Have Passport, Will Travel

Well it's that time of the year to dream of travel plans.  Before I can do anything concrete I need to renew my passport. I got my last passport in November 2005 but they are only good for 5 years. Actually it works out to 4 1/2 years since you must have a valid passport with at least 6 months left on it before you can travel. Mine will expire in about 6 months so it must be renewed.

Passport applications and renewals are done at the Passport Canada Office at the Sinclair Centre in downtown Vancouver (corner of Hastings and Granville).  That is where I spent my time Tuesday. I had to wait until Tuesday since the Monday is the annual statutory holiday, Queen Victoria Day in honour of Queen Victoria.

Photograph of Queen Victoria by Alexander Bassano, 1887.

On my way to the passport office I caught a glimpse of this demonstration. I also decided to stop off at the Dressew, a Vancouver institution; where I bought skeins and skeins of wool and cotton yarn to make dishcloths and try my hand at a child's sweater. See  more about my knitting adventure here and here.

I finally made it to this place.



The passport office is on the second floor. There were a lot of people in there but the line up moved fairly quickly. I waited in one line for an agent to review my documents and give me a number which would be called when another agent would take my money and give me instructions.

Altogether I was in and out of the office within a half hour. It cost me $87 Canadian. Twenty of this is for the processing fee which includes sending my passport to me by registered mail (requiring adult signature for delivery acceptance).  It is the same price for an original application or a renewal application. I was told to expect my passport around June 8, 2010.  If I needed it quicker, I would pay an additional $20 and be able to pick it up at the same office on the third day after drop off.

This got me to wondering how much it costs in your country for a passport (original or renewal) and how long it takes to process. I'd love to hear from you!

11 comments:

  1. A few years ago, obtaining a passport in Namibia was a nightmare of red tape and waiting but I believe it's improved slightly now - and certainly not as expensive as in Canada (I don't know the amount offhand)

    As one who hates queues like the plague I prefer to work through an agent, costs a few bucks more but it's worth it ...

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  2. Thank you for sharing that about the Namibian passport. It's great that they are improving things there even if only slightly. Hopefully they will continue to do so. I do not like queues either. However in Canada due to the security around passport issuance,I don't think we are able to use an agent to get a passport. We must take it in person or mail it in. If we take it in person we can send someone else to pick it up but we must appear personally at either the drop off or pick up if I understand correctly. Normally I do the drop off and pick up myself but this time I am having it mailed to me when it is ready. A Canadian abroad would apply at the nearest Canadian government offices abroad. We can use agents for getting visas for travel to other countries and there are special companies/businesses that exist for this purpose.

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  5. Hey OSC, look I found this about your "new" passport process. This is a few years old now so it is probably more of less the same information. Seems it costs $160 Namibian to get a passport 2007.http://leavenamibia.blogspot.com/2007/07/how-to-renew-your-namibian-passport.html
    This government site confirms the cost is still the same http://www.embnamibia.at/ncs.html

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  6. I'm not sure what it costs. Mine is out of date, but my husband had one renewed recently as he travels to Canada on business. I'll try to remember to ask him and report back.

    Sounds like it was not a bad process at all and moved rather speedily along with no complications. That's great!

    XO,

    Sheila :-)

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  7. Hoo boy, Joyful,last year, 2009 was my year for passports. I hadn't had mine renewed since returning to South Africa from West Africa in 2006. My own fault. As I wss coming to stay with my hubby here in Khartoum, I had to rush to the Home Affairs which is 240km round trip from my home. I requested a temporary passport for which I paid ZAR100/US$13 and should have walked out with it that day: 16 July. No, I had to return three days later, which I did. I applied for my maxi passport (valid for 10 years) that day and said I could expect it in 6 weeks' time. Cost ZAR500/US$66. I travelled on my temp passport and three months later called at the office where they told me that there was a problem with my photo. It was re-submitted. I bought another temp passport - same cost. On 25 NOVEMBER I was advised to come and fetch my passport! Viola! I don't need this palava until 2019 again! Thanks for a wonderful post.

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  8. Hi Sheila, I guess you are going to have to get your passport application going if you are going to visit Vancouver soon ;-) Good luck with it. Hopefully it will be quick and painless and you can experience our beautiful city. Blessings xx

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  9. Wow Jo! You really went on a journey to get your passport(s). I'm so glad it all work out and you won't need to do it again for some time. Here at home our passports are only valid for 5 years and so I'm afraid I will be reapplying for another one before yours is up for renewal! I guess one good thing about that is our photos actually look like us for the most part, lol.

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  10. Wow Jo! You really went on a journey to get your passport(s). I'm so glad it all work out and you won't need to do it again for some time. Here at home our passports are only valid for 5 years and so I'm afraid I will be reapplying for another one before yours is up for renewal! I guess one good thing about that is our photos actually look like us for the most part, lol.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hoo boy, Joyful,last year, 2009 was my year for passports. I hadn't had mine renewed since returning to South Africa from West Africa in 2006. My own fault. As I wss coming to stay with my hubby here in Khartoum, I had to rush to the Home Affairs which is 240km round trip from my home. I requested a temporary passport for which I paid ZAR100/US$13 and should have walked out with it that day: 16 July. No, I had to return three days later, which I did. I applied for my maxi passport (valid for 10 years) that day and said I could expect it in 6 weeks' time. Cost ZAR500/US$66. I travelled on my temp passport and three months later called at the office where they told me that there was a problem with my photo. It was re-submitted. I bought another temp passport - same cost. On 25 NOVEMBER I was advised to come and fetch my passport! Viola! I don't need this palava until 2019 again! Thanks for a wonderful post.

    ReplyDelete

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