Online Passport Renewal: New White House Executive Order

Online Passport Renewal: New White House Executive Order


Online Passport Renewal is Part of A New White House Executive Order. The Executive Order, which aims to more broadly transform the public's customer service experience at the hands of federal agencies, doesn't specify a time horizon for the change, but states: ” The Secretary of State shall design and deliver a new online passport renewal experience that does not require any physical documents to be mailed.”

Currently, renewing a U.S. passport requires getting passport photos and submitting the required documentation by mail; standard processing takes 8-11 weeks after documentation is received, or 5-7 weeks for expedited processing, by paying an additional $60 fee. Many have experienced delays with passport renewals due to the pandemic; the State Department now recommends applying 6 months before planned travel. A limited number of in-person appointments exist at Passport Agencies for urgent travel, although they now require calling in, because the online service was being used by scammers who then sold the appointments to desperate applicants.

According to a White House primer, “Americans will be able to renew their passports securely online, saving time from having to wait and the effort and cost required to print, go to a post office, and use a paper check. This new online process will be done with safety and security.”

Other travel-related improvements the Executive Order addresses include the TSA; the order instructs Homeland Security to test innovative technologies to reduce passenger wait times at security checkpoints, and to make it easier for passengers to provide feedback.

If you've recently renewed a U.S. passport, how long did it take?

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