If you’re a U.S. Citizen and you plan to do any traveling outside of the country, your passport is the most important document you have. If you’ve never had a passport before, getting one for the first time can be a rather complicated process. The good news is that there is plenty of information online, full of tips for applying for your travel document. But what if you already have a passport and you’re looking to renew it? You’ll find that the process can be just as complex, but you won’t find nearly as many helpful resources online regarding renewals. We’re here to help. Here are some tips for easily getting your passport renewed in the U.S.
The first thing you’ll want to do is make sure that you’re filling out the correct form when you start the process of renewing your passport. There are several passport forms to choose from so make sure you’re selecting the correct one. If you’re renewing your passport by mail, you’ll want to fill out a form DS-82. However, if you’re applying in person, you’ll need to use form DS-11. Keep in mind that anyone under 16 years of age MUST apply in person. If this is your first time applying for a passport, you’ll also use a DS-11. Finally, if the passport you’re renewing has limited availability or if you’re correcting an error made on your original passport, you’ll need to fill out a form DS-5504. A DS-11 or DS-82 will also be used if you’re changing your name on your passport because you got married.
Once you’ve got the right form filled out, you’ll also need to provide two color passport photos which need to have been taken within the last 6 months. Your best bet is to head to a local drugstore and have them do the photos for you. Trust us, a selfie isn’t going to cut it here.
If you’re renewing by mail, you’ll also need to send in your old passport without all of your documents.
As for costs, the current price for a passport renewal for an adult is $110, while children under 16 pay $80. Keep in mind that it can take a while to receive your new passport. If you want it expedited, you’ll have to fork over an additional $60.