The following news release was issued by the U.S. State Department on April 13. The PDF is available here.
As noted in the release, Passport Services will accommodate mariners whose current valid passport expires within 13 months, and those who need a passport for international voyages.
NOTICE TO MARINERS WITH INTERNATIONAL VOYAGES
April 13, 2020
Due to public health measures to limit the spread of COVID-19, effective March 20, 2020, we are only able to offer service for customers with a qualified life-or-death emergency and who need a passport for international travel within 72 hours (3 business days).
Mariners with International Voyages
Passport Services will also serve mariners who urgently need a passport for international voyages, and whose current valid passport expires in 13 months or less.
Instructions for Urgent Assistance
If you have not already applied for a passport:
- Contact the National Passport Information Center at 877-487-2778 and identify yourself as a mariner who urgently needs to apply for (or renew) a passport.
- The Duty Officer will take your information and schedule an appointment at the nearest passport agency.
- In addition to your passport application materials, described on travel.state.gov, you will also need to submit a letter from your employer or your U.S. mariners union, on company letterhead that includes:
- Your name
- Date of your next voyage and duration of the voyage
- Printed name and title of your supervisor or mariners union representative
- Signature of your supervisor or mariners union representative
- Date the letter was issued
- Make a clear copy of your Merchant Mariner Credential (MCC) to include with your application.
- Bring the application, required documents, and the passport fee that includes the $60 expedited fee with you to your appointment.
If you have already applied for your passport but have not received it, contact the National Passport Information Center at 877-487-2778 and identify yourself as a mariner who has already applied and urgently need your passport. The Duty Officer will provide further instructions and the passport agency will contact you to coordinate the delivery or pickup of the completed passport.
Applying for a Passport for Personal (Non-Life or Death Emergency) Travel
If you are applying for a passport for personal (non-life or death emergency) travel, please see our website travel.state.gov for instructions and the most up-to-date processing times.
We regret any inconvenience and request your patience and understanding as the majority of our passport agencies have limited mission critical staffing due to COVID-19.
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