Expired Passports For Americans Abroad Will Be Honored By The State Department: Citizens of the United States who are currently abroad can return to the country without having to renew their passports until the end of the year.
The State Department stated Monday that passports that expired on or after January 1, 2021, will be honored for re-entry into the United States until December 31, citing delays in passport processing due to the pandemic.
The State Department announced that “U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers will accept for admittance certain expired U.S. passports, thereby assisting U.S. residents who have been affected by appointment backlogs at embassies and consulates overseas caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
According to the document, consulates and embassies around the world were forced to reduce staffing as a result of the pandemic, resulting in an “unprecedented” backlog of passport services appointments.
According to The Associated Press, several consulates are reporting wait periods of more than two months for passport renewals, and there is still a “substantial” backlog of applications.
Expired passports that will be accepted for travel must be in good condition and have a 10-year validity period. Additional requirements may still apply, so Americans should verify their passport status online before finalising their travel plans.
Passports that have recently expired cannot be used to travel from the United States to an international destination, nor can they be used to travel to a foreign country for more than a stopover between flights.
At this time, the State Department “strongly advises U.S. citizens to reconsider traveling abroad and postpone their trips if possible,” and reminds those returning home that they will need to show a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of their flight’s departure in order to enter the United States.
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