When it comes to staying up to date with government-issued documents (not to mention parking tickets, wedding plans, and condiment expiration dates), anticipation is the name of the game. Always plan way, WAY ahead of travel dates, making sure passports are current and visas are taken care of, etc.; after all, a stitch in time saves nine years hacked off your lifespan due to heart-stopping stress. However, we all know that the whole planning thing can often go off the rails. If that happens, or you’re the kind of person who’s into spontaneous globe-trotting, or you’re the kind of person who just likes things done at warp speed, there are a few steps you can take to expedite the process of securing your passport or visa before you step onto the tarmac.
Option 1: Pay Up
Finally, one instance where throwing money at the problem really works! The U.S. State Department does allow for faster processing of passport procedures…for a fee, of course. For the arguably-better-than-pulling-your-hair-out price of $60 in addition to delivery costs you might just be able to wrangle a shiny new passport within three weeks, whereas standard applications take 4-6 weeks just to process. Of course, this is if you can demonstrate to the government that the situation necessitates a passport, like, really fast. Just be advised that if this is your first time applying OR if you are attempting to replace a passport that was lost, stolen, or issued over 15 years ago, the application form (DS-11) must be submitted in person, and at an authorized facility.
Option 2: Call the Hotline
The State Department website does provide the number for the National Passport Information Center, or their after-hours number, and directs inquirers to call them. However! They are very careful to caution that this resource is only to be used in emergencies of life-or-death proportions. So, basically, let’s hope you never have to use that one. But if your need for a passport or travel visa in a pinch is rooted in an emergency situation, know that the Information Center is there to answer questions and help you sort everything out.
Option 3: To the Internet!
No one likes dealing with the red tape that unavoidably surrounds any bureaucratic process. Thankfully, there are independent companies out there, like Choice Passport, for instance, that exist to help you out with all your travel needs. Having a lot less to deal with than the government, they have the resources and focus to provide efficient, fast, personable service so that you can save enormous time and hassle. We’re talking a government-approved one-stop shop that’s certified to provide for whatever you need, passport-wise. In addition to renewal, these independent suppliers give you all the necessary options: adding pages or changing the name on an existing passport, replacing a lost, stolen, or damaged one, and obtaining a child’s passport so you can tote your family along on trips too.
Information and services regarding visas can also be obtained at the same source, the better to simplify the whole travel document process. This affords anyone the ability to take care of any kind of visa online – student, work, or just-for-fun getaway visas – for any desired destination. Be sure to use the company site for research, as well; while many countries allow tourists to stay for a certain amount of time (this frame generally ranges from 30 to 90 days, on average), many require visas for either business travel, recreational travel, or both. No matter what, though, applications can be found, filled out and submitted through sites like Choice Passport, with options for regular service (20-45 business days), express service (15-25 business days), or rushed service (3-15 business days). The company will also be in immediate, direct contact with you regarding verification and any hitches or essential details, managing your needs in the smoothest, quickest way possible.
Make the Right Choice
No matter where you’re going and why you’re going there, nothing beats a stress-free travel experience. What’s the Age of the Internet good for if not to simplify the tedious legal measures that modern life inevitably requires? If you prefer sluggish, exasperating service we suggest looking elsewhere, because Choice Passport is committed to delivering fast, convenient service to get you out the door and into the world, so give them a call.