Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

 

How long does it take to get a passport?

You should allow a minimum of 6 weeks to get a passport. 

While most passports are being processed well within 6 weeks, some can take longer. This includes first-time adult and child passports. 

For applications lodged under our routine service, see our advice on the latest processing times.

 

I need a passport urgently. What can I do?

If you need your passport urgently, for an additional fee you may be eligible for one of our faster processing services. For more information, see urgent applications page.

 

How should I prepare for overseas travel?

Before you book travel, check your passport expiry date. Some countries won’t let you enter on a passport that expires in less than 6 months.

Check your passport for signs of damage, like rips, marks, stains or missing pages. Even minor passport damage may stop you from entering your destination country.

Each country determines their own entry requirements, visa requirements and processes. You should ask an authority from the country you plan to visit. Contact their embassy or consulate in Australia or ask your travel agent. You can visit the Smartraveller website for more information about getting a visa and for the entry and exit requirements of your destination country.

 

Does my passport need to be valid for at least another 6 months when I travel internationally?

Your passport is valid from the date it is issued until the date it expires. You can use it throughout this period, subject to meeting the visa and immigration requirements of the countries you wish to visit or transit through.

Some countries do require your passport to be valid for at least 6 months from the end of your planned stay. You may be refused entry if you do not comply.

 

My family lodged our applications at the same time. Why didn’t all our passports arrive at the same time?

If you lodged multiple applications, you may not receive the passports at the same time.

This is because all applications are assessed individually and processing times differ, depending on the type and complexity of the application.

Some applications – for example, adult renewals – can be processed quickly.

Others, such as first-time adult and child applications, may take longer because they require additional security checks and all supporting documents need to be verified.

 

My passport has been lost or stolen. What should I do?

If your passport has been lost or stolen, you must report this to us.

Phone us on 131 232 or contact your nearest Australian diplomatic or consular mission.

For more information, visit our lost and stolen passports page.

 

My passport has been involved in a data breach. What should I do?

You can find more information on our data breaches page.

 

Can I renew my passport online?

No. Currently, you can start your passport application online through our AusPassport portal. You then need to print off your ‘Passport application checklist’ and lodge it at your nearest participating Australia Post outlet. As set out in the checklist, you will also need to provide 2 passport photos and any other original supporting documents.

 

How do I set up multi-factor authentication on my AusPassport account?

You can find instructions on how to set up multi-factor authentication on your AusPassport account on the multi-factor authentication page. 

 

When will I be able to renew online using myGov?

The approach and timeframe for moving to online passport renewal haven’t yet been determined.

The use of the myGov portal for a broader range of online services, including the processing of Australian passport applications, was highlighted in a myGov user audit, the report of which was released in January 2023.  The Australian Government will provide a full response to the report and its recommendations later this year.

 

I can’t log in to the system because I can’t answer the security questions correctly. What should I do?

Call us on 131 232 and we’ll reset your account.

 

I got an email asking me to complete a survey about the Australian Passport Office. Is it legitimate?

The Australian Passport Office (APO) uses third-party providers to survey customers on their passport experience. These surveys are voluntary and will never ask for any personal information such as your name, date of birth or passport number.

If you received an email and have concerns about its legitimacy, call us on 131 232 or submit an enquiry online. You can also choose to ignore or delete the email.

Customer research undertaken on behalf of the APO complies with the Privacy Act 1988. If you don't want your information used for research purposes, call us on 131 232 or submit an enquiry online.

 

Do I need to provide original citizenship and/or identity documents with my passport application, or will certified copies or extracts do?

When you apply for an Australian passport you must provide original documents that confirm your Australian citizenship and your identity. Birth extracts, commemorative certificates, photocopies (including those that have been certified as a true copy) and fax copies are NOT acceptable.

An original document is one produced, and not altered by, the authority or organisation named on the document. A duplicate copy issued and certified as a true copy by the authority or organisation named on the original can be accepted as if it were an original document. A photocopy, even if certified, is not a duplicate copy.

 

I’m running out of blank pages in my passport but it’s still valid. Can I add extra pages?

No, you cannot add extra pages. You will need to get a new passport. You can apply for a replacement passport. A replacement passport is valid only until the expiry date of the passport it replaces. More information about replacement passports is available online.

Some countries won’t let you enter unless you have at least 2 to 4 blank pages in your passport. Make sure you check how many blank pages you have left and need before you book travel.

 

If I’m a dual national, can I depart/return to Australia on my foreign passport rather than my Australian one?

The Department of Home Affairs advises Australian citizens to leave and enter Australia on their Australian passport.

Some airlines may not allow you to board a plane to Australia without a current Australian passport or an entry visa.

If you travel on another passport, local authorities may not recognise you as an Australian citizen. This may limit the Australian Government’s ability to provide you with consular assistance.

See the Smartraveller website for more advice for dual nationals.

 

A member of my family died recently and their passport is still valid. What should I do?

You should report the details to us. We’ll cancel the passport to ensure it can’t be misused by another person. Take the passport and the original death certificate to a participating Australia Post outlet. You can keep the passport as a memento after it has been cancelled..

 

Why is the passport called the R Series?

This is the first letter in the document number (the passport number).

 

Can I swap my existing passport for an R Series?

No. You don’t need to. Your current passport can be used until it expires.

 

Does it affect my family’s travel if some members have an R Series and some have a P Series?

No. Airlines and border officials around the world will treat both passport series the same.

 

Does the R Series passport reference King Charles III on the Governor General’s page?

We have started issuing passports referencing King Charles III on the inside cover. There will be a period when passports that refer to the late Queen Elizabeth II will continue to be issued.

Passports that refer to the late Queen remain valid until their expiry date.

 

The cover of my passport is curling slightly. Should I be concerned about this?

You may notice a slight curling on the cover of your R Series passport. This occasionally occurs due to changes in humidity.

It's not a manufacturing defect and doesn't affect the validity of your passport. Keeping your passport tightly secured will help prevent this curling. For example, you can use an envelope or passport holder to store and protect your passport between use.

For more information see using and protecting your passport

 

Why did I receive an email reminder?

If you received an email reminder it means you had an incomplete application in your AusPassport account at the time the email was sent.

If you have since submitted the application from your account, you have 28 days to lodge and pay at an Australia Post outlet. If you have since lodged your application with Australia Post, you don’t need to do anything.

You can check the status of your application in your AusPassport account.

 

I’m overseas and have mailed my application. Why did I receive an email reminder?

If you have mailed your application, that means you have lodged it with us, and you don’t need to do anything.

You can check the status of your application in your AusPassport account. All of the applications you have lodged will be listed under ‘Applications ready to lodge’ and marked as ‘lodged’.