The US Department of State has provided updates on the current status of US Passport operations. Routine processing services can take up to 18 weeks from when the application is submitted to when the passport is received.
As part of prioritizing the very limited appointments for urgent travel, on Wednesday, July 21, the State Department temporarily disabled the online booking system for Urgent Travel Appointments. Appointments scheduled before 10 p.m. ET on Wednesday, July 21, using the online system will be honored.
What to Expect
- Passport applicants should expect continued delays. Routine service can take up to 18 weeks, and expedited service can take up to 12 weeks. Pending routine applications can be updated to expedited service for a $60 fee.
- The timeline for processing begins when the State Department receives the application, not the mail date.
- For applicants who need to apply in person, the State Department recommends applying at an acceptance facility. Applicants should first contact their local acceptance facility to confirm it is open before they apply.
- In-person appointments at a passport agency or center are currently only available for Life-or-Death Emergency Service and Urgent Travel Service.
- Adults with 10-year passports can renew them by mail instead of appearing in person.
- Applicants can get their questions answered immediately by using one of the self-service tools available online. Customer service representatives will not give status updates over the phone.
The State Department recommends applying at least 6 months before planned travel. Appointments for in-person service at a passport agency or center are extremely limited, and customers with emergencies are being prioritized. Currently, appointments must be scheduled by phone — 1-877-487-2778 or 1-888-874-7793 TDD/TTY.
Due to COVID-19, government agencies, including passport agencies and centers, significantly reduced operations resulting in lengthy backlogs. In 2020, 11,711,945 were issued, the lowest number since 2005. All agencies and centers are processing applications, but not all offer the same level of in-person service. As the State Department works to reduce processing times for routine and expedited service, the timeline will shorten.