Urgent Appointment FAQ'S
If you are attending an urgent passport appointment, then you are more than likely needing to travel in the near future therefore using the slower postal or check and send services will probably not be suitable for your travel needs. When you contact HM Passport Office to make either a 1 Week Fast-Track appointment or a 1 Day Premium appointment, receiving your passport within the guaranteed time frame very much depends on you getting your application, photos and supporting documents correct and within the guidelines.
In this article we are going to talk you through some of the most commonly asked questions to ensure your passport application goes smoothly and efficiently.
Do I Need A Passport Application Form When Attending?
When attending any passport appointment you will need to bring with you a fully completed application form, ensuring all the appropriate signatures are complete and within the boxes. Please remember to follow the guidance booklet to ensure your application is filled in correctly. To retrieve an application pack you will have to go to you nearest large Post Office, as many of the smaller Post Offices no longer hold application packs.
Do I Need To Supply Passport Photos?
All passport applicants need to supply 2 new photos with your application; these must have been taken within the last month and represent a true likeness of yourself. The Passport Office will not use accept photo from your old passport or driving licence, and is unable to except any photos that do not comply with the set guidelines of the guidance booklet, see our passport photo guide for more.
Please note - all child applicants, under 11 years old, do need their photos to be countersigned, regardless if it is a first time or a renewal. All first time adult applicants as well as any applicants whose passport is lost, damaged or has been stolen will also need one of the photos countersigned.
Do I Need To Bring My Old Passport?
If you are renewing your old passport or wanting to change any details on the passport, like your name, through marriage or deed poll or your address on your passport you will need to bring it with you to your appointment.
I Don't Have My Old Passport.
If you do not have your old passport either because it has been lost or stolen, you must then pick up a form called an LS01 form. These are also found at larger Post Offices, it is important that you fill in this form with as much detail as possible, if you do not know your old passport number this is ok, as The Passport Office is aware that you may not know all the answers to the questions.
I Have Booked For More Than One Person Can We Both Attend?
When making an appointment many people make appointments for their spouses and children at the same time. When one appointment is made, regardless for how many people it is for, only one person can attend the actual appointment. This is down to the security and safety of everyone in the building and the huge demand for these appointments.
If an adult is attending on behalf of another adult, the person who has decided to attend the appointment of behalf of the other appointees must have a signed letter from each applicant stating the date, [the attendees full name], giving permission for, [the second adults full name] to submit and collect my passport application/passport on my behalf. Please note that this must be [Signed] & [Dated] or it will not be accepted.
Does My Child Need To Attend With Me?
Children do not need to attend their passport appointment; it is generally assumed that a parent or legal guardian will go on their behalf.
Please note, the parent or legal guardian that wishes to attend the appointment must also be the person who signs section 9 of the application form. If not you will also have to write a letter giving a third party the right to submit the application on your behalf [please see above for letter requirements]
The person attending any passport appointment must ensure they bring a piece of their own ID with them to the office, this is for security reasons.
I Need A Second Passport For Business.
Many people are not aware that you can obtain a second passport for business purposes, leaving many people slightly confused when filling out the application as there is no option for this on the form. So when you are filling out your application you must tick the box that states "First Ever Passport" then in the addition notes section you must the say you require a second passport for business purposes explaining the reasons and detailing why.
When you attend your appointment will also need to bring with you a letter from your employer on letter headed paper also detailing the reasons behind the need for a second passport. This letter must be signed and dated and is considered a supporting document.
Does The Office Have Special Needs Facilities
When you make your appointment on the phone please make the operator aware of any special needs you may have, and they will make sure that every assistance is given to you on the day of your appointment. Guide dogs are allowed into the buildings but again please try and make the office aware ahead of time so that they can cater to your needs. Every one of The Passport Offices has disabled access and if you need any assistance the staff will be happy to help.
Have You Changed In Appearance Since Your Last Passport?
If you are applying for a straight forward renewal, most people then start to worry if they need their photos countersigned. The Passport Office asks if you are still recognisable from your previous passport. But this leaves a lot of doubt and room for interpretation, so we've got a few things to help clear up the confusion.
The question you should bare in mind is; Would a stranger recognise you from your old and new photos?
The things to look out for are:
- Drastic facial surgery
- Different hair colour or drastic style change
- Growing or shaving off a beard
- Vast time difference between passports
With most passports lasting 10 years people obviously age between photos, this is not classed as a big enough change to require a countersignature. If you are in any doubt ask a member of staff at the Post Office for advice.
Passport Office And Name Changes.
Name changes are extremely common when renewing a passport, with the most common reasons being due to marriage, returning to a maiden name and children's surnames being changed to another parent's surname. These in themselves are perfectly acceptable and the Passport Office will be happy to make these changes for you.
However many people decide to change their name for other reasons, but you do need to take into consideration that the Passport Office has the right to refuse any name change if they deem it to be vulgar, offensive or blasphemous. This would include swear words or a combination of words that would create an offensive sentence.
The will also refuse trademark or copyrighted names like "Coca-Cola" or "Tesco". Also if your name were to make a sentence like "how are you" or "see you later".
You are also not allowed any name that gives you a presumed title like Princess Emma or Lord Stephen. If the Passport Office feels that you have made a name change for a bet a joke or any other frivolous reason they reserve the right to refuse the name change on your passport. If you are in any doubt please contact The Passport Office.
All of this information is here to ensure you receive you passport quickly and without any delays, ensuring you have your passport application completed correctly and all of your supporting documents are present will make this process easy for all involved.
The Passport Office can not guarantee your passport will be ready on time if any part of your application, photos or supporting documents are not correct, so double and triple check you've got everything you need before your appointment. Any delays could severely impact on your travel plans.