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Passport Renewal at NY Passport Agency

by bZerk Billionaire
(New York)

Question: I am traveling to South Africa in 3 days. My passport expires on October 3rd. I am in New York (my departure city), but I live in Atlanta, GA. By walking into the New York Passport Agency, will I be able to keep my old passport to use on my trip to South Africa?

Answer: Expedited passport renewal at the NY Agency is only necessary if one of the following apply to your situation.

1) Your passport has less than two blank visa pages remaining. South African immigration officers require travelers to have two blank pages.

2) Your passport will expire less than 30 days after your stay in South Africa. A passport valid for 30 more days after the intended return date from South Africa is a basic requirement to enter the country.

If you need to get your passport renewed before your trip, you can apply at the New York Passport Agency as long as you meet all the criteria. You will need your current passport, a recent passport photo, completed Form DS-82 and evidence of your travel date. Besides the application fee, you will be required to pay the expedited service fee.

You will not be able to keep your old passport to travel to South Africa but a new one will be issued to same day or, at the latest, the following day. The old passport will be invalidated and returned to you.

As a general precaution, all travelers to South Africa are advised to carry a photocopy of the photo/bio information page of their passport and keep it in a location separate from their passport.

Comments for Passport Renewal at NY Passport Agency

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Impractical and cruel food and drink policy.
by: Petra Gelbart

Question: As both the parent of children with special needs and a person who has medical conditions, I am asking you to reconsider your--apparently rather unique--stance regarding absolutely no nourishment in the waiting area. It should not take multiple requests to be granted an exception to the rule for a small child or any other person who has physical difficulty going for long stretches without food and drink.

Answer: Please register a formal complaint at the National Passport Information Center. Your feedback help Passpprt Services improve their policies.

by: Malini D Sur, MD

Question: Hello,

I am writing to express my utter disappointment and distress at my experience on Friday at the NY passport office on Hudson. I went with my husband and 2 year old daughter for a 9am appointment for her first passport application. I understand that you have a "no food and drink" policy. I therefore took my daughter out while my husband waited so that she could have a snack. After we returned, we still had to wait another 30 minutes for a total of at least 90 minutes. Just as our number was called my daughter became quite agitated and was crying out loud for milk over and over again with tears in her eyes. I asked the agent at our booth if I could give her milk. She then directed me to speak with a supervisor at a different booth. There I waited while my toddler continued to cry for milk until the man behind the counter was done with a conversation. I told him my situation. He then brought out a different supervisor who heard my request and again stated "It's the policy m'am no food and drink allowed."

At this point I begged again to allow my 2 year old child to be able to drink milk. He stated I should go outside and I again explained that my husband was at the booth so I needed to be present and could not leave. He then stepped away and returned to say "it's ok." I gave my daughter milk and she immediately quieted down.

I then asked him to tell me who I can email to give my feedback for this experience and he answered simply "Go online and google it." I stated I had already done that and couldn't find it and he said "Go online again." He didn't tell me his name. He wasn't wearing an identity badge. He said he was just trying to do his job.

As a mother and a surgeon I am extremely shocked at the heartlessness and cruelty of this policy with no exceptions. How can small children be expected to go 90 minutes to 2 hours without food or drink? What of elderly and diabetic folks who are also asked to wait an unknown amount of time? What is your policy about breastfeeding women and bottles? Would it be ok if I started breastfeeding her but not gave her cows milk? Does that make any sense?

After looking online at the other passport agencies across the country I see this is not the national rule but unique to NY.

I ask that you immediately reconsider your policy to have exceptions for small children and those with medical conditions who need to be able to have access to food/drink.

I also ask that you ask your staff to wear identification at all times and finally, they should be willing and encourage feedback by openly giving the contact information where citizens can communicate concerns about their experience.

Thank you very much.

Malini D Sur, MD

Answer: We are sorry to hear about your unfavorable experience. You may register a formal complaint at the National Passport Information Center.

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