UK Passport Processing Times – Latest News
Historically Her Majesty’s Passport office has always been extremely efficient with the processing of their passports for first time and renewal applications.
At the start of 2022 passport applications were being processed in under 6 weeks. Even for first time applicants there were no unnecessary delays. If your application was complete you could expect your new passport in 4-6 weeks and that included receiving back your originals.
Unfortunately this has all changed in the last few weeks with passports taking well over 10 weeks to be processed with a good chance it will be months.
COVID has been the cause of this disaster coupled with a sudden surge of passport applications as people are eager to resume holidays and travels after a 2 year hiatus due to COVID.
There are no clear reports on when service standards will return to their usual level but the passport office have increased staff numbers to try and deal with this influx of applications.
If you have a trip planned or you are thinking of it then check your passport now. Be especially careful of the issuance date in particular. Your passport must have 10 years of validity from the date it was issued even if your expiry date shows your passport is valid you may be prevented from travelling if the passport is over 10 years old due to the new ruling after Brexit.
It is also important to remember that you must have a valid Permanent Resident Card or a Canadian passport to return to Canada.