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How To Best Take A Great Passport Photo Of Your Infant

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Ready for takeoff?

Well – maybe not yet!

Summer is approaching and you’re ready to take the family on a well-deserved vacation. Or, you have a destination wedding that you need to attend.

But there’s one more thing on your to-do list this time around – get a US passport for your infant!

You’re probably thinking, ‘Where do I start?’ ‘How long is the process?’ and a myriad of other questions.

Trust me, I get it.

In fact, my family and I had the same thoughts as we prepared for our vacation to Barbados in January of this year.

So the good news is that we’ve been through the process and can now share detailed insights into the entire process.

 

What Is Required for a US Infant Passport?

Here’s the short list of items required for a U.S. infant passport from the U.S. Department of State:

  1. Form DS-11 – completed!
  2. Proof of U.S. Citizenship, which includes a Birth Certificate, or if they were born abroad, you can use aΒ Consular Report of Birth Abroad or Certification of Birth
  3. A Photocopy of the Proof of U.S. Citizenship and it must meet the following requirements: legible, on white 8.5″ x 11″ paper, black and white, and single-sided.
  4. Proof of Parental Relationship, so basically a second birth certificate would be useful!
  5. Parents/Guardians’ Valid ID, which could be a valid driver’s license or even a foreign passport.
  6. A Photocopy of the Parents/Guardians’ Valid ID with the same requirements as the photocopy of proof of U.S. Citizenship, except you can enlarge it if necessary.
  7. Show Parental Consent, aka both parents should show up at the passport appointment. If one can’t make it, well that’s’ an option. However, the unavailable parent will need to consent but via a form. See full details under no.7 here.
  8. Passport Photo for Child
  9. Calculate Those Fees! A passport book by itself currently costs $80 plus an application fee of $35. A passport card costs $15 plus $35 for the application fee. However, a passport book and a card cost $95 plus one application fee of $35.
  10. Submit Your Application + Pay. You can do this at a passport acceptance facility. Usually, this is a local post office. But if you’re not sure, you can search for the closest one here: https://iafdb.travel.state.gov/.

 

How Should You Prepare for a US Infant Passport?

Now, if you have all of these items prepared in advance of submitting your application and paying for it, life will be a breeze!

As far as paperwork and documents are concerned, that’s the easy part. You can even schedule your passport appointment in advance and some locations even do Saturdays!

Yet for us, the hardest part of preparing for a U.S. Infant passport was being able to take our daughter’s passport photo.

 

How We Took A Great Passport Photo of Our Infant PLUS A More Efficient Way To Do It

To take the passport photo of our infant, my husband and I followed the tips shared on the U.S. Department of State website, which are as follows:

Tips for taking photos of infants and newborns:

  • Lay the child on its back on a white blanket or sheet to ensure its head is supported without the aid of a hand.
  • Alternatively, cover a car seat with a plain white sheet and take a picture of your child in the car seat.
  • Please make sure no other person is in the photo.
  • A photo with the child looking at the camera is preferred, although not required.

So with our cellphones in tow, and the curtains pulled back in our home to get as much natural light as possible, we proceeded.

We laid a blanket down on the floor in our living room, placed our little peanut in the middle, and then snapped away!

Needless to say, we didn’t have the greatest result but with some basic photo editing, and repositioning of our baby girl, we were able to create a photo that would be eligible for the passport.

Then, to get it printed at the appropriate passport photo size, I visited my closest Walgreen’s where the attendant helped me print out 2 passport photos.

Easy enough, right?

Well…..What if I told you there is a way more efficient way to take a great passport photo of your infant?

 

The Most Efficient Way To Take A Great Passport Photo Of Your Infant

If you want to save time AND take the hassle out of taking a great passport photo of your infant, here’s a secret that I learned from the Walgreen’s attendant…

Go to the nearest Walgreen’s and they will take a professional passport photo of your infant (or toddler).

Isn’t that much better than our DIY method?

 

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Tamara Sykes
Caribbean-Born Gal. Always Plottin' My Next Hairstyle. Encouraging women with a creative spirit to color outside the lines and live a life they love.
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