Getting a passport isn't cheap. For adults the basic passport fee is $67, plus an execution fee of $30, grand total $97; for children under 16 expect to pay $82, $52 for the application, $30 for an execution fee. For a family of four, including two parents and two children, the fees add up to $358 plus additional costs for passport photos and nearly double that amount to expedite passports.
Expedited passports, which are supposed to be "processed within three workdays," can cut down on the normal 10 to 14 weeks to receive your passport in theory—but don't count on it.
Antineau had to renew her family's passports in January 2006. A passport official gave her the wrong amount for her expedited passport fees. The passport office never called her to tell her she'd overpaid, instead relying on letters to inform her. Luckily Antineau called the office and found out about the delay.
"If I hadn't called I wouldn't have known," says Antineau. "They had my phone number, my email, but yet they sent me a letter to tell me about the problem." Antineau wasn't sure if her children would receive their passports in time for their spring trip to England. Thankfully, she got the passports in time, but she cautions other parents to check every detail to avoid delays.
If you paid to expedite your passport and didn't receive it quickly, the US Passport office says it will reimburse you for the extra costs.