Passport United Kingdom


The British Passport Renewal Process





Obtaining Temporary Emergency Travel Documents

If you are stuck abroad without a passport, and you are not able to obtain a new passport before you are due to depart, then you’ll need to apply for an emergency travel document to allow you to leave the country. In this type of situation you will need to contact consular services at the nearest British Embassy or British Consulate in the country where your passport was lost.

There have been numerous issues with people abusing the application of emergency travel documents and the FCO have flagged this process as a potential loophole. With this in mind, you should only apply for an emergency travel document if you absolutely need to travel and cannot wait for your current passport to be replaced or renewed.

If you are intending to travel to another country, other than Great Britain, please note that you may need to apply for visa to gain access. An emergency travel document does not exempt you from the visa process. Please contact the relevant country’s consulate to enquire about where you will need a visa. 

Application process:

All emergency travel documents need to be applied for in person at the nearest British Embassy, British consulate or high commission in the country you are currently in. You will need to check if they require you to make an appointment, or just turn up in person.

When you go to apply you must have the following:

-          A current passport sized photograph

-          A completed Application for a United Kingdom Emergency Travel Document  Foute link

-          The correct fee (the equivalent of £95 in local currency)

-          Any proof of ID that you have remaining

-          Documents to prove plans for travel (flight e-tickets/tickets, receipts, booking confirmations etc.)

-          Police report from local police, if either lost or stolen

Please note: If you apply for an emergency travel document then the passport you are reporting lost or stolen will be cancelled and rendered obsolete.

Getting approval for your emergency travel document

 If all your documents, fees and information are in order and current circumstances are not too complex, then the British embassy or consulate should be able to issue you your emergency travel document the same day. However, if your circumstances are a little more difficult then it may take longer to process, and you might need to reassess your travel plans.

If for whatever reason, you are not eligible for the emergency travel document the embassy or consulate will give you specific reasons for this. 

Restrictions of emergency travel documents

An emergency travel document cannot be used the same as a passport. It is only valid for the journey specified in the application form,Foute link and for a limited amount of time. All this will be displayed on the emergency travel document, if you are successful.

Please note that applying for an emergency travel document is a serious matter and any abuses of this will be dealt with harshly. The passport that is being reported lost or stolen will be cancelled and can never be used again. If subsequently the passport is found, it needs to be returned to the FCO immediately, via the nearest consulate. 

New Passport Fees for British Nationals Overseas

The application process for a new British passport while overseas has been streamlined, and instead of applying through the British embassy, consulate or high commission in the country you reside, you can now apply online and the application is sent directly to the British Government in the UK, who will process it directly.

This new system effectively cuts out the middle man to save time and often more importantly, money. The overall fee has been reduced by 35% as of March 2014 - that is £28.50 for children and £45 for adults.

The new fees as of March 2014 are:

-         32 page child passport: £53.00

-         32 page adult passport: £53.00

-         48 page jumbo passport (adult / child / veteran): £91.00

As the process is now mainly conducted online, directly with the British Government in the UK, you need to be extra careful when filling out the forms in their entirety and providing back up information with documents. If there are issues then the process can become very drawn out because of the communication channels.

Please take the time to read carefully through our page on how to apply online (insert link to passport renewal page) to ensure you follow the process properly.

British Consulate