The cost of renewing your passport just went up
At a time of rising inflation, the cost for a U.S. passport is also going up. Starting Monday, Dec. 27, fees are rising by $20 and the increase applies for all new passports, as well as renewals, according to the State Department. The price hike is needed so officials can “continue to produce one of the most secure travel and identity documents in the world,” the department said on its Twitter
In other online messages, the department said the price increase pertains to “an increase in the security surcharge component of the passport application.” Before the fee hike, an adult paying for a new passport book had to pay $145, comprising a $110 application fee and a $35 acceptance fee. Starting Dec. 27, the total charge will be $165. The previous price for a renewal was $110, and now it’s $130. A new passport for a child, under age 16, was previously $115 and now costs $135. The fee assessed will depend “on when the application was submitted,” the State Department said, responding to tweet comments. The State Department did not respond immediately to a MarketWatch request for further comment. That may come as a minor relief to people who have already applied for the travel document and are now awaiting its delivery. Routine processing times for U.S. passports now take eight to 11 weeks. If you want to pay more for expedited processing, the turnaround is five to seven weeks, the State Department says. Expedited service costs $60 and one to two-day delivery costs $17.56, the department said. Of course, the big question is what the appetite — and rules — for international travel looks like as 2022 dawns with the delta and omicron variants upending travel plans for many. Earlier in December, data from the travel booking site Hopper showed fares for international flights were edging down, with a 2% drop for outbound flights and a 5% drop for inbound flights. The State Department issued almost 15.5 million passports in fiscal 2021. That’s up from 11.7 million in 2020 but shy of the 20.6 million passports issued in 2019.