Libraries as a passport acceptance facility

A photo by Robert G Allen Photography.
Use your library to help travelers!

Ready to think outside the box about a way to help both your library and the community? If you are a public or academic library, this idea could be for you!

The U.S. State Department is looking to add to their growing network of passport acceptance facilities. A passport acceptance facility is just like it sounds – “a public sector office that is designated to accept passport applications.” The facility then sends the applications to the State Department, who handle the processing and issuing of the passports.

There are definitely benefits to becoming one of these acceptance facilities. Most libraries operate on a strict budget, and by becoming a passport acceptance facility, your library would get to keep the $25 Execution Fee that comes with each passport. That would add up quickly. Plus, you would get an increase of people coming to your library! And while they are there to get their passport, why not use a computer or check out a book? There’s also the consideration that many libraries have more inclusive hours of operation than the traditional passport acceptance facility, the post office. People may be more able to process their paperwork by visiting the library instead.

This article from American Libraries gets more in-depth about what to expect when a public library becomes a passport acceptance facility. Of course, you can find more information at the U.S. Passports and International travel website.