Passport Services

Applying for a U.S. passport while outside the United States is a different process from applying for a U.S. passport while inside the United States. Although the application forms, supporting documentation, costs and finished products are the same everywhere, each U.S. Embassy and Consulate has different procedures for submitting and processing your final documents. The Consular sections in Cape Town, Durban, and Johannesburg all process United States passport applications. Currently the processing time for most regular passports is seven to ten business days.

To renew your passport follow the instructions at travel.state.gov.

All passport renewals must include the following:

  • DS-82 Passport application
  • Your most recent passport
  • One passport photograph  (Note: Photos must be 2″x 2″ in size with a background that is uniform, plain and white, and free of shadows).
  • Cash in US$ or South African Rands is accepted.  Most major credit cards are accepted.  Certified bank checks (also known as cashier checks), are also accepted, but please contact us at acsjohannesburg@state.gov before you come for your appointment.  Personal checks are not accepted.

Form DS-82 does not require a personal appearance nor an interview with a Consular Officer; therefore, you may mail in your application through the recommended courier provider DHL.

Applicants who prefer to apply in person or who do not qualify for mail-in passport renewals can book an appointment online.

Please direct mail-in applications to the U.S. Consulate serving your province:

  • For U.S. citizens in Gauteng, North West, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, or Free State, please send your applications to the U.S. Consulate in Johannesburg:
    • U.S. Consulate General Johannesburg
      ATTENTION: American Citizens Services Unit
      1 Sandton Drive
      Sandhurst 2196
  • For U.S. citizens in Northern, Eastern or Western Cape, please send your applications to the U.S. Consulate in Cape Town:
    • U.S. Consulate General Cape Town
      ATTENTION: American Citizens Services Unit
      2 Reddam Avenue
      Westlake 7945
  • For U.S. citizens in KwaZulu-Natal, please send your applications to the U.S. Consulate in Durban:
    • U.S. Consulate General Durban
      ATTENTION: American Citizens Services Unit
      Delta Towers 31st Floor
      303 Dr. Pixley Kaseme St.
      Durban 4001”

Your previous passport will be returned to you with your new passport.

If your name has changed since your passport was issued:

  • Enclose the original of the legal document specifying your name change (e.g. marriage certificate, divorce decree, adoption decree, or court order).
  • No photocopies accepted.
Photos

Your photo is a vital part of your passport application. To learn more, review the information below on how to provide a suitable photo to avoid passport processing delays. The acceptance of your photo is always at the discretion of the U.S. passport agency.We recommend you use a professional passport photo service to ensure your photo meets all the requirements. Note: Photos must be 2″x2″ in size with a background that is uniform, plain and white, and free of shadows.

If you are applying for a U.S. Passport, you must provide one (1) photo. Your passport photo must be:

  • In color
  • Printed on photo quality paper
  • 2 x 2 inches (51 x 51 mm) in size
  • Sized such that the head is between 1 inch and 1 3/8 inches (between 25 and 35 mm) from the bottom of the chin to the top of the head. View the Photo Composition Template for more size requirement details.
  • Taken within the last 6 months to reflect your current appearance
  • Taken in front of a plain white or off-white background
  • Taken in full-face view directly facing the camera
  • With a neutral facial expression and both eyes open
  • Taken in clothing that you normally wear on a daily basis:
  1. Uniforms should not be worn in your photo, except religious clothing that is worn daily.
  2. Do not wear a hat or head covering that obscures the hair or hairline, unless worn daily for a religious purpose. Your full face must be visible, and the head covering must not cast any shadows on your face.
  3. Headphones, wireless hands-free devices or similar items are not acceptable in your photo.
  4. Applicants may not wear eye glasses in their U.S. passport photos. Take off your eyeglasses for your photo. For tips on how to get a picture perfect passport photo, please see HERE

Review the Photo Examples to see examples of acceptable and unacceptable photos. Photos copied or digitally scanned from driver’s licenses or other official documents are not acceptable. In addition, snapshots, magazine photos, low quality vending machine or mobile phone photos, and full-length photographs are not acceptable.

Fees

The U.S. Consulates General accepts U.S. dollars and South African Rands.  The consular exchange rate may change with little notice. Please contact us for the current exchange rate.  We accept cash or credit card payment (in person only) and do not accept personal checks.

To view a complete list of fees for consular services, please click here. What follows is a list of fees for the most common consular services:

Fee Type Cost $
Passport Application1/Renewal (Adult) $110
Passport Application (Minor)1 $115 (inclusive of Execution fee)
Passport Application (1st Adult, Lost & Stolen) $145 (inclusive of Execution fee)
Execution fee/Examination of Oath1 $35
Passport Card (Minor) $15
Passport Card (Adult) $30
Consular Report Of Birth Abroad (CRBA) $100
Additional Notarial Copy $50
Notarial $50
Additional Notarial Copy $50
Renunciation of U.S. Citizenship $2350
  1. An execution or Examination of Oath fee applies for all first passports, all minor passports and minor passport cards, a first 10 year passport or passport card at or after age 16, lost, stolen or mutilated passports, and renewals of passports that were issued more than 15 years ago.
  2. NB: If in doubt about the fee, please call the US Consulate.

Applying for a U.S. Passport from Outside the United States

Applying for a U.S. passport while outside the United States is a different process from applying for a U.S. passport while inside the United States. Although the application forms, supporting documentation, costs and finished products are the same everywhere, each U.S. Embassy and Consulate has different procedures for submitting and processing your final documents. The Consular sections in Cape Town, Durban, and Johannesburg all process United States passport applications. Currently the processing time for most regular passports is seven to ten business days.

Where to Apply

The Consular sections in Cape Town, Durban, and Johannesburg all process United States passport applications. Currently the processing time for most regular passports is seven to ten business days.  Passport applications must be submitted by appointment only.

Applicants under 16 years of age must appear in person at the Consulate with both parents.

For minor passport applications, please also bring the child’s official original unabridged birth certificate as well. Minor applicants who may have changed drastically in physical appearance are advised to bring photos showing the child in the years since the previous passport.

You must appear personally at the Consulate if you:

  • Are applying for your first passport
  • Are replacing a lost or stolen passport
  • Your last passport was issued before you were 16 years old
  • It has been more than 15 years since your last passport was issued
  • You are applying for an emergency passport (for immediate travel)
  • You are applying for a child under the age of 16.
  • Are replacing a damaged passport (follow same procedures as Applying for a PassportNote please bring your damaged Passport in with your supporting documents).

If you are coming to the Consulate to apply for a passport and do not fit any of the criteria above you may use the DS-82 passport application.

Supporting Documents

Please bring to your appointment the following items:

  • Application forms, including passport application from (see “Forms,” below)
  • Proof of Identity (examples: previous passport, valid foreign passport, driver’s license, U.S. government issued I.D.).
  • Proof of Citizenship (examples: previous passport, birth certificate from U.S., Consular Report of Birth Abroad, Certificate of Naturalization).
  • Proper size/type of photo.

To receive your passport by mail, bring a self-addressed, prepaid return courier envelope so your passport can be sent back.

Forms

Please note that some of the instructions on forms DS-11 and DS-82 apply only to US citizens residing in the U.S. Should you require any further clarification or assistance with these forms, please contact the American Citizen Services section of Consulate Johannesburg, Consulate Durban and Consulate Cape Town. Forms can be filled out online and then printed using the application wizard or downloaded in PDF format

  • DS-11:   Passport Application
  • DS-64:  Statement Regarding Lost or Stolen Passport
  • DS-82:  Passport Renewal (and for changes more than one year after issuance)
  • DS-2029:  Application for Consular Report of Birth Abroad
  • DS-3053:  Statement of Consent (must be notarized)
  • DS-5504:  U.S. Passport Re-Application (for changes within one year of issuance)
  • DS 5507: Affidavit of Parentage, Physical Presence and Support
  • SS-5:  Application for Social Security Number

Photos

Your photo is a vital part of your passport application. To learn more, review the information below on how to provide a suitable photo to avoid passport processing delays. The acceptance of your photo is always at the discretion of the U.S. passport agency.We recommend you use a professional passport photo service to ensure your photo meets all the requirements. Note: Photos must be 2″x2″ in size with a background that is uniform, plain and white, and free of shadows.

If you are applying for a U.S. Passport, you must provide one (1) photo. Your passport photo must be:

  • In color
  • Printed on photo quality paper
  • 2 x 2 inches (51 x 51 mm) in size
  • Sized such that the head is between 1 inch and 1 3/8 inches (between 25 and 35 mm) from the bottom of the chin to the top of the head. View the Photo Composition Template for more size requirement details.
  • Taken within the last 6 months to reflect your current appearance
  • Taken in front of a plain white or off-white background
  • Taken in full-face view directly facing the camera
  • With a neutral facial expression and both eyes open
  • Taken in clothing that you normally wear on a daily basis:
  1. Uniforms should not be worn in your photo, except religious clothing that is worn daily.
  2. Do not wear a hat or head covering that obscures the hair or hairline, unless worn daily for a religious purpose. Your full face must be visible, and the head covering must not cast any shadows on your face.
  3. Headphones, wireless hands-free devices or similar items are not acceptable in your photo.
  4. Applicants may not wear eye glasses in their U.S. passport photos.  Take off your eyeglasses for your photo. For tips on how to get a picture perfect passport photo, please see HERE

Review the Photo Examples to see examples of acceptable and unacceptable photos. Photos copied or digitally scanned from driver’s licenses or other official documents are not acceptable. In addition, snapshots, magazine photos, low quality vending machine or mobile phone photos, and full-length photographs are not acceptable.

For all in-person consular services, we accept U.S. dollars, South African Rand, and major credit cards as payment. We do not accept checks, postal orders or EFT payments.  [Note: If you plan on renewing your passport by mail, please refer to the ‘Checklist for Mail-In Passport Applications’ tab below for instructions on how to pay.]

To view a complete list of fees for consular services, please click here. What follows is a list of fees for the most common consular services we provide:

Fees

Consular Report Of Birth Abroad (CRBA)Fee Type Cost $
Passport Application*/Renewal (Adult) $110
Passport Application (Minor)* $115 (inclusive of Execution fee)
Passport Application (1st Adult, Lost & Stolen) $145 (inclusive of Execution fee)
Passport Card (minor) $15
Passport Card (Adult) $30
Consular Report Of Birth Abroad (CRBA) $100
Notarial $50
Additional Notarial Copy $50
Renunciation of U.S. Citizenship $2350

An additional Examination of Oath fee of $35 applies for all first passports, all minor passports and minor passport cards, a first 10 year passport or passport card at or after age 16, lost, stolen or mutilated passports, and renewals of passports that were issued more than 15 years ago.

What to do:

  • Please notify the nearest South African Police station of the loss/theft.
  • Inform the U.S. Consulate of the loss/theft, leaving a message on our voice mail if necessary.

If you decide not to apply for a new passport immediately, you may report your lost or stolen passport by completing Form DS-64 (details about forms here) and mailing it to: U.S. Consulate, American Citizens Services.

To obtain a new passport, you must apply in person to the nearest U.S. Consulate.

Note: An appointment is needed for this service.

You will need to:

  1. Complete Form DS-11, Application for Passport. Please note that some of the instructions apply only to U.S. citizens residing in the U.S.
  2. Present Proof of U.S. Citizenship
  3. Present Proof of Identity
  4. Provide one Passport Photo (Photos must be 2″x2″ in size with a background that is uniform, plain and white, and free of shadows).
  5. Pay the Applicable Fee
  6. Provide a Social Security Number
  7. Complete a Statement Regarding Lost Or Stolen Passport, DS-64.
  8. Present a South African Police Report regarding the passport loss.
  9. Make an appointment.

Emergency passports are only issued in real emergencies and evidence of the need for immediate, emergency travel should be submitted with applications. Emergency passports are normally only valid for three months and cannot be extended. You must appear at the Consulate in person to apply.

The application process and fee is the same as if you were applying for a regular passport.

When you receive your emergency passport, you will also receive a letter that explains how to obtain a regular passport after returning from your urgent travel.

If you apply for your regular passport within 1 year of the issue date of the emergency passport, you will not have to pay the fee again.

If you are an American citizen with an emergency situation, please call your nearest U.S. Consulate and leave a message, the Duty Officer will return your call.

For non-emergency issues, please see our general contact information.

Individuals applying for qualifying services will not have to make an in-person visit to their local consulate. Detailed instructions on who qualifies and how to apply by mail are given below. These expanded services are offered as part of the Mission’s continuing effort to offer the best and most efficient service to American citizens.

  • DS-82 Application for a U.S. Passport by Mail (Applicants’ renewing their 10 year passport)
  • DS-5504 Application for a U.S. Passport (Trade-in of Limited Passport for a full validity passport)
  •  Please note: You must provide your Social Security Number in accordance with 22 U.S.C. 2714a and 22 C.F.R 51.60(f).

DS-82

Mail-in application for U.S. Passport

·   Those renewing a 10 year (Adult) Passport that is not lost/stolen or damaged

·         Original passport

·         2 Passport photographs (5cmx5cm/ 2inch x 2inch with white background)

$110.00 payable by bank guaranteed check.

Applicants must submit all fees associated with their application in the form of a South African RAND-denominated, bank-guaranteed check payable to “United States Disbursing Officer.”  BEFORE you obtain a check from your bank, please send an email to acsjohannesburg@state.gov and ask for the current consular exchange rate, which is NOT the same as the commercial exchange rate and which changes periodically and without prior notice.

  • Personal checks, postal orders, or EFT payments are not accepted.
  • The bank-guaranteed check must be for the exact amount of the fee being charged.  Change cannot be given.
  • Please do not add names and dates of birth to the front of your check.

You may send your application and other materials to us using a courier service.  Please do NOT send your application through the regular mail system.  Applications should be sent to:

US Consulate General [Name of city, i.e. Johannesburg, Cape Town or Durban]
Attention: ACS Unit
[Street address of Consulate
]

APPLICATION FORMS WHO QUALIFIES? SUBMITTED DOCUMENTS REQUIREMENTS FEES (in USD)
DS-5504

Mail-in application for U.S. Passport

Trade-in of Emergency Passport for a full validity passport Original Emergency Passport

2 Passport photographs (5cmx5cm/ 2inch x 2inch with white background)

 

Application for a full validity passport made within one year of the issue date of the emergency passport will not have to pay the fee again.

 

.

PLEASE NOTE THE FOLLOWING:

  • At their sole discretion, the consulates have the right to request an applicant’s personal appearance before processing a renewal application.
  • Read all application instructions carefully, complete all questions, and sign the proper form(s).
  • You MUST submit the old passport you are replacing; it will be returned to you with your new passport.
  • Don’t forget to include a prepaid, self-addressed, return envelope from a courier company along with your application and other materials. We will return both old and new document(s) to you using the prepaid envelope you provide.  If the prepaid, self-addressed, return envelope is not included with the application, the new passport will be kept at the Consulate for 90 days until you come in or make other arrangements for pick up.
  • After your application is received by us and approved, it will take about 10 working days for your passport to be printed and sent to us from the U.S.  When your passport arrives, you will receive an email informing you that the passport is ready for collection or delivery via courier.  If you do not receive an email from us within 3 weeks of your submission, please feel free to contact American Citizen Services for a status update (for Johannesburg, acsjohannesburg@state.gov; for Cape Town, americanscapetown@state.gov; for Durban, consulardurban@state.gov ).
  • Incomplete applications, including those without a bank-guaranteed check drawn in the proper amount, will be returned in the prepaid, self-addressed, return envelope you provide, and no further action will be taken.

Generally, immediate family members may accompany passport or CRBA applicants to their appointment interviews at a U.S. embassy or consulate, and all minor children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.  Passport or CRBA applicants also have the option of being accompanied by an attorney at their appointment interview.  Attendance by any third party, including an attorney, accompanying an applicant is subject to the following parameters designed to ensure an orderly appointment interview process and to maintain the integrity of the adjudication of the application(s):

  • Given space limitations in the consular section, not more than one attendee at a time will be allowed to accompany an applicant (or the applicant’s parent or guardian if the applicant is a minor).
  • Attendance by an attorney does not excuse the applicant and/or the minor applicant’s parent or guardian from attending the appointment interview in person.
  • The manner in which a passport or CRBA appointment interview is conducted, and the scope and nature of the inquiry, shall at all times be at the discretion of the consular officer, following applicable Departmental guidance.
  • It is expected that attorneys will provide their clients with relevant legal advice prior to, rather than at, the appointment interview, and will advise their clients prior to the appointment interview that the client will participate in the appointment interview with minimal assistance.
  • Attorneys may not engage in any form of legal argumentation during the appointment interview and before the consular officer.
  • Attendees other than a parent or guardian accompanying a minor child may not answer a consular officer’s question on behalf or in lieu of an applicant, nor may they summarize, correct, or attempt to clarify an applicant’s response, or interrupt or interfere with an applicant’s responses to a consular officer’s questions.
  • To the extent that an applicant does not understand a question, s/he should seek clarification from the consular officer directly.
  • The consular officer has sole discretion to determine the appropriate language(s) for communication with the applicant, based on the facility of both officer and applicant and the manner and form that best facilitate communication between the consular officer and the applicant.  Attendees may not demand that communications take place in a particular language solely for the benefit of the attendee.  Nor may attendees object to or insist on the participation of an interpreter in the appointment interview, to the qualifications of any interpreter, or to the manner or substance of any translation.
  • No attendee may coach or instruct applicants as to how to answer a consular officer’s question.
  • Attendees may not object to a consular officer’s question on any ground (including that the attendee regards the question to be inappropriate, irrelevant, or adversarial), or instruct the applicant not to answer a consular officer’s question.  Attendees may not interfere in any manner with the consular officer’s ability to conduct all inquiries and fact-finding necessary to exercise his or her responsibilities to adjudicate the application.
  • During a passport or CRBA appointment interview, attendees may not discuss or inquire about other applications.
  • Attendees may take written notes, but may not otherwise record the appointment interviews.
  • Attendees may not engage in any other conduct that materially disrupts the appointment interview.  For example, they may not yell at or otherwise attempt to intimidate or abuse a consular officer or staff, and they may not engage in any conduct that threatens U.S. national security or the security of the embassy or its personnel.  Attendees must follow all security policies of the Department of State and the U.S. embassy or consulate where the appointment interview takes place.

Attendees may not engage in any conduct that violates this policy and/or otherwise materially disrupts the appointment interview.  Failure to observe these parameters will result in a warning to the attendee and, if ignored, the attendee may be asked to leave the appointment interview and/or the premises, as appropriate.  It would then be the applicant’s choice whether to continue the appointment interview without the attendee present, subject to the consular officer’s discretion to terminate the appointment interview.  The safety and privacy of all applicants awaiting consular services, as well as of consular and embassy personnel, is of paramount consideration.