The Pleasure of Passport Renewal

Ah the US of A, land where renewing a passport is made so easy that everyone wants to have an up to date one. Seriously, folks, I have renewed UK and Canadian passports, and it is complicated.

See, the KoD’s passport is about to expire, and he needs to renew it. (One should always have a current passport). All he needed to do was fill out the form, take some passport pictures which by law probably have to make you look awful, write a cheque and pop the darn thing in the mail.

In Canada, and the UK, the pictures have to be dated, by the photographer, on the back, and signed by a guarantor who cannot be a member of your family and who has to have known you for at least 2 or 3 years. The guarantor has to fill out a form attesting to his / her knowledge of you, and in what capacity they are signing. They have to be professionals. And yes, they do get checked up on. Not every guarantor is checked, but a lot are. It’s not something you can do within the space of 5 minutes like the US renewal.

The KoD was allowed to keep his glasses on for the pictures – in Canada and the UK, no glasses are allowed, no earrings, no smiling, no excessive make up, no head coverings, and the lips must meet even if you have an overbite or an underbite. Seems to be that it’s easier to renew an American passport than that of any other nationality. I wonder why that is. I would think that they would be hyper-vigilant, but it seems as if it is the other way around.

I cannot wait for the day when I can have a US passport….

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  1. Z! says:

    YEAH, and just TRY to change your NAME on your Canadian passport!!! Especially in Quebec!
    I will cross that bridge when my current passport expires in 2012.

  2. Erin says:

    It seems backwards that it is that easy, especially with all of the ridiculous hoops you and the KoD have gone through for the visas. *sigh*

  3. batya from NJ says:

    bimheira b’yameinu amein! may it be speedily in our days :)!

  4. Z! says:

    You don’t plan on going back to Canada? You’ll renew your UK passport?
    I need my Canadian passport, as once you get to the Canadian border they don’t care to see your greencard. Only the Americans want to see your greencard when you come back. I will still need a passport.

  5. Canuck says:

    Guarantors no longer need to be professionals–that restriction was removed in 2007. They just need to be adults with valid passports. See here, here. Any adult family member can now be a guarantor.

  6. tesyaa says:

    Weird about the no glasses/no smiling. I do remember that my mother looked very dour in her English passport picture – now I know why.

  7. miracle13 says:

    Hi !
    Nice post. It is especially useful for people who would want to know how easy it is to get or to renew passports in the United States. Might I also add that in the US you can actually renew your passport as fast as the Same day passport renewal especially when you are in an emergency situation. But in due respect of other countries, it will always boil down to the early preparation of travelers so that their travel will not be interrupted with late passport applications or renewals.

    Keep up the good work!

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