Requirements for Instant Passport Photos at the Passport Office

If you intend to travel abroad with your infant, you must first obtain a child passport. As a result, you’ll need to obtain acceptable passport photos. Many parents quickly discover that getting a passport photo of their baby is more difficult than it appears. The following are the requirements for infant passport photos as specified by the US Passport Office:

Top 8 requirements for infant passport photo:

  1. The photos must be 2 inches by 2 inches in size and taken within the last 6 months.
  2. The baby must be facing forward and looking at the camera, with a white or off-white background.
  3. The head in the image must be between 1 inch and 1 3/8 inch in size.
  4. Please, no hats, headgear, or cute little baby bonnets.
  5. The baby should have a “natural” expression, which means that his or her mouth should be closed and he or she should not be laughing, screaming, or crying.
  6. The photo must be of high quality, clear, and in focus.
  7. The baby must be the only thing in the picture—nothing used to support the baby is allowed in the frame. This includes you, your hands, your arm, and your child’s car seat.
  8. Pacifiers are not permitted.

Bribery with candy or a toy is usually enough to get an older child to sit still and look at the camera. But what if you’re expecting a child? Newborn babies can’t hold their heads up on their own, they can’t yet understand or follow instructions, and they’re prone to laughing, cooing, or crying at the wrong time when you try to photograph them. It may appear that the passport office expects you to perform miracles, but there are a few tricks you can employ to obtain acceptable photos, even with newborns.

Going to a professional photographer who specializes in photographing infants, rather than a drugstore or post office, is probably the simplest way to get passport-worthy photos of your child. Then you can delegate the task to the photographer. If that is not in your budget, the following suggestions will help:

In 2022, here are some pointers for infant passport photos!

Try laying a baby down on a piece of white poster board or a white blanket on the ground for babies who can’t sit up on their own. This solves the issue of trying to hold the baby away from your body in such a way that your hands/arms aren’t visible in the photo.

  • Try to schedule your photo session when your baby is most likely to be happy.
  • Stand behind the photographer with something that will pique your baby’s interest, such as a favorite toy.
  • Expect to do several retakes before getting a good shot.
  • If you’re taking your own passport photos, make sure the stage is well-lit so you don’t need a flash. The passport office is put off by dark shadows cast in the background.

Consider using a passport expediting service to submit your child’s passport application to the passport office if you need to travel within the next month. If necessary, a passport photo maker service such as can help you get your baby’s passport in as little as one day!

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