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Common Passport Application Mistakes To Avoid

Any mistake you make in the passport application process can lead to the rejection or suspension of your application. This can cause major delays in processing and possibly cause you to miss your trip. To save you time and any headaches, read these Top Tips:

  • Avoid any kind of errors on the application – Cross-outs, white-out, or any other marks on the application are strictly forbidden. It’s better to pay close attention while filling out the form and use black ink only. Filling the form online and printing is suggested.
  • Birth Certificate – Must be an original or certified copy of your birth certificate. It should be the state issued long form with parents full names (hospital certificates and photocopies are not allowed).
  • Passport Photos – Common errors with photos include applicants trying to take the pictures themselves instead of having it done at a professional passport camera outlet such as CVS, Walgreens, Kinko’s. Expired film, bad quality images, wrong color background or image of head too large or too small are major reasons for denials. Click here for some examples of Passport Photos.
  • Government fee – Incorrect amount or payable to the wrong name will cause your application to be rejected. If mailing your application, fees must be made payable to the “U.S. Department of State” for the correct amount. Fees can be paid by check (personal, certified, cashiers, travelers) or US Postal money order.If going directly to the passport agency, fees can be paid by credit/debit card, check, money order or cash for exact amount.The Application Fee is a non-refundable processing fee and is retained by the Department of State whether or not the passport is issued
  • Applying on Behalf of a Minor – both parents including the child must be present. In the event that the parent or guardian cannot both be present, proper consent forms must notarized.


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