Online Passport Renewal….

Online Passport Renewal….

Recently I had cause to renew my passport – I thought I had better get it up to date as it was due to run out the early part of next year. Whilst researching the most efficient way to do this I came across the option now available to renew online and was pleasantly surprised at how easy and straight forward it was – I thought I’d take you through the process this month.

Firstly, be aware, that you can only use this service if you have a current, undamaged UK passport in your possession. So, you can’t use this service if your passport is lost, stolen or damaged. The cost of the online service is £75.50 (that’s almost a tenner cheaper than using the postal service) and you do have to send away (by post) your current passport; but everything else is done online with your computer, tablet or smart phone.

The first step is to head over to and click on the big green “Start Now” button. You’ll be asked a few simple questions to make sure that you qualify to renew online. To answer these you will need to have your current passport in front of you so, a credit card (to pay) and your smart phone or tablet (so you can take your photo for the passport).

Once you’ve finished answering the simple questions the website will explain how to take a good and acceptable photograph from your smartphone or tablet. At this stage you’ll need to take your photo (you’ll likely need a family member or friend to help you as to get the proportions required, you’ll need to take the picture from a couple of meters away and most people’s arms aren’t long enough! Once you have the photo, go back to the process and upload it. The website will check it and confirm whether it’s acceptable or not. This part of the process can be tricky to get right but it’s worth persisting and getting just the right photo to continue – you will need to stand outside, in front of a blank wall, but all the instructions you need are on the site.

Once you’ve uploaded a photo that is acceptable then you will be asked for some information from your current passport and be asked for payment and contact details. After all this your application will be accepted on the understanding that you will post back your current passport. Once the passport office receives this by post they will process your online application. For me, from the time taken to post the old passport back, to the time DHL delivered it and my new passport back to me was less than two weeks – I thought that was pretty good.

So, the next time you need to renew your passport, why not give it a whirl?