[SiH] Recommended Resource: Do You Need a Passport?
January 2007 – Vol. IV, Issue 1
Recommended Resource: Do You Need a Passport?
If you live in the United States, you’ve hopefully heard of the new requirement for travel. All air travelers between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, Panama and the Caribbean must have a valid passport. This requirement just began as of January 23, 2007, and as a result, you may face long lines if you go to apply for a passport today. Because I just renewed my passport in preparation for travel to the Worldwide Association of Business Coaches conference in Vancouver in May, I thought it might be helpful to share a couple of tips.
- If you don’t have a current passport, go get one. You never know when you may need it. If you want to wait until after the current fervor has died down, feel free, but do it as soon as you can. The processing time for passports is about six weeks normally, but I expect that it’s longer now because of the new requirements. If you don’t have one, you won’t be able to travel internationally.
- If you’re facing a passport application, renewal or name change, make http://travel.state.gov/passport your first stop. The US Department of State has done a great job at preparing you for the process. You can even fill out your application at home before you go. You just can’t sign it if you’re making a full application � you must appear in person and your signature must be witnessed.
- Get your photo taken at a regular photo store, not at the passport application location. And don’t try to take it yourself; photo stores know the specs and probably have a little space where they do all of their passport photos. I walked in to our local Inkley’s and walked out with my passport photos in hand in about 10 minutes.
- If there is another option, don’t go to the post office to make your passport application. I was there today and the line was almost out the door. Luckily, I was doing a renewal and just needed to purchase postage for my envelope. I chatted with a postal worker and she said that it had been like that all week, but that the local county building had no line and you could just get in and out. Again, http://travel.state.gov/passport is your friend… there’s a quick search feature that shows you the passport application locations that are closest to you.
I’m not sure how many of you this will help, but if I can save you a little time and headache, my work here is done!