How about the government’s accelerated service?
The current wait time for expedited passport processing ($60) is five to seven weeks. While that isn’t exactly quick, “[expediting] may well be worth [the fee] if you have imminent travel plans. There is, however, one workaround. Any travellers who can show proof of urgent travel, such as life-or-death emergencies, or who can show that their trip is within 72 hours, are given the opportunity to get an in-person appointment to renew their passport quickly.
If you can get an in-person appointment at one of the government’s 29 passport agencies or centres across the country, a US passport renewal agent will review your application and possibly issue you a passport on the spot if you are eligible. Alternatively, depending on the agency, their workload, and the date of anticipated travel, the agent may ask you to return at a specific time to receive it.
What to do if you need a passport quickly?
If not being able to renew your passport could result in the cancellation of a major trip, it stands to reason that you would go to extreme lengths to secure an appointment—even if that means paying for one.
One inventive method for potentially moving quickly through official channels: Contact your local representative, as well as the office of your U.S. senator or congressional representative, and request assistance in obtaining an appointment. With a trip in two days and no luck booking an appointment with the Department of State, they contacted their government representative and were able to get assistance—and continue their planned trip with a new passport in hand.
What can I expect if I renew via mail?
It’s scary to mail your passport without knowing when it’ll be returned. However, you should be able to track the status of your application through this page within two weeks of mailing it. Enter your last name, date of birth, social security number last four digits, and a security code.
It is advisable to take a photo of your passport before sending it in for renewal. “If your passport is lost in the mail, you’ll have a copy to refer to, which will save you time and effort during renewal of passport.