Until yesterday, it was impossible to apply for a US passport exclusively online. Sure, there are application forms and other resources available to get the ball rolling, but you had to use snail mail to send in the application. Now, if you already have a passport and would like a passport card as well, you can take advantage of a new online application procedure that allows you to send off for the card without entering a post office or even licking an envelope.
This option may not be around forever- at the moment, it is part of a 90-day pilot program being conducted by the Department of State. According to a State Department press release, “This pilot program is the Department’s signature initiative under Presidential Executive Order 13571 to simplify customer service interactions and streamline related processes, making them more efficient.”
The online application is available here. To be eligible to participate, you must already have a US passport book, valid for ten years from the date on which it was issued. You’ll also need a digital passport photo that meets the applicable State Department requirements, and a credit card and/or a bank account so that you can pay for your passport card on the Pay.gov website.Finally, you must have an email address so that the Department of State can communicate with you about your application. (more…)