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In-depth Guide to U.S. Passport Renewals & Special Cases [2023]

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Alex Miller

Alex Miller

Founder & CEO

Countries Visited: 34U.S. States Visited: 29

Founder and CEO of Upgraded Points, Alex is a leader in the industry and has earned and redeemed millions of points and miles. He frequently discusses the award travel industry with CNBC, Fox Business...
Edited by: Keri Stooksbury

Keri Stooksbury


Countries Visited: 39U.S. States Visited: 28

With years of experience in corporate marketing and as the Executive Director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Qatar, Keri is now Editor-in-Chief at UP, overseeing daily content operations and r...

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It’s likely been at least 5 to 10 years since you received your passport, and renewing your passport after so long can be overwhelming. If your passport is up for renewal or you’ve had a special change with your passport, here’s how to get it done.

If you want to know how to get your first passport, please see our definitive guide for getting your first U.S. passport.

In this guide, you will learn about how to renew your passport, special cases, important tips, and more.

The Difference Between U.S. Passport Renewal and First-time Applications

The difference is fairly simple: if you already have a passport and meet the renewal requirements, you can renew your passport by mail instead of in person.

In fact, these are the only 2 options for getting a passport in any case.

Note that renewing your passport will cause any travel visas you have to be nullified, so plan your trips accordingly!

Hot Tip:

For more info on visa requirements, check out our piece: Do I Need a Visa? 100+ Countries with Tourist Visa Requirements for U.S. Citizens

Online Passport Application Form

Unfortunately, if you want passport renewal online, you’re currently out of luck. You can fill out the renewal form online, but it must be printed and mailed.

There are limited options available online when renewing your passport. Image Credit: U.S. Department of State

To renew your passport by mail, you will need to:

Note: There are trusted government-registered passport courier services that expedite passport renewals in as little as 24 hours.

Hot Tip:

President Biden signed an executive order in December 2021 to “improve the customer experience for…the American people,” including things such as offering online passport renewals. This process has entered testing but hasn’t been released for everyone just yet.

Requirements To Renew by Mail

If you want to be eligible for the mail renewal, then you must meet a few requirements. Luckily, the information will not be as extensive as it was when you applied for your first passport.

  • You must have your old passport, and it must be undamaged
  • Your previous passport must have been issued when you were 16 years of age or older
  • You must have been issued the passport within the last 15 years
  • Your name has not changed, or you can document your name change

If you do not meet the above requirements, you must renew your passport in person.

Providing an Updated Passport Photo

You must submit an updated passport photo of yourself from within the last 6 months. The full requirements are on the U.S. Department of State’s website, which also includes tips on places to obtain photos.

In general, the photo must be a color 2×2-inch photo in your normal clothes. You can typically have these photos taken at nationwide pharmacies and larger retailers like Walmart and Target, or you can take your own photo at home.

Photos cost between $6 to $15. However, unlike before, where you may not have stapled your photo to the application, you must staple 1 photo to the form.

To staple the photo to the DS-82 form, staple only vertically in the corners and as close to the outer edge as possible. The following photo demonstrates the technique:

Once you take that new passport photo, be sure to only staple it with vertical staples in the corners as shown or you’ll have to send in a new photo! Image Credit: Ekaterina_Minaeva via Shutterstock

U.S. Passport Renewal Processing Time

Unfortunately, there is no change in processing times between getting a renewal and getting a first-time passport. The current estimated times are:

  • Standard Renewals: 10 to 13 weeks
  • Expedited Renewals: 7 to 9 weeks
  • Passport Agency Expedite: Must have international travel within 4 calendar days

Note that while you don’t have to renew your passport at any specific time (i.e. before or after it expires), you should be cognizant of the time it will take for renewal when planning your trips.

See the Tips and Facts section below for more information or if you’re specifically interested in information related to expedited passports, see our guide to expedited U.S. passport applications.

Validity Period for Renewed Passports

Renewed passports have the same length of validity as original passports.

  • If you are 16 years of age or older when you get your passport renewed, it will be valid for 10 years.
  • If you are younger than 16, your passport will be valid for 5 years.

Your passport validity period restarts at the time of renewal. Therefore, if you renew your passport at 9 years (1 year of validity left), your passport will be good for 10 and not 11 more years. For this reason, you don’t want to renew too early.

Fees for Adults

Finally, a place where you have an advantage! When renewing your passport (using form DS-82), you will NOT be required to pay the $35 execution fee required for first-time applicants.

You do, however, still have to pay for the passport, card, or both:

Applying For:Application Fee (Adults):
Passport Book$130
Passport Card$30
Passport Book + Card$160

You can still apply for an expedited renewal ($60) and overnight delivery ($19.53) if time is of the essence.

Paying the passport renewal fee by mail requires using ONLY a check or money order payable to the “U.S. Department of State.” Unfortunately, you cannot use a credit card or cash.

See the applicable Special Cases in Passports and Renewals section below more for information on fees.

Mailing in the Passport Renewal Application

Once you have gathered all the necessary items and completed the necessary paperwork, you will need to put it together to be mailed. There are a few things to note when sending in your forms and information.

  • There is a different mailing address for expedited service versus normal service
  • It is strongly recommended to use a large envelope rather than a normal business letter envelope; this helps protect your forms and also makes it easier to ship your info
  • It is strongly recommended to use a trackable delivery method

Therefore, it is probably in your best interest to take your application forms to your local USPS to have them help you choose the right size envelope. If you live in the U.S., you must use the United States Postal Service (USPS) to mail your renewal application and supporting documents.

Bottom Line:

The U.S. Department of State notes that if you use UPS, FedEx, DHL, or another company to send your application, the application will be returned to you.

The applicable addresses are as follows:

Standard Services (If You Live in California, Florida, Illinois, Minnesota, New York, or Texas):
National Passport Processing Center
P.O. Box 640155
Irving, TX 75064-0155

Standard Services (All Other States or Canada):
National Passport Processing Center
P.O. Box 90155
Philadelphia, PA 19190-1955

Expedited Services (All States):

Write “EXPEDITE” on the package
National Passport Processing Center
P.O. Box 90955
Philadelphia, PA 19190-0955

Hot Tip:

Earn a few extra points with shipping when you use an appropriate business credit card. An example is the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card, which earns you 3x on the first $150,000 spent in combined purchases on travel, shipping purchases, internet, cable, and phone services, advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines each account anniversary year.

What Happens to My Old Passport?

For those of you worried about what happens to your old passport, don’t worry. You get it back!

Many people like their old passports for nostalgia’s sake. It’s quite fun to be able to look back at all the various places you have been and see the stamps, some of which are quite neat.

Your old passport will be sent back, but separately from your new passport, so don’t worry when they don’t arrive together.

Special Cases in Passports and Renewals

Certainly, not everyone falls under the “normal” category when discussing passports.

There are a number of special cases to consider:

  • Passport card renewal
  • Name change or correction
  • Child support payers
  • Children/minors ages 16 or 17
  • Children 15 years of age and younger
  • No-fee passports
  • Life or death situations
  • Adding pages to your book
  • Lost or stolen passports
  • Replacing a limited-validity passport
  • Returning a surrendered passport
  • Renewing outside of the country

Renewing a Passport Card

You may renew a passport card by mail if you meet the above requirements. In fact, you may apply and receive a passport card by mail if you already have your passport and meet the above requirements.

Simply follow the procedure above while selecting to renew (or obtain) your passport card versus the passport book. Your passport card will be valid for 10 years from the date of issue and costs $30.

Be sure to check the box to get a passport card when you are sending in your application for a card! You can also get both of them at the same time. Image Credit: Daniel M. Earnest via Shutterstock

Passport Name Change or Correction

Name changes are probably the most common special case, given names can change due to marriage, divorce, or other reasons.

However, this process also is applicable for any corrections, such as being issued with a misspelling or other error in data.

For legal name changes, there are 2 conditions: (1) your passport was issued more than a year ago, or (2) your passport was issued within the past year.

Passports Issued More Than 1 Year Ago

If it’s case 2, unfortunately, you will have to resubmit form DS-82 as if it were a U.S. passport renewal.

You can do this at any time during the validity of your passport. However, note that if you are traveling you will need to do this as soon as possible in order to ensure you are not stopped.

You must be able to document your name change with a legal original or certified copy of a marriage certificate or other government-issued document of the change of name.

If you are not eligible to use Form DS-82 due to not having your old passport or due to damage, you cannot submit the legal documentation, or you had your passport issued more than 15 years ago, then you must apply in person using the original DS-11.

When using the DS-11 method, you will not need to provide proof of your name change if you already have another government ID issued with your new name. You must include your marriage details, however.

See the list above for all the documents you’ll need to include with your application.

If you are recently married and changed your name, you will need to make sure to update your passport ASAP because you won’t be able to travel internationally without matching documents! Image Credit: Jack Frog via Shutterstock

Passports Issued Less Than One Year Ago

If you are lucky enough to have case one, or if you need to make any general corrections, you may use form DS-5504 instead of DS-82 and you will not be charged a fee.

You will still need to provide the following documents:

  • Form DS-5504
  • Your most recent U.S. passport
  • Your original or certified name change document, such as a marriage certificate, divorce decree, or court order
  • A color passport photo

Note: General corrections can be made at any time using DS-5504.

Final Name Change Notes

All forms require you to send in your current passport and your legal documentation of your name change.

In either case, a name change requires fees if using DS-11 or DS-82 (see the applicable fees for normal applications for renewals). If you are eligible to use DS-5504, you will not be charged.

Child Support Payers

This is an important note for those who pay child support: if you owe $2,500 or more in child support, you cannot receive or renew a U.S. passport.

The U.S. Department of HHS has a list of what will prevent your application from being processed.

Be sure to stay up to date to continue getting passport privileges.

Passports for Children/Minors Ages 16 and 17

Because at this age children are still technically children and not legally adults, there are special rules for getting a passport at this age.

Renewing a U.S. passport for a child generally requires you to apply in person using form DS-11. This is because one of the requirements to use DS-82 is that you must have been issued a passport at age 16 or above.

However, this does mean that if you want to renew a child’s passport by mail, you can technically do so if your child’s passport was issued after the age of 16 and the child is now 17 years old.

Applying Alone as a 16- or 17-Year-Old

At 16 or 17 years of age, you can apply for your passport by yourself as long as you have the proper identification and accompanying information (i.e. evidence of U.S. citizenship).

If you don’t have your own identification, you will need to have a parent present that can identify you. Even if the child can apply on their own, it is recommended they have parental consent or parental awareness when applying.

This is simply having at least 1 parent accompanying the child, or having a signed statement of consent to the issuance of a passport along with a photocopy of that parent’s ID.

The appropriate fees apply to those ages 16 and up, depending on if you are using the DS-11 (first-time applicant) or the DS-82 (renewal, special case) — $160 for a book and a card, $130 for just the book, and $30 for the card. A $35 execution fee applies to the DS-11.

Passports for Children 15 and Younger

Regardless of having a previous passport, all minors under 16 must apply for their updated child passport in person as if it was their first, following all of the applicable rules.

This will be with Form DS-11. The same fees apply each time.

If you want to get your child a passport (under 16 years old), then you’ll have to apply in person for it. Its validity is only 5 years versus 10. Image Credit: Ponzakov via Shutterstock

Obtaining No-fee Passports

If you’ve heard of a no-fee passport, you may wonder if you can get one!

There are only very specific people that are eligible for a no-fee passport:

  • You are a U.S. government employee traveling abroad on behalf of the U.S.
  • You are a dependent of someone traveling abroad for the U.S. government and will travel with them
  • You are an immediate relative of a deceased member of the military and are going abroad to visit the grave or attend a funeral or memorial service
  • There may be additional exceptions on a special basis

Depending on what circumstance applies to you, you will need to contact the appropriate agency that you are part of and they will direct you from there.

It is of note that you can only use this passport when traveling for official duties. This means that you may have both a regular and a no-fee passport concurrently.

Emergency Passports: Life or Death Situations

In instances where expediting the passport is not enough, and it is a life or death emergency, you must call the passport information center during business hours at 877-487-2778 or TDD/TTY 888-874-7793 to schedule an appointment.

Your appointment date can be scheduled up to 2 weeks before your international travel, but the date of your appointment must be within 3 business days of your international travel date.

Adding Pages to Your Book

You cannot add pages to your passport book. Instead, you must apply for an entirely new passport. You can do this as a renewal using DS-82 if you meet the eligibility requirements discussed above.

Lost or Stolen Passport

If you lose your passport or it is stolen, you should report it immediately. This helps prevent identity theft.

Here is one thing you can do online! Submit DS-64 online for your lost passport.

You will receive an email acknowledging the submittal and, within a couple of days, you will receive confirmation that the loss was entered into the appropriate database.

In lieu of submitting the passport online, you can call 877-487-2778 or complete form DS-64 by hand and mail it.

Hot Tip:

No matter the method you choose, you’ll still need to fill out an Application for a U.S. Passport (DS-11) if you’d like to reapply for a new passport.

If you find a lost passport, you may mail it back to the U.S. Department of State, in a sturdy envelope, to the following address:

U.S. Department of State
Consular Lost and Stolen Passport Unit (CLASP)
44132 Mercure Circle
P.O. Box 1227
Sterling, VA 20166-1227

Once your passport is reported lost or stolen or is received by someone sending in a found passport, it will be inactivated and can no longer be used.

Therefore, if you find your passport after it has been reported lost, you need to submit it to the address on the back of the DS-64.

If you request it, they will cancel the passport and send it back to you. Otherwise, the passport will be destroyed. The passport also will not be able to be used to renew or apply for a new passport.

To apply for a new passport, you must go in person and submit form DS-11, and provide your proof of citizenship again.

Replace a Limited-validity Passport

A limited-validity passport is one whose validity date is less than 10 years and is likely provided for special instances, such as losing your passport overseas or being under the age of 16. Other special cases may be gender transitions or naturalization certificate replacements. See the website for additional information.

If your limited-validity passport was issued less than 1 year ago, you will not have to pay any fees except in the case of expediting. Submit DS-5504 by mail with your passport and a new passport photo.

If it was issued more than 1 year ago and less than 15 years ago, you may submit DS-82 by mail per the normal renewal application process.

Returning a Surrendered Passport

Sometimes, you may be required to surrender a passport. If you want it returned, you must follow the steps on this page.

Renewing a Passport Outside the U.S.

To renew your U.S. passport outside the U.S., you must use the same process as when you first applied for the passport. This means finding and renewing at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

However, if you reside in Canada, you may utilize the same renewal process as inside the U.S. and use form DS-82. You must ensure that payments draw from U.S. financial institutions.

If you live in Canada, you can still apply for an American passport renewal using form DS-82. You have to draw payments from a U.S. financial institution, however. Image Credit: David P. Lewis via Shutterstock

Tips and Facts

Here are a few tips and facts about passports that you may not know:

You can technically renew your passport at any time during its validity period. The new validity will be 10 years from whenever you are issued your new passport.

Your passport will be sent back via Priority Mail so that there is delivery confirmation — unless you choose overnight delivery. Your passport card is sent via First-Class Mail and cannot be overnighted.

Important Validity Grace Period Requirements for Travel

Some countries do not allow you to enter the country if you have less than 6 months remaining on your passport.

Therefore, it’s smart to plan ahead and get your passport renewed when you’re about a year out so that you have plenty of time to get it done.

Nothing would be worse than flying somewhere and planning a trip, only to be stopped at the border control and turned around, and sent home. Some notable countries with the 6-month validity rule are:

  • China
  • Egypt
  • Singapore
  • Thailand

Check out the U.S. Department of State’s detailed information by country for validity rules by destination.

Damaged Passport Requirements

If your passport has been significantly damaged, you will need to apply for a new one. This includes water damage, tears, unofficial markings on the data page, missing (torn) pages, punches, and more.

You will need to reapply for a new passport using DS-11, apply in person, and provide all required documentation as well as the damaged passport.

Other Passport Special Cases

If a loved one has passed away, you may submit their passport for cancellation by mailing it in.

If your passport has been reported as sent out in the passport application status system, and you have not received it, you should report it to the National Passport Information Center.

If not reported within 90 days of the passport being officially issued, then you will be required to reapply and pay all the applicable fees.

If you’re using a passport card for expedited travel from Canada or Mexico, everyone in your car over the age of 16 must have an RFID-enabled card.

Final Thoughts

The passport renewal form is DS-82. You must already have a current passport and meet other requirements to use this form.

There is no passport application online at this time; you must instead print and fill out the passport renewal forms and either take them in person or send them in by mail.

Before Your Next Trip

You’ve got your passport renewed or changed! Now, grab your travel rewards cards and get ready for another trip. The following links will help you get started:

Like this Post? Pin it on Pinterest!

Frequently Asked Questions

You must have your old, undamaged passport, a new passport photo, appropriate fees, and the correct DS-82 form. If you are renewing to change your name, you must also submit legal documentation proving your name change.

Unfortunately, there is no U.S. online passport application at this time. Passport renewal forms can only be submitted in person or via mail (depending on the form). Online passport renewal may be offered in the future. However, on a positive note, President Biden signed an executive order in December 2021 to offer online passport renewals! This renewal is already being tested, so hopefully this available to everyone in the near future!

The U.S. passport application for minors is different depending on your age. If a child is under the age of 16, both parents must be present and you must apply in person using form DS-11. If the child is of age 16 or 17, they can apply in person themselves if they can provide their own documentation and identification.

Passport application renewal takes the same amount of time as a regular passport takes: approximately 10 to 13 weeks for standard service, 7 to 9 weeks for expedited service, or up to 3 days for agency expediting (only available if you have evidence of upcoming international travel within 14 days.

Passport application renewal costs the same amount as a regular passport whether you are a minor or an adult. This fee is $130 for the passport book and $30 for the passport card. However, you don’t have the pay the $35 execution fee again.

You may check your passport application status on the U.S. Department of State’s website. This site does not track special-issuance passports.

The validity period for renewed passports is the same as it was for your original passport. An adult passport (ages 16+) is good for 10 years from the date of issue. A minor passport (younger than 16) is good for 5 years from the date of issue.

If you are eligible, you may use form DS-82 and send in your renewal application by mail. If you are not eligible to send in the application by mail, you must use form DS-11 and apply in person. If you are making a change or correction, you may use form DS-5504.

Your passport card may be renewed by mail using form DS-82 if you already have a valid passport.

Lost or stolen passports must be reapplied for in person using form DS-11. You must provide proof of citizenship and pay the applicable fees, including the $35 execution fee.

About Alex Miller

Founder and CEO of Upgraded Points, Alex is a leader in the industry and has earned and redeemed millions of points and miles. He frequently discusses the award travel industry with CNBC, Fox Business, The New York Times, and more.


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Bryan Lombardi

January 23, 2019

FYI – one of your links appears to be outdated.
Under: “Online Passport Application Form”
The link sends to a page that reads: “The page you’re looking for may have been moved or renamed” (though it’s still linking to a general State Department site).

Using their search filter I found the following:

I think this is where you wanted to link.

Either way, appreciate your site. All seems accurate. I would point out that all of the same information seems to be available directly from the State Department. Not a big deal, as long as you’re accurate. So, thank you for getting me going in the right direction.

Alex Miller

January 23, 2019

Hey Bryan, thank you very much for letting us know, that’s super helpful 🙂

I updated it with this link that leads straight to the form:

Thanks again!

Seva L Lara

April 09, 2019

Under your FAQs, you state passports will be delivered by priority mail but you don’t state whether the post office will go ahead and deliver them if you are not at home to sign for them?

Christine Krzyszton

April 11, 2019

Hello Seva. I do not know if this is always true but I can tell you that my own passport was delivered by priority mail and I did not have to sign for it.


February 12, 2020

Will they deliver them to your home address or do you have to have it delivered to a PO Box?

Christine Krzyszton

February 12, 2020

Hi Brittney. I know they will deliver to home address because I received mine there. Also, the application allows for you to give a P.O. Box, RFD #, or street address as your mailing address. There is another section for your actual permanent address.


April 30, 2019

Hello, I am located in Mexico and I do hold a tourist passport 15+ years for me/family. I have been offered work with a company in Texas as a diesel mechanic but want to do things legally to be working with a work permit. What would be the best choice for me and what’s the time frame on obtaining a work permit?? Thanks

Christy Rodriguez

April 30, 2019

Hi Gonzalo. You are correct, a tourist passport is different from a work permit. You will need to either obtain a permanent resident card, a work permit, or a employment-related visa in order to legally work in the U.S. We are Upgraded Points, a website that publishes points and miles based articles as well as additional travel related posts like this guide to passport renewal. That being said, I don’t believe we are your best resource to answer your questions.

I would recommend you start your search on the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website which has detailed information –


June 03, 2019

Confusion with no clear answer:
I want to renew / replace my passport and passport card — both expire August 2019. I have my passport card but the passport itself is lost in my house or storage somewhere. Can I submit form DS 82 with my passport-card and include form DS 64 (statement of lost passport) AND STILL SUBMIT BY MAIL? The USPS rep stated I can do this without having to go in person. I’m looking for clarification before sending it in so I don’t get rejected and lose down time

Christy Rodriguez

June 03, 2019

Hi Marc,

It seems like you have a few questions – first, you’ve lost your passport. In order to renew it, you’ll need to also complete the Form DS-11. This is the application form for a U.S. Passport if you don’t have a valid passport currently. You will need to submit this form in person to a passport agency. Here is more information on where to make your appointment:

Second, you want to renew your passport card. This is probably what the USPS individual was referring to – you can send this via mail, but you could also do this in person at the same time you’re applying for your passport card.

Thanks for reading!


June 03, 2019

Thanks so much for your response, Christy. I just got off the phone with the US Passport Office and I do not have to go in person and pay an extra processing fee for renewal. I can renew by mail because even though I can’t find my passport book, the passport-card can be sent in with Form DS 82 as it contains all of my passport info. So it paid to have that Passport Card in order to not have to go in person and have to pay the extra $35 processing fee.

Christy Rodriguez

June 03, 2019

Great news Marc. I wasn’t aware that you could do this as there isn’t much guidance for this particular instance found on their site. Glad you were able to get it all sorted out though.

Thanks for following back up as well in case any of our readers are in a similar position!


August 20, 2019

Hi, I just renewed my passport in person (I live in Norway) and am waiting for the new passport to come by mail. Do I need to send in my old passport to be canceled? (Because I already brought it with me when I came in person.) Will the old one be in my way of using the new one for travel?

Christy Rodriguez

August 20, 2019

Hi Minken, typically when renewing a passport, the old was is taken back and cancelled. It doesn’t sound like this was the case for you.

We would definitely recommend contacting the U.S. Department of State directly to confirm how to proceed. The contact information can be found here:

Jarrod West

August 20, 2019

Hi Minken,

No, you do not need to send your old passport in. It’s best you hold onto it in a safe place as even old passports can be used as proof of U.S. citizenship.

Thanks for reading!


August 20, 2019

I just don’t want to be stopped at the border because there’s something wrong/not completely right with my passport history.

Jarrod West

August 21, 2019

Hi Minken,

There is nothing wrong with keeping your old passport. Many people keep them to look back on the various stamps they’ve accumulated. You will definitely not be stoped at the border for that.

Thanks for reading!


August 20, 2019

Hi, what does it really even mean that the old passport is canceled? Does that mean that somehow the new one isn’t 100% functional until the old one is canceled?

Christy Rodriguez

August 20, 2019

Hi Minken, no – your new one is fully functional when you receive it. As far as the specifics, we can’t speak to this which is why we suggested contacting the U.S. Department of State. At a high level, they will mark your old passport as cancelled in the relevant databases and the document will no longer be valid for travel. In my case, it’s always been hole punched. Hope this helps!

Bianca Splinter

September 09, 2019

I have a question not addressed previously.
My passport expires on April 5, 2020. In October I will be visiting Germany and taking a cruise from Prague to Budapest returning on November 4, 2020. Since the validity on my passport is less than 6 months, how and where can I get it extended, rather than renewed.
I live in California. I also have a Global Entry Pass good through 2023.

Christy Rodriguez

September 09, 2019

Hi Bianca, there isn’t an option to extend a passport – you would simply be applying for a renewal following the steps above. You can apply for a renewal before your passport expires though, so this is definitely what we would recommend doing if you have time to do so.

Once your passport is renewed, be sure to update the Trusted Traveler profile associated with your Global Entry account to ensure everything matches up.

Thanks for reading!


October 06, 2019

Hello, I read all the requirement and process to renew my child passport. My son was issued a passport when he was six months old and it is time for me to renew his passport as he is six years and half now. My question is, can I just go to the post office and do it like first time since he is not eligible for the mail renewal? Thanks for your time and help.

Christy Rodriguez

October 06, 2019

Hi Meirem, we have a whole guide on how to get and renew a passport for a child here: /how-to-get-a-passport-for-your-baby

But in short, children applicants under 16 are not eligible to mail in their passport applications. You must go in person to do this. Thanks for reading!


October 25, 2019


I intend on renewing my existing passport. I also would like to get a passport card (I do not currently have one) Do I just check the Both Box on the application and then leave the “most recent passport card number” blank.

Thank you

Jarrod West

October 25, 2019

Hi Rob,

You should reach out to the Department of Transportation directly regarding this. They will be able to give you the most accurate information.

Ken jones

December 15, 2019

My son was a minor when he first received his passport. Now that he is an adult what do I need to do to get it renewed?
Can I go to the post office to have it renewed?

Christy Rodriguez

December 15, 2019

Hi Ken, depending on the age of your son, I would suggest starting in the article above at “Passports for Children/Minors Ages 16 and 17” or check out our article here.

Either way, he will need to go in-person to a post office to have it renewed, you will not be able to do it for him.

Kenny liu

December 31, 2019

I just applied to renew my passport a few days ago and I noticed that It will take 6-8 weeks to receive my new passport. Now, there are personal reasons I need the passport very soon. Can I pay extra now to have the passport renewal process faster, please? I have to travel overseas next week.

Jarrod West

December 31, 2019

Hi Kenny,

In some cases, you can pay extra to have your passport expedited, but it usually still takes 2-3 weeks. You can read more about your options here:

Garrett Harper

January 13, 2020

I am about to renew my US passport in the Consulate in Mexico City and am filling out the DS-82 form. I have a couple questions about that.

1. When it asks for my mailing address, should I provide my address where I live in Mexico? Or an address in the US where I receive my mail? (i.e. Parents house)
2. On the second page it asks for a Permanent address, is that the place to put my address in Mexico?

Christy Rodriguez

January 13, 2020

Hi Garrett,

Typically your mailing address is where you would want your new passport to be mailed to, but since you are currently living in Mexico, it may need to be collected directly at the consulate. As we aren’t directly associated with the US Department of State, we would recommend that you reach out directly to the National Passport Information Center: just to be sure!

Thanks for reading!


February 15, 2020

I applied to renew my passport with my new married name, but they sent me a passport card instead of a book! Now I have no idea what to do and how to get it in time for my travel in 7 weeks. When I applied I had plenty of time, but they didn’t send me what I ordered. What should I do? I still have not gotten my old passport back from them either.

Christine Krzyszton

February 17, 2020

Hi Darah. You could give the passport office a call at 877-487-2778. You can also go online at and check the status of your order for more information. Additionally, you could check your credit card statement before you call to see how much you were charged. It might be helpful information to know if the fee for the change you requested, i.e. changing the name on a passport more than 1 year old, matches the amount charged to your credit card. Perhaps the order is still in progress.


February 18, 2020

I recently sent a renewal application in for my passport. Can you tell me what the application status stages are? Currently it says, “being processed” or “in progress”, I can’t remember. What would be the next stage in the process that I should see on the website?

Jarrod West

February 21, 2020

Hi Zach,

If the application is already being processed, then the next stage should be the approval of your application once it is finished processing.

Thanks for reading!

Blaiz Christopher

February 22, 2020

The only name that I have been using for the past 39 years is not my legal birth name. All of my documents are in my current name, including my SS#, California Driver’s License, Medical Insurance, etc.

I never legally changed my name because I didn’t have a need to. I wasn’t going to travel outside the US. However, now with Real ID necessary to travel by air within the US, I either need to legally change my name, or show a passport with my current name in order to travel. Is it possible for me to get a passport without doing a legal name change? I don’t really have the money to do it right now as I’m on Social Security.

In the article, you wrote “When using the DS-11 method, you will not need to provide proof of your name change if you already have another government ID issued with your new name.” Is a Social Security Card “another government ID issued with your new name”? Or is that only in the case of a name change due to marriage.

I have contacted the passport agency, but they just keep sending me links on their website, which don’t answer my question.

Thank you!

Christy Rodriguez

February 24, 2020

Hi Blaiz, this seems pretty complex and unfortunately, we’re not an official source for obtaining a REAL ID or a U.S. passport. Our best recommendation is to refer you to your local DMV or make an appointment at your closest passport office regarding your questions. Sorry we can’t be of more help.


February 26, 2020

Hi there, my passport was received 1/29/2020 as of today it still says in process on the website for the status. My trip is in about 4 weeks from now so they have had my information now about a month. When I sent my information out the post office told me that if anything is not accepted or more information is needed that a letter would be generated to let me know within 2-3 weeks. At this point I haven’t received anything. Does anyone know if this is accurate? I called the passport office for an update but all they shared was the same information as what is reflected on the website which is “in process” I was just curious if anyone had received a letter asking for more documents, etc. and how quickly this came?

Christy Rodriguez

February 26, 2020

Hi KO, I don’t personally have experience with more information being requested, but I do know that my passport took 6 weeks to arrive once it was marked as received when I renewed in May last year. If you are concerned about it not arriving for your trip, you can call and see if you can pay the fee to get your order expedited. Maybe a reader has experience with additional information being requested that can chime in?

Hope this helps!

Marek France

March 05, 2020

So I need to renew my passport and I cannot find where or how I attach my old passport to the renewal form. Same with paying for it. How I attach payment to the form.

Christy Rodriguez

March 05, 2020

Hi Marek, on the form, there are guidelines of where to include 4 staples to attach your picture. In order to attach payment, you can simple include the check inside the envelope. Thanks for reading!

Mack Alexander

June 08, 2020

Hey there – do you all have experience for how long passport renewals are taking with the impact of COVID? My passport is expired and want to know how long it might take.

Christy Rodriguez

June 08, 2020

Hi Mack, the passport office has been closed since March 2020, and there is no indication when it might reopen yet per the State Department. It doesn’t even have an estimated time for processing on the website.

I’ve heard that some individuals that sent their passports back in February have yet to receive them. I would estimate once they reopen, to expect at least a 4-6 month delay, but this is clearly just a best guess. Thanks for reading!


December 18, 2020

I need to renew my passport because it will expire soon but I’ve also had a name change since my last passport was issued. I was told I need to fill out the DS-82. Question 11 asks for the place of the name change (city/state). My husband and I got married in Cancun, Mexico so I’m not really sure what answer they’re looking for here. Do I just put Cancun, Mexico down? Thanks so much!

Jarrod West

December 19, 2020

Hi Heather,

Did you file the documentation to have your name changed while you were in Cancun? I assume you probably did that at your local courthouse before or after the trip right? In that case, you should put that city and state down.


December 30, 2020

I applied for passport renewal for my 6-year-old daughter. I got the new passport and passport card but haven’t received the old passport back. I need the old passport for our travel as it has the visa stamped. Can you please tell me how long it takes to get the old passport back? Does it come through priority mail or first class mail? Is there a way to track the status or expedite to get it sooner? I have tried reaching (877) 487-2778 but never been able to reach anyone. Can you please advise? Thanks!

Jarrod West

January 12, 2021

Hi Anita,

I’m sorry for this frustrating situation! Usually, it takes 6-8 weeks to receive your passport back, but if you have it expedited it can return in 2-3 weeks. About how long have you been waiting now?


March 06, 2021

Has anyone heard how long expedited processing is actually taking right now? Particularly in Philadelphia? I have an application that began processing on February 19th. My travel date is March 17th. I’m really worried it will not arrive in time.

Christine Krzyszton

March 07, 2021

Hi Mc. I received mine back in 2 weeks and 2 days but that was a few months ago. You can contact the passport office at 1-877-487-2778 on Mondays-Fridays from 8:00 am to 10:00 pm Eastern Time for an update on the status of your application, since it has been more than 14 days. More information here:,after%20you%20apply%20or%20renew.

Brandon Doyle

June 17, 2021

So was it 2 weeks and 2 days after you sent it in or after it was reported received and “in process?” Mine has been “in process” for 2 weeks today. I am stressing because my vacation is scheduled for July 3rd. Everything is paid for, we are traveling with many couples, and even the expedited service is taking longer than “normal.”

Christine Krzyszton

June 17, 2021

It was 2 weeks and 2 days from the date I sent it. Hoping you receive yours soon.

Brandon Doyle

June 18, 2021

Me too. Thank you.

Brandon Doyle

June 17, 2021

Does anyone know how accurate the renewal times are? I paid extra for expedited service as well as overnight return postage. I sent in my renewal application on Wednesday, May 26, and the Dept. of State says they received it on June 6th and that it takes 4-6 weeks to process. I am stressing because my international travel date is July 3rd. Most people were reassuring me with their story of receiving their passport in 3 weeks, but today marks the 3-week mark that I sent it in and it is still processing. I know Covid has affected issuing times, but I am hoping the 4-6 week time is the worst case. I am freaking out because our trip is in 2 weeks and we have prepaid for quite a bit. None of the 3rd party expediting service companies can offer anything but the 4-6 week expediting times either, which does not help me at all. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.


July 03, 2021

Did you get yours? I sent it in mid-April and still haven’t received anything, although I did select standard processing.

Maria Lopez

June 22, 2021

How do you write other names used on DS-82 line 9 if the name is too long for the space?

Jarrod West

June 22, 2021

Hi Maria,

Are you filling out the online form? If so it allows up to 35 characters each for your first, middle, and last name. I would imagine that should be more than enough space, even if you have multiple middle or last names. Here is a link to the form page I am referring to.

Jeromy Cole

August 18, 2021

I applied for a renewed passport by mail and the website gave me an estimated delivery date. When the envelope arrived, it had my old passport and not my new passport. We have tried to contact the passport support people but they have all given us the runaround and said there is nothing they can do to help us. It seems to me that they processed my passport but then accidentally sent me the old passport instead of the new passport. Any suggestions?

Christine Krzyszton

August 19, 2021

Hi Jeromy. Normally, the old passport is returned but it is sent in a separate package from the new one. You might want to ask for the package tracking information for the new passport. There should be 2 tracking numbers, one for the old and one for the new.

Jeromy Cole

August 20, 2021

Thank you for your reply. Who do I ask? When I call the phone numbers, the person on the phone says they can not access that information and they tell us to check the website. The website, however, does not list mail tracking information and instructs us to call the phone numbers.

Christine Krzyszton

August 20, 2021

There is some information here on assistance with tracking:
Sorry, you are having trouble. If you tell them you checked the website, you saw an estimated delivery date, it is now past that delivery date and you have not received it, there should be assistance to track it down. Another option is to visit a passport agency depending, of course, on your access to one.

Linda S Bentley

January 27, 2023

Two weeks after mailing my passport renewal, I noticed that the second page was not sent. It was in the envelope at some point, and probably didn’t get added when I added the check. What action or actions should I take now, if any?

Jarrod West

January 28, 2023

Hi Linda,

If the second page was not sent then it is very likely your application will be returned to you, and you’ll have to resend the documents.


July 15, 2023

Hi Linda, I have the same issue. What ended up happening? I have read on other threads that they can send a letter requesting additional information. Did this happen in your case? If so, how long did it delay the process? Thank you!

Linda S Bentley

April 11, 2023

Thank you Jarrod. Will I be able to renew or will I now have to reapply? Perhaps instructions will be included.

Jarrod West

April 13, 2023

Hi Linda,

You would need to reapply, but most likely you should just be able to resend the documents you already completed along with the second page filled out.


May 16, 2023

Hello, if a child is under the age of 10 and her/his passport needs to be renewed but she/he parents are not available to be there, but the grandmother is the legal guardian, what steps do I need to take?

Keri Stooksbury

May 17, 2023

Hi Rosa. Passports for minors cannot be renewed – you have to start from scratch again in the application process (we have great tips in this guide). According to our guide, “Parental consent must be given to those under the age of 16 and they cannot apply alone. Both parents or guardians must be present and consent, if available. If a parent can’t be present, the other must bring an affidavit granting permission to give the child a passport. If there is only 1 guardian, then proof can be provided by presenting a proper court order or death certificate.” More details can be found on the Department of State website. Thanks for reading!


August 28, 2023

Hello, I have lost my passport during my move and had my last name changed since passport was first created. Would I only need to submit DS-011 form and start from scratch? I am in a time crunch with needing mine urgently. Any advice would help.

Christine Krzyszton

September 04, 2023

Hi Whitney. If the lost passport has expired less than 5 years ago, you do not need to report it lost/stolen, you would submit the DS-11 with your current name. You will be able to list previously used names on the form. If the passport is not expired, you should report it lost/stolen. Then, you must apply in person and use the DS-11. You would be able to change the name at that time also.


August 31, 2023

I applied for the renew my passport and received a new passport in 7 weeks. However, it is valid for one year only. Why is that? My previous passport has not expired and my name has not changed.

Jarrod West

August 31, 2023

Hi Raju,

I’m not sure why they would have given you a temporary passport. Have you called to inquire about this?

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