Here is a simple guide to get you started.
Step 1. Go to CVS, Walgreens or another passport photo place and have them take a passport photo of you. Bring your family so they can get theirs done as well. You cannot wear any glasses of any kind in your photo... don't forget to take the sunglasses off your head too. Fix your hair, put some makeup on and look cute, this photo has to last you 10 years!
Step 2. Gather your birth certificates and photo ids. You will need proper proof of citizenship.
There are a few options to choose from, but the most important thing to remember is that the original document must be presented, no photocopies! Options include:
- Certified U.S. Birth Certificate (must meet all of the following requirements):
- - Issued by city, county or state of birth
- - Lists bearer’s full name, date of birth and place of birth
- - Lists parent(s)’ full names
- Has date filed with registrar’s office (must be within one year of birth)
- Has registrar’s signature
- Has embossed, impressed or multi-colored seal of registrar
- - Previous U.S. passport (may be expired, but must be undamaged)
- - Consular Report of Birth Abroad
- - Certificate of Naturalization/Citizenship
- Valid driver’s license (if it’s issued in a different state than where you apply, you must present a second ID)
- Undamaged U.S. passport (if issued less than 15 years ago)
- Certificate of Naturalization
- Valid government ID (city, state or federal)
- Valid military ID
Step 3. Head to your township building or post office with your pictures and documents.
Here is a link to find out the place closest to you: https://iafdb.travel.state.gov/
You can do this online but it was very easy in person and I didn't want to risk the government losing my paperwork via mail, we all know how great they are at that.
If you are getting passports for your children they must be with you and both parents must be present as well.
Step 4. Fill out the forms, pay the fees and be on your way.
The cost of a new passport for an adult is $135. The cost of a renewal of an adult passport is $110. A passport for a minor (anyone under the age of 16) costs $105.
It really is that simple! Your passport should arrive in 3-6 weeks. If you need it faster, you can pay to have it expedited. I had to get mine in a short time so I paid a little extra and it came in 2 weeks.
The processing time may also vary based on demand. Peak season, which can slow down processing times, is from January to August. Off-peak season is from September to December.
Most important-Don't forget to buy a cute passport cover book for it so you can travel in style!
The Department of State’s website has even more information on passport applications and renewals. But when working on applying for a new passport or renewing an existing one, the best advice is to plan ahead and be prepared with the correct documents. No one wants to have their vacation delayed because of passport issues.
Now that you know the ins and outs of getting your passports where will you plan your next adventure to?
We do all travel, not just Disney so let us help you plan your next vacation!
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