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Can I print my own passport photo?

Is it time to renew your passport? If so you’ll already be thinking about getting some decent passport photos done. Photo booths pictures can be grim affairs so taking photos in a more relaxed atmosphere like your own home makes sense. But what rules are there about passport photo sizes? And is it possible to print them out at home?

What passport photos do I need?

You’ll need two identical passport photos for your application. Follow the rules for taking a good passport photo and you’re halfway there. Now you need to print them out at 45mm high x 35mm wide size – you can’t print a bigger picture and cut it down!

Shoot and edit your passport pictures

First, make sure you’re well lit – natural daylight is best – and standing in front of a plain cream or light grey background. Don’t use a flash so you avoid the dreaded red-eye and keep a tight focus on your head and shoulders. Once you’re satisfied with your photo then you can move onto the next step.

If you feel the need to edit your photo, think again. Gov.UK rules state quite clearly that photos should be ‘unaltered by computer software’ so you may run into problems if you give yourself a virtual facelift!

Finally, you need to accurately size your photo so that the distance between your chin and the crown of your head is no less than 29mm and no more than 34mm, and set the photo size to the standard 45mm x 35mm.

Press print

Finally, you need to set your home printer to print your passport pics. Bear in mind that they must be printed to a professional standard on white photo paper – and check that your printer can handle borderless printing as your passport photos must be printed without a border.

‘Professional standard’ can be subjective but obviously, you’ll need to invest in some decent photographic paper rather than plain old copy paper!

Now you’ll need to set the printer to print at 100% of screen size and select the highest possible resolution before pressing print.

Picture perfect

If all that sounds like a hassle, it is. Especially when you can simply upload your passport pictures to Paspic where 99.5% of passport pics are approved the first time!

So why not let us take the fuss out of passport photo printing and get approved first time or your money back?

Can I take a passport photo using my iPhone?

When renewing a passport, passport photos are often the main cause for concern. Between the list of guidelines and having to trail down to a photo booth, it can be a hassle. Double that when it’s a child passport photo. But what if you could scrap all the hassle and take a photo within minutes in your own home? And could it be done using a device everyone has to hand – your iPhone?

The short answer is yes, but there are a few conditions that you’ll need to keep in mind.

Online passport photos are accepted by GOV.uk when applying for a passport, and they even state in their guidelines that digital photos can be accepted from three methods: get someone else to take a photo for you using a device with photo capabilities; go to a photo shop and ask for a digital copy using a code; go to a photo booth that provides digital codes along with the physical copy. Of the three, it’s clear that the first option is not only the quickest but also the easiest.

To make sure you get it right the first time, review the guidelines laid out by GOV.uk. You will require someone else to take the photo from the shoulders up, against a light background, and of clear quality. There will be a chance to adjust the size of your photo during the application process and you will be given a preliminary decision at the point of upload, which is a good indicator that your photo will be approved when your application is reviewed later.

If you are still unsure of whether your photo qualifies or how to take it, Papsic is available to give you peace of mind. Using your phone, Papsic will take you clearly and concisely through each step of the process for quick Digital passport photos and ensure they’re suitable before you even begin your passport application. Simply upload your photos and Papsic will take care of the rest!

Photo: iPhone 6 by edowoo licensed under Creative commons 2

Where can I get a passport picture?

The right passport picture is essential to making sure that your passport application has the best possible chance of acceptance. If your picture does not meet the stringent criteria, your application will be sent back to you, which will delay the whole process.

So where can you get your photo taken?

Take it yourself

Recently, the passport office has begun accepting photographs taken from smartphones, as a result of camera technology improving to the point that they can provide the level of clarity necessary for proper identification. So you don’t even have to leave the house if you don’t want to, it’s that convenient. Read if you take a passport photo using iPhone.

There are a number of different online services to help you with this. One of the best is Paspic, which will quickly and easily guide you through the process of taking the photograph yourself. Once it’s done, you’ll have the ability to order hard copies to send with your application.

Photo Booths

Photo booths can be found in a variety of different locations such as on the high street, in shopping centers, in supermarkets, and occasionally in train stations. They offer you simplicity, affordability, and a degree of convenience too. However, you still have to know how to pose properly.

The process is simple, you go inside the booth and follow the on-screen instructions. They’re commonly used for official photos so there’s likely going to be a specific guide to make sure you take the right photo. Once you have taken the photo, they will be printed immediately.

Photography stores

Though they are growing a little harder to find, most towns and cities still have photography stores or studios which will offer a dedicated passport photography service for a fee. The fee may be higher than it costs to take the photo yourself or at a booth, but there are benefits.

The photographer will know the requirements for an acceptable passport photo and will be able to guide you through the session. That means when you collect your photographs you won’t be in any doubt as to whether or not the passport photo is right.

Photo: passport by susi.bsu licensed under Creative commons 2

How to get kids’ passports

Mums and dads don’t have the luxury of just having to sort out their own passports before heading abroad. Instead, they’ve got to ensure that their children also have a passport ahead of a family holiday. It’s a little more work, yes – but it’s something that most parents should be able to arrange without too much difficulty in this day and age. With this in mind, here’s how to get kids’ passports and how to get the best baby passport photo.?

What’s the process?

The process is pretty much the same as the one required for those applicants aged 16+. You simply have to fill out the official forms and submit two pictures to the passport office. Thankfully, you’ll be able to do the bulk of the heavy lifting without having to get your kids involved.

kids’ passports photo

Who needs one?

Everyone needs a passport if they’re to be permitted to go abroad. A baby passport photo will be issued to anyone under the age of 16. Even newborn babies require a passport if they’re to leave the country with their parents.

How long is the passport valid?

Unlike an adult passport that lasts for 10 years, a child’s passport is only valid for five years. This is largely due to how much kids’ facial features can change throughout their childhood and adolescence. Therefore, you may need to go through the process several times before your child reaches 16.

Are there any obstacles?

The only real part of the application that requires effort and energy from your child is the passport photo. Luckily, this can now be done from the comfort of your own home. While mums and dads previously had to queue up with their child outside of a photo booth, the pictures can now be taken with a mobile phone and authorized online before being submitted to the passport office. This has, undoubtedly, removed the biggest obstacle for most parents.

Use Paspic!

The process of applying for a kid’s passport needn’t be a hassle – especially if you use Paspic. Through this service, you’ll have peace of mind that the picture you’re submitting meets all the government guidelines and won’t be rejected.

Photo: stoic by efleming licensed under Creative commons 2

How to cut passport photos

There’s no doubt that one of the trickiest parts of the passport application process is actually getting a passport photo. Whether you use the dreaded photo booth or visit a local high street photographer, the whole business can send your stress levels off the charts.

There is a better way. If you follow a checklist for taking passport photographs then you can take a much more relaxed passport photo at home.

Why size matters

One of the main reasons passport applications are denied is that the passport picture doesn’t conform to the guidelines. We all know that it can be a nightmare to produce a neutral expression or keep the hair off your face, but if you’re taking your photos at home then you’ll have endless chances to get that right.

But when it comes to printing out and cutting passport photos for your application, size definitely matters. The rules are clear – your passport photo itself must measure 45mm x 35mm. You can also add a 5mm border around the image, so if you’re printing at home you can also specify an image size of 55mm x 45mm if you’re printing a border.

So far so good. But then you also need to make sure that the distance between your chin and the top of your head in the image is between 29mm – 34mm so your face is centrally positioned in the picture. And you can’t manipulate the image in any way or submit a cropped or cut down version of a bigger photo because that’s an instant fail.

Cut to size

Once you’ve selected a photo that looks like you and meets the guidelines, you’re going to need to print and cut out your passport photos. You must use glossy white photo paper and your printer’s highest resolution. Choose 4cm x 6cm paper and then manually cut out your pictures.

If you have a sharp craft knife and a cutting mat then you’ll get the best results. Otherwise, scissors and a steady hand should do the job. Just remember your photo needs to measure 45mm x 35mm and that you’re allowed a 5mm border all around and you’ll be good to go.

Trust the professionals

If that all sounds like too much hassle, why not let Paspic take care of your photos for you? We can ship to anywhere in the world and we have a 99.5% approval rate. Upload today and make your passport photos truly fuss-free!

Photo: scissors by ibotamino licensed under Creative commons 2

How to replace a lost passport

Have you lost or damaged your passport? Don’t worry, you can get a new one and the process is reasonably easy to understand and to follow. It’s important to remember that you’re basically re-applying for your passport, so it’s important to get the application process underway as soon as possible to prevent any delays and ensure you get your passport back quickly.

Here’s what you need to do:

Re-application for your passport

You can apply for your passport either online or by visiting your local Post Office and filling in the relevant form. It’s important to note, however, that it’s not a free service to re-issue a lost or damaged passport.

It costs £75.50 if you’re applying online, and £85 if you’re applying via a paper form.

It’s important that you fill in the form as accurately and as clearly as possible. Remember the same rules apply as when you applied for your passport originally. Write legibly and provide all of the personal information necessary to ensure that your application can be dealt with in as swift a manner as possible.

If your form is badly or incorrectly filled in, the Passport Office may have to contact you for clarification, send the application form back to you, or, in isolated cases, possibly even reject the application. So invest the extra time and fill out the form properly.

Re-sending your photographs

You will have to take another passport photo if you’re going re-apply for your lost passport. There are many ways you can do this, whether it’s using an online service such as Paspic, a photo booth, or by visiting any high street photography store.

You will need to send two identical photos of yourself with the new application, both of which will have been signed by an appropriate counter-signatory who conforms to the proper conditions.

Remember that though you only need to have one photograph signed, you need to send two photographs with your application, and both must be of acceptable standard and identical.

Photo: UK passport by nathan17 licensed under Creative commons 2

Who can sign your passport forms and photos?

Most people are aware that their passport photos need to be signed as part of the passport application process. But, what many people do not realize is that the requirements for signing passport pictures are incredibly specific. Below we share some advice on who can sign your passport photos.

When do you need a passport photo to be signed?

When you apply for your first passport as an adult or a child, you need to have both the application form and passport photo signed. You’ll also need a passport photo signed if you are renewing a passport, replacing a passport, or if your physical appearance has changed dramatically.

The person signing the passport photo

So, you have your passport photos ready and your application form filled in, but how do you choose who signs your passport photo? There are a few rules you need to follow. It’s important that the person signing your photo has known you for a minimum of two years. If signing for a child, then they need to know the adult. They also need to live in the UK, and they need to have a valid and non-expired passport.

Who cannot sign your passport

It’s important that the person signing your passport photos knows you, and not just in a professional way. However, there are restrictions on the type of relationship that you can have with this individual. The person signing your passport photos cannot be related to you by marriage or by birth. They must also not live at the same address. It’s also important to note that you can no longer ask your GP to sign your passport photo. However, if your GP is a close friend, then they are fine to sign.

The occupation of those who sign

One final point is that there are named occupations that the person who signs must hold. A full list is available on the GOV.UK website. However, generally, the list includes those occupations of good standing, such as a teacher, nurse, accountant, banker, dentist, journalist and police officer.

If you require passport photos, then you can easily and quickly take your passport photos, including baby passport photos, at home. To learn more, please do visit our website today.

Photo: Day 185 by victoriachan licensed under Creative commons 2

Who can countersign a British passport application?

Getting someone to countersign a passport photo is an easy process. Someone simply signs their name on the back of your passport photograph to confirm that it is indeed an accurate likeness of you. Not just anyone can sign a passport photo, however, and there are conditions the counter-signatory must meet.

Who can sign?

The first piece of criteria your counter-signatory must meet is that they have to have known you for a period of two years. However, they cannot be someone you’re in a relationship with or who lives in your household. Nor can they be someone you’re related to, either by marriage or by birth. Know Who can sign your passport forms and photos?

They must be able to identify you properly, and not be someone you just have a passing familiarity with. They must also be someone of good standing in the community. To qualify for that they must either be retired from or currently work in, one of several recognized professions. Read more about accepted professions here.

The counter-signatory must also be a UK resident and hold a current British passport.

What the counter-signatory must do

Once you have decided who you’d like to countersign your photo – and they have agreed, and they meet all of the relevant criteria to be an officially recognized counter-signatory – you must have them sign the back of your passport photograph.

To do that, they must write the following phrase on the back of the photo:

“I certify that this is a true likeness of (Title, Forename, Surname)”

They must then provide their signature underneath their declaration and provide the date they signed the photograph on, at which point you’re free to post off your application to the passport office.

It’s important to make sure you thoroughly understand the rules relating to who can and cannot countersign your passport photo. Failure to do so will mean your application will be sent back to you, which will only serve to delay the process.

Please make sure you inform the person counter-signing the photograph that the passport office may contact them to confirm their details and your identity.

Photo: Fountain pen by matsuyuki licensed under Creative commons 2

Can I Wear Glasses in a Passport Photo?

You’ve booked the perfect holiday and now it’s time to make sure your passports are in order. A common question that glasses wearers ask is: am I allowed to wear my glasses in my passport photo? After all, a mistake in your passport photo can lead to a delay in receiving your passport, as well as extra costs that can be incurred, so it is essential to make sure you get your photo just right.

Your passport photo must be taken in front of a light coloured background, with no shadows falling either on your face or on the screen behind you. The photo should only feature you; no other people or objects should be included in the photograph. It is also essential that your passport photograph was taken within the past month so that it accurately represents a true current likeness of you.

It can be tricky to know the rules and regulations for passport photos, but the general rule to abide by for passport photos is that nothing should be obstructing your face or eyes. This means that there should be no hair covering your eyes, you should not be wearing a head covering — unless for religious or medical reasons — and there should be nothing else covering your face.

The rules on the government website aren’t particularly clear when it comes to prescription glasses. The official guidance states that if you wear glasses that you are unable to take off, then your eyes must be fully visible behind the lenses without any reflection or glare obscuring the view of your eyes. However, as passport photographs are often taken in a booth, or — in the case of online passport pictures — are taken at home using a camera with a flash, it can be difficult to reduce the reflection or glare caused by the lenses in prescription glasses. Therefore, where possible, it is advisable to remove your glasses in order to have your passport photo taken.

Although the government guidance does not state that prescription glasses should be removed for passport photographs, due to the hassle and stress that can be caused if the photographs are not accepted, it is advisable to remove prescription glasses — where possible — in order to have your passport photographs taken.

What to write when countersigning a passport photo

An essential step in the passport application process is to find a counter-signatory to sign your passport photo. The idea behind this is simple, the counter-signatory is a person of trustworthy status who has known you for a certain period of time who signs to confirm that you are who you say you are.

The process is simple, but problems can delay your passport application, so it’s best to know exactly who can countersign your passport photo and what they need to write.

For further information, refer to the Gov.uk website.

[h2]Who can countersign[/h2]

The first step is to find someone who is willing, able, and eligible to countersign your passport photograph. There aren’t many rules to this, but there are certain requirements. The person, for example, must not be related to you by birth or marriage, be in a relationship with you or live at the same address as you.

The person must be someone of good standing, be they working or retired, ideally from a recognised profession such as a doctor or school teacher. They must have known the applicant for a period of at least two years, and be able to easily identify the applicant.

[h2]Getting the photo counter-signed[/h2]

Once the person has agreed to countersign your passport photo, it’s simple. All they have to do is write on the back of the photo the following:

“I certify that this is a true likeness of [the applicant’s title and full name].”

With that done all they need to do is provide their signature and the date, and it’s done. The counter-signatory will also have to check through your application and provide their signature, and passport number, to confirm that to the best of their knowledge the information you have given is accurate.

Please also be aware that the passport office may need to contact your counter-signatory in the event they require any more information, so please make sure they’re aware of this. If they go on holiday for example and can’t be reached it will delay your passport application, so ensure they’re available if needs be.

Photo: Writing? Yeah. by crdotx licensed under Creative commons 2