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Read this before you apply for your British passport

by John Dunn | Feb 07, 2018
  • I recently wrote articles on the looming UK visa fee increases, as well as the immigration health surcharge increase, but those aren’t the only fees increasing this year. The Home Office has announced that the price of British passports is set to increase on 27 March 2018. The fees have increased across the board, but in various ways. Let’s have a look at how and why the fees have changed.

    The new fees

    Passport type

    Current price

    New price: Online application

    New price: Postal application





    Child (under 16)




    See also: Immigration health surcharge set to increase massively in 2018

    Ordering a passport by post will now be £12.50 more expensive than doing it online. The cost of a postal passport application for under 16s rises 27%, and for adults 17%; whereas online fees are rising 6.5% for children and 4% for adults. 

    Why are UK passport fees increasing? 

    While the fees are still subject to parliamentary approval, if they are approved, they are set to come into effect on 27 March this year. The Home Office has said that the main motivation for the increase is to encourage people to apply online, so that they can create a “self-sustainable immigration and borders system”. The higher charges are also said to reflect the increased cost and admin of processing postal applications as opposed to online applications.

    See also: Don't delay! Apply for your UK visa before the application fees increase

    If you’re thinking that there’s going to be rush on applying for British passports because of the fee hike, you’re not alone. HM Passport Office has said that they plan to employ 200 extra staff to cope with the extra demand in the run-up to the price hike. It currently takes about three weeks for a new British passport to arrive, so with some luck, the time you wait for your passport to be given to you won’t be pushed out too far.

    Want to apply for British citizenship?

    Should you apply for your passport now?

    With the fee increase set to be implemented in March, you have ample time to apply for or renew your British passport before the fee increase comes into effect. Remember: You do not necessarily have to wait until your passport expires to renew it, as any time left on your old passport will be transferred to your new one, up to a maximum of nine months.

    British citizenship is immeasurably valuable, and we can help you obtain it and retain it. Get in touch on +44 (0) 20 7759 7581 or send us an email on

    We are a professional services company that specialises in cross-border financial and immigration advice and solutions.

    Our teams in the UK, South Africa and Australia can ensure that when you decide to move overseas, invest offshore or expand your business internationally, you’ll do so with the backing of experienced local experts.

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