for changing the book’s data page or $42.90 for a card’s data page.
When Should I Renew My Passport?
The U.S. Department of State recommends that you renew your passport before it expires as they may not accept one that is expired for identification purposes at airport security checkpoints.
Suppose you are in an overseas country and find yourself unable to use your passport. In that case, the department requires a written explanation from the applicant for why their travel document cannot be used or how an emergency prevented them from obtaining a new or renewed passport before traveling back to the United States.
Should this happen, call the closest U.S. embassy/consulate office and let them know who you are and what happened, then ask if they can assist by issuing a limited validity emergency travel document called a “Passport Acceptance Letter.” This letter can help you make arrangements to travel back home and receive a new passport.
Getting a passport is the first step toward a fantastic international adventure. But it can be challenging to figure out how to get one, especially if you are not fluent in English or have never done this before. Fortunately for you, we’ve created this article that will teach you everything you need to know about getting your U.S. Passport! Follow our guide and find out what forms of identification are required and steps on where to go, and who needs to sign off on your application process.