As the US Department of State always reminds US citizens, it is recommended to renew passports at least 9 months before the expiration date. Passports are set to expire ten years after they have been issued, and passports issued to minors have an expiry date of five years after they have been granted. While these legal documents may provide you a long time before you need to process a US passport renewal, one can always process a renewal application anytime.
Benefits of Renewing Early
As you know, most of travels outside the country require a passport. However, many neglect to note when they should renew these important travel documents. Being able to renew on time or way ahead of the deadline allows you to save money you may need to spend for rebooking flights. At the same time, you also do not have to worry about the long queues during the busier times of the year, when everyone is planning to get on a vacation. Remember that other people are also cramming to process renewal US passport. Also, keep in mind that during the busy dates, having to renew US passport may take up to ten weeks.
If you are in a hurry, you can pay for an expedited processing fee in order to get a valid passport in time for your travel. This processing fee is $60 on top of the application processing fees. The advantage is you can get your passport in an overnight delivery. However, you must think if you are willing to shell out $200 for your passbook and card because you neglected to renew early.
Passport Renewal –US Minors
As mentioned above, your child’s passport is set to renew five years after it has been issued. However, if your son or daughter is going to process her passport, renewal is not as simple as sending an application through mail. Renewal passport processes can only be done in person at a Passport Acceptance Facility, Passport Agency, Consulate, or Embassy.
Renewal – Passport for Those Who are Already Abroad
If any chance you are already at your destination and your passport is set to expire, it is important that you visit the US Embassy or Consulate as soon as you can. These Federal offices can assist you in renewing your passport even if you are in a foreign land.
Note that there are certain countries that would not allow visitors to stay if their passports are set to expire in less than six months. If you are out of the country for work, make sure that you do not delay your passport renewal.
When intending to process your renewal, check your book and card for any damages. The reason for this is you will not be allowed to process for renewal if your passport is damaged or stolen – you must apply for a new one. At the same time, if you are not able to present an evidence citizenship, you may need to pay for a File Search fee, which is $150. However, if your passport and other legal documents were lost or stolen while you are abroad, you are exempt from the File Search fee.