top of page


On June 7, 2023, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) issued a written statement of its plan to maintain record productivity in the face of unprecedented passport and visa demand. Currently, demand for both U.S. passports and visas to the United States are at all-time highs. These numbers are only growing, and the Bureau of Consular Affairs strives to meet the demand.

To meet the current U.S. passport demand, the State Department instituted an “all hands on deck” posture. Since January 1, DOS authorized between 30,000 and 40,000 overtime hours per month for direct-hire personnel at passport agencies and centers. Additionally, volunteers have been recruited to work in Washington D.C.’s Satellite Office. The adjudicative staff increased by 10% as well. As a result, 5.4% more passports and cards were issued in the first five months of this fiscal year compared to the same period in FY2022’s record-breaking year. The State Department publicized the routine passport processing time as 10-13 weeks.

Additionally, visa processing times became delayed due to travel shutdowns, U.S. and Foreign restrictions, and low staffing. Due to expanded expenditure authorities along with supplemental funding provided by the U.S. Congress, hiring freezes have been lifted. Since the United States re-opened for travel, the State Department has streamlined visa processing and dedicated more resources to reducing wait times, consistent with national security. These efforts include surging staff overseas to adjudicate visa applications, working with DHS to exercise interview waiver authorities for low-risk visa applicants, and expanding the development and use of IT solutions to take advantage of capacity wherever it exists.

DOS also plans for a more agile, optimized future of consular processing. The Consular and Border Security Programs FY2024 requested a budget of $4.5 billion to respond to the highest demand for passport services in history and the pent up demand for visa adjudications while supporting their efforts to modernize complex IT systems that were built more than 20 years ago. This modernization includes meeting a goal before the end of the year where eligible Americans will be able to renew their passports entirely online.

To view the written statement, click here.


Featured Posts
Recent Posts
Search By Tags
No tags yet.
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square
bottom of page