What do I need to get a new passport? First and foremost, you must be a US citizen by naturalization or birth to qualify for a passport. Residing in the US on a visa or as a permanent resident doesn’t qualify you for a passport. Secondly, you must submit documents to the passport agency to get the passport. We review the documentary requirements for a new passport, so read on to know more.
Should You Apply For A Passport Book or A Passport Card?
Many citizens applying for a new passport for the first time are confused about whether to go for a passport book or a passport card; the answer is not far-fetched. The one you go for should depend on your trips. If you plan to travel abroad and away from the continent, you will need a passport book. Passport cards are only accepted at the Mexico and Canadian borders and are only suited for land trips. You can’t use them to board an airline or apply for a visa.
On the other hand, if you travel within the continent and abroad, you may apply for both, so you can always alternate them based on your needs. Also, note that you can use a passport card for trips to Bermuda and the Caribbean islands, which is less expensive than the booklet.
What Do I Need To Get A Passport?
You need the following when applying for a US Passport.
Application Form: There are different types of application forms for passports. If you already have a passport that is about to expire, you can apply for a renewal by filling out a DS-82 form which is solely for renewals. If you don’t have a passport or your previous passport is missing, you must fill out the DS-11 form for a new passport. Then there is the DS-64 form which must be filled out if your previous passport was stolen or lost. Once you fill out and submit it to the authorities, the previous passport will be deactivated and rendered invalid. Those with a missing passport must also fill out the DS-11 form for a new passport.
Citizenship Documents: Another document you should submit is proof of US citizenship. The law recognizes a birth certificate or a naturalization certificate for proof of citizenship. Copies of these acceptable documents should be presented, including the original, for verification.
Proof of Identity: You must also present a government-issued ID card that is still valid.
Previous Passport: If you are applying for a renewal, you will be asked to present the previous passport in place of a government-issued ID card. Those applying for a new passport don’t need to provide this.
Passport Photograph: A passport photograph that meets all the guidelines set by the liaison Department of State.
Fee: The application fee for processing your application is also required
These are the items you will need to submit to the passport acceptance facility to get a US passport.
How To Apply For A Passport
Applying Inside The US: If you live in the US, you can visit a Department of State passport agency in your city or state to submit your application. This method is the only route available to first-time applicants or those with lost or stolen passports. Uninvited applicants are not attended to, so you need to book an appointment with the agency over the phone before your visit. The passport officer on duty will take your documents and capture your biometric data.
Applying Outside The US: Those living outside the US can visit the US embassy or consulate in their home countries to apply for a passport. Different embassies have special procedures, so the officials will give you directions on applying.
Application By Mail
There is a special application by mail option for current passport holders wishing to renew their passports that are about to expire or expire. They can package their current passports and documents in an envelope and mail them to the Department of State. Those within the US must use the United States Postal Service, but those outside can use a private courier.
Use A Private Passport Service
Better still, you can use VisaHQ’s passport service to get your documents to the State Department if you wish to renew your passport by mail. Visit VisaHQ to learn more.
How Can I get My Passport Fast?
Passports take 6-8 weeks before they are ready, but if you can’t wait that long because you need to travel urgently, you can apply for an expedited service which will cost you an extra $60. For renewal by mail, mark the envelope with the bold word “expedite” and pay for expedited courier delivery.
What do I need to get a passport? You need proof of citizenship and the other documents mentioned in this Post.