How to get a US Passport in 1.5h Hours

This is a true story.

Last Thursday I flew from RSA in San Francisco back to Seattle. When I got back I helped my wife pack the bags for our trip to New Zealand. At about midnight, after we'd done all the packing, I got the passports out of the safe and went over then one last time. At this point I realized our son's passport had expired Sep 06. The 06 looked a lot like an 08, but it really was an 06. So here we are midnight the day before we're about to fly to New Zealand, and we have a bum passport. What to do?

We phoned customs agents at LAX and SEA, but they basically laughed, giving us a near-zero chance of getting out. The guy we spoke to at LAX suggested we try to go anyway!

At 7AM, Friday, we phoned the Dallas passport office becuase they'd be awake! They gave us a national phone number to call to see if we could get an appointment in Seattle. We 'phoned the number and got a noon appointment. Which, we are told, is very, VERY rare; getting an appt on the same day is near-impossible. Our flight from SEA to LAX (and then to AKL) was 3:55PM, so we realized we were cutting things really fine. My wife suggested we fill the car with the luggage as if we were going to the airport anyway. We got all the paperwork we needed to get Blake a new passport (birth cert, new photo, old passport, flight details, both parents [tha would be my wife and me] and a check book) and decided to head to the passport office early at 10AM.

We got there at 10:30AM.

We told the security people our plight, and they politely told us to get in line.

When we got to the front of the line, we told the lady in the office our story, they checked our appt number, took all the paperwork and told us to come back at 12:15PM.

We came back at noon.

They had a new passport for Blake.

Seriously, they had a new passport for Blake! Sure, we were $150 lighter, but who cares!

So yes, you CAN get a passport in 1.5 hours 🙂

Comments (12)

  1. This is a true story. […CUT… ]So yes, you CAN get a passport in 1.5 hours 🙂 Io ci ho messo 20gg.

  2. Ted Howard says:

    That’s incredible Michael. I used to think that four weeks was speedy for a new passport. I think you’ve set a new record, and when I have to get a new passport in a month I won’t be satisfied with anything over 2 hours. 😉

  3. Rajiv Das says:

    That’s how security should be. Fast and not unnessarily bureaucratic. Just kddin’. Have a good time.

  4. thomas says:

    In some European countries you get one in 20 minutes, without appointment.

  5. Geoffrey Hill says:

    Michael, I think you have me slightly beat on the time.  I had a turnaround of several hours for an outdated passport that went bum while I was at a conference in Seattle [I live in London.]  I dutifully paid my $150, showed my return airline ticket [which is the legal reason] and showed my previous passport.  I was then interviewed for about 30 minutes and told to come back that afternoon.  Voila, I had a new passport at the Seattle Agency waiting for me.

    I believe it all comes down to the fact that a US citizen cannot be denied a new passport if s/he shows a justification [ie. plane ticket] for getting that passport sooner than the usual 6 weeks.

  6. dumian says:

    This sounds really, close to win at lotto as chance, anyway have fun in NZ Michael, i just come back from the forgotten paradise.


  7. Moe says:

    I’m so glad you guys made it.  I can just see Cheryl’s face when you told her the bad news!!!  have a great time.


  8. Jim says:

    You wouldn’t be able to do that in Canada ever since it was announced that Canadians need passports to enter the U.S. I think it takes 1-2 months here right now.

  9. Your wife manifested it.  It’s the law of attraction.  She already pictured in her mind that Blake will have his passport.  I wish we could do that when we code softwares ;->

  10. Aaron says:

    The passport system is completley F’ed now.  I ordered my passport over 7 weeks ago for a flight for next week.  The passport status recently changed my expected passport arrival time from this week to the week of April the 15th.  Now I have to try to get out of work to expedite my passport.  On top of that, when you call the passport service, it rings and then you get the prompt and then it hangs up on you.  It’s great.  Which retard didn’t plan ahead for the influx of passport applications?

  11. says:

    I’ve been trying to find the national office phone number–sent my renewal application in February and still no passport.  Could you send me the number?


  12. Brianna says:

    Dang! That’s awesome! I paid $167 for an expidited passport! The lady at the agency thought I had to have one in 2 weeks so she said I would have to pay for overnight postal service which would have made the total cost about $200! Crazy right?! I can’t believe you got your passport that quick! I have to try that next time!  

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