Friday, December 14, 2007

Passport Procrastination

New Year’s Resolution #1: Complete the passport application that is currently on the bottom of my ‘to do’ pile on my desk!
I know that a passport is now required when traveling anywhere outside of the USA.
I also know that the processing time frame is about two months. So why do I put it off?
I know that if I need to expedite the service, I’ll have to pay an extra fee and still have to wait for nearly a month to receive it.

When I initially inquired about the application process I found out that all I needed to do to start the process was to go to the local post office or town office to pick up the application. The town clerk instructed me to
complete the form and return it with my original birth certificate (proof of US citizenship) , proof of identity (social security card, driver’s license), and 2 passport photos. The town clerk mentioned that AAA members can get passport photos done at a discounted rate in nearby locations.
The government also provides a useful guide for first time applicants.

FYI: If you're traveling within two weeks and need a passport or foreign visa for travel, you can contact one of the
thirteen Passport Agencies who will be able to assist you.

What if a Passport is lost or stolen?
* A report of the loss or theft must be filed immediately to the State Department and a report needs to be filed with the local police.
*If the picture ID for domestic travel is lost, it is necessary to contact the airlines immediately . They have other ways to document identities.

Heart of the Valley Travel web site info: "When traveling internationally, carry a passport even if you don't need one (it's always the best form of ID), and make two photocopies of the data page (one for someone at home and another for you, carried separately from your passport). If you lose your passport, promptly call the nearest US Embassy or consulate and the local police. Make sure you have a signed, valid passport and visas, if required. "
The embassy request that applicants appear in person, prove identity, and reapply (and of course, pay a hefty fee). Another contact is the Department of State Overseas Citizens Service at 1-317-472-2328. Before you go, fill in the emergency information page of your passport and check the expiration date. Many countries require you to present a passport with an expiration date of no less than 6 months from the end of your visit to their country.
Keep the passport in a safe location….and have a safe trip!
I think Santa has an
RSS feed for gramEpat's blog. Maybe he will leave a AAA gift card in my stocking to pay for my passport photos!

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