Expert advice to speed up your Australian passport renewal

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With many Australians keen to fly abroad once the international travel ban is lifted on November 1, there has been a rush on passport renewals – especially as potential travelers find out that their passports expired in the last 18 months when he sat in a drawer.

According to the Australian Passport Office, it normally takes around three weeks to receive a passport – but there are a few tips that can ensure a faster turnaround even without paying the $ 200 “priority processing” fee.

Apply for a “simplified passport renewal”

Most Australians with recently expired passports are eligible for the ‘Easy Renewal’ process, which allows the Australian Passport Office to reuse your old passport file rather than starting from scratch with a brand new application.

Under the Simplified Renewal Program, all you need to do is submit an application checklist form, two new passport photos and your most recent passport.

Simplified renewal is available for adults (not children) with an Australian passport that

  • was issued when you were 16 or older, and
  • was valid at the time of issue for more than two years, and
  • was issued to your current name, date of birth, place of birth and gender, and
  • expired less than three years ago (or is still valid), and
  • has not been reported lost or stolen, or has been canceled for any other reason.

(Why would you need to renew a passport that is always up to date? Many countries will not allow entry if your passport has expired within 3 to 6 months.)

With much less paperwork to complete, simplified passport renewal applications flow through the system.

To apply for a simplified passport renewal online, start by creating an account on online.passports.gov.au and you will be guided step by step through the process.

Submit your passport renewal application to the GPO

It is no longer possible to lodge your passport application at the passport office without making an appointment – and appointments are only available “if you have to travel urgently for unforeseen compassionate or compelling reasons.”

Instead, passport applications must be dropped off at a participating Australia Post outlet, and from there it may take a few days to reach the passport office.

But here’s a little-known tip: Each capital’s GPO (General Post Office) has a daily courier service that brings all passport applications submitted before noon straight to that city’s passport office, where processing can begin that afternoon. midday.

This can reduce the total turnaround time for your shiny new passport by several days.

Pick up your passport at the passport office

While passport offices are closed for filing applications, they are open (until 4 p.m. on weekdays) for people collecting their new passports.

If you live or work in the city, or can easily get to the CBD, then when completing your Simplified Renewal Application, check the box to pick it up from the city ​​passport office.

With all the delays in the postal system right now, it could save you anywhere from a few days to a whole week waiting for your new passport to be delivered in the mail.

Pay the priority $ 220 for free

Even these tips cannot guarantee that your new passport will be back in less than three weeks.

If you really need it ASAP (because you’re planning to jump on a flight next week), it’s worth paying the extra $ 220 priority handling fee.

This speeds up your application so that your new passport is ready for collection at the passport office within 2-3 business days.

But unless there is that urgent need for a new passport, use the first three tips here – apply for a streamlined rebel, file your application at the GPO, and collect your passport from the passport office – the deadline will always be much faster than usual. .

Read also : How to get your Australian Covid International Vaccination Certificate


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