It is possible to renew your passport at almost any time within its validity period. However, it is only recommended to do so more than 9 months to 1 year ahead of its expiry for a legitimate reason.
You may need to renew your passport for reasons such as the following:
- Your passport has been lost or stolen
- The information on your passport has changed, such as if you change your name after getting married
- It is nearing its expiration date
It is always advisable to renew your passport ahead of a trip abroad to ensure that it is valid for the duration of your journey. If your passport expires while you are away, you might run into problems.
This is a very important consideration for visiting many countries. Most will require you to have at least 6 months’ validity on your document to enter.
When Should You Renew Your Passport?
The ideal time to renew your passport is about 9 months before its expiration. This allows you enough time to get your new travel document processed before your next international journey.
Most countries require foreign visitors to have at least 6 months left on their passport before they will permit entry or allow them to apply for an online visa. Therefore, it is important to check your expiration date well ahead of traveling.
Why Is It Important to Renew a Passport Before Its Expiration?
Renewing a passport before it expires is recommended so that you’ll be able to travel as flexibly as possible.
Submitting a passport renewal application can take several weeks or even months for a government to process.
Renewing a passport also usually takes longer at peak travel times of the year, such as when summer vacations or major holidays like Christmas occur.
If you need to go abroad urgently, not having a valid travel document could prevent you from being able to make the journey. Therefore, it is important to plan ahead to make sure your passport doesn’t expire at a time when you really need it.
Can I Apply for a Visa with a Passport That’s about to Expire?
Applying for a visa with a passport that is about to expire is a bad idea.
Some countries will not process a visa application if you provide data from a passport that will expire within a couple of months.
Many nations require visitors to have a minimum number of months’ validity on their passports when they arrive at their borders. In most cases, these visa requirements oblige you to have around 6 months left on the document.
Evisas, electronic visa waivers, and visas are processed to match the exact passport data provided during an application. Therefore, if information like your passport number changes, the travel authorization linked to it will need to be updated or renewed too.
As a result, most countries won’t process visas for travel documents that will be expired by the time you arrive.