South Florida

Do you need to get your first U.S. passport? There’s an easier way

A new citizen holds an American flag and passport during a naturalization ceremony at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Kendall Office, Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018, in Miami.
A new citizen holds an American flag and passport during a naturalization ceremony at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Kendall Office, Thursday, Aug. 30, 2018, in Miami. AP

A record number of people, especially newly naturalized U.S. citizens, are applying for U.S. passports. And in large cities like Miami, people are standing in long lines to obtain the prized document for themselves and their children.

But the State Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs has great news for citizens applying for their first passports.

The office announced a series of Passport Day Fairs across the country this fall to help families apply for and obtain U.S. passports more easily.

“Adults who are first-time applicants and all children can apply early and avoid the rush!,” the office said in announcing the special community assistance events.

Authorities stressed most of the Fairs are limited to first-time applicants and children, who must submit Form DS-11.

Citizens who want to renew existing passports must still do so by mail, preferably at least six months before the expiration date, using Form DS-82.

For more details and instructions on passport renewals, please visit this link.

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Passport Day in Miami will be Saturday Sept. 15, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Passport Agency office in Miami, 1501 Biscayne Boulevard, Suite 210.

Applicants must make an appointment to apply for a passport at the special Passport Day. The appointments can be made by calling 1-877-487-2778.

The fairs will offer routine and expedite passport service, and expedited service will have an additional cost of $60.

The application fee for adult first-time applicants is $110 plus a $35 execution (acceptance) fee. Both fees are paid separately.

For applicants under the age of 16, the fees are $80, plus $35.

There’s more information on passport fees in this link.

Dates, times and addresses for special Passport Fairs in other cities across the country can be obtained in this link.

The waiting time for a requested passport using the routine service is six to eight weeks.

Follow Daniel Shoer Roth on Facebook and Twitter @DanielShoerRoth and read more about legal and immigration issues in Spanish at AccesoMiami.com.
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