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Does my child need a passport?

Does my child need a passport?

If you intend a travel international With her baby You may soon be wondering if your baby will need a passport to travel and what other rules and regulations you need to be aware of. Here’s what you need to know about international travel with a baby, including if you need a baby passport, what rules apply to traveling with a newborn or baby, and how to prepare.

Do children need a passport to travel?

The short answer is yes. If you travel internationally between countries, your baby will most likely need a passport to leave the country of origin and re-enter. However, there are some exceptions to the general travel rule, such as travel from the US to Canada.

Children under the age of 16 traveling from the US to Canada do not need to have an official passport and only need a birth certificate as an official document to enter and leave the country. .

However, if you plan to travel to most places outside your home country with an infant or any child under the age of 16, you will need to plan to get a passport for everyone you travel with before you travel, including for your child. .

How to apply for a baby passport

You will need to apply for your baby’s passport in person ; Parents and caregivers cannot apply for a baby passport by phone, mail or online at this time. As an adult, you may have the option to apply for a new or renewed passport by mail or in some states online for yourself, but for infants, you will still need to visit an acceptance center in your area.

You can search the US State Department travel website find a passport acceptance center near you. In many cases, your local post office can also handle passport processing, although you may want to check this before leaving.

Some passport processing facilities will also ask you to schedule an appointment in advance to apply for a passport, so be sure to check the rules and schedule an appointment if your facility requires it. And finally, if you need your baby’s passport very quickly, you’ll need to visit an accelerated passport processing facility and be prepared to pay an additional fee (around $ 60) to get the accelerated passport.

The main application for the children’s passport is form DS-11.

As of March 2020, forms DS-11, DS-3053 and DS-5525 have expired, but according to the website of US State Department trip , Parents can still use these forms to apply passports for children under 16 years of age. . DOS will post updated versions of the form online when they become available.

Form DS-11 must be completed in person for all first-time passport applicants, including minors and infants. You can print a copy of the PDF version of the form on the U.S. Department of State’s travel site, or you can use the online form generator to complete it in your computer’s browser, and then print it out. However, if you choose to complete the form in advance, you should not sign the application until you are in the office of the person applying for the passport. The form has two pages and is easy to complete with your personal information.

If you plan to travel frequently with your baby, when applying for a passport, you can select the «Large (non-standard) book» checkbox at the top of the form to request a larger, multi-page passport.

What to take with you

Before you make an appointment to get a passport for your baby, gather everything you need to bring. The last thing you want to do is wait in line with your baby to get a passport only to have to do it again because of a missing document. Here’s what you need to bring:.

  • Official baby birth certificate: You will need the official birth certificate and, as a security measure, we recommend that you bring a digital backup and a photocopy of the original.
  • Proof of US citizenship: If you travel shortly after the baby is born, you may not yet have the official baby birth certificate. In this case, you can try calling the local county clerk to see if the process can be expedited or if they have recommendations for a verified form that you can get. If your child does not have a US birth certificate, consular birth reports abroad or birth certificates or citizenship certificates can also be used. In some cases, there are various documents that can be used as proof of citizenship, including family or religious records, such as medical forms, baptismal announcements, or even personal records. You can also use an old US passport, even if it has expired, as proof of US citizenship.
  • Baby’s social security number: a Again, if your baby does not yet have a Social Security number, which can last weeks after birth, you can still apply for a passport under the US State Department. Providing a signed and dated social security number. statement stating: «I declare under penalty of perjury under the laws of the United States of America that the following are true and correct: (full name of child) never received a social security number from the Social Security Administration.»
  • All legal parents:If a legal parent cannot apply for the passport in person, that parent will need to complete an absence form, Form DS-3053, if applicable. If you are the sole legal guardian of your child, you will also need to bring documentation proving this, such as a birth certificate with your name only or a court order granting sole guardianship. In addition to physical presence, both legal guardians must bring their own form of identification and citizenship, such as a valid state driver’s license, a valid or expired U.S. passport, undamaged, a certificate of naturalization, or citizenship. . , an identity document of a government employee, a military document, a valid foreign passport or a consular registration. In some cases, if neither parent is available to present the child,
  • A passport photo: there are very specific rules about baby passport photos. The US Department of State website recommends that parents place their child on a white sheet of photography or line up a car seat with a white sheet or blanket before taking the photo. The baby has to face the camera and no one else can be in the photo. You must bring the photo, but do not staple it or attach it to the passport application form.
  • Photocopies of all: In addition to bringing the original proof of citizenship, you must bring a regular 8 x 11 black and white photocopy of all document , including your own identification, which you provide. The photocopy remains with the application and, although officially not a requirement, non-compliance will delay the processing of the passport. If you do not bring a photocopy, you will also need a secondary proof of US citizenship. No photocopy can be double-sided.

What’s next

After paying passport fees (the cost is about $ 115 for normal processing), you will receive your baby’s official passport in the mail. Seven to 10 days after the application is completed, you can track the status of your child’s passport application online or by calling.

Once you have the passport for you and your child, you can see the world together! Your little one’s passport is only valid for five years, so you’ll need to make sure you update it or request a new one after that.

A word from Verywell

If you are going to traveling with a child Outside the country, your baby will most likely need his or her own passport to enter and leave a new country. All baby passports must be requested in person, so make sure you plan properly before your travel dates. We know that traveling with a child, especially for the first time and to a foreign place, can be stressful for many parents. With a little extra preparation to make sure your baby has his passport, you can help the travel process as smoothly as possible and help your little one get the first passport stamp.