I don’t know if my readers can tell, but I love to travel. I also have really bad nightmares where I realize I don’t have my passport on me on the way to the airport. Passports are the original gatekeepers, and it’s worth learning some of the rules surrounding them.

  • The Online Passport Status System is your resource for checking on the status of a passport. Official wait times are 8-11 weeks, but people tend to receive them in fewer than 8 weeks. 
  • Embassies are the only place new passports can be issued, and embassies are only in the nation’s capital. Think of how inconvenient that would be for an unfortunate, disorganized tourist visiting Seattle. Here is a list of our own embassies — so maybe vacation in those places. 
  • You can’t travel with a passport you reported as stolen and then use. You’ll likely get out of the country, but getting into your destination country is much less likely. Try putting a sticker on your old one. Maybe one that says “memories” or “evidence.”
  • If one of your family members loses their passport abroad and calls you for help, contact the Office of Overseas Citizens Services at 1-888-407-4747. 
  • Even when an embassy is closed, there is always a duty officer stationed to deal with “life or death” situations. They make it seem like they mean it; births and deaths only. That said, the temporary passport will not get issued until the next business day anyway.

The good news is I am not the only source for information about passports. The State Department has your back in every way. I love our passports. With the eagle standing proudly next to me as if to say “Don’t you dare harm this person.” 

Whether you’re just getting a passport or planning a whole vacation, our Lifestyle Division can help. Contact us here and have fun over there!