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I also was considering passport renewal by mail, however this is what is posted on the official website. Seems risky.

Can I renew now?

You may also be eligible to renew your U.S. passport by mail. If you are eligible to renew, you can complete the process by yourself and should not go to an acceptance facility. Follow the instructions on Form DS-82 and send your application and supporting documents to one of the addresses marked for routine service. Do not send the application to the expedited service address and do not include the $60 expedite fee. Expect significant processing delays

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4 hours ago, clearlake_cruiser said:

I also was considering passport renewal by mail, however this is what is posted on the official website. Seems risky.

Can I renew now?

You may also be eligible to renew your U.S. passport by mail. If you are eligible to renew, you can complete the process by yourself and should not go to an acceptance facility. Follow the instructions on Form DS-82 and send your application and supporting documents to one of the addresses marked for routine service. Do not send the application to the expedited service address and do not include the $60 expedite fee. Expect significant processing delays

Sure you can 

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9 hours ago, SRF said:

 

The article is wrong.

 

It stated that passport services were suspended.  They were NOT.  Only walk in services were suspended.

 

From article:

 

So, this got my curiosity up, because as I said, I’ve been checking state dept website regularly and remember seeing the same info as the article states. If you Google “U.S. passport stops service” you will get dozens of articles dated April1-3 echoing that services were suspended.  
These articles directly quotes what was on the government website. “Due to public health measures to limit the spread of COVID-19, effective March 20, 2020, we are only able to offer service for customers with a qualified life-or-death emergency and who need a passport for immediate international travel within 72 hours,” said a March 27 online statement. 
If you read the articles, it also seems you can (or could) APPLY but passports would not be processed. 

 

https://www.cntraveler.com/story/the-us-is-only-issuing-new-passports-in-emergency-cases-amid-coronavirus

 

https://www.latimes.com/travel/story/2020-04-02/u-s-suspends-passport-services-except-for-emergencies

 

I looked today on the government  site and sure enough the wording is different. The words “in person” now appear before “service” which totally changes the meaning. My guess is someone internally made a boo boo in the wording. Or maybe they changed the initial policy. 
Probably more info than you want but I had to satisfy my curiosity and make sure I wasn’t losing my mind. 

Edited by rhiannon35
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Just to provide my experience only, we were originally scheduled for our first passports on April 10th. When I saw that the State Dept was "suspending" passports, I called our local post office. They said they were still doing them and it was at the discretion of each office. So, when we got the work from home order, we got an appointment for the next morning March 27. Went in with all the documents except one. We were there a total of 30 minutes including getting our pictures done. Checks for service were all cashed within about 5 days. 

 

My recommendation if you are concerned is to call your local post office to find out directly. The information is confusing at best.

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2 hours ago, bigrednole said:

Just to provide my experience only, we were originally scheduled for our first passports on April 10th. When I saw that the State Dept was "suspending" passports, I called our local post office. They said they were still doing them and it was at the discretion of each office. So, when we got the work from home order, we got an appointment for the next morning March 27. Went in with all the documents except one. We were there a total of 30 minutes including getting our pictures done. Checks for service were all cashed within about 5 days. 

 

My recommendation if you are concerned is to call your local post office to find out directly. The information is confusing at best.

 

Did you get the passport yet?  Just curious, since we did DH’s renewal March 17th and we are still waiting.  The previous time we renewed a passport it took about two weeks. That was without expedited service.

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4 minutes ago, APDMOM said:

 

Did you get the passport yet?  Just curious, since we did DH’s renewal March 17th and we are still waiting.  The previous time we renewed a passport it took about two weeks. That was without expedited service.

You can go on line and track it.  I sent mine in last year in July and it took 30 days.  Under current times, I would think 30-45 days.  🍷

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20 hours ago, Wine-O said:

You can go on line and track it.  I sent mine in last year in July and it took 30 days.  Under current times, I would think 30-45 days.  🍷

Thanks!  Was this a renewal or new passport you are referring to? 

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1 hour ago, APDMOM said:

Thanks!  Was this a renewal or new passport you are referring to? 

 

This was a renewal.  You have to follow the directions very closely.  I took mine to the Post Office for review prior to mailing it, and they pointed out a couple of errors that would have had it returned.  🍷

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57 minutes ago, Wine-O said:

 

This was a renewal.  You have to follow the directions very closely.  I took mine to the Post Office for review prior to mailing it, and they pointed out a couple of errors that would have had it returned.  🍷

Thanks!  Yes, we did it through the post office too.  I guess service slowed down in the past few years.  When we renewed mine and our son’s in 2017.  It only took 2 weeks without asking for expedited service.  At least DH only needs a birth certificate and Driver’s license to sail if the passport comes late.  For me, it would be 4 documents!  🤦‍♀️ Glad my passport does not need to be renewed now. 

 

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On 4/21/2020 at 6:47 PM, rhiannon35 said:

So, this got my curiosity up, because as I said, I’ve been checking state dept website regularly and remember seeing the same info as the article states. If you Google “U.S. passport stops service” you will get dozens of articles dated April1-3 echoing that services were suspended.  
These articles directly quotes what was on the government website. “Due to public health measures to limit the spread of COVID-19, effective March 20, 2020, we are only able to offer service for customers with a qualified life-or-death emergency and who need a passport for immediate international travel within 72 hours,” said a March 27 online statement. 
If you read the articles, it also seems you can (or could) APPLY but passports would not be processed. 

 

https://www.cntraveler.com/story/the-us-is-only-issuing-new-passports-in-emergency-cases-amid-coronavirus

 

https://www.latimes.com/travel/story/2020-04-02/u-s-suspends-passport-services-except-for-emergencies

 

I looked today on the government  site and sure enough the wording is different. The words “in person” now appear before “service” which totally changes the meaning. My guess is someone internally made a boo boo in the wording. Or maybe they changed the initial policy. 
Probably more info than you want but I had to satisfy my curiosity and make sure I wasn’t losing my mind. 

 

It you read more, you will see that it only applied to walk in services.  Not mail in.

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On 4/21/2020 at 6:51 PM, rhiannon35 said:

Thank you, I did see this but was wondering how well it works especially as far as printing the right size. Did you use it?

Have not done it yet. Or passports expire around 6/1. Unfortunately I don’t think I need it any time  soon.

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4 hours ago, SRF said:

 

It you read more, you will see that it only applied to walk in services.  Not mail in.

Yes, I did read the entire articles and saw what you’re referring to.  That’s why I commented the articles seem to indicate you could apply via mail but passports would not be processed or issued, which I guess could be considered suspension of services. 
Either way, my point is the confusion seems to have been caused by a state dept. PR person forgetting to write the words “in person” before “services” on the original announcement. Or policy has changed, but it wasn’t the media getting it wrong. 

 

Wording is much less confusing now on State Dept site. This is why copy editors are important. 😀

Edited by rhiannon35
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4 hours ago, mac_tlc said:

Have not done it yet. Or passports expire around 6/1. Unfortunately I don’t think I need it any time  soon.

Ugh, I know. Mine expires in Aug. I most likely won’t need it, but would much rather renew than apply fresh again. 
My son’s friend works for US passport office. He advised me to wait as most employees are on furlough. 

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17 minutes ago, rhiannon35 said:

Ugh, I know. Mine expires in Aug. I most likely won’t need it, but would much rather renew than apply fresh again. 
My son’s friend works for US passport office. He advised me to wait as most employees are on furlough. 

Wonder if it makes sense to do it just to get in the line? I suspect once they return there may be a big rush of new and renewal requests.

 

mac_tlc

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2 minutes ago, mac_tlc said:

Wonder if it makes sense to do it just to get in the line? I suspect once they return there may be a big rush of new and renewal requests.

 

mac_tlc

Being yours expires is just over a month, that might make sense if you want to renew instead of apply all over again, which requires more time and effort. 
My guess is if they receive your application before expiry date, you’ll be ok. But, I will ask my son’s friend. 
Mine expires in Aug. If things are still held up by mid-June, I plan on sending it in anyway for same reasons you stated. Better to be in mid-line than at the end!

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On 4/23/2020 at 1:14 PM, rhiannon35 said:

Ugh, I know. Mine expires in Aug. I most likely won’t need it, but would much rather renew than apply fresh again. 
My son’s friend works for US passport office. He advised me to wait as most employees are on furlough. 

 

You can renew an expired passport if it meets these conditions:

 

Yes, but the passport must have been issued within the last 15 years. In addition, you must also have the passport in your possession, the passport cannot be damaged, you must have been age 16 or older when the passport was issued, and it must have been issued in your current name or you must show legal proof of your name change.

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Even though our passports don't expire for 4 years we need to get new ones because we are running out of blank pages.   Has anyone ever gotten the Large Book with more pages instead of the Regular?   How much bigger is the larger one?

 

 

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16 hours ago, Kylie said:

Even though our passports don't expire for 4 years we need to get new ones because we are running out of blank pages.   Has anyone ever gotten the Large Book with more pages instead of the Regular?   How much bigger is the larger one?

 

About twice as thick.  48 pages instead of 24.

 

Same size, other than thickness.

Edited by SRF
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  • 1 month later...
Posted (edited)

Checking in on this thread.  We had (past tense, sadly) an Alaskan cruise from Vancouver in a couple of weeks, now rescheduled for June 2021.  In February, we had to get a new passport for younger son whose original passport was issued when he was under 16 and would be expiring this year.  Because he was under 16 when the first one was issued, and now is 18, we had to go to the post office, submit everything to the post office person, and then the post office sent the application to the passport center.  That was on Feb. 20 and we received his passport in about three weeks.

 

Older son's passport wasn't expiring until 2021 but since we were already renewing younger son's, we decided to do older son's at the same time.  Since he was already 18 with his first passport, he was able to do the renewal by mail.  We mailed his old passport and the application on Feb. 20, certified mail, and got the green card back on Feb. 27 that it was received in the passport center in Irving, Tx.  

 

This was all before the quarantine began.  After a couple of weeks, I would check his status online and it said Application: In Process.  Even after we knew our June 2020 cruise was cancelled, I'd still check the status every few weeks.  Always said In Process until yesterday when it said Not Found.

 

According to the travel.gov website, they significantly reduced passport operations in March and specifically mentioned passport applications submitted to them beginning in March would be delayed.  

 

I know that his passport being received by them on Feb. 27 was right on the cusp of their restricting the processing.  I did some googling on the In Process/Not Found issue and evidently it's very common and has been for years.  The question is, should I follow up with them or continue to wait?  We don't need it until next year. 

 

Sorry for the rambling but I wanted to include all the details. 

Edited by Kellie in Texas
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I mailed the passport renewal applications for my wife and I on 5/26. On 6/2, I noticed that they had cashed the checks. Ours were expiring on 6/2, so I wanted to “get in line” for the renewal. Don’t need it until at least November, probably January. 
 

I’ll update when more info is available.

 

mac_tlc

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34 minutes ago, Kellie in Texas said:

The question is, should I follow up with them or continue to wait? 

Follow up - this is like some of those "lost" refunds, you need to take action.

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Posted (edited)
41 minutes ago, APDMOM said:

They are just now resuming passport services.  They are opening their own “phase 1”.

 

We sent a renewal in on March 17th, and it is still “processing”

 

https://www.travelagentcentral.com/your-business/asta-urges-state-department-to-resume-passport-processing

I saw this similar article today, and from what I could tell my routine renewal may fall into phase 2, and they will supposedly be processing routine service in the order received. I sent mine in a week after you did and the website also still says it's processing.

 

https://www.travelmarketreport.com/articles/Passport-Services-to-Resume-in-Three-Phases

Edited by NCMtnBoys
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