Obtaining a Passport Book
You must carry a Passport BOOK. (Passport Cards are not valid for air travel)
First Time Passport Book Applicant
- Apply Early
Processing can take as long as five months. If you are considering travel to Europe, start the process now.
- Obtain a Passport Book Application
Forms are available at your local post office or may be printed from the www.travel.state.gov web site. You can also call the National Passport Information Center at 1-877-487-2778.
- Complete the Passport Book Application
Your information must be typed or written in BLACK ink. IMPORTANT: Do not sign the passport application until you are instructed to sign at your passport acceptance facility.
- Obtain Proof of U.S. Citizenship
Valid proof includes a previous passport, certificate of citizenship, naturalization certificate, or certified copy of birth certificate available from the registrar's office in the county of birth. Birth certificate must include the full names of the applicant's parent(s). If you cannot obtain any of the above, check with the sources in #2 for other options.
- Obtain Photographs
You must have two IDENTICAL 2" x 2" photos taken within the last 6 months and showing current appearance. Photos must be in color, showing a front view of your face and with a white or off-white background. You can check passport listings in the Yellow Pages for passport photo providers.
- Obtain Personal Identification
Valid ID includes a previous U.S. passport, a CURRENT (not expired) drivers license, naturalization certificate, state ID card, or military ID. Your ID must have an expiration date and photograph. Name changes must be reflected on your picture ID. Both parents must accompany a child who does not have a picture ID and submit documentation of parental relationship and consent.
- Bring Application Form in Person
Do NOT sign the form. Bring the form, proof of citizenship, photographs, and identification IN PERSON to your passport acceptance facility. Consult sources in #2 for a list of locations.
- Pay Fee
Fee is $135 for those 16 years of age and over (valid for 10 years) and $105 for those under 16 (valid for 5 years). Applications can be expedited for an additional fee of $60 (recommended within 4 months of departure). Before going to the passport acceptance facility, verify what forms of payment you may use, as this varies for each location.
How to Renew a Passport
- At this writing, your passport must be valid for more than six (6) months after your scheduled return date. If your expiration date falls within 3 to 6 months of your return date, call the airlines to verify the current regulations.
- Renewing a passport costs $110. You will need to have two new passport photos taken. Send those along with your check, the most recent passport (undamaged), and a completed renewal form. You can obtain a Passport Renewal Form through the sources listed at the bottom of this page.
Other Important Information
- If you have not received your passport within two months of applying, or at least a month prior to departure, we recommend that you contact the National Passport Information Center to check on the status.
- Minors under 18 years of age who apply must submit written parental consent to leave the country.
- If you do not provide a social security number, the IRS may impose a $500 penalty, processing may be delayed, and your application may be denied.
- Information about visa requirements is available from the consulate of the countries to which you are traveling, and usually can be found on their website.
- When you receive your passport, sign it, fill out the emergency information page, and carry it with you at all times while traveling abroad.
- This information is only a condensed guideline and is subject to change. Image Tours accepts no responsibility or liability for any incomplete or incorrect information. For the most current and complete information, consult one of the following sources: