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Passport Reminder & Global Entry
May 16, 2023

By Doug Orens, Vice President, Plaza Travel

The demand for travel is continuing to increase, just look at these year-over-year numbers for a random date in April. In 2021, 1,468,972 passengers passed through TSA checkpoints in US airports. On the same date in 2022, that number increased to 2,188,196, and in 2023, 2,511,861 travelers were travelling through airports in the United States alone. Many of those travelers were on their way to international destinations around the world.

U.S. passport

If you’ve been thinking about
traveling internationally, it's time to
dust off that passport and make sure
everything is up to date so you can
get out there again too. Passport
processing times are starting to
improve, but you still need to plan
ahead. As of March 24, processing
times were 10 to 13 weeks for
standard service, and 7 to 9 weeks for
expedited service. Current processing
times can be found here.

As a reminder, passports must be valid for six months beyond the date you will be leaving the United States. For example, if your trip is scheduled to depart on June 1, your passport would need to be valid through at least December 1, 2023. Some countries have different requirements, but this is generally the case. Don’t wait until it’s too late to renew your passport. On March 8, the State Department paused their online renewal service so that they could introduce improvements to the previous procedures. They plan to have the online renewal option available again later this year. In the meantime, you can renew by mail by following the instructions found here.

If you live in the Los Angeles area, you can also visit the newly opened passport office in Calabasas. Appointments are required and you can find more details here.

Airport customs sign

Many of our clients that travel
internationally find Global Entry to be
a very valuable time-saving program.
If you are not familiar with it, Global
Entry is a trusted traveler program
that allows expedited entry into the
United States for pre-approved
travelers. Once approved, you use
automated kiosks at certain airports
to bypass the standard immigration
and customs lines. To apply for Global
Entry, you'll need to complete an
application here.

Once conditionally approved, you need to have an in-person interview before receiving your final approval. We have made this process easier for you by arranging to have TSA personnel come to our office in Woodland Hills, CA to conduct these interviews. Our next two dates are June 7 and July 12, 2023. Please reach out to your travel advisor if you would like more info about scheduling your interview.

To help you discover ways to explore the world, we're pleased to share our digital travel magazines, The Travel Experience and Ultimate Experience.

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