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Can I travel with my passport even though it has my maiden name?

by Christina
( Illinois, US)

Question: When booking my vacation I didn't think about the fact my passport has my maiden name on it. My flight ticket is booked in my married name. My vacation is in 2 days.

Do I have to spend the money to get a new passport or can I bring all of my name change documentation (marriage certificate, SS card, birth certificate) and still travel with my current passport?

Answer: The TSA Secure Flight Program states that "You should ensure that the name provided when booking your travel matches the government ID that you will use when traveling." It goes on to say that small difference such as a middle initial instead of a full middle name should not be a problem. However, a completely different last name may cause problems.

The U.S. Department of State Passport Services website states that "all citizens need to travel in their current, legal names."

To avoid any problems, you should get the name changed before you travel. You can do this in one of two ways, either you submit the application yourself at the Chicago Passport Agency or you go through an experienced expediting service.

Since it may be impossible to get an appointment scheduled before your flight, you might try visiting the regional agency without an appointment. The form and documents you need to obtain the name change depend on when your most recent passport was issued. For more information, click the appropriate link below.

Passport Name Change Information

Chicago Passport Agency

If you would prefer professional assistance from an experienced expediter, click the link below.

Expedite Passport Name Change

Comments for Can I travel with my passport even though it has my maiden name?

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Last name change
by: Anonymous

Question: I will be getting married soon and next year plan to travel internationally. My last name will be hyphenated before the trip. Is it possible I could still use the birth name (the name that is also on the passport) if I bring a copy of my marriage certificate or proof of name change?

Answer: You may use your passport in your maiden name as along as you book your tickets in your maiden name as well.

Passport with Maiden Name
by: Anonymous

Question: My passport has my maiden name on it but my license and airline tickets have my married. I have sent the passport (expedited) to have my name updated before our trip, but it won't be here in time and I cannot get anyone on the phone to help me with it. Will I be able to travel if I bring my marriage certificate?

Answer: Since you do not have your passport, you will not be able to travel internationally.

Name change 2 days before honeymoon
by: Anonymous

Question: I am getting married and then traveling out of the country for my honeymoon 2 days later. Do I need to pay to get an expedited DL and PP before I travel?

Answer: If you already have a passport, you can just book tickets in the name that currently appears in it and use it for travel. You can apply for a name change when you get back from your trip.

New Passport and name change
by: Lauren

Question: My passport has expired. I need a new one but am getting married in 2 weeks. Can I send in the marriage license and my old passport to get a new one in my name? Or do I need to change my DL and SS card first and then go through the passport process?

Answer: In order to get a passport in your married name, you must wait until the official marriage certificate is issued. This usually takes approximately 6-8 weeks after the correct documents are issued.

You can apply for a passport in your current legal name. Once the marriage ceritificate arrives, you can apply for a name change. There is no cost for the passport name change if you apply within 12 months of your passport's date of issue.

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