There are many places you can submit a passport application. Each site varies with the application process; therefore, the place you choose to give your papers can determine how soon you will need your travel document. Let us start with the most convenient and cheaper location and then finish with the most expensive but will get you a passport in a day.
Local Acceptance Facilities
There are facilities in your neighborhood that accepts your application with all the supporting documents and fees. These acceptance facilities are your post office, county clerk’s office, courthouse, and public library. Please note that all of these places will take a passport application. Mostly more populated areas will use these facilities with a higher volume of applicants; whereas, smaller counties and city may have only on acceptance agent.
The post office will accept a passport application. Some post offices require an appointment to submit the documents. With others, you can walk in anytime. The application must have the correct form completed, supporting documents as suggested on the form, and the right amount to cover the cost. If your application is not complete, it will get rejected.
The post office offers two options to get your passport application process. The first is routine and takes 4 to 8 weeks to get a new passport. The process is the average or standard way of getting an original document, and it is the cheapest. The second choice is expedited and is for anyone who must travel sooner than four weeks and can provide proof of travel. With this option, you will have a new passport in 2 to 3 weeks, but the cost will be more.
County Clerk, Courthouse, and Library
As the post offices, all these facilities offer the same services, and the price is similar to the post office. You have the two processing options available to you as well. However, each requires an appointment and has less operating hours to accept applications. If you find one of these sites that do accept passport applications, call to get an appointment before showing up.
Regional and Statewide Acceptance Facilities
There are acceptance agents who can provide a passport sooner than two weeks when necessary. Most are private businesses or state. For the privately owned businesses, you can submit your documents in person or by mail. However, the state processing centers require you to present them in person.
Private Expediting Company
Private expeditors apply on your behalf. You hire a private expeditor as the middle person to get your papers as quickly to a processing facility and get the new document back to you. It can take from one day and up to two weeks. It all depends on how soon you need to travel and the cost to pay. The price to pay will be much higher than the post office or any other facilities in your neighborhood. You will mostly find private expediting companies online or in large cities.
Regional Passport Agency
Regional Passport Agencies are state-run facilities that offer emergency passports to individuals with proof of travel and emergencies. To visit a regional passport agency, you must first call the National Information Center at 1-877-487-2778 to get an appointment. Since there are only 26 regional passport agencies in the U.S., you may need to travel outside the state you reside for your meeting.
A regional agency office is in a Federal Building; therefore, you will encounter security. To prevent being late, bring what is necessary for the interview. Any persons without an appointment will not be allowed to pass guard. If you have the documents required to get a passport, you will get on the same day or the next business day. Since there is only a processing option available, you will have the only price to pay.
So, there are plenty of places to take a passport application to start the process. The most common place to go is the post office. People who are not in a rush submit their application at the post office. Another reason is that of the cost they will pay for their new travel document. With either service available at the post office, it will still be cheaper to apply to go to either a private expeditor or a regional passport agency.
The next time you need a passport and have the time to wait, visit your post office to submit your papers. However, if you need the document sooner than four weeks, the other options will be a private expeditor or a regional agency.