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Where and how should I renew a passport that expires soon?

by William
(Alpine, CA, San Diego County)

Question: I am traveling to Belgium on April 3, returning April 5. My passport expires May 11 of this year. I have another trip to Germany scheduled for May 25 - what is the best method for me to renew and ensure that I have a valid passport in time for the May 25 trip? I am noticing that in some examples (or all), I should surrender my current passport to acquire a new one - and as noted above I will need my passport for an April 3 journey to Brussels.

Answer: Belgium is party to the Schengen Agreement. You are not required to obtain a visa for the initial entry into the Schengen area, but you must have a passport valid three months beyond the proposed stay. Since your passport will not have three months validity at the time of your trip, you need to renew it before your departure date.

There are only two ways to get your passport so quickly. One, you can visit the San Francisco Passport Agency. Due to the urgency, you have no time to make an appointment. Just appear at the agency very early with the completed application form DS-82, your current passport, one passport photo and payment for the fees. Bring proof of your imminent travel like an airline e-ticket or hotel reservation. Your renewed passport should be issued the same day.

If you are unable to travel to San Francisco, you can request the assistance of a qualified passport expediting service. By using express mail delivery, you can obtain your passport by Thursday or Friday.

Click here for expedited passport renewal

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