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Need a passport fast?

SmarterTravel

While it’s certainly not ideal, it is possible to get a passport in a hurry, even within 24 hours of applying. But it’ll cost you extra money and a whole lot of stress, so it’s wise to avoid getting stuck in that situation in the first place.

If you need your passport in the near future (but your departure date is more than two weeks away), you should expedite your passport application. In addition to the current $100 application and renewal fees for new passports, you’ll also be charged $60 per passport application and overnight delivery charges. The State Department recommends two-way overnight delivery, and advises travelers to mark “expedited” prominently on the outer envelope.

If your departure date is within two weeks, however, you should make an appointment at a regional passport agency, provided you have proof of your travel dates and there is an office within reasonable distance of your home. Regional offices have speedy turn-around times, and you may be able to receive your passport within 24 hours. Regional agencies do not take walk-ins, so you must schedule an appointment in advance and be sure to show up on time.

In the unfortunate circumstance that there isn’t a regional office anywhere near you, or you’re faced with a life-or-death emergency, call the National Passport Information Center for help at 877-487-2778.

Have a great travel tip you’d like to share? Send your insider travel strategies to editor@smartertravel.com.

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