Passport Tips

You can apply for a first-time passport if ANY of the following apply:

Passport applications cannot be submitted online. Renewals can be completed by mail. You must apply IN PERSON for the First-Time Passport.

How To Apply

1. Complete Application Form DS-11 Application forms can be obtained in person from any passport agency or acceptance facility (during posted hours of passport application acceptance) or through the Internet at the US State Department's Web site at Do not sign the application form until you are instructed to do so by a passport agent. Do not use pencil or red ink to complete the form.

2. Present Proof of U.S. Citizenship Suggested forms of citizenship include (but are not limited to):

3. Present Proof of Identity Social Security cards are NOT an acceptable form of identification. Suggested forms or identity include (but are not limited to):

4. Two Identical Passport Photos Photos must meet the following requirements:

5. Include the Application Fee

For updated application fee information visit

6. Provide a Social Security Card

Although a Social Security number is not required for issuance of a passport, Section 6039E of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 requires that passport applicants provide this information. Passport Services gives this information to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) routinely. Any applicant who fails to provide the information is subject to a $500 penalty enforced by the IRS. Questions on this matter should be directed to your nearest IRS office.

Ready to go? To find out where to apply, visit the State Department's page.

How long will it take?

Processing times can vary during times of year, or due to unforeseen events. The summer travel season can also be a busy time. We advise travellers to send in their applications as soon as possible or at least a few months before travel. Currently, processing time may take 8-13 weeks. If you're traveling within 13 weeks, consider using the expedited service. See Application Processing Times for more information.

Do I need to renew?

Some countries require that your passport be valid at least six months beyond the dates of your trip. Some airlines will not allow you to board if this requirement is not met.

Do children need passports?

Every child needs a passport, regardless of age. In addition to the identity, citizenship, and photo requirements, to get a passport for children under 16, you must provide legal proof of parental or guardian relationship. Both parents must also appear in person at the application to give consent to the child's passport, or fill out additional forms and provide documents explaining why only one parent/guardian is present.

We make efforts to keep our website information current, but can't guarantee it will always be up to date. For further information on First-Time passport applications, and to verify that the information provided is still current, visit the US State Department at or call a helpful agent at 1-800-6TRAVEL.

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