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  • Passport Fees Have Increased: Here’s What You Should Know

    The next time that you need to get a passport, you may notice an increase in the total cost. On December 27, 2021, passport fees increased for anyone looking to get a new passport or passport renewal. Though the fee increase may not be significantly high, those who did not know about the increase may be surprised when they see the total cost. So, how much did passport fees increase and why did they increase in the first place? Here’s what you should know:

    How Much Did Passport Fees Increase?

    The U.S. Department of State recently announced that there would be a price increase for passport fees starting December 27, 2021. Though the price increase wasn’t substantial, passport fees did increase by $20 for anyone looking to obtain a passport. If you want to know how much money total this will set you back, you can use this passport fee calculator on the U.S. Department of State website. You will have to pay a different total price based on if you’re looking to get a passport renewal or a new passport. If you choose to get your passport with Swift, you can find out how much the total cost of your passport will be on the Swift website.

    Why Have Passport Fees Increased?

    A tweet made by the State Department stated that passport fees will be increasing by $20 on December 27, 2021, in order to ensure that the government is able to “continue to produce one of the most secure travel and identity documents in the world.” Beyond that statement, there are no details into what that exactly means for passports and if the government plans on updating passports with this added fee.

    How Secure Are Passports Right Now?

    The safety and security of the information in your passport is of the utmost importance. Passports are designed to make sure that your information doesn’t get stolen. In fact, a new passport was introduced in 2021 – the Next Generation Passport (NGP). The NGP is a redesign of the old passport in terms of look, feel, and security. It will help to keep your personal information safe and make you less susceptible to becoming a victim of counterfeiting and identity theft. Some of the features that the NGP has that make it more secure include a polycarbonate data page, updated artwork, laser engraved personalization, a black and white photo image, and a multi-layered plastic data page.

    Did Fees Increase For Both New Passports and Renewals?

    Yes. You can expect to see an increase in passport fees for both new passports and passport renewals. Though fees have increased for both, the total cost to obtain a new passport and passport renewal may differ. You can use this fee calculator to estimate what the total cost of your new passport or passport renewal will be. If you choose to get your passport with Swift, you can find out how much the total cost of your passport will be on the Swift website.

    Will There be Any Other Changes to the Passport?

    Though there are currently no other plans for changes to the passport in the near future, there are plans to change how you can obtain a passport. An executive order signed by president Biden in December 2021 wants to make it possible for passport applicants to be able to apply for their passport entirely online. So, instead of applicants having to physically send in documents during the application process, they would be able to upload all of their documents online. There’s no exact date for when this new system will be available, but we don’t expect it to be in place any time soon.

    How Can I Apply For a Passport Right Now?

    If you’re looking to obtain a passport renewalnew passport, or child passport you can do so on the Swift website. As of January 7, 2022, we are offering a 7-10 business day passport service. Please note that this service is very limited and is offered on a first-come-first-serve basis. If you are interested in using this service, please call us ahead of time at 312-929-2105 to reserve your spot. If you aren’t in a hurry to obtain your passport, we also have a 5-7 week option for passport renewals only.

    If you have any questions at all about obtaining a passport for an upcoming trip, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We’d be happy to help answer any questions you may have, and work with you to get your passport in hand as soon as possible. As always, no matter where you’re going, we’ll get you there!

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