So you’ve decided to a get a new baby passport, but now you’ve got to attempt to get a cute, but legal baby passport picture.
Do their eyes have to be open? How can they sit up for a photo?! How can I hide my hands from the infant passport photo?!
Fear not. I’ve been there (twice now!) so I’ve got lots of tips to help you get your baby passport picture right the first time. And I’ve also included a step-by-step guide on how to apply for the baby passport once you’ve sorted the photo.
Let’s face it – it’s hard enough to get out of the house with a newborn, so let’s make it as easy as possible!
How to Get an Infant Passport Photo Right
1. Decide how you want to take the baby passport picture. Do you want to take it (see point 3) or would you rather have a professional to do it (see point 2)?
Find a Baby Passport Photo Service Near Me
2. Where can I get a baby passport photo done? If you want some help head to your local Max Spielman. You can usually find them in a larger Tesco store.
They will take photos until they get the right one, resize it to the correct passport size and then print a set. It’s a short, cheap process and there’s no need to book ahead. It currently costs £7.99.
Take a Baby Passport Photo at Home
3. How can I take a good baby passport picture at home? Pop your baby on their back on a white blanket or plain light-coloured sheet. Remove any toys or dummies from the shot and make sure you’re in a well-lit room. Natural light is best.
Take lots and lots of photos on a high quality camera and then pick the best one! I’ve always found it easier to have someone with me to try and make the baby look at the right spot. Just make sure they don’t cast a shadow over the baby.
If you’re applying via a paper form, pop it on a memory stick and head to a local photo shop to print it. If you’re getting a passport for a baby via the online form you’ll be able to upload it digitally.
Baby Passport Photo Requirements
4. Consider the infant baby passport photo rules.
The current UK guidelines state:
- Children must be on their own in the picture.
- Babies must not be holding toys or using dummies.
- Children under 6 don’t have to be looking directly at the camera or have a neutral expression.
- Children under 1 don’t have to have their eyes open. If their head is supported by a hand, the hand mustn’t be visible in the photo.
The current US guidelines can be found here and also say the baby’s eyes do not need to be open.
Recommended Reading: Why I don’t share photos of my children
How to Get a New Baby Passport (in the UK)
1. Register Baby’s Birth
Before you can apply for a new baby passport you need to register their birth. It’s pretty easy to do this (find out how here).
You will need to make an appointment with your local register office, so get booked in as soon as you can.
Once you’ve registered your baby you’ll receive a birth certificate, which is a legal document that you need in order to apply for an infant passport.
Tip: If you’re travelling very soon skip to step 2 and step 5 whilst you wait for your appointment
2. Complete the New Baby Passport Application Form
You have two choice; complete the baby passport application form online or by hand.
Collect a passport form from your local Post Office. Make sure you use black ink and stay in the lines. Follow the prompts on the form to complete the relevant sections.
Access the baby passport application form here. You’ll be prompted to complete the boxes and automatically taken to the next relevant section.
Once completed, hit ‘submit’ and print a copy. You can save your form and email it to someone if you don’t have a printer.
Tip: You need information of your own parents and in-laws, such as their middle names, the date they got married/divorced/re-married etc.
3. Pay the Fee
It costs £49 for a child’s first passport if you apply online. It costs £58.50 if you apply via the paper form.
You can pay an extra fee to have your application checked before you submit it. This is known as the Post Office Check and Send Service. It costs an extra £9.75 for a paper application and £15.40 for a digital check.
If you use the online form you’ll be prompted to pay online.
Recommended Reading: Travelling With a Baby – Everything You Could Ever Want to Know!
4. Sign the Form
Regardless of the method, you’ll need to sign your baby’s application on their behalf.
You’ll also need to get it countersigned. This means getting a professional (accountant, teacher, doctor, dentist etc) who has known you for at least two years to sign the form. They will also need to fill in some of the details on the form.
5. Upload or Enclose the Baby Passport Picture
See the tips in the first section of this post.
6. Post Your Infant Passport Application
Post your signed application form, baby passport picture, birth certificate and any other supporting documents.
It’s estimated it should take around three weeks for you to receive your baby’s passport.
Recommended Reading: How old does a baby need to be to fly?
And there you have it! A ticket to a load of baby adventures!
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