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Problems and delays in the UK passport office from overseas

laplandsnow
posts: 6
Problems and delays in the UK passport office from overseas

Hello,

I applied for a renew on the UK passport using this new online fill in a form service. On their website they were giving a guide line of 4 weeks turn around.

I am now at 6 weeks and the passport has not even reached the examination team. I am now being told by the passport office they have a big back log and it is taking 7 weeks for passports to even be looked at. (its taken some doing to get them to admit the extent of the delays for applications from overseas)

Anyone else having problems at the moment? anyone know of anything that can be done?

I have tried calling, begging.. to no avail..

Please anyone else applying from overseas leave 3 months to allow for postage and processing! or better still do it when you get back to the UK :(

any advise would be great

Auckland Region...
posts: 4,923
reviews: 78
1. Re: Problems and delays in the UK passport office from overseas

tripadvisor.co.nz/…57967224

Very recent similar post.

laplandsnow
posts: 6
2. Re: Problems and delays in the UK passport office from overseas

Thank you..

I was one of the people commenting on that thread but for some reason I am no longer able to..? Very strange..

Seeing as the last comment ended with there are no problems it take three weeks I am back on my plight of information and of cause still no sign of passport :(

Edited: 8:36 pm, May 03, 2014
London, United...
Destination Expert
for Berlin
posts: 2,959
reviews: 52
3. Re: Problems and delays in the UK passport office from overseas

Overseas customers are advised it normally takes up to 6 weeks to process an application (3 weeks for in-country) but it's peak season now, just before summer holidays. When do you need to travel?

laplandsnow
posts: 6
4. Re: Problems and delays in the UK passport office from overseas

Hi,

I already wanted to travel but now I am running out of time as I only have a few more weeks in which I can fly.

I just spoke to the passport office this morning who have now had the passport 7 weeks, it has moved to the examination floor but due to backlogs it could take another 3 weeks to pass the examination floor, then it still has to be printed checked and sent back so I could be waiting another month yet.

Basically they are too busy, they cant cope and they don't care how long it takes as they do not have a max time for overseas passport applications. (and have said this much)

So all in all if they allow the truth out they are now on a 10 week min service but they are doing their dam hardest not to admit that's how bad it is.

London, United...
posts: 15,736
reviews: 23
5. Re: Problems and delays in the UK passport office from overseas

What is a few more weeks, exactly? In periods of peak demand, then the service will be slower, the wait time is simply an average. As said before, mine took just over three weeks over Xmas and new year renewing from bxls. The majority of that time is when it's with the examiner.

There is very little you can do other than keep checking progress.

I think the lesson learned here for everyone reading it is to give yourself as much time as possible to renew before travel, you can renew several months before it expires and ensure you have a comfortable safety margin in terms of time.

However I agree, if you are looking at close to three months, then that's not really an acceptable turn around period, especially for someone who may travel frequently and need their passport often. If your situation had happened to me, it would have caused me significant issues. Obviously something wrong with staffing levels during peak periods.

Australia
posts: 12
6. Re: Problems and delays in the UK passport office from overseas

We are in a similar situation. My partner sent his passport for renewal on late March, via International Priority Courier. It arrived on April 3. He also applied on-line. Money has been taken from his account. Because we are 'dual', he also sent his Australian Passport (as is now required). Since the three weeks minimum time was up we have been phoning and phoning the customer call centre (who I privately refer to as the 'gatekeeping centre') and have just received rebuffs. Emails sent are simply responded to my an automated system that asks for further details (they are then ignored when these are sent). Our travel date is in mid June. Yesterday we were informed that they 'could not find his application number in their system' (WHAT does this mean?). I am now nearly frantic. Bear in mind that we have now lost his Aussie Passport as well. Today I phoned DFAT re what we can do re his Aussie passport (pay a huge amount for a new one, it seems). I needed to phone them twice to check up on a detail ... and both operators told me they were inundated with calls from stressed people re similar incidents with the UK (Liverpool) office. I also phoned the British High Commission in Canberra and was told the same thing - many duals have been phoning because they now have NO passports. The new system may work for some, but it seems it has holes in it the size of craters on the moon. Be very, very careful when using it and expect to have to wait ages and troubleshoot, based on not only our experience, but what we were told by both DFAT and the British High Commission.

This was just a general warning, but any advice re dealing with the travesty that is the Liverpool office would be highly appreciated.

PS - I agree that we should have done it earlier, etc. but we thought that we'd left plenty of time, especially as the website does say four weeks, and this was the advice also given on the consular site in Australia. They have now had it SIX WEEKS and it is still 'being examined'.

7. Re: Problems and delays in the UK passport office from overseas

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Removed on: 3:49 am, May 16, 2014
Edited: 3:49 am, May 16, 2014
8. Re: Problems and delays in the UK passport office from overseas

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Removed on: 7:09 pm, May 21, 2014
London, United...
posts: 15,736
reviews: 23
9. Re: Problems and delays in the UK passport office from overseas

Yes, I'm in Brussels and they stopped the embassy system awhile ago ( it used to be via France) and now has to go to the passport office in London. I'm not sure why they changed it, but there is obviously some big problems right now in terms of resource to process in a timely manner.

Portland, Oregon
Destination Expert
for Air Travel
posts: 16,247
reviews: 5
10. Re: Problems and delays in the UK passport office from overseas

"Because we are 'dual', he also sent his Australian Passport (as is now required)."

Is this true, in that you have to send in your "other" passport if you have dual UK/XY citizenship? Why should they (the UK) care? In fact when I last renewed my British (in person at London) the man said "we don't care about that one" when I showed him my US.

I would **never** surrender both my UK and US passports to the same body. If that means letting my British passport lapse then so long British! In fact I'd recommend the same day in person service at UK offices; it costs an arm and a leg but you get it back same day.