If you plan to head abroad in 2022, do not delay applying for your passport! Here's why:
Covid delays mean longer processing times
The US Department of State processes passports for US citizens. Due to pandemic conditions and adequate physical spacing requirements, passport turnaround is requiring extra time. Here's a breakdown of the timeline for passport processing:
|Routine service||Expedited service|
|Mailing time||0.5 weeks||0.5 weeks|
|Application intake||6.0 weeks||6.0 weeks|
|Passport processing||12.0 weeks||6.0 weeks|
|Return mailing time||0.5 weeks||0.5 weeks|
|Total turnaround time||19.0 weeks||13.0 weeks|
Reopened economies mean more demand for USA passports
The pandemic stunted a lot of citizens' international travel plans. Imagine a whole year's worth of passport applications flooding the State Department Passport Services office over 2-3 months. Now imagine that they can only process ⅓ or ½ as many passports as normal due to the pandemic.
California recall election means fewer passport appointments
Merced residents will look to the Merced County Registrar of Voters for new passport applications. The County Registrar, however, is also mailing out and processing ballots for the September 14 California gubernatorial recall election. This will limit the support they can provide in passport application appointments between now and possibly early October. Other passport acceptance facilities do not have openings for 6-8 weeks.
Planning to apply to study abroad and need advice?
Talk with a study abroad advisor, especially the advisor supporting your preferred study abroad destination country. The advisor will know which programs and deadlines will work best.