Remember To Check Your Passports Before You Book Your Next Trip

A lot of people have forgotten about their passports. Those little blue booklets just spent the last year or more sitting in safe spots collecting dust instead of stamps. But now that travel is on the rise and travelers are eager to book their first post-2020 getaway, one thing is commonly being overlooked — passport validity.

Maybe your passport expired in 2020 and you didn’t realize it? Or maybe it expires within 6 months of the dates you intend to travel this year? Either way, don’t commit to your travel dates before you check those booklets to make sure you don't need to renew.

While passport processing times have gotten better than they were over the last year, they’re still slower than normal. I renewed my own back in March and even with paying the extra expediting fees it wasn’t guaranteed for 4-6 weeks when expediting is normally 2-4 weeks. For me, it took exactly 4 weeks to reach my doorstep and I paid overnight mail fees both ways on top of the expedited processing fee. 

Right now the processing time without expediting is a whopping 6-12 weeks! The worst part is, emergency passport agencies are so swamped they have barely any appointments (if any) for quick processing.

Make sure to give yourself ample time to renew any passports expiring or apply for any that will be needed. And expect to pay the extra fees if you want that passport guaranteed to get to you within that month and a half time frame

Also remember, a passport card will not get you on an international flight. If you’re considering an international getaway, make sure you’re applying for the passport booklet. Not the card.

For more tips and information I recommend you visit the US State Department's passport page for official up-to-date passport information.

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