Passport Photo Requirements

Passport Photo Requirements

Getting a passport can be done online or in person. It can seem to be a long, drawn out process, but it is necessary if you want to go overseas. All countries require a passport and that passport must also include a current photo of the traveler.

If you are going to get a passport, one of the necessary items to send along with the application is a photo of yourself that meets several requirements. You need to ensure that the place that you go to have your picture taken knows that the passport legal photo requirements are the following:

  • Two identical color photos 2×2 inches in size.
  • Must be taken within the last six months showing how you look now.
  • Must be full face and seen from the front on a white or off white background.
  • There must be between one inch and one and three-eighths inches from the bottom of the chin to the top of the head.
  • Must wear normal street clothing with no uniforms allowed or religious items unless you wear them every day.
  • Hats are not allowed that block your hair or your hairline.
  • You should wear normally worn items such as prescription glasses, a hearing aid, wig or comparable items.
  • No dark or nonprescription sunglasses are allowed except if required medically.
  • A person’s eyes must be opened in the photo.
  • You must be able to see the area from the top of your hair to your shoulders.
  • There can be no shadows on the face.
  • The person’s mouth must be closed and have a neutral look on their face.

Hints and tips for taking passport photos

You should not take a passport photo of yourself because the requirements are hard to meet and it’s best if they are done by a specialized passport taking place. You can go to many drugstores like Walgreens, FedEx, Kinkos, Sam’s Club, Costco, Rite Aid or CVS and they can take passport photos. Another good place is the post office as they can also do it for you. There are also other convenient places to have your passport photo done and they are easy to find. If you don’t have a photo that matches the above requirements, then your application could be delayed or not processed.

Places not to get a photo taken for a passport

Even though it is easy to find a place to take a passport photo, here are places you shouldn’t use as they will not meet the requirements:


  • Don’t get them at a photo booth, as these will not be correctly formatted for a passport photo.
  • Don’t use old photos you have on your hard drive since they have to be done within six months.
  • Don’t use cheap disposable cameras to take a passport photo as the resolution isn’t good enough.

All in all, if you follow the above rules, you should have no problems getting a passport photo for your next passport.