A few blog posts ago, I wrote with some trepidation about the need to renew my passport. Although it wasn’t set to expire for 2 years, I was running out of blank pages, and didn’t have enough for an upcoming trip. So, I made the trip to the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo, and watched with some distress as my trusty passport was packaged to be sent away for what was estimated to be a 3- or 4-week period for renewal.
Turns out my angst was unfounded. Just a week and a day after my venture to the Embassy, a package arrived. And there it was – a bright, shiny new passport, filled with blank pages just waiting for future stamps and visas. And my old passport…which still contains my current Japanese visa, by the way…was there, too, unscathed but for some strategically placed punches to show its retirement.
All in all, I must say I was surprised by the relative ease of the whole process. Yes, there are some specific instructions that you have to follow in completing the renewal application and getting the package ready to submit. And the process of going through security and getting to the passport window at the embassy was, not unexpectedly, a little tedious. But all in all, the process was well-explained, straightforward, and it worked…even faster than promised.