Monday, July 10, 2017

Know Your Rights: Passport renewal

I have booked a family holiday and checked my passport to make sure it’s still valid. It is, but it’s due to expire a couple of weeks before I travel. How can I make sure that I can get a new one in time?

You don’t have to wait until the expiry of your passport to renew it. If you apply for a new passport before your current one has expired, the period that your new passport is valid for begins from when you apply, rather than from when your previous passport expires.

The website of the Passport Service,, lists the current average processing times for different types of passport applications. The quickest way to renew your passport is by using the online application service, which was introduced earlier this year. You can use the online service if your passport expires any time in the next 12 months.

You must submit a digital photo with your application. You can get a friend to take your photo with a digital camera or smartphone or you can go to a photo provider, for example a pharmacy or a photographer, who will give you a copy of your digital photo to upload. Alternatively, you can go to one of the photo booth services listed on, which will take your photo and provide you with a code. If you enter this code when you apply, you don’t need to upload the photo yourself.

Online renewal isn’t available for children’s passports, so if you wanted to renew your family’s passports together, you would have to use Passport Express, the postal application service. Alternatively, you could renew your own passport online and use Passport Express for renewing any passports for children.

When you get your new passport you can set a renewal reminder. The website offers a passport reminder service, which will send you an email three months before the passport expires.
Further information is available from the Citizens Information Service below.

Know Your Rights has been compiled by Boyle Citizens Information Centre which provides a free and confidential service to the public. Tel: 0761 07 6330 

Address: Elphin Street, Boyle, Co. Roscommon

Information is also available online at and from the Citizens Information Phone Service - 0761 07 4000

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