13 January 2019
By Mary Bermingham
Fine Gael Senator for Cork South West, Tim Lombard, has urged people to ensure their passports are in date before booking long haul flights with January travel deals.
Senator Lombard said: “As potential holiday makers are bombarded with low-cost deals and cheap flights for 2019 travel this January, it is worth remembering that your passport must be in date for at least six months after the date of your intended trip when travelling to certain parts of the world.
“The New Year always brings a surge in passport renewals, and coupled with the spike in demand for Irish passports due to Brexit, I would advise people to check the dates on their passports and the turnaround time for renewal before booking.
“Thankfully the new online passport renewal system offers a hassle free route to renewing your passport, with the average processing time less than 10 working days (plus postage time). The online platform was launched in March 2017 and to date over 20,420 applications from Cork have been received through this channel.
“In November, this facility was expanded to include children’s passport renewals as well as other adult renewal categories – for example applicants requiring a name change, an observation on their passport, or those replacing a damaged passport.
“As part of this expansion, a passport card is also now available for children. The passport card is valid for travel within the EU/EEA (European Economic Area) and Switzerland.
“In the interest of child protection, and in order to ensure the highest level of integrity for the passport renewal process, the online renewal of a child’s passport will continue to require that a child’s identity is verified and that the consent of each of the child’s legal guardians is received before a passport is issued.
“The Online Passport Application Service is fast, secure and the most convenient way to apply for a passport. It can be used by Irish citizens living anywhere in the world, and is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
“I would urge applicants wishing to renew their passports, whether residing in Ireland or overseas, to avail of this service where possible.”