A Window into Life in the Suburbs

"Consider how the lilies grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these." Luke 12:27 (NIV)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

9 Passport Tips from A Frustrated Mummy

I had no idea that making passports could be such a laborious process... but it doesn't have to be for you...

Disclaimer: This tip sheet was written from the point of view of a beleaguered mum and does not claim to be an exhaustive list of what maybe required of individuals. For more information seek advice from your local passport issuing Australia Post or the Passport Office.

Tip 1: The Passport People are very, very nitpicky...  Understandably so... perhaps but still irritating. Don't shoot the messengers ie. don't get stroppy with Australia Post... they're just the workhorses. But we live in a post 9/11 era, paranoia is at its peak, everything's oh so hi-tech and all information given has to be just so.

Tip 2: If the good people at Australia Post offer you a form, ask for another. Better still get 3. Just in case you make mistakes.You can also download them from the interweb.

Tip 3: Don't get your photos done at K-Mart or Ted's Cameras. There's a good chance they'll get knock back. Apparently the quality of the prints don't cut it. Good news is that Australia Post provides a photo service at around $15 for 8 photos.

Tip 4: Get your guarantor to fill in both forms and sign them. Keep all your writing within the little boxes. Neatness is the key. Don't get creative. And use a black pen.

Tip 5: Get those passports applications in at least 2 months before you travel. My local Australia Post tells me that they do 30 applications a day. Quite often there are problems and applications get sent back.

Tip 6: Make an appointment with your local Australia Post before going in. You'll have to ring a 13 number and the CSO will organize something for you ASAP. I'm not sure if it's as bad as booking in an ultrasound but it's pretty close.

Tip 7: Bring in all the documents listed and a couple of extras to the interview I thought my passport would suffice but apparently I had to have some documentation that I was a citizen before No:2 was born. Fortunately I had my citizenship certificate with me.

Tip 8: Photocopy completed form

Tip 9: If you're not sure about anything, ask ring the 13 number on the form. It's better than doing a continuous back and forth with your Australia Post CSO.

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