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Renew your passport before this time to save money

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You could save money by renewing before this date (Picture: Getty Images)

The ideal time for Brits to renew their passport to save money is a lot sooner than you might think.

So if you have plans to jet off somewhere nice this year, get your renewal in ASAP and give yourself more cash to spend on your holidays.

Experts at Travel Supermarket crunched the numbers for both adult and child passports ahead of the application fee increasing next month.

From April you’ll have pay to £88.50 for adults and £57.50 for children, compared to £82.50 for adults and £53.50 for children before the price hike.

The change comes into effect from April 11, with adults whose documents expire before December 17 and children whose run out by August 14 have advised to renew now to beat the increases.

After that point, it’s more cost-effective to wait until next year – even with the increased fees – as any time remaining on your current passport’s validity isn’t added to the new one’s 10-year validity, and you could be throwing money away by jumping the gun.



What is the 10-year passport rule?

Before Brexit, the UK Passport Office’s policy was that passport holders that had time left on their existing documents could effectively transfer the balance to a new one.

So, if a document had three months remaining, those three months could be added to a new passport.

Under these rules, up to nine months could be carried over to a new passport, bringing the total for updated 10-year passports to 10 years and nine months.

However, as a result of this rule, data from the Home Office suggests that up to 32 million people could have passports that are now over 10 years old – which EU nations do not accept.

These rules also apply in the wider Schengen Area, including in Iceland, Norway and Switzerland, though UK visitors entering Ireland aren’t impacted.

Meanwhile, the cost of a postal application for a standard passport has risen by £7 for adults to £100. For children, a postal application will now cost £69, up from £64.

Costs are even higher if applying from overseas, where an online application will rise to £101.00 for adults and £65.50 for children. If you want to do a postal application from abroad, it will cost £112.50 for adults and £77.00 for children.

Every little helps when it comes to passports, especially since there is currently a lot of confusion among those with older red ones.

Before the UK left the EU, passport holders were able to transfer up to nine months from an old passport over to a new one, including on 10-year passports. 

Red passports are still valid but you must check the expiration date before travelling (Picture: Getty Images)

But if carrying this over has meant that your passport is now over 10 years old, you could find yourself unable to cross the border. 

Red passports are still valid, however you’ll need to double check the expiry date. Due to what’s known as the ‘six-month validity rule’, a number of Brits using documents issued before Brexit run the risk being refused entry to certain countries as a result.

Many countries require your passport to be valid for another six months before you leave for international travel – another rule that’s been slipping countless Brits up post-Brexit.

It’s worth double checking before you book, as it could mean a wasted trip to the airport and a lot of wasted money.



How long does it take to renew a passport?

You’ll typically receive your new passport within three weeks, according to Gov UK, but don’t forget that the processing time starts from when your documents are received – not sent off.

It can also take longer if the Passport Office decides that they need more information about you.

If you need a passport more urgently, you can use a Fast Track service, although you’ll have to pay a premium.

The one-week Fast Track costs £155 for adults and £126 for children, and you need to attend an in-person appointment at a passport office.

In a real pinch, the Premium one-day service costs £193.50 for adults, butcan’t be used to renew children’s passports or for first-time applicants.

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