Professional Tips Travel

What Is A Passport Card


Here is one question that has become a trouble for many people because I have been receiving lots of disturbing e-mails about “ Now in this article, I will explain what a passport card is and why you need one”. Continue reading for more.

What Is A Passport Card?

A passport card performs the same duties as a passport booklet. It provides or serves as clear evidence of your United States citizenship and your identity. A passport card is a wallet-sized plastic card that is just like a driver’s license this card was designed for the special purpose of northern and southern U.S border communities and also for the resident that migrate the border frequently by land. This card has been initiated since July 14, 2008. The card has the same validity as the passport. Ten years for adults, for the minor under-age of 16 five years is given.

what does a passport card look like

What Is A Passport Card

Courtesy U.S. State Department

You might be wondering what a passport card looks like, well I will be showing you a sample for the United State of America. like I earlier stated it a wallet-sized plastic card that is just like a driver’s license



Who is the passport card for?

The passport card can be used by persons traveling by land or sea mostly between the Bermuda, Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean. Is was created to help in facilitating the persistent travel of Americans living in border communities. It can also be used as your personal means of identification. I believe you can tell for yourself if you need a passport card or not.

How many passport cards have been issued?

We can’t really tell how many of these cards have been produced so far but we know the Production of this passport card started on July 14, 2008. Currently, Millions of these cards have been issued since then to date.

Where can I use my passport card

This passport card is only used for travels that are either on land or sea and to certain places when traveling for an international journey, at the backside of the card it is quite indicated there.

So many airport employees have so much confusion on the part of the passport card but note that the passport card cannot be used to travel by air internationally. You might get through with this passport in one airport but won’t be long before you have issues traveling with the airport security.

Some countries don’t make use of the passport card, countries like Guadeloupe, Martinique, Barbados, St. Barts, and St. Martin— they do not accept the passport card to enter into there country by any means of traveling. In any case, you want to migrate to any country to do well to get a laydown of the documents required for you to pass through. 

How Much Does a Passport Card Cost?

A passport card is cheaper compared to a traditional passport booklet. If you are getting a passport card for the first time it will cost about $65 and ($50 for children under the age of 16 years) and the passport card is valid for ten (10) years and (five (5) years for children). After that, you may want to Renew which will cost you about $30. For a traditional passport book, it costs $145 and $110 for renewals.

How do I apply for a passport card?

If you have your valid passport already, then you just have to apply for just a passport card via the mail using Form DS-82.

Then if you have not gotten any, getting the passport card is very simple, you will use the same form that you use in applying for a passport book —either a DS-11 or DS-82. On the form you are giving on the top of page 5 you will see a box for a passport card or passport book (see example in the image below) so all you have to do is indicate.

The process is simple and just like the process of apply for a passport you provide proof or documents that show that you are a citizen of U.S and you I.D It is a similar process you go through when applying for a passport and the processing duration is almost same which is six weeks from the time of application. 

Note: Make sure you don’t forget to include enough payment for both the Passport and Passport card when submitting your application.

How do I receive one?

If you didn’t apply for both which are the passport card and passport, you just applied for a passport card, the card will be sent to you via a First Class Mail, as the Bureau of Consular Affairs does not use 1-2 day delivery services for passport cards.

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