U.S. Passport

  1. Home
  2. Glossary
  3. U.S. Passport

To travel internationally, you must have a passport. U.S. Passports are government-issued forms of identification that verify both your identity and citizenship and allow you to enter other countries and re-enter the U.S. You can get either a U.S. passport book or card. However, the passport card is only valid for travel between the U.S. and Canada, Bermuda, Mexico, and the Caribbean, and only by land or sea.

How to apply for a new U.S. passport

You must visit a passport-issuing facility and apply in-person if:

  • This will be your first U.S. passport
  • You need to change the name on your passport
  • Your most recent passport was issued when you were under 16
  • Your current passport is more than 15 years old
  • You are currently residing outside the U.S (apply at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate) 

When you apply, you must provide:

  • A completed DS-11 form 
  • Proof of U.S. citizenship (U.S. birth certificate)
  • Proof of identity (driver’s license or state-issued ID card) 
  • An approved passport photo
  • Payment for the processing fees
  • If you have changed your name, proof of a legal name change

How to renew a U.S. passport

If you meet these requirements, you can apply by mail to renew your passport:

  • Your current passport was issued when you were 16 or older
  • Your current passport was issued within the last 15 years
  • You have your current passport in your possession
  • You do not need to change the name on your passport

How much does a passport cost?

Books for adults: $135 new, $110 for renewals

Books for minors: $105

Cards for adults: $55 new, $30 for renewals

Card for minors: $40

If you plan to travel internationally and need a new passport or renewal, keep in mind that passport applications can take anywhere from 4-12 to process. So, apply early and give yourself plenty of time to get your passport before your departure date.

Navigate Glossary Terms

Previous Term
Texas Birth Index
Next Term
Vital Records Office