The Department of State just announced the opening of a new emergency passport office in Hot Springs, Arkansas. According to the press release, the new office is located in an existing passport printing facility. The passport factory has been open since 2007 and more than 30 million US passports have been produced there since that time. Because passports are printed on-site, the office is able to offer extremely fast passport processing, allowing applicants to receive their documents within 24 hours.

To be eligible to apply at an emergency passport office, you need to be able to prove that you have a travel emergency that necessitates a passport by bringing a copy of your travel itinerary. Your itinerary must show that you have booked tickets to leave the country in 2 weeks or less, or 4 weeks or less if you still need to apply for a travel visa for the country you will be visiting. See What to Bring When You Apply for an Emergency Passport for more details about what you’ll need to apply.

In 2009, the government began requiring a secure document such as a passport for American citizens traveling by land or sea to Canada, Mexico or the Caribbean. Previously, only a driver’s license and birth certificate were required for land and sea travel.

Even over a year later, these new regulations still catch people by surprise, increasing the demand for passports. To keep travelers from becoming stranded due to not having the proper documents, the Department of State has been slowly but surely increasing the number of emergency passport offices. The passport agency office in Hot Springs brings the number of emergency passport offices in the US to 21. More new offices are set to open in the next 6 months in the following cities: Atlanta, San Diego, El Paso and St. Albans, Vermont.

With only 21 facilities to serve the entire United States, traveling to an emergency passport office is still inconvenient for many Americans. Plus, you can’t just walk in to a passport agency office-you must make an appointment to be seen. Additionally, passport agency offices typically have limited hours of operation and are not open in the evenings or on weekends, so if you work during the day you’ll have to get time off.

For these reasons, many people prefer to use private passport expediting companies like RushMyPassport. We’ll help you with your passport application and personally deliver your paperwork to the Department of State, resulting in processing times as low as 24 hours with no need to make an appointment or wait in line.

Apply for an emergency passport the easy way today!