Ireland’s Guide To Money And Living

Passport prep

Prep the passport

Applying for a new passport? You might as well save as much as you can – a standard 10-year passport will cost you €80, and €110 if you opt for the larger, 66-page version, while the photos could be anywhere from €6 to €8 depending on where you go.

Though you could also opt for Boots Photo (eight passport photos for €1.99, with 20 free 6×4 prints once you sign up online) – the best way to save money, however, is to take care of it yourself. There are a range of options out there., for example, allows you to create passport photos to Irish specifications for free – just take a snap with your smartphone or digital camera, and upload the results.

If you are supplying your own photo, just be aware that there are a number of requirements you must satisfy. Firstly, your head must be centred and you must look straight at the camera, the background should be plain, and don’t smile! Minimum photo size is 35mm x 45mm, the maximum is 38mm x 50mm.

You’ll also have to ensure the photos are printed on photo-quality paper, but you can get 12 sheets of A4 photo paper for €1.49 from Dealz. A full list of requirements is available online from the Department of Foreign Affairs.

Top tips

If this is your first time applying for a passport as an adult resident in Ireland, you’ll have to include a photocopy of your Public Services Card. This also applies if your passport was last issued before January 2005 and it has been reported as lost, stolen or damaged.

Don’t forget to get the back of your photos signed by a witness – a member of An Garda Síochána will provide this service.

It generally takes at least 11 working days to process renewal applications, and 20 working days for first time applications, or for lost/stolen replacements. If you’re in a rush, An Post’s Passport Express service will take ten working days, though you’ll have to pay an additional €9.50 for the privilege (€16 for up to four applications). A Passport Appointment service is also available for those travelling within three to ten working days.

When not writing about all things personal finance, You & Your Money's editor Conor Forrest enjoys reading, football and getting lost in an ocean of Wikipedia articles.