Thousands of Post Offices™ accept first-time passport applications for the U.S. Department of State. Most of those locations can also take your passport photo.
- Renewing Passports: If you answer 'Yes' to all 5 eligibility questions in the "Renew a Passport by Mail" section, mail your renewal form directly to the State Department. If you don't meet all the renewal requirements, you'll need to go to a Post Office in person and do a new, first-time passport application.
- First-Time Passports (and Passport Photos): Schedule your in-person appointment online.
Passports for Minors
Passports for children under 16 have special requirements. Make sure you are prepared.
Apply for a First-Time Passport
If you've never had a U.S. passport, are 16 or under, or aren't allowed to renew an existing passport by mail, you need to apply for a new passport in person at the Post Office.
Generally, you should apply for your new passport as soon as you know you’ll be traveling internationally—at least several months in advance. Passport processing times may vary, so be sure to check the latest State Department service estimates. First-time applicants, minors, and applicants who need a new passport but may not renew by mail may submit their passport application at the Post Office. The U.S. State Department website explains what you'll need to bring with you.
Visit the U.S. Department of State website to learn how to apply for a passport and what documents you need.
- Complete your Form DS-11 Application for U.S. Passport on the State Department website.
- Print your completed application.
DO NOT SIGN YOUR APPLICATION. A Postal employee must witness your signature.
- Have a passport photo taken.
- Photocopy your proof of identity and U.S. Citizenship documents.
- Calculate your fees.
- Post Offices accept credit cards, checks, and money orders for Post Office acceptance fees.
- State Department fees are mailed with your application. You can pay with a personal, certified, cashier's, traveler's check, or money order, payable to "U.S. Department of State."
Post Offices that offer passport services have set hours, and you'll need to schedule an appointment using the online Retail Customer Appointment Scheduler or a Post Office lobby self-service kiosk.
- Go to Schedule an Appointment.
- Choose the passport service you need, along with the number of adults and minors who need appointments.
- You can search for appointment by location or date first. If you search by location first, you'll then be asked to choose a date and time; if you search by date first, you'll then need to choose a location and time.
- After you choose your appointment location and time, provide your contact information, and agree to the Terms and Conditions.
- Click Review Appointment, then confirm your appointment.
If you need to modify or cancel your appointment, click the Manage Appointments tab and enter your confirmation number and email address or phone number.
Using a Self-Service Kiosk
- Go to a Post Office location with lobby self-service kiosks. Find USPS Locations
- At the self-service kiosk, touch the screen to begin, then select "Other Services," then "Passport Scheduler."
- Choose the passport service you need, then enter the number of adults and minors who need appointments.
- Search for Post Office locations by ZIP Code™ or City/State and choose a location.
- Select an available appointment date and time, then agree to the Terms and Conditions.
- Enter your contact information and decide if you'd like to receive SMS text notifications.
- Review and confirm your information, then select “Schedule Appointment” to finalize.
- Take your printed receipt listing your confirmation number and appointment details.
First-time passport applications have two types of basic fees, the application acceptance fee and the application processing fee. Passport photos and fees for faster processing are extra. Learn how to calculate fees and what you can use to pay for them.
Application Acceptance Fees – Postal Service
Pay acceptance fees in person at the Post Office. You may pay by check or money order, payable to "Postmaster," debit card, or credit card.
- $35.00 - Post Office acceptance fee
- $15.00 - Post Office photo fee (if needed)
Application Processing Fees – Department of State
State Department payment is sent with your application package. State Department fees are paid separately from USPS fees.
- State Department Fees
State Department passport fees vary. Calculate passport fees online.
- State Department Payment Methods
NOTE: You may not pay State Department fees with credit or debit cards. You may pay with:
- Personal, certified, cashier's, or traveler's check, payable to "U.S. Department of State."
- Money order payable to "U.S. Department of State." You can buy a money order at the Post Office with cash, a debit card, or a traveler's check. You cannot pay with a credit card.
Application Status Updates
Use the Online Passport Status System to check your application status if you applied by mail or in person. You may not be able to get a status update for 2 weeks after you apply or renew. During these weeks, your application and supporting documents are on their way to the Department of State. See more information about current processing times on the Department of State page "U.S. Passports."
Renew a Passport by Mail
If you are eligible to renew your passport, please complete Passport Renewal Application Form DS-82 (see completion instructions on the form), and mail your completed renewal application directly to the State Department for processing. To verify if your passport is eligible for renewal by mail, please visit State Department Renew By Mail.
A minor's passport may not be renewed by mail; to renew a minor's passport, you need to submit a new, first-time passport application in person. An adult passport may be renewed by mail if it meets certain requirements.
You can renew your adult passport by mail if you answer "Yes" to all 5 of the following statements:
- Is in your possession to submit with your application.
- Is undamaged other than normal "wear and tear."
- Was issued when you were age 16 or older.
- Was issued within the last 15 years.
- Was issued in your current name or you can document your name change. (Name changes are explained on Change a Passport.)
If your passport does not meet all these requirements, do not mail your renewal application. You must prepare the same application package as a first-time passport applicant.
Apply early for renewals as many countries require that passports be valid for at least 6 months after you enter their country. Learn how to properly prepare your application package and include all the necessary documents so your passport is processed on time.
- Complete your Passport Renewal Application Form DS-82 on the State Department website.
- Print and sign your DS-82 form.
- Have a passport photo taken. You can schedule a passport photo-only appointment at a Post Office™ location.
- Calculate your passport renewal fees.
- Collect your most recent passport, completed and signed application, renewal fees, and name change documents, if needed.
- Choose your envelope.
- Use an envelope large enough to fit the application without folding it.
- TIP: Pay for Priority Mail Express® or Priority Mail® service and get free envelopes that are large enough to hold your application. Order easily online: Priority Mail Express Flat Rate Envelope or Priority Mail Flat Rate Envelope.
- Address the envelope to the location for your state. See page 2 of your DS-82 form.
Department of State recommends using a USPS delivery tracking service to mail your renewal application.
Choose one of the following services:
- USPS Priority Mail® Service with Delivery Confirmation
- USPS Priority Mail® Service with Signature Confirmation
- USPS Priority Mail Express® Service (for overnight delivery requests)
If you use a USPS delivery tracking service, go to USPS Tracking® to see when your package is delivered.
- With a USPS tracking service, you can see when your application arrived using the tracking number on your receipt.
- Use the Online Passport Status System to check your application status if you applied by mail or in person. You may not be able to get a status update for 2 weeks after you apply or renew. During these weeks, your application and supporting documents are on their way to the Department of State. See more information about current processing times on the Department of State page "U.S. Passports."
Expedited Passport Delivery
If you need your passport faster for emergency travel or another special case, you can send your passport application via Priority Mail Express® service and pay the State Department fee for faster delivery.
If you need to travel within 72 hours (3 business days) for an immediate family member who is dead, dying, or has a life-threatening illness or injury:
- Visit the Life-or-Death Emergencies page on travel.state.gov to learn if you are eligible.
- The State Department processes these requests by appointment only.
- Your appointment date must be within 72 hours (3 business days) of travel.
Urgent Travel in Less than 10 Weeks
If you are traveling in less than 10 weeks, you must call the State Department Passport Agency to schedule an appointment:
- You can call 1-877-487-2778 (1-888-874-7793 TDD/TTY) to schedule an appointment.
- Your appointment date must be within 72 hours (3 business days) of travel, and you must provide proof of travel.
Note: An extremely limited number of appointments are available for customers who are traveling internationally in the next 72 hours (3 business days), and other restrictions apply.
If you pay an additional $60 for expedited service and mail it with Priority Mail Express, you can get your renewed passport within 10 weeks.
- Check your eligibility under Renew Your Passport by Mail, Step 1: Check Your Eligibility to Renew by Mail.
- Prepare your application as listed under Renew a Passport by Mail, Step 2: Prepare Your Application Package.
- Add these special fees, both payable to the U.S. Department of State, to your regular processing fees.
- $60.00—Expedited application processing at the State Department
- $18.32—1- to 2-day delivery service for faster return shipping to you from the State Department
- Clearly mark "EXPEDITE" on the outside of the envelope.
- Ship your application to the State Department by Priority Mail Express. Cost varies by location.
State Department Travel Resources
U.S. State Department Website
- Department of State Passport Website English | Español
- Ask Questions at the National Passport Information Center
- Enroll in Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)
- Plan Your Trip with the Traveler's Checklist
- Get Help in an Emergency Overseas
Lost or Stolen Passports
If your passport has been lost or stolen, you should report it immediately to the U.S. Department of State.