The cost of a British passport is set to rise by up to 27 per cent, depending on how you apply, under new Government plans.
Thinking of applying for or renewing a British Passport? You can save money by applying or renewing before the new prices come into effect in late March 2018.
At present, fees for online applications, which are available to all UK-based applicants and postal applications are the same. However in an effort to increase the use of the government’s online services, the rise in cost of a passport will be greatest for those applying via the post.
Currently in the UK, a standard first adult passport or renewal costs £72.50 regardless of how the application is made.
Under the proposed changes due to take effect in March, the fee will rise to £75.50 for online applications and £85 for postal applications.
Charges for children’s passports will go up from £46 currently to £49 online and £58.50 in the post.
Despite the price hike, the government maintains that adults choosing to apply online would still be paying less than they would have in 2009, with passport fees having decreased in 2012.
Renewing a passport?
Clearly many British passport holders will save if they are able to renew before the new rates take effect. Remember you can renew a passport up to nine months before the date of expiry.
Why the price increase?
In the announcement by the UK Home Office it states “The proposals, which remain subject to Parliamentary approval, would mean the money collected through fees will contribute to the cost of processing British passport holders as they travel in and out of the country, shifting the burden for paying for these services away from the taxpayer – millions of whom do not currently hold passports. These reforms
are part of plans by the Home Office to invest £100 million on border security and infrastructure next year.”
“In addition, as is currently the case, the fee will pay for the costs associated with issuing UK passports and for consular support provided to British nationals abroad.”
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.”
Adding “These proposals will ensure that those people who don’t travel abroad are not footing the bill for those who do.”
The Home Office added “the changes are fully supported by the fee-setting powers that were brought in by the Immigration Act 2016 and if they are approved by Parliament, they will come into force on 27 March 2018.”
It was clarified that the proposals are unrelated to the announcement that the colour of the UK passport will be changing in 2019, which will be delivered at no additional cost.
To apply for or renew a British passport online click the link below: