How Long Are Kids’ Passports Good For? [The ABC]

How long are kids’ passports good for?
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Should I issue my kid’s first passport? As family travel plans overseas are still uncertain, parents may be skeptical about going through the application process, particularly if they’re unaware of how long a child’s passport is valid.

Here, readers will learn how long kids’ passports are good for and if there’s a chance a child can be issued a ten-year valid passport, as well as overcome many other doubts.📘

Clarify whether it’s a good idea to issue your child’s passport soon or if it may be better to wait, saving you time (about two months) and a minimum of $135 (execution and application fee).

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How long do kids’ passports last: straight to the point

For those wondering how long a child passport lasts, note that a U.S. passport will be valid for 5 (five) years for applicants 15 years of age or younger.

The main reason a child’s passport expires earlier than adult passports is the rapid change in appearance at young ages, causing difficulty in identifying the passport holder after a few years, primarily when the passport was issued as a toddler.

Nevertheless, the U.S. Department of State assumes natural changes in appearance during these 5 years, which is why aging or growing in size are not conditions to renew a passport.

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How long are kids passports good for: additional invalidating factors

However, substantial appearance changes may cause a child’s passport issued in the last 5 years to be invalid. In this case, parents must attend the passport agency and renew the child’s passport if planning to travel soon. 

Substantial changes in appearance include:

  • gender changes
  • major cosmetic operations
  • accidents resulting in irrecoverable facial changes
  • significant weight gain/loss.

Regardless of the passport issuance date, a child’s passport won’t be good anymore if damaged.

KEY INFORMATION: Even if parents know how long their children’s passports are good for and plan to travel abroad and return to the U.S. before their child’s passport expires, some countries establish a 6 (six) month-passport validity rule.

The renewal of a kid’s passport entails a different procedure (applying in person, a higher number of documents required, etc.) and a longer processing time (approximately two months), so it is recommended to apply 1 year before the child’s passport expiration date.

How long does a passport last for a minor: age factor

To understand how long passports last for minors, it is essential to distinguish between children and minors – 2 different categories according to the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Consular Affairs.

Whether it is a baby or a teenager, someone aged 15 years old or younger is considered a child, and therefore the child’s passport will last for 5 (five) years. 👶

A child’s passport cannot be renewed. Instead, the U.S. government requires its holder to issue a new one.

On the other hand, a U.S. passport will be good for 10 (ten) years for minors aged 16 or 17 years old, the same as any U.S. adult. 🧒

Passport validity for children and minors

Note: to get a 10 (ten) year-valid passport—an ordinary U.S. passport—minors must be 16 years old before the passport application is submitted. Minors turning this age after the application is processed will obtain a 5 (five) year-valid passport, like any other U.S. child.

IMPORTANT: U.S. passport holders can still use a passport until its expiration, regardless of age. Turning 16 years old doesn’t imply the need to issue a new passport.

When do passports expire for minors: passport validity by age

How long is an infant’s passport good for? When do passports expire for minors? 

Read the list below to get the picture.

Applicant’s ageApplicant’s categoryPassport validity
<1 year old (newborn babies)Child5 years
1 year oldChild5 years
2 years oldChild5 years
3 years oldChild5 years
4 years oldChild5 years
5 years oldChild5 years
6 years oldChild5 years
7 years oldChild5 years
8 years oldChild5 years
9 years oldChild5 years
10 years oldChild5 years
11 years oldChild5 years
12 years oldChild5 years
13 years oldChild5 years
14 years oldChild5 years
15 years oldChild5 years
16 years oldMinor10 years
17 years oldMinor10 years

When children’s passports expire: take a kid’s passport photo the easiest way with PhotoAiD®!

Parents planning to get their child’s first passport or issue a new one will need to submit 2 (two) U.S. passport photos, along with the required documentation.

Today we introduce to you PhotoAiD®, an online passport photo app featured by the worldwide-known Forbes or National Geographic, among others.

📷 This tool is particularly handy when taking passport photos of newborn babies or young children. 

Enjoy innumerable benefits:

  • all you need is a smartphone;
  • babies won’t leave their comfort zone or have their sleeping hours interrupted;
  • parents or family members will take the child’s passport photo in just 2 minutes;
  • guarantee of passport photo compliance with U.S. government regulations and acceptance at the post office;
  • ability to take a picture anywhere, at any moment. PhotoAiD will edit the image accordingly.

Users can enjoy 2 options available on PhotoAiD®:

  • get a passport photo template for free. The only thing left to do is print the passport photos at the nearest store for less than $1;
  • order photo prints and receive your order in only 2-3 working days at your doorstep.
A comment from a PhotoAid customer highlighting how convenient it is to take a baby's passport photo with the app

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How long do passports last for minors: FAQ

In this section, we will answer many questions about how long a child’s passport is good for.

Do kids’ passports expire sooner?

Yes, kids’ passports expire sooner than adults’ passports. To be exact: after 5 (five) years, instead of 10 (ten).

Why are children’s passports good for only 5 years?

Children’s passports are good for only 5 (five) years because of quick and significant changes in appearance at such a young age, requiring the passport holder to have a new passport issued, thus making the identification task easy for officials, overseas authorities, or cabin crews.

Do kids’ passports last 10 years?

No, kids’ passports do not last 10 (ten) years. A passport for children aged 15 years old or younger lasts 5 (five) years.

How often do kids need to update their passports?

Updating a passport is not mandatory, but in case the family plans to travel overseas, a child’s U.S. passport would need to be updated within 5 (five) years of the passport’s issuance date.

How long is my child’s passport valid?

If your child is 15 years old or younger at the time the document is issued, your child’s passport will be valid for 5 (five) years.

Can I renew my child’s U.S. passport before it expires?

Yes, you can renew your child’s U.S. passport before it expires, whenever you want. No minimum time must pass before you can renew your child’s passport.

How long do baby passports last?

The time baby passports last is 5 (five) years, the same as any other child under 16 years old.

How long does a passport last for a teenager?

It depends on the age of the teenager when the passport is issued. A passport for a teenager aged 15 years or younger lasts 5 (five) years. On the other hand, a U.S. passport for a 16 year old or older lasts 10 (ten) years.

Can a child get a 10-year passport?

No, a child can never get a passport valid for 10 (ten) years until turning 16 years old.

How long is a child’s passport valid: closing thoughts

In this post, we solved the doubts of those wondering how long a minor’s passport is good for or how long a baby’s passport lasts. 

As mentioned earlier, the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs divides minors into 2 categories:

  • 16 to 18 year olds will get a U.S. passport valid for 10 (ten) years.
  • 15 year olds or younger (including babies) obtain a passport good for 5 (five) years.

If you are planning to have a U.S. passport issued soon, use PhotoAiD® to get your passport photos easily, in only a few minutes, and from home.

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