Some Americans can now return to the United States with an expired passport - ForumDaily
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Some Americans can now return to the US with an expired passport

Some American citizens living or traveling abroad will be able to return to the United States if their passports have expired, reports CNN

Photo: Shutterstock

On December 28, the US State Department issued a memorandum stating that citizens who meet certain criteria will be able to return to their country by March 31, 2022 with expired passports.

However, there are many conditions that apply.

First, not every expired US passport can be accepted as a return document. This exemption applies to American citizens currently overseas and returning to the United States (not leaving the country or traveling elsewhere) whose passports have expired after January 1, 2020.

In addition, only certain types of passports are relevant. The expired document in question must be the original 10-year passport, except for persons who were less than 15 years old at the time the passport was issued, because these are five-year passports.

These passports must be unaltered and owned by the owner.

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Americans who meet this criterion may return to the United States or U.S. soil by the end of March 2022. Short connections are allowed as there are no direct return flights to the United States from some destinations.

This is the second major passport news announced this week.

As of December 27 the cost of obtaining a new US passport rose $ 20, from $ 110 to $ 130 for a 10-year document.

“The increased fee is necessary to ensure we continue to issue some of the most secure travel and identification documents in the world,” the State Department said in a tweet.

One of the likely reasons for this expired passport amnesty is the delay in issuing passports due to the pandemic.

On the Department of State's website, Americans are advised to expect passport renewals to take eight to 11 weeks, although individuals may pay $ 60 to expedite the process.

However, government officials admitted that delays have been longer than usual in the past two years.
Rachel Arndt, deputy assistant secretary for passport services, said at a news briefing this summer that it is not uncommon for passport applications to take up to 18 weeks, "including processing time, initial internal application intake, and mailing." This happened both with the submission of the first application for a passport and with the application for renewal.

At the time, she estimated that there were between 1,5 and 2 million passport applications.

Americans overseas whose passports expire before January 1, 2022 are not entirely lucky. These citizens, as well as people whose passports have been lost or stolen, can apply for an emergency passport, which will allow them to return to the United States.

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However, these documents will only work for one trip back to the United States, so people who receive these emergency passports will then have to go through the normal procedure to get a new passport after that.

On more specific issues, the Department of State advises Americans to register with the nearest US embassy or consulate. Americans who live abroad or will be spending significant amounts of time overseas must sign up for the registration program Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)to get the latest travel notifications and safety alerts.

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In the U.S. passport validity renewal of passport
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