30 April 2018
By Bryan Smyth
The Passport Service is currently implementing major upgrades to the passport service technology platforms and business processes, enabling it to deal with the increasing demand for Irish passports. At present, the online service only accommodates adult renewals but it is planned to further extend the online passport application service to more categories of renewals by the end of 2018.
The Irish passport is ranked fifth highest in the world in the Henley Passport Index and fourth in Arton’s global passport index. These rankings measure passports of the world according to the number of countries their holders can travel to visa-free.
The Carrigaline based Foreign Affairs Minister Simon Coveney is encouraging all families in Cork to check their passport before booking their flights this summer and to apply early, at least six weeks in advance of travel.
“The May Bank Holiday Weekend leads to the biggest spike in passport applications over the course of the year, as families across the country book their holidays. So I’m encouraging people to prepare, to check before you book and to renew online.
“If you are over 18, you can apply to renew your passport online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at www.passport.ie – No need for a paper application form, witnesses or printed photos.
It’s just over a year since the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade launched the new Online Passport Application Service. 180,000 online renewal applications have been processed and the service’s popularity continues to increase with over 80,000 online applications received since the beginning of this year alone.
Coveney added: “I’m glad to see that more than 6,000 people in Cork have already availed of the new online renewal service. It’s convenient and secure, with turnaround times of 10 working days or less. The Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Simon Coveney is encouraging as many people as possible to avail of this new service and to spread the word: save time – renew online.
“If you are not eligible to use the online facility and travelling in more than three weeks’ time, you can submit your application by Passport Express through your local post office. You can also make an appointment to submit your application at the public counters in Dublin (Mount Street) or Cork.
“If travelling within the next three days, a rapid renewal service by appointment at the Passport Office in Dublin can provide a same-day turnaround. There are a limited number of appointments per day and proof of travel will be required.