July 5, 2023
The World recently published a segment featuring Jay Zagorsky, Associate Professor of Markets, Public Policy, and Law, discussing the delays Americans are facing to apply for or renew a passport.
Currently, Americans should expect about 13 weeks for wait times, but consumers say it’s taking even longer. As travel restrictions have dropped and people are starting to travel again, a lot of this can be traced back to Covid-19. Additionally, the State Department laid off many employees in the travel office during Covid as the demand for them was low, and now they are experiencing the consequences of an understaffed office.
Zagorsky offers, “If you already have a passport and you’re trying to renew, use the online system so you don’t have to send your passport in. Expired passports were given about a 16-week grace period for some travelers, so keeping that documentation on hand could be beneficial.”
In addition, he notes that these delays are not only occurring in the U.S. Travel was also halted in other countries during the pandemic; passports and visas were delayed worldwide.