Ways to track a passport application
The HM Passport Office offers applicants three ways to apply for a passport. The Standard Service Online, The Post Office Check and Send Service allows applicants to complete the application form and have their photograph taken at a participating Post Office. Finally, the Standard Service via Postal Forms allows applicants post their application form along with the required documents themselves, all of these standard service options come with an average 6-8 week timeframe as of January 2023
HM Passport Office does offer urgent fast-track services if customers need to improve on these time frames, however whatever application type you choose you will often want to get an update on the progress of your application, this article aims to provide the different ways by which you can do this.
If you have applied for your British Passport using the standard 6-8 week service
If you have applied for a passport, there are three different ways you can track it. Depending on how you submitted your application, you can track it online, through the Post Office, or by phone.
1) Track It Online
If you applied online with a PEX reference, you can track your passport application on the third party passport office website. This website will provide you with up to date information on the progress of your application and any information that the Passport Office needs from you.
2) Track Via The Post Office
If you have used the Post Office Check & Send service, they will have sent your application to the Passport Office. You can track your application at any time on the Post Office website. They provide regular updates on the progress of your application.
3) By Phone
Finally, if you have sent in a paper form yourself, you can track your application by phone. You will need to call the Passport Office Adviceline to provide them with your application details. They will then be able to tell you the status of your application.
If you have applied via the 1 Week Fast-Track service
If you have used the 1 Week Fast-Track service and have recently attended an appointment this means that this service guarantees 7 days from the date of the appointment (including weekends).
It is not possible to track the whole progress of the application, however there are a few stages that can be confirmed by HM Passport Office.
1) By Phone
You can contact HM Passport Office by phone, you then need to ask if the passport has completed the check process and if it has been "Sent for print", if the advisor is able to confirm this that means that it is now in the final stages of the application process and will soon within 24-48 hours be given to the third party courier company for delivery.
2) The Courier Will Contact You
The courier will contact you via text the day prior to the delivery date to confirm delivery. This message will include a tracking number that you can use to monitor the progress of your application.
You can use the tracking number to track the progress of your application online. All you need to do is visit the website of the courier company and enter the tracking number into the search box. You will then be provided with a list of updates concerning your application.
These updates will include the date and time of when the application was collected, the status of the delivery (e.g. in transit/delivered), and the expected delivery date. If the delivery is delayed, you will also be informed of this and provided with an estimated time for delivery. You can also contact the courier company directly if you have any queries regarding the status of your application or the delivery time. They will be able to provide you with further information and assistance.
Passport Renewal Status
Possible delays for Lost or Stolen Passport Applications or a Child Passports Applications
Although applying for a fast-track passport for a lost passport or child application can be the fastest way to obtain a new passport, there are certain steps which need to be taken that could potentially delay the application beyond the 7 day fast-track period.
One of the major factors that could delay the application is if the passport office is unable to contact the counter-signatory. A counter-signatory is a person who has known you for at least two years and is willing to sign the passport application form and the photos provided. This counter-signatory must also have a valid passport and be willing to provide a counter-signature.
The purpose of the counter-signatory is twofold. Firstly, they are there to check that the photograph provided is of the correct person, and secondly, they are there to verify that the person signing the form is, in fact, the person who has applied for the passport.
Make sure your nominated counter-signatory is contactable
The passport office will usually try to contact the counter-signatory by telephone or email before proceeding with the application. If they are unable to do so, then the application will be delayed until the counter-signatory can be contacted.
Therefore, if you are applying for a fast-track passport, it is important to ensure that the counter-signatory provided is available and able to be contacted by phone, this can not always be required, however if it is a random check or there is something the passport office needs to clarify with them then they will need to be aware and available for contact by phone, this number may also show as a withheld number on the caller id.
No matter how you applied for your passport, this article hopes to help you keep track of the progress of your application, however if you still have any questions you can call the passport advice line below: