The Ultimate Guide to Passport Photo Size and Requirements

Taking a passport photo may sound like a simple task, but it can quickly turn into a frustrating experience if you’re not prepared. With different requirements depending on the country you’re applying to, it’s essential to have all the information you need to take the right passport photo.

In this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about passport photo size and requirements. From dimensions to background, pose, clothing, and common mistakes, we’ll ensure you have everything you need to take a high-quality passport photo that meets all the necessary specifications.

Key Takeaways

  • Different countries have different requirements for passport photo size, ranging from 2 x 2 inches to 35 x 45 mm.
  • The background of your passport photo should be plain and light-colored.
  • You should look straight at the camera with a neutral expression, and avoid smiling, raising or lowering your head, or tilting it to the side.
  • Glasses are no longer allowed in many passport photos, but specific requirements may apply.
  • Clothing should be plain and avoid hats or head coverings.

Now, let’s delve deeper into the different passport photo size requirements and tips for taking a great passport photo.

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Dimensions of Passport Photo Size

Passport photo dimensions differ from country to country. Here are some commonly used dimensions:

  • United States: 2 x 2 inches (51 x 51 mm)
  • Canada: 50 x 70 mm
  • United Kingdom: 35 x 45 mm
  • EU countries: 35 x 45 mm
  • India: 2 x 2 inches (50 x 50 mm)

When taking a passport photo, use a white or off-white background with no patterns or shadows. Your face should cover about 70-80% of the photo, and you should stand or sit with a straight and relaxed posture.

Tips for Taking a Great Passport Photo

Taking a photo that meets all the requirements may seem daunting, but don’t worry. Here are some tips to help you take a high-quality passport photo:

Clothing and Appearance

  • Clothing should be plain and avoid hats or head coverings.
  • Keep a natural look with minimal to no makeup, with natural but well-groomed hair.
  • Avoid anything obstructing the face like sunglasses or a face mask.

Lighting and Background

  • The background should be plain, light-colored, and without shadows.
  • Use natural light wherever possible, standing with your back to the window or outside on a bright but cloudy day.
  • Avoid using flash or harsh artificial lighting.

Pose and Facial Expression

  • Look straight at the camera with your face centered and your eyes level with the horizontal line.
  • Keep a neutral expression and avoid smiling, squinting, or opening your mouth.
  • Keep your mouth closed and have a resting face.

Avoid These Common Mistakes

  • Turning or tilting your head
  • Shadows on the face or background
  • Overexposed or underexposed photo
  • Too much glare on glasses or other reflective objects
  • Incorrect sizing and dimensions
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By following these tips, you can increase your chances of taking a fantastic passport photo that meets all the requirements.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: Can I wear glasses in my passport photo?

Some countries allow glasses in passport photos, while others don’t. Check the specific requirements of the country where you’re applying to determine if glasses are allowed or not.

Q: How can I ensure that my passport photo meets the requirements?

It’s always a good idea to have your passport photo taken by a professional photographer or at a passport application center. They are familiar with the specific requirements and can ensure that the photo meets all of them.

Q: Can I take my passport photo with my smartphone?

Yes, you can take a passport photo with your smartphone as long as it meets the specific requirements.

Q: Can I wear a headscarf or hat in my passport photo?

It’s best to avoid head coverings like hats or headscarves in your passport photo, as they may obscure your face. However, if you wear a head covering for religious reasons, you may be allowed to wear one in your passport photo. Check the specific requirements of the country where you’re applying to determine if head coverings are allowed or not.

Q: Can I smile in my passport photo?

No, you should not smile in your passport photo. Keep a neutral expression with a resting face.

In conclusion, taking a passport photo that meets all of the requirements can seem challenging, but with the right knowledge and preparation, it can be a straightforward process. By following the tips covered in this guide, you’ll be well on your way to taking a high-quality passport photo that will help you got your travel documents.

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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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