LAS VEGAS(KTNV) — If you’re in need of a passport you may run into some problems. There is a major backlog across the country and right now it’ll take months to get yours in hand.
People across the country are finally able to jet set off to the dream destinations they couldn’t go to last year. While we were all cooped up in our homes and cities, some of us let our passports expire. Others are trying to get one for the first time.
A massive backlog, caused largely by the pandemic, has the state department scrambling to process millions of applications.
"The acceptance agent appointment is the hard part right now," said the assistant manager of PostalAnnex+, Jessica Moore.
"We work with the Southern Nevada Health District. They have an acceptance agent there," she explained. "It is by appointment only. I actually just called and spoke with them and they told me their soonest appointment is September."
Right now there is an 18-week wait for new and renewal passports. If you’re looking to get an expedited one and are willing to shell out the extra cash, you still could wait up to 12 weeks. Moore says they have people coming in daily wanting a passport.
"We, unfortunately, have people that come in and want to get their passport within the next couple of days," she said. "They have a trip next week or two weeks. Unfortunately, we cannot help due to the government's restraints right now."
If you sent in a passport request before the middle of June, you may not know about the change in wait times. Las Vegas resident Brandyn Dente mailed her passport in for renewal in the middle of April. At the time it said 10 to 12 weeks. After not getting a status update, she called on July 1.
"I was on the phone for 5 and a half hours. I watched a couple of movies. I finally talked to this guy. Luckily they hadn’t gone home yet because it was 8:30 our time," said Dente. "He was not so nice and said he couldn’t guarantee you’ll get it."
Now it’s a waiting game to see if she can go to Cancun to celebrate her two friends' big 50th birthdays on Aug. 4.
"My status is still the same. It says processing. It hasn’t changed. Hopefully, I should get it by the 30. I paid an extra $77 to get it expedited."
It’s recommended that if your passport is expiring soon you should go and get it renewed now. Countries can reject entrance if your passport is expiring in less than 6 months.