New guide to passport application form launched
Passport Office receives 80,000 incomplete applications each year, says Charlie Flanagan
Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan launching the passport card earlier this year. He confirmed it will be available from the end of September 2015. File photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times
Minister for Foreign Affairs Charlie Flanagan has launched a new guide to completing the passport application form.
The guide accompanies new application forms and is available in post offices and Garda stations.
Mr Flanagan said the Passport Office receives 80,000 incomplete applications each year.
“It is hoped that the new guide, which gives clear and concise instructions, will greatly reduce the most common errors and speed up processing times.
“The guide includes sample screenshots of the more complex sections of the application form, with information on how to complete them properly,” he said.
The number of passport applications in the first six months of the year increased by almost 5 per cent compared to the same period last year.
In 2014, a total of 629,446 passports were issued.
“The new guide has been designed to clarify the process of filling in the passport application form with a view to minimising errors and ensuring that passports are issued as quickly as possible,” he said.
The application form has also been updated to include the Eircode, but older versions of the form will still be accepted.
Mr Flanagan confirmed the new passport card will be available from the end of September 2015 and will be available to all those with a valid passport book.
“Those travelling within the EU and EEA will be able to use the passport card. Frequent travellers will find this particularly useful if their passport booklet is with an embassy as part of a visa application.
“The passport card will also be very useful for young people who will be able to use it as identification instead of their passport booklet, especially on nights out,” he said.
Mr Flanagan urged parents to check the validity of their child or children’s passports as they are only valid for three or five years.