Vacationers face a 10-week wait for new passports and more and more people are rushing to make changes following the easing of travel restrictions.
Officials stressed that the 10-week tips for renewals and applications are designed to help people plan their trip and ensure they leave enough time before traveling to renew their passports.
Online requests typically take around three weeks to process. It costs Â£ 75.50 to renew or replace a passport via an online application or Â£ 85 with a paper form.
One parent wrote on Twitter: “I haven’t been able to get a date in weeks and my flight is Aug. 18. At this rate, I’m going to ruin my kids’ summer vacation.”
A manager replied, “Our emergency services are in high demand right now, and I’m sorry you couldn’t make an appointment.”
There were only four million passport applications in 2020, up from seven million in 2019, suggesting a higher than usual number may be overdue for renewal.
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A spokesperson for the Interior Ministry said: âClaims that passport processing times are influenced by where staff work is totally untrue. There is also no passport backlog.
âSince the start of the pandemic, more than 4.5 million people have delayed their passport applications. This means that the potential demand for passports is higher than ever, and passport processing times could change quickly. We therefore advise applicants since April to plan to wait up to 10 weeks before receiving their passport.
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