Proposed Elimination of Visa Page Insert Service for U.S. Passport Book Holders
Currently, all U.S. passport book applicants may apply for either a 28-page or 52-page passport book at no extra charge. U.S. passport book holders may then apply for additional visa pages while the passport book is still valid. The Department of State proposes eliminating the option to add visa pages in passports beginning January 1, 2016. To help mitigate the need for visa page inserts, the Department began issuing the larger 52-page passport book in October 2014 to all overseas U.S. passport applicants at no extra cost. U.S. passport applicants applying domestically can still obtain the 52-page passport book at no extra charge by requesting it on the application form. The elimination of visa page inserts coincides with the Department's anticipated rollout of the Next Generation Passport in 2016. The Next Generation Passport incorporates new security features designed to protect the integrity of U.S. passport books against fraud and misuse. An interagency working group determined that the addition of visa page inserts could reduce the effectiveness of these new security features. If this change is implemented, the fee for this service will be removed from the Schedule of Fees for Consular Services.