Where can I get a digital passport photo taken?

If you’ve applied for a passport in the last few years you’ll know that the rules seem to get stricter and stricter – and the process more and more expensive – every time. One of the most common reasons for a passport application being turned down is that the photo you sent with it doesn’t meet the requirements. So, where can you get your passport photo taken to make sure that you don’t have problems?

The machine in the corner of the supermarket

For almost everyone, this is the place they got their first passport photo taken: the grotty little machine behind the checkouts in your local supermarket. When it works, it’s perfectly okay, but of course, when it doesn’t, it’s frustrating enough to make you want to pick up the entire machine and throw it through the automatic doors.

Not to mention, who wants to wait 5 minutes for their photos to spit out of that little window on the side of the booth while all their frozen shopping is melting.

What’s more, if you’ve ever tried to use one of these machines to get baby passport pictures, you’ll know all too well that it’s a particular kind of purgatory.

Professional high-street photographers

One word: expensive. Although you’re likely to receive a higher quality product than you would from an automated photo-booth, you’re also expected to pay a lot more for it.

The other problem is that you’re more than likely to be paying for a set of six passport photos when really you only want two. And you know that in two years time when you need them again you just won’t be able to remember which safe place you put the other four photos in; no matter how sure you were you’d be able to find them again this time.

Going digital

At Paspic, we save you time, money, and stress with our digital system, by making sure that you get your passport photos right the first time. Simply use your phone to take a photo against a plain background, choose which country you are applying for a passport from, and your photos will be printed, checked by our experts, and delivered to your door for free in just a couple of days.

Photo: camera by wiennat licensed under Creative commons 2

How much do passport photos cost?

Whenever you have your passport photo taken, do you factor in the hidden costs? You already know that having your photo taken in a booth or at a photo shop is more expensive than doing the job yourself. But have you ever considered the hidden extras that make it even more costly?

The hidden costs of passport photos

The fact that just about everyone has a smartphone with a great camera these days is making the photo booth obsolete. But let’s say you need a passport photo fast, you lost your phone and all your friends are out of town. You need to find a way to get your passport pics printed.

Once they used to be everywhere – in post offices, train stations and more. Now photo booths are now few and far between. When you finally find one you’ll only have a limited number of chances to get your picture right. Then there’s the long, long wait until the booth finally spits out your photos and you realise your white T-shirt makes you look naked and you’re pulling the kind of face you dread to be identified by for the next 10 years. Another attempt in a photo booth soon adds to your spending.

Instead, you seek out the local photo shop. You’ll pay around the same as a photo booth for your photos but at least your photographer will take unlimited shots – within reason. Obviously, no photographer is going to keep shooting all day while you insist you need to try just once more. Then, you’ll either have to wait around for prints or come back again to pick them up later. That can be inconvenient if you’ve made a special trip into town and you’re spending a fortune in parking.

The joys of DIY

If you want to avoid the time, money and hassle then order your passport photos online. At Paspic we’ll deliver pre-checked photos with a 99.5% chance of being approved anywhere in the world for just £6. Our service is ideal whether you need ID overseas or that dreaded passport renewal is near. Our checking service gives you peace of mind and you can practice your passport pose until you get it just right!

Where to get baby passport photos

Applying for baby’s first passport is an exciting time because it means you’re taking your first family holiday together. But knowing where to get good baby passport photos is another matter because babies aren’t naturally the most co-operative subjects when it comes to meeting passport pic rules!

The perils of baby passport photos
Theoretically, it is possible to take baby passport photos in a photo booth. If your baby can sit still and upright on their own, by all means give it a go. But for most of us with wriggly babies who won’t stay in one place, a photo booth photo is pretty impossible unless we get in the picture too – and that’s an instant passport photo fail!

Your local photo shop should know the guidelines for baby passport pics and will provide a neutral background and remove all toys, hats, glasses and stray hair to get the perfect shot without mum or dad in the picture. However, this is another expensive option and although you’re more likely to get a good result the costs soon mount up if you have a large family.

Do it yourself
It’s perfectly possible to take the perfect photo yourself and then use the Paspic service to print them out and send with your application.

The rules have been relaxed in recent years regarding very young babies’ passport photos which makes the do-it-yourself option a breeze. If your child is under 12 months old, then the image needs to be a good likeness – after all, they’ll already have changed by the time you get their first passport!

Your baby doesn’t even need to have their eyes open or their mouth closed, and the template check has been waived to make things even simpler. For children over 1 and under 6, they no longer need to have their mouths closed and eyes looking at the camera.

One tip for very active babies is to lie them on their back with a rolled towel across their shoulders and around their head to keep them as still as possible. Otherwise, try placing them in their cot or buggy against a plain white sheet.

So why not give it a go? Snapping baby’s first passport photo yourself could be the first step in creating a lifetime of wonderful holiday memories!

How to pose for a passport photo

When Kate Moss hit her local photo shop for a passport photo shoot, her photos were instantly rejected. Why? Because her head was tilted to one side and her hair was falling over her face. When it comes to getting a passport photo taken, the rules are clear:

• Photos must be a close up of your head and shoulders
• The background must be cream or light grey
• You must face forward and look straight at the camera
• Your expression should be neutral with eyes open and mouth closed
• Nothing covering your face, including glasses and hair
• Nothing covering your head, including hats and sunglasses (religious and medical reasons excepted)
• No shadows either behind you or on your face

Once you’ve mastered all the rules, you should be in a position to pose for your passport photo. Here are some professional hints and tips to make your photo look great and pass muster with the passport people!

Get a good night’s sleep

There’s no substitute for sleep to make you look your best. Schedule your photo for a time when you’re well rested and not stressed out.

Make-up is your friend

Concealer, a little bronzer, plenty of mascara, good brows and a dab of lip gloss should be all it takes to look like the best version of you. Save the full Kim Kardashian contour look for your holidays.

Hair do’s and don’ts

Do sweep your hair back if it’s long, and wear it off your face and shoulders. A small barette is fine to keep your hair off your face, a headband or scarf will count as headgear and could see your passport photo rejected.

Strike a pose

The instructions say neutral expression but that doesn’t mean you can’t throw in a Tyra Banks ‘smize’ – let your eyes smile and you’ll light up your photo. Worried about a double chin? Then poke your chin forward like a turtle. Want your cheekbones to pop? Clench your back teeth. Practise your pose before you start snapping and you’ll look like a supermodel.

Think classic

The best attire for a passport photo is a classic shirt or high necked top in any colour but white – think black polo or navy shirt. The more timeless and classic your pose, the more likely your passport pic is to stand the test of time.

Need passport photos that have a 99.5% chance of being accepted? Then simply upload to Paspic and we’ll send them postage free to more than 65 countries worldwide.

How to print out passport size photos

Applying for your first passport? Or do you need passport photos for ID purposes? It is possible to print out your own passport size photos but you’ll need a printer, the right photographic paper and a passport compatible image.

Getting started

Before you can print a passport size picture you need an image. If you haven’t needed a passport photo in a while, you may not be aware of the rules for taking a UK passport compatible photo.

You’ll need to stand against a neutral background and you can’t wear anything that casts a shadow or obstructs your face. That includes glasses, a hat, head scarf, sunglasses on your head or even your own hair! No one else should be visible in the photo and you can’t smile or frown – your expression must be completely neutral.

Once you’ve nailed your photo, then you’re ready to print.

Perfect prints

Do you have a high resolution photo printer with colour accuracy? Then you’re ready to start. You’ll need photo quality paper of at least 200gsm and advanced photo software to scale your photo to exactly the right dimensions.

These are the steps you need to take to print your own photo:

• Check your printer handles borderless printing – your passport photos must be printed without a border
• Skin tones must be accurate so use the manual settings in a good quality photo editor to get it right
• Passport photos must be 45mm high and 35mm wide – you can’t use a bigger photo that’s been cut down to size

Windows and iOS operating systems offer basic photo editing, but for more control you may need to download a dedicated app or invest in photo editing software.

Forget the hassle, use an online service

Of course, there is an easier way to print out your passport photos. Just take a photo and then upload it to Paspic. We’ll print a perfect set of UK passport photos and deliver them free just about anywhere in the world. And because we check every photo for compatibility we have a 99.5% approval rate which gives you 100% peace of mind. Want to print out perfect passport photos every time? Then trust Paspic to get it right first time.

Photo: 2003 and Now by Alex Cheek licensed under Creative commons 2

Where can I get cheap passport photos?

Do you remember the old days? When you had to visit a photo booth and sit stony-faced while it did its stuff before churning out some grim black and white images that made you look like someone else? Not only were the photos highly unflattering, they were also incredibly expensive.

Photo booths remain the most expensive way to get your passport photos taken. You can also opt for the services of a professional photographer if you want a great passport picture at a cost. But there are much better ways to get cheap passport photos – even baby passport pics – that looks like you and gets approved the first time. We’re talking about an online passport photo service.

Cheap doesn’t mean poor quality

Just because you choose a low-cost online service doesn’t mean your hard copy photos will be of poor quality. A quality service like Paspic verifies your photos for compatibility before sending you high-quality images that will get your application approved first time, 99.5% of the time.

Saving you time and money

Not only does using an online passport picture service produce great results but it saves you time and money. With photo booths disappearing, you can waste a lot of time and effort tracking one down. And when you do you only have a limited number of chances to get your passport pictures right unless you have deep pockets!

The advantage of an online service is that you can take your pictures as many times as you choose until you’re completely satisfied, and it won’t cost you a penny!

So where can I find cheap passport photos?

You’ll get free passport validation checks, low-cost prints and free postage to over 65 countries when you use the Paspic online service. Our comprehensive blog will tell you all you need to know about taking an online photo that meets the rules so you save even more time and money by using our services.

In fact, we’re so confident in our passport photo service we’ll give you your money back if your passport pictures aren’t accepted the first time!

How to obtain a second passport

A second passport isn’t just for spies, diplomats or the super rich. In fact, anyone can obtain a second passport whether it’s from another country or a duplicate by satisfying certain conditions. If you want to benefit from all the positives that another passport can bring, here’s how to get one.

Trace your family tree

If you can prove that your parents, grandparents or sometimes even great-grandparents come from another country, then you may be eligible for a low cost second passport. You’ll need to make an appointment at the nearest consulate and provide the necessary paperwork to prove your heritage.

You’ll need birth, marriage and death certificates for yourself and your children plus certificates going back through the maternal and paternal lines. You’ll also need passport photos for your new passport. Countries like Ireland and Germany are popular choices for these kinds of secondary passports.

Be patient

If you’re prepared to wait, you can generally apply for residency and then get a second passport after living in your chosen country for a set period of time – for most countries it’s five years before you can get your new passport photos taken and apply for your second passport. However, requirements can change so keep checking the website for your country of residency.

Invest in a second passport

You don’t have to be super rich, but economic citizenship programmes effectively allow you to buy that all-important second passport. The cost can be exceptionally high, however, with some Caribbean countries charging a six figure sum. It’s probably worth considering residency rather than this type of deal.

Birth or marriage

There are also ways to get citizenship and a passport through marriage and birth, but residency doesn’t always apply to parents. For example, a child born on French soil is eligible for a passport but only if they have one French parent.

Frequent traveller

If you travel often for business, then you might want to apply for a second passport in case anything happens to the original. You’ll need proof of business travel, your existing passport and birth certificate plus of course your new passport pictures – just remind the passport office not to cancel your original passport!

However you intend to get a second passport, Paspic can help you get your online passport photo right first time!

Rules on how to make a passport size photo online

Before you pack that suitcase and book your hotel, you need to make sure that your passport is up to date. If you need a new passport, then you’ll need to take an up to date passport photo. The good news is that it is now possible to make an online passport photo. Below we share with you the rules on how to make a passport size photo online.

Read the instructions

It is vital that you read any instructions and follow the rules regarding taking your passport photo. Meet the requirements and you’ll be fine. The last thing you want is to make an online passport photo only for it to be rejected with your application. A friend can take your photo for you, either on your phone or by using a digital camera.

What you need to show

The good news is that it is very easy to take a digital photo to make your online passport photo. All you need to remember is that the head and shoulders, plus the upper body, need to be in shot. That’s all. So don’t stand too close or too far away. As long as you get the upper body into shot, we can crop the photo for you to a passport size.

Your photo needs…

When taking your online passport photo it is important that you stand in front of a plain and light-coloured background such as a wall or curtain. No people or objects should be in the shot. There should also be no shadows, either on your face or in the background.

You need to stand facing the camera. Eyes should be focused straight ahead, and you cannot smile, as your mouth needs to be closed. If you wear glasses, then these need to be removed for your photo.

Digital photo quality

Your digital passport photo must be of a good quality and resolution. Your face should be in clear focus, with no ‘red eye’, and no filters used. Ideally, the image should be 600 pixels by 750 pixels and no larger than 10MB.

Here at Paspic, we can help you to quickly and simply obtain that perfect online passport photo. You take the photo and we crop it to the correct size. Be sure to check out our useful hints and tips and upload your photo today!

Photo: Metaphoto by devopstom licensed under Creative commons 2

Where can I get a digital passport photo?

It’s becoming more common now for passports to require a digital passport photo, rather than a hard copy.

As this is a fairly new requirement, you may not have had to provide one before, and have no idea how you get one.

The UK government are currently running a trial where they are renewing some UK passports completely online, so a digital photo is required. If this trial is successful, it is likely that going forward all, or the majority, of UK passports will be provided this way.

Get a friend to do it

You can get a friend to take a photo of you on your phone or tablet and upload it when you make an online UK passport application. It must meet the passport requirements though, which you can check on the GOV.UK website.

Go to a photo shop

Photo shops have been taking hard copies of passport photos for years, but some will now be able to take photos you can access digitally.

They’ll give you a photo code so you can go online and access your photos, which you can then upload to your passport application.

Photo booths

Some photo booths that give you passport photos, the sort that you find in supermarkets and railway stations, can also give you a photo code in the same way a photo shop will.

Again you would go online, input your code and access the photos that you can then upload to your passport application.

Online

You can get passport photos online already. You upload a photo you’ve taken, send it to the company and they validate that it meets passport requirements and print hard copies that you then get through the post.

Going forward they’ll also be able to provide digital copies, or a photo code so that you can access the photos in the same way as other methods.

Completing an online passport application is potentially easier than filling in a paper form, and should only take 10 minutes, so it’s worth considering completing your passport application renewal in this way going forward.