While a second valid passport may seem like a good idea to have for backup or additional identification, you won’t be granted one just because you want one. It is possible to get a second passport, but only if it’s deemed necessary by the U.S. Department of State (DOS).
Why You May Need a Second Valid Passport
Circumstances that qualify for receiving a second passport can include:
- If you’re traveling internationally while you’re applying for a visa to another country. Visa applications can take some time, and having a second valid passport will allow you to continue to travel while you’re waiting for visa approval.
- If you have stamps on your passport that would deny you entry into other countries. Many Middle Eastern countries, for instance, would deny entry to travelers who have passports stamped from Israel.
How to Get a Second Valid Passport
The easiest way to get a second valid passport is using a third-party agency, such as Swift. Since agencies are well-connected and experienced in obtaining passports and visas, the experience is likely to be much quicker and much less of a hassle than working through the DOS.
Your first step is to gather up all required documents. These include:
- Valid U.S. Passport: Your existing passport must be in good condition. If your passport has less than one-year validity, you may want to renew your passport before requesting a second one.
- Passport Application Form DS-82: You can fill out the form online, and then print it out for submission. This is the same form you use to renew a passport.
- Passport Photo: Passport photos must have been taken in the last six months, have a white background, be taken without glasses, and measure 2-inches square.
- Request for Second Valid Passport: Submit a letter written by yourself or your employer that explains why you need a second valid passport. You must also sign and submit a form requesting a second passport.
- Proof of Travel: The proof of travel you need to submit depends on the reason you’re requesting a second valid passport. If it’s due to travel dates conflicting with a visa application, you must submit itineraries for both dates of scheduled travel. If it’s due to passport stamps that may deny you entry to a specific country, you must submit an itinerary outlining travel to that country.
- Original Letters of Authorization: If you’re submitting your information through Swift or other third-party agency, you need to sign and submit two identical letters of authorization. These letters allow the agency to submit information on your behalf.
Your next step is to submit all the documentation and fees so your second passport can be processed and issued. Swift makes it easy to apply for a second valid passport, with an online checklist, online payment options, and expedited service with processing times for second passports that range from four to 15 business days.
What Else You Need to Know
Second passports are only valid for two years. While two years is a shorter time than the usual 10-year validity period, you can re-apply for a second passport as frequently as needed after it’s expired.
Now that you know the lowdown on obtaining a second valid passport, you can move forward with the process if it’s the right option for you. Please feel free to contact us with any questions; we’re here to help!
Laurie Lee is co-founder and CEO of Swift Passport and Visa Services. A Chicago native, Laurie loves adventure travel, especially to the Caribbean. She enjoys writing for the Swift Post, as well as for her personal blog, Spare Parts- www.sparebodyparts.com.