How Long Does it Take for Passports to be Printed and Delivered in the UK?

If you’re planning a trip abroad, one of the most important things you’ll need is a passport. However, getting a passport can take some time, and it can be frustrating not knowing exactly how long the process will take. In this article, we will explore how long it takes for passports to be printed and delivered in the UK, including typical timelines, potential delays, and other relevant factors that can affect the process.

Key Takeaways:

  • The standard timeline for passport delivery in the UK is around three weeks from the time of application.
  • If you need your passport sooner than that, there are other options available, but they will come at a higher cost.
  • Be sure to double-check your application before submitting it, as errors or incomplete forms can delay the process.

The Passport Application Process:

Whether you’re applying for a new passport or renewing an old one, the application process is relatively straightforward. You will need to fill out the relevant form, provide supporting documents (such as a birth certificate or old passport), and include a passport photo.

Once you have submitted your application, it will be reviewed by HM Passport Office. If there are any issues or missing information, you will be contacted via email or post. Otherwise, the process will move forward to the next step.

Printing and Delivery Timelines:

Once your application has been approved, your passport will be printed by Her Majesty’s Passport Office. The average time for this process is around five to ten working days, although it can take longer during busy periods (such as holiday season).

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After your passport has been printed, it will be shipped to you via Royal Mail. The delivery time can vary depending on the type of service you choose. The standard service is second-class, and it typically takes around one week for your passport to be delivered to you. If you require your passport sooner, you can choose the first-class service, which usually takes one to two working days.

Potential Delays:

There are a few factors that can delay the passport process. The most common are mistakes or omissions on the application form. Be sure to double-check all information before submitting your application, as even minor typos can lead to delays.

Another potential delay is if your supporting documents are deemed insufficient or invalid. This can happen if your birth certificate is damaged or if your old passport is expired. Check all documents before submitting them to ensure they meet the requirements.

Finally, unexpected events like natural disasters or industrial action can disrupt the printing and delivery process. If this happens, HM Passport Office will contact you to inform you of any delays and provide an estimated delivery date.


Getting a passport can be a time-consuming process, but by understanding the typical timelines and potential delays, you can make the process as smooth as possible. Make sure to double-check your application before submitting it, and be aware of the potential for delays. With a little patience and persistence, you’ll be ready to travel the world in no time!


Q: Can I expedite the passport printing and delivery process?A: Yes, you can choose to use the one-day premium service or the one-week fast-track service if you need your passport sooner. However, this will come with an additional cost.

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Q: What can I do if my passport doesn’t arrive on time?A: If your passport doesn’t arrive within the expected timeframe, contact HM Passport Office immediately. They will be able to provide an update on its status and investigate any potential issues.

About the Author

Clifford Thompson

Clifford is a 33-year-old Asian-American travel blogger based in Seattle, Washington. He has a degree in computer science and has traveled to over 30 countries across six continents. Clifford is experienced in navigating the visa and passport application process and shares his knowledge and insights on the blog. His articles are informative and engaging, providing readers with practical advice and recommendations for international travel.

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