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How to Renew a Passport in 24 Hours

Renewing a passport, like most official government matters, is a long process. The State Department’s expedited passport service costs an extra $60 and still takes a cool six weeks. Faster expedited service (three weeks or fewer) requires an in-person visit to a passport center. And standard passport renewal is subject to ever-changing processing times. Which is why horror stories of travelers discovering their passport expired (or is about to expire; some countries require passport validity of three to six months for entry) the weekend before an international trip are so cringe-worthy—there’s never been much you can do about it. But a new and fast passport renewal service via FedEx is aiming to change that.

By partnering with an existing service called RushMyPassport, FedEx is facilitating a nationwide solution for those who need very fast passport renewal. While expedited passport services like the State Department’s and the U.S. Post Office’s take weeks (and still cost an added fee), FedEx and RushMyPassport say they can turn around a passport renewal in 24 hours by combining the shipping service’s thousands of U.S. locations with RushMyPassport’s expertise. The passport renewal service can also replace a lost/stolen/damaged passport, complete a name change on your passport, or acquire a second passport—but no matter which service you need, it’ll cost you.

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Compared with the painful prospect of missing your paid-for vacation, though, the $449 fee (not including shipping costs) might seem like a deal to some. Add on the $170 expedited service fee that goes to the State Department and the one-day rush shipping costs, and the several-hundred-dollar expense is certainly a last resort that’s probably only worthwhile if you’re totally unable to visit a passport center before your trip. If you have slightly more time before your trip, FedEx also offers a 10-12 business day rush for $99 (plus those same added fees).

According to FedEx: “Expedited passports and rushed passport renewal baseline pricing, which factors in the expedited processing service, is offered among six tiers. These include 24-hour service, next-day service, priority service, rush service, standard service, and rush renewal. Additionally, customers can purchase two high-quality, government-compliant 2×2 photos to submit with passport applications.”

So if you’re totally, completely out of time to get a new passport, your local FedEx might be the place to save your trip—for a price. Travelers can start the process, which includes 24/7 customer service from a “passport advisor,” by visiting a FedEx or filling out an application online.

Readers: Have you ever expedited a passport renewal or visited a passport center to save a trip? Comment below.

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Editor Shannon McMahon writes about all things travel. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

By Shannon McMahon

Editor Shannon McMahon is always planning her next trip and often writing in her travel journal. Follow her on Twitter @shanmcmahon_ and on Instagram @shanmcmahon.

Shannon joined SmarterTravel in 2015. A former news reporter, she's lived in the south of Spain, spotted elephants in Sri Lanka, gone spelunking in the Caribbean, hiked Jordan's Petra Basin, interviewed Sao Paulo's Michelin-Star chefs, and explored China via bullet train. Travel trends, news oddities, and her visits to up-and-coming destinations are some of her favorite things to write about.

Her stories have also appeared online on USA Today, The Sun, Huffington Post, Business Insider, blog.TripAdvisor.com, Boston.com, and more. Her educational background is in journalism, art history, gender studies, Spanish, and film. She's been quoted as an expert travel source by CNBC, People.com, MarketWatch, The Washington Post, USA Today, and more.

The Handy Item I Always Pack: "Plenty of extra thick hair elastics. They tame my frizzy curls and come in handy in a surprising number of packing and hotel dilemmas."

Ultimate Bucket List Experience: "Climbing (yes, climbing, it's steep!) the Great Wall of China before it's gone."

Travel Motto: "Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness." - Mark Twain

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Email Shannon at smcmahon@smartertravel.com.

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