9 Steps To A Same Day Passport

Get-a-US-Passport-Intro.jpgMy husband and I are coming up on our 4th Wedding Anniversary this March, In which we will be starting our 5th year of Marriage together. We were looking for somewhere special to go. I have been to Cancun, Mexico a lot, however he has never been there prior. If we are going to make this trip work, we have multiple issues going on. First I have no birth certificate, and was born in Germany. So I sent out a birth certificate request to Washington DC. I hope to get that within the next two weeks.

After that will leave me about three weeks to get an US passport to travel to Mexico. Since my husband was born in Chicago, he will have no issue getting his.

  1. First step is to find a passport agency that you can get to.  Without one of these you’re out of luck.  Visit this page to see where the nearest agency you can get to is.
  2. Once you have your agency identified, call 1-877-487-2778 to schedule an appointment ASAP.  Take the earliest appointment you can get, because then it’s more likely they will be able to get your passport created before they close.  Obviously if you have more than one day to work with, you have some flexibility here.  However if you need it that same day, your only shot is most likely an early morning appointment.  Be sure to write down your confirmation #.  You’ll need this when you arrive.
  3. Okay, here’s where I messed up a bit.  Save yourself the time and waiting longer in line by having whatever forms you need filled out and printed prior to arriving.  Depending on your situation, you may need to fill out a few forms.  You can access them here.  You can fill out online and print, or print and fill out by hand.  Regardless of your situation, you’ll need to fill out the DS-11 Application for a Passport.  I had lost mine so I had to also fill out the DS-64 Statement Regarding a Lost or Stolen Passport.  You can get these forms at the office and fill out there, but you’ll lose valuable time.
  4. In addition to the forms, you will need to bring your state issued birth certificate, not a copy and it has to be issued by the state you were born in.  You’ll also need your driver’s license.
  5. You’ll need 2 passport photos in hand at the office.  Honestly, the easiest thing to do here is to just go to a Walgreens, or some local drug store that does these.  It’s quick and easy, and you’ll ensure the proper requirements are met.  If you are ambitious, you can do this yourself by following these directions.
  6. You’ll need a check, money order or credit card on hand.  For same day passports expect a fee of around $195 (that’s what I paid).  It is quite a bit more than a normal process, but when you’re desperate, it’s not too bad.  Especially considering there are quite a few websites that are actually charging 3x this much for similar services.  DO NOT use these services unless you do not have access to a passport agency.  You’ll be paying way more then necessary, and will actually not be able to get your passport as quickly as you could.
  7. You need to print out your travel itinerary showing that you are traveling out of country soon.  This is important as without this, they will not expedite your passport as quickly as you need it.
  8. Try to get to the agency 15 minutes before your appointment.  IMPORTANT NOTE:  Be nice!  It sounds silly but the reality is the people behind the counter are pretty much the ones who can and will dictate whether they will accommodate you.  Seems crazy but it’s true.  Be nice, conversational, and you’ll have a good shot of getting what you need as long as you bring everything required.
  9. If they are able to accommodate your same day request, expect to either stick around all day, or come back to pick your passport up.  I checked in at 9am, and my passport was ready for me at 3pm.  Most of these offices will not let you use your cell phone or laptop there, so be prepared if you plan on waiting.

 

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