Passport renewal

Old Feb 17th, 2007, 11:11 PM
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Passport renewal

It's been two weeks since I sent in my passport renewal. I paid the extra $60 for it to be expedited. I went online to check the status, but they show it as not yet being processed. I did not pay the extra for expedited shipping as I did not know to do this until after I mailed it off. I included in the envelope: old passport, completed application, check for $127, and two photographs complying with their specifications. Online it states that the processing should take several days -- it's now two weeks. I am wondering if the severe weather is to blame.

Is anyone else in the same boat? I have over a month until I travel, but I don't like being without a passport.
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Old Feb 18th, 2007, 03:07 AM
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Try calling them.
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Old Feb 18th, 2007, 03:56 AM
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Where did you send the passport and where did you send this from.

From the US, it should be fast but in France it takes 6 to 8 weeks. I used special postage but nothing else for expedite charges.

Other posters can give more information but give the info marked above.

Blackduff
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Old Feb 18th, 2007, 12:17 PM
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Blackduff, it was mailed to Philadelphia from Los Angeles.
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Old Feb 18th, 2007, 01:04 PM
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Hi Luv,

Call the US Passport Office: 1-877-487-2778

How long until you need the passport?

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Old Feb 18th, 2007, 03:07 PM
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Hi Ira, I have plenty of time -- not going until late April. I just worry that my passport got lost. I will call them next week. Thanks.
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Old Feb 18th, 2007, 03:18 PM
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We had a similar experience last February and after several e-mails and phone calls I was told there was no guarantee my son's passport would be back for my trip (that was 2 weeks away). (The other 4 family members had passports) They had had it for 5-6 weeks. Someone suggested I call my Congressman which I did and they have a passport person who called the NH processing center and my son's passport was overnighted the next day.
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Old Feb 19th, 2007, 11:03 AM
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bella33, did you pay the extra $60 for it to be expedited?
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Old Feb 19th, 2007, 05:18 PM
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Luvtotravel: I didn't pay it initially as we had 8 weeks. When there was such a delay I called the passport # and they said I could give my credit card and upgrade to pay the $60 for expedited which I did. When I called back, I was told that there was no guarantee they would do it and they wouldn't charge my card unless they expedited it. I definitely learned a lesson. It was a last minute trip so we should have paid the expedited from the beginning or used a service. Thanks.
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Old Feb 21st, 2007, 07:53 AM
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Our taxpayer dollars at work. My expedited passport request still is not showing up on the status page at their website. When calling all I get is a recording saying that they are experiencing a high volume of calls and to call back later. I can't even reach a person. I mailed my passport on February 4 and it is now February 21 with no trace of my passport. So much for paying the extra $60.

Thanks for letting me vent. This is so frustrating.
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Old Feb 21st, 2007, 03:26 PM
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Sorry for yur plight, luv. Hope everything works out, soon.

For those of us with renewals on the horizon, is there any merit to taking the renewal application and materials to a paasport agency window at the post office rather than mailing them ourselves?
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Old Feb 21st, 2007, 05:17 PM
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luvoftravel, did you send it by certified mail? I'm also traveling in late April and mailed mine on Jan 24. They cashed my check more than a week ago, so I thought the new passport would arrive soon after. However, when I checked the status online just now, it said:

"When you applied, you requested Routine Service and Routine Delivery of your passport. Passport Agencies use Priority Mail. This means you should receive your passport within 6 weeks from the date you applied. Depending upon how the facility where you applied forwarded your application, you should receive your passport on or about 03/25/2007."

Well, it won't be "on" 3/25 which is a Sunday. Looks like their 6-week estimate is from the time they cash your check, not from when you mailed the application, and non-expedited renewals really take 9 or more weeks. (Although there's still plenty of time before my trip, I desperately need the passport as an ID in order to change my expired out-of-state driver's license to a NY license before early April). I finally reached a real person on the phone just now after holding for 43 minutes (to get put on hold instead of simply cut off, keep you have to keep pressing "9" for "main menu" and "3" for "check status" repeatly-- eventually you'll get to the music instead of the "try back later"), only to be told that she couldn't do anything today because their computers are down and that I should try back tomorrow.

So don't waste time trying to call them tonight.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 08:18 AM
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I'm getting nervous about my daughter's passport, too. She's 14 and we went to the passport office (part of the county services offices) on 12/29/06, 3 months in advance of our trip departure of 3/29/07.
The clerk looked at her certified birth certificate, filled out the paperwork, took her picture, and charged us $93, the standard fee.
One week later the check was cashed but six weeks later, on Feb. 16th I received a rejection letter from the State Dept. Although we had submitted a certified birth certificate, it was an abstract, not the long form.
I expedited getting the correct copy from the County Recorder in OC, CA (we are now in Mpls) and less than a week later, on Feb. 21st, I overnighted it back via UPS with a $60 check for expediated service plus paid in advance for the passport to be overnighted back to me.
The rejection letter came with a return envelope with codes and dates and asked for the departure date to be written on the front (I put the departure date as 3/15/07). I put all the documents in there, copied all the info on the front of the UPS envelope and it was delived and signed for at 11:30 am the next day.
I'm hoping that since they let the whole thing sit around for 6 weeks and sent me a coded return envelope, that that will be their cue that this is already in their system and just waiting for the birth certificate and I will have her passport within 2 weeks (that is what they claim if you pay the extra $60).
The only reason we didn't apply sooner was because we felt it would be best to have a trip booked first. Although it was my fault for not having the proper birth certicate, you'd think they could have rejected it at the time of application (as they did with my husband's in 1986) or at least when they happily cashed the check.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 09:39 AM
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Hi all,
I have been going through something similar. Sent in my renewal and name change at the end of January. Sent it certified so I was able to see it was received January 31. I did not pay for expedited service as I had no travel plans. But in the meantime I booked a trip to Paris for April 3-10. Now I was getting nervous and checked the online status every day.

It was finally logged on Thursday of last week, the 22nd, it took three full weeks to even show in the system! I called the 23rd to expedite from that point and the gentleman told me he's never seen anything like it but that my passport had been processed at 4:30pm on the 22nd, finished at 11am on the 23rd and was in Friday's mail. I never even had to upgrade the service, that was standard!

So, my advice is to keep checking, keep calling. I did not get a live person until the 5th time I called Friday and then was on hold for 20 minutes. Also, the email status request is great because a live person checks it and emails in about 24 hours.

It seems that with the higher volume, they are starting to get a real routine down and are getting things out more quickly. Good luck!

Dana
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Old Feb 27th, 2007, 05:27 AM
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Dana,
I followed you suggestion and called the toll-free number. After lengthy recorded instructions, they hung-up on me.
Was that due to high volume?
I sent an email (however last when I did that at the end of January, a month after applying and 3 weeks before they sent me the letter requesting the correct birth certificate, they never answered my email).
With March 1st looming and our departure date getting closer, I'm starting to stress out over this.
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Old Feb 27th, 2007, 07:17 AM
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Julieah - what does an abstract birth certificate look like? I'm about to apply for passport with certified birth cert and now I'm hoping I have the correct type.
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Old Feb 27th, 2007, 08:49 AM
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Julie,

Yes I was hung up on several times due to high call volume. I kept on trying since I was so desperate to expedite and finally I was thrown into a hold queue. It depends on how quickly you need to talk to a live person. I would try again. I always got very quick email responses too (by quick I mean within 24-36 hours). Have you also tried the online status checker? Maybe they have posted the receipt of the correct birth certificate and the expedite request?

The good news is, both my husband's and my passports arrived yesterday, earlier than I expected. So I would hope that once they process the new birth certificate, things will move very quickly.

Dana
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Old Feb 28th, 2007, 03:51 PM
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Here is my update:
the abstract birth certificate is a shortened version of the regular one. It stated on it: certified abstact birth certificate. So, therefore, I didn't know there was a long version and because it said certified, I thought I had the right one.
Yesterday morning I called the 800 # (for a second time) to talk to a customer service rep and only had to wait 10 min!
The customer service rep said the passport would be mailed within 3 days.
I sent a UPS overnight envelope and prepaid the fee so maybe it will be here by Monday? (I don't know what within 3 days exactly means).
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Old Feb 28th, 2007, 04:14 PM
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My passport renewal took longer than I had expected, but I had put our depature date on the application. I suspect that they handle the requests by that date; anyone leaving prior to your date gets quicker attention. It arrived in plenty of time, but it didn't keep me from also worrying. I did not pay for an expedited handling though. Your situation just reenforces the fact that one needs to renew way in advance of the expiration date.
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Old Feb 28th, 2007, 05:06 PM
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The Passport Agency has now had my expedited application for four weeks. No sign of me in their tracking system and they haven't cashed my check yet.
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