Is your passport or ID card still valid?

This warning may seem a little premature, but if you are planning to take a flight this year, it’s worth checking the expiry date on your passport or identity card right this minute. There’s a good chance that you will need a new travel document this year. And if so, you will have to apply well in advance at your local municipal offices. You are not the only one who is likely to need a new passport or ID card in the coming months. Read all about the passport peak here!

Check your passport or ID card

Picture the scene: there you are at Schiphol. Your baggage is safely checked in and you’ve sailed through security. All that’s left is passport control... And then you discover that your passport expired a month ago! Not the greatest start to your trip. So take our advice and check right now to make sure that your ID card, passport and any visas you might need do not expire this year. And when you do, remember that some countries require your passport to be valid for at least a few more months beyond the date of travel, so it’s best to take a wide margin.

Passport peak

Is your passport or ID card due for replacement? Then make an appointment with your municipality soon. It’s extra important this year, because millions of people will need new passports or identity cards. That’s because in 2014 the rules changed and passports with a validity of 10 years were introduced. Lots of people applied for new travel documents at the time, and all those documents are due to expire this year. Municipalities across the Netherlands are warning that waiting times for a new passport could increase significantly during this passport peak. So make sure you’re ahead of the game!

Waiting time: 1 to 4 weeks

The maximum wait between applying for your travel document and it being ready for collection is 4 weeks. In practice, you can usually pick up your new passport or identity card after 5 working days but, as this year looks set to be busier, it could take longer. Are you due to travel soon and in a big hurry? Most municipalities also have a fast-track application procedure for new travel documents. However, they do charge extra for this service.

Can I sort it out at Schiphol?

It’s not possible to obtain a new passport or ID card at Schiphol. This has to be done in the municipality where you live. So what can you do if you find yourself at the airport and have a last-minute problem with your travel documents? Go to the Royal Netherlands Marechaussee’s Emergency Documents Office. You will find their desk between departure halls 1 and 2 at Schiphol. They may be able to help you obtain a temporary emergency passport. But hopefully you won’t need this last resort and will soon be boarding your flight smoothly with your new passport or ID card at the ready. Have a good trip!

Read the previous blogs

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