Due to extreme delays, expect your renewed passport in 18 weeks

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If you’re thinking about taking a trip overseas, you may need to get your passport renewed now before you run out of time.

In normal times, a routine passport renewal takes about 6 to 8 weeks. But right now, the estimated wait time is 18 weeks. 

There are several reasons for the delays, such as slower shipping and mail service and reduced staffing for passport processing teams — both a result of the pandemic.

But there are some things you can try.

“You can pay $60 for what’s called ‘expedited processing,'” said Scott Keyes, founder of Scott’s Cheap Flights, “and that basically jumps you to not exactly the front of the line, but it certainly puts you in a priority category where you can expect to knock at least four to six weeks off of your expected processing time.”

Keyes advises that many countries require that your passport be valid for three to six months beyond your travel date.

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