How to Order an Expedited Passport

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How to Order an Expedited Passport

Regular passport processing takes about 6 weeks. However, no matter how conscientious you try to be, accidents do happen and you may find yourself needing your passport sooner. Fortunately, there are several different ways to speed up this process so you can be on your way. Whether you have to leave the country at the last minute or just procrastinated, this guide will help you choose the expediting method that’s right for you.

Ordering Expedited Processing

If you have a little bit of time before your trip, one option is simply to order expedited service from the government when you apply for your passport. This costs an additional $60, plus the Department of State recommends you pay extra for overnight delivery both to and from the passport office.

If you are applying in person, simply pay the extra fee and let the acceptance agent know you need expedited service. If you are applying by mail for a passport renewal, make sure you write “expedite” on the envelope.

The government’s expedited passport service generally takes about 3 weeks to process.

Making an Appointment at a Regional Passport Agency Office

If you are leaving in the next 2 weeks, you can get expedited passport processing by making an appointment at Regional Passport Agency office. This option is also available if you are traveling within 4 weeks and you need a visa. To make an appointment, call 1-877-487-2778. Once you go in for your appointment, as long as you have your paperwork in order you should get your passport the same day.

Using an Expediting Company

Not everyone is located near a Regional Passport Agency office-there are only 19 of them, scattered throughout the country. A private expediting company can expedite your passport for you if you can’t or don’t want to visit a passport agency office.

If you are applying in person, simply tell the acceptance agent that you will be using an expediting company, and they will “seal” your documents. Then, send the documents to them via a carrier like FedEx or UPS, along with a letter authorizing the expediting company to handle your expedited passport application for you. They will handle dealing with the passport agency office for you and send your passport back to you once it’s issued, using overnight shipping if necessary. The downside of using this method is that the fees can be pretty hefty.

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