Residents invited to passport application event on Saturday
Congressman Brian Higgins joined the U.S. State Department's Buffalo Passport Agency in announcing the opportunity for Western New Yorkers to apply for or renew passports at an event being held Saturday.
"This is a great opportunity for local residents to stop in to apply for or renew passports," Higgins said. "There will be staff on hand to walk people through the process, and this event provides a convenience and cost savings to those who attend."
Passport Agency Director James Theis said, "The rest of the year, this agency is required to charge applicants an expedite fee of $60, and we are only open Monday-Friday. But for this event, we will be open on Saturday, and anyone without urgent travel will not need to pay the expedite fee. We urge everyone to take advantage of this special weekend opportunity to apply for or renew their passport."
The Buffalo Passport Agency provides passport services year-round to residents in need of a passport for urgent travel. For those who partake in Saturday's Passport Day, there will be no need to schedule an appointment, and the usual expedite fee will be waived for all non-emergency cases. Residents in need of a new or updated passport can visit the Buffalo Passport Agency from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. at 111 Genesee St., Buffalo.
Western New York is home to four of the nation's busiest border crossings, making access to a passport agency vital. Higgins led the fight to bring a passport facility to Western New York. Prior to the opening of the Buffalo facility in 2010, Western New Yorkers in urgent need of a passport would have to travel to New York City.
Additional information on passport fees and requirements is available through the U.S. Department of State website at www.travel.state.gov. September is designated by the State Department Bureau of Consular Affairs as Passport Awareness Month.