NOTTINGHAM, Md. (WJZ) – As vaccinated travelers book the trips they’ve been dreaming of for the past year and a half, the sluggish passport processing is becoming difficult. AAA says to start the passport application process well in advance to avoid delay or even cancellation of your getaway.
The State Department said processing a passport application would take more than four months. Even if you pay for express service, you won’t receive your passport for at least three months.
AAA says processing times are three times longer than before the pandemic. The US State Department said the significant delay was due to pandemic-related issues and high demand.
Micki Dudas, Director of AAA, Leisure Travel said: “At AAA, we are seeing a lot of travelers, sometimes whole families, forced to cancel or postpone their trips because of the processing of households. Projection took longer than they anticipated. “One of the first questions we are asking customers is about the passport status of all travelers.”
AAA has provided the following tips to ensure a hassle-free trip:
- Check the passport status of everyone you plan to travel with
- Share passport status information with your travel advisor
- Book a trip that guarantees your return at least six months before your passport expires
- Begin passport processing for:
- New passport applicants
- Passport expired or expired within 6 months of travel
- Passport requires name change
- Visit your nearest AAA office to view your passport photo, application and instructions. For more information, visit Passport Service AAA.