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The cost of passports is about to increase – how to beat the hike

The changes could be implemented at the end of March

Chloe Best

The cost of a child's passport in the UK could soar by nearly 30 per cent in March, according to new plans announced by the Home Office. The cost could increase from £46 to £58.50, while the price of an adult passport will rise from £72.50 to £85 under the proposed scheme. The Home Office has said that it wants to move the cost of passport services to travellers to reduce the cost to taxpayers. The price hikes will apply to postal applications and will come into effect on 27 March 2018 if approved by Parliament.

Meanwhile, the cost of online passport applications will rise in line with inflation, with the price of a child's online passport rising seven per cent to £49, and an adult online passport increasing four per cent to £75.50.

British-passports

The cost of a child's passport could increase by nearly 30 per cent

It is possible to beat the price increase by renewing early, as long as your existing passport is due to expire before 31 December 2018. This is because when you renew, the time left on your existing passport is added up to your new one, up to a maximum of nine months - so you can renew at the current price without losing out.

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If you're unable to renew your passport before the changes come into effect, you're best to use the online application rather than postal application, as this will be significantly cheaper. An adult online application will cost £75.50 compared to £85 for the postal application, while a child's online application is £49 – some £9.50 cheaper than the £58.50 a postal application would cost.

family at airport

The price increase applies to postal applications

"The passport is an invaluable document that allows millions of British people to travel around the world for business and pleasure," Immigration Minister Caroline Nokes said. "Our priority is to ensure that UK travellers have a secure, effective, and efficient service from the point of application to the time they pass through the UK border and it is only right that we should look at this whole process when setting our fees. These proposals will ensure that those people who don’t travel abroad are not footing the bill for those who do."

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