Last Updated on March 17, 2022
Update: Because of COVID-19, Passport Expediting is in limited supply – As of October 2021, regional passport offices are again allowing third-party passport expeditors to submit applications for travelers under the hand-carry provisions.
Demand for Passport Expediting surges leading up to and during most holiday seasons.
This article is about companies that can act as couriers for your passport application to the passport agency, you pay an extra fee to these companies for them to go there on your behalf and any shipping that may be required, a passport expeditor is not necessary for everyone but you may find that the cost of convivence is worth it.
we are not currently recommending any specific passport expediter
If you need your passport fast, you only have a couple of very specific options. The fastest mail away service offered by the Department of State or your local passport office is 4-6 weeks. If you live near one of the regional passport offices you can make an appointment to appear there in person at specific time on a specific day. After appearing in-person at the passport agency, the best case scenario is you will have to wait until the end of the day in order to get your passport, but it’s likely that it will take 1-2 days in order to get your passport. Either way you will spend several hours getting an expedited passport in-person at the passport agency.
An alternative to this is to hire a third-party company called a passport expediter to hand-carry your application to one of the regional passport offices, then return for it when it’s ready. You will have to ship your documents to the passport expediting company; most of the passport expediting companies use FedEx overnight services each way. Expediters provide service in exchange for the fee that they charge; this fee will vary depending on how fast you need the service performed.
Advantages of using a Passport Expediting Service
- Professional assistance
- No visits to regional passport office necessary
- Peace of mind
Disadvantages of using a Passport Expediting Service
- Costs are in addition to Government passport fees
- Expediting companies cannot validate your data like the government, your application is still subject to suspension for any number of reasons
- Until Passport Agencies start working with passport couriers again (thanks Covid-19) there is no reason to use one.
Typically yes, but just like anything there is always some risk. Understanding the risks may help. Some passport expediters are large companies with a workforce in the hundreds, some are small 1-2 person businesses. Typically the smaller the business, the more attention that is given to oversight of employees and complying with all regulations, penalties exist for expediting companies that don’t follow proper Department of State procedure. Larger companies have more employees and while every company has to follow the same procedures and rules, there are more hands touching your application and paperwork with larger companies.