Record passport demand is expected throughout the remainder of 2016, in 2017, and into 2018. National Passport Month is the ideal time to obtain or renew passports before peak travel season gets underway. Applying during the off-peak months can help ensure passports are processed within routine service commitments of 4-6 weeks (3 weeks for expedited service) by the U.S. Department of State.
The Blue Earth County Passport Office is located within Taxpayer Services on first floor of the Historic Courthouse at 204 S. 5th Street in Mankato and accepts passport applications Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Applicants are encouraged to first visit www.blueearthcountymn.gov/passports to review instructions and get a head start on filling out necessary forms before arriving in person to complete the application process. To ensure passport photos meet necessary requirements and to avoid additional delays in the application process, it’s encouraged to have passport photos taken at the time of submitting application materials. Taxpayer Services provides passport photo services.
“Our Taxpayer Service Specialists are ready to assist customers who have travel plans taking them outside the United States,” said Michael Stalberger, Director of Taxpayer Services. “We are prepared for the record demand and encourage folks to check their passport’s expiration date and to renew or apply early, well in advance of making winter getaway plans.”
In recognition of National Passport Month, the Minneapolis Passport Agency is hosting a special Passport Day event on Sat., Sept. 17 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Old Federal Building located at 212 3rd Avenue S. in Minneapolis. This is the only Saturday throughout the year that the Minneapolis Passport Agency will be open to accept routine and expedite applications. Appointments are required for the Minneapolis Agency; call 1 (877) 487-2778.
For more information regarding passports, visit www.blueearthcountymn.gov/passports or call Blue Earth County Taxpayer Services at (507) 304-4251.