WACO, Texas — A passport backlog across the nation may put a damper on many people's vacations if you wait too long.
As Americans are vacationing again, there are extensive wait times and delays for processing passport.
According to the state department , its taking 18 weeks for regular service and about 12 weeks for expedited applications.
Andres Rodriguez passport services spokesperson for the department of state said demand is typically high during the summer however they are experiencing several additional issues including delays in receiving mail and slow processing as offices re-open from COVID restrictions are causing the backlog.
"You multiply this by hundreds of thousands of applications mixed with some delays that we are seeing with internal issues related to COVID we are tacking on an addition to our normal processing times," Rodriguez said.
If you urgently need a passport, you can go to one of the regional offices in Dallas, Houston, or El Paso but you must be traveling within three days.
"You have to show up with an appointment and proof of your travel within three days or proof of an emergency, a life or death emergency in order to get a passport," Rodriguez said.
The state department recommends submitting your applications now if you need a passport for the holidays. By August they hope to have 97% of staff back in the office and more appointment availability and capacity to address the high demand.
For a list of post offices across Central Texas that accept applications, click here.