If you're planning to travel outside of the United States, you're required to get a passport before traveling. If you've already completed the application process, and you're wondering when your passport will arrive, you may find the information you're looking for by checking on the status of your application. Checking your status is not a hard process, but there are a few things required to gain access to your updated information. If you're in the pending category, here is everything you need to know about passport applications from the United States, the average processing time, and how to stay informed.
How do you check the status of your US passport application?
The best way to check the status of your US passport application is to go directly to the source. Visit the official website of the agency that issues your passport. You will need to have your personal information ready to access the information you're looking for. An Online Passport Status System is available to allow applicants to check the status of their applications. The page is dedicated to providing this service. The website will not allow you to see your application status before you click on the Department of State Privacy and Computer Fraud and Abuse Acts Notices and Disclaimers. A link to the page that contains this information is in the introduction text on the site. You can also find it here. When clicking on the link, a new page opens. It's recommended you read all the information contained on the page. When you finish, just close the window and you will return to the previous page. Check the box that confirms you read the Privacy and Computer Fraud and Abuse Acts Notices and Disclaimers. When you do this click on the "submit" button. It will open the page that allows you to enter your personal information.
Information to have ready
You will need to enter the last four digits of your social security number. You will also need your date of birth and your last name. After entering your personal information, it will take you to a page that gives you information about the status of your application. It's a straightforward process. It only takes a few minutes to complete if you have your personal information ready.
When will my information be ready to view?
If you recently applied for your passport, the status of your application may not show up in the system yet. The average time it takes for someone to enter your information in the database for processing is between 7 to 10 business days. The timeframe does not include weekends and holidays. Government agencies work on their timelines. If you check before a minimum of 7 business days, likely, the information won't show up online yet. If you still cannot access your information after ten days contact the issuing agency where you applied.
Are there other ways to check my passport application status?
You can check your passport application status by email or by telephone. The Department of State has developed an online site that allows you to contact the agency by telephone. The standard phone number is 1-877-487-2778. If you are hearing impaired, call 1-888-874-7793. You need to have the same information available for phone inquiries as for the online website inquiry. When asked to provide your Birth date information, provide it in the MM/DD/YYYY format, along with your last name and the last four digits of your social security number. You must check with your local agency for the hours of operation as these may have changed because of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Checking your passport application status via email
You can also check your passport application status by email. It involves emailing NPIC@stat.gov. Supply your first and last name, your date of birth, and the application number on the form you completed requesting your passport.
Which method is the best?
We consider the email method the most unreliable. You must rely on a response from workers who receive thousands of emails throughout the week to get back to you. Sometimes it takes a while, but someone usually gets back to you with the most current information at the time of their response. There are pros and cons associated with using the telephone method. It can be time-consuming if agents are busy with other callers. During peak hours of operation, you may have a long wait on hold if you're trying to contact an agent. The easiest and fastest way to check on your passport application status is through the online method. The benefit of calling and talking to an agent is that you get to talk to a live person who can look up the status of your application. The worker can probably give you n estimate of how much longer the process will take. The hours of operation are usually Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM Eastern time to 10:00 PM, and on Saturdays from 10 am to 3 pm, except for federal holidays.
How can I receive automatic updates?
You can request automatic updates on the status of your passport application when you are checking on the status through the Online Passport Status System. Provide your email address at the prompt to set automatic notifications when something changes in the status of your application. This is one of the best methods for learning about the status of your application, and for discovering if there are any problems associated with your application.
It is the responsibility of the applicant to track the progress of applications submitted for a US Passport. The best way to stay informed is to visit the online status page through the Department of State. This site provides updated information, and it does not require you to talk to a staff member or wait for an email response. You can also register for automatic updates about the status of your application.
Written by Dana Hanson
Read more posts by Dana Hanson