5 Things That Can Slow Down the Passport Process

5 Things That Can Slow Down the Passport Process

Passport processing delays can disrupt or ruin the most meticulously laid travel plans. Caused by human error or unforeseen circumstances, delayed passport issuance can be frustrating and cost an individual thousands of dollars in non-refundable travel reservations. Ideally, a traveler should apply for a passport months in advance of an international trip. However, sometimes an unexpected need to travel arises, and the timely receipt of a passport is of the utmost importance. Although there are certain factors out of an individual’s control, following the application and fee instructions carefully can help to ensure timely processing and receipt of that coveted little blue book. Some of the top reasons for delays in passport processing are as follows:

Human Error

Whether it is on the part of the applicant or the government employees tasked with the processing, human error is one of the biggest causes of passport delay. Often, a traveler has missed a field in the application, or the appearance of their signature varies enough between documents to cause concern. It is imperative that the application is filled out concisely and in its entirety, and special care is taken to keep each signature as true to form as possible. However, even when the application is received in good order, human error can occur during its processing. The United States issued 14,087,341 passports in 2014. Even with quality review processes in place, some degree of human error is unavoidable when handling such a high volume of requests.

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