How To Get A Passport
" I don't have a passport, so I can't travel." "Travel is too expensive." "I don't have enough money for a passport." "How much is one of those again?"
As a travel blogger, I hear these sentiments often and believe me when I tell you having a passport is the key to unlocking your travel potential. I was fortunate enough to be studying abroad, so I had to finally put the excuses away and apply for my passport. It seems like a daunting process, but it's more simple than you may think.
Once you have your passport in hand, oh the places you'll go. You can take that dream vacation to Aruba and galavant across pink beaches. You will finally get to spend your summer backpacking across Europe. By fall you will probably be headed south for one last bit of warmth in Havana. Maybe you'll head to Montreal for a bit of French flair in the winter.
Your passport is the key to the unknown. Inside this little booklet, are pieces of you that you haven't yet discovered and they are pieces that only travel will expose.
Here's how you can finally get your passport this year:
1. Gather Your Documents
You're going to need to prove that your eligible for a passport and here's how. In order to get your passport you're going to need:
- Proof of Citizenship- It can be a birth certificate, naturalization certificate or certificate of citizenship.
- Proof of Identity- This is your driver's license or state ID card. There are other acceptable forms like a military ID or government employee ID etc.
- A Passport Photo- You can take your photos at CVS for $13
- Form DS-11 - You'll need to fill this form out and turn it in with your application.
2. Find the nearest passport location
Finding an acceptance facility or passport agency near you is crucial. Applications are usually accepted within post offices, however you will need an appointment. You can't get a passport without scheduling an appointment first.
3. Pay The Fees
The moment you've all been scrolling for. A new passport for a first-timer is $135 ($110 application fee plus $25 processing fee). These are two separate fees that will require two methods of payment. For example, if you're paying with a check, write one check for $135 and another for $25. If you're in a rush, your passport can be expedited for an extra $60. Otherwise, your passport will come in 4-6 weeks. Mine took exactly one month.
Saving money for your passport can seem like the impossible, but I promise, it's not. The money that you spend on clothing, makeup or other luxuries can be cut out for a month (or so) until you reach your goal. I simply saved 50 dollars from a few paychecks until I reached $135+. If $50 sounds like too much, try setting aside $20 per pay and in a few months time you'll have your passport in hand and adventure in your heart.
Unlock your travel potential this year.
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