My twenty-something daughter was planning an overseas trip. When she was telling me about what all she planned to do, I had one question for her, “Do you have your passport?” She looked at me for a moment, then her eyes widened and a dozen questions came pouring out about how to apply for a US Passport.
When Should I apply for my US Passport?
You can get your US Passport within 5 days, but it will cost you extra. The less expensive and standard method of applying for a US Passport will take between 4 to 6 weeks from the time you submit your application and the time you actually receive your US Passport.
Which US Passport Should I Apply For?
Your travel plans will guide you as to which form of Passport you will need. There are two types of passports available to US Citizens. The Passport Card allows you to easily reenter the United States from the Caribbean, Canada and Mexico. The Passport Book can be used for those as well, but the Passport Book allows you to travel overseas. The card is convenient, the size of a driver’s license while the book is a little more cumbersome to travel with. However, when you apply for your US Passport, you can apply for both the Passport Book and the Passport Card at the same time. The Passport Book is currently $110 and the Card is $30 and to get both, it will set you back $140.
What Documentation is Necessary to Apply for a US Passport?
Basically, you will need proof of your citizenship to apply for a Passport. This means your birth certificate or similar document will be needed to apply for a US Passport. You will also need a government photo ID such as your driver’s license or military ID.
What Form do I use to Apply for a US Passport?
You will need a completed Form DS-11 to apply for a US Passport. However, do NOT sign the application until you are submitting it to the government officials. You can also fill out an online version of the DS-11 and print it out to take with you. Again, do not sign the application until you are ready to submit it.
How do I get the Picture to Apply for a US Passport?
There are a number of ways to get the pictures necessary to send in with your application. Many US Post Offices can provide you with the pictures. You can also go to Walgreens, Walmart and have your picture taken. Be sure to tell the clerk you need two copies of the picture for your US Passport application.
Where do I Submit my US Passport Application?
The most common place to submit your US Passport Application is your local Post Office. Not all Post Offices accept the applications, and many require you to have an appointment. You can check out the nearest post office where you can submit your US Passport application.
My daughter and I walked through the steps and she obtained her passport in plenty of time to make her overseas trip. While I was sad to see her leave, I was very happy to know she would have no trouble re-entering the US with her official passport in hand.