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Print my own passport photos?

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Old Jul 19, 11, 10:39 am
#1
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Print my own passport photos?

My passport is up for renewal in a few weeks. They want photos to go with the application.

The last time I got a passport, I just went to AAA and they took them. I have a printer that does a very nice job with photographs, especially on the nice glossy photo paper.

Is it acceptable to print my own photos and send them in? I understand that the inks used may be subject to fading, especially in sunlight, but the photo will spend 99.99% of its life in the dark.

There may be rules against it, but I don't know.

Any advice?
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Old Jul 19, 11, 10:52 am
#2
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You can print them yourself if you want, there is a template you can download and print on the photo section of their website for how large the head has to be, etc.

If you are eligible for the aaa to take them for free, that's probably not only easier, but much faster (even if you have to pay you will probably spend less to get them done that way instead of wasting a pack of paper in trial and error to get it right)
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Old Jul 19, 11, 11:02 am
#3
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+1 - They are incredibly strict, down to the millimeter. $10-20 to have it done professionally is well worth it if you have travel anytime soon.
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Old Jul 19, 11, 11:03 am
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If you go to http://epassportphoto.com you can upload a picture and it will size it and format it for printing on standard 4 X 6 prints. Then either upload the resulting picture to Walmart photofinishing or wherever and get prints for a few pennies, or else print it on your own photo printer.
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Old Jul 19, 11, 11:07 am
#5
mp2

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I tried ePassportphoto, but somehow my head was always getting chopped in the actual print (The JPEG from ePassport Photo came out OK).

After trying out a few times, I finally went to Costco. They give you 2 prints for $4.99.
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Old Jul 19, 11, 12:02 pm
#6
mkt

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I've used ePassport Photo for my US passport, US passport card, and Spanish passport as well as a few visas. My first attempt was a bit worrying since I didn't know if it was going to be approved, but once it was approved, the subsequent uses have been worry free.
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Old Jul 19, 11, 12:46 pm
#7

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Originally Posted by mp2 View Post
After trying out a few times, I finally went to Costco. They give you 2 prints for $4.99.
Local CVS pharmacy does it for $8.99 plus tax for 6 prints [used to be for 8 prints]. Always nice to have extra photos in case you need a visa, etc. Always carry extra pix when I travel, just in case...
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Old Jul 19, 11, 1:31 pm
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just use the jpg from epassportphoto and goto cvs and self print for ~$.30
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Old Jul 19, 11, 1:44 pm
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My wife and I printed our own photos on our home printer. I had an urgent travel trip so I took my application to the passport office in DC. The lady behind the counter said that mine was "too grainy" and I had to go have new pictures made at the place next door.

My wife mailed hers in and received a new passport without incident. You can't tell the difference between ours with the plastic sheet they put over the photos.

I halfway wonder if there is a referral "fee" for everyone who gets sent to to the place next to the passport office.
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Old Jul 19, 11, 2:40 pm
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I do freelance photography for a pretty large design firm and their PR department called to book me to shoot the founder's passport photo. Let's just say I charged many, many times what corner drugstore would charge. I followed the guidelines and supplied them with a couple of prints.

When I made the prints I used a glossy paper that looked and felt like a Polaroid print. I don't know whether it made a difference, but I suspected that subliminally they were more likely to accept it. As far as I know everything worked out fine.
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Old Jul 19, 11, 3:34 pm
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I uploaded mine to Walgreens website and printed there on their regular photo paper for $0.19 per 4" x 6" which I think had 6 photos on it. I made them using some program I downloaded for this purpose, I don't remember which one. If your printer is high quality, I'm sure you can use it.
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Old Jul 19, 11, 3:56 pm
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Originally Posted by rofly View Post
I uploaded mine to Walgreens website and printed there on their regular photo paper for $0.19 per 4" x 6" which I think had 6 photos on it. I made them using some program I downloaded for this purpose, I don't remember which one. If your printer is high quality, I'm sure you can use it.
I used Walgreens too to upload the photo arranged/croped on http://epassportphoto.com site. Curiously, though Walgreens originally refused to sell it to me. I believe some photo clerk thought I was cheating their system of taking a snapshot, uploading to their own software, and selling the same for $12 (or whatever it is). I had some strong words for the manager, and was on my was $0.19 later...

I have used the website for my own passport as well as two other family members. Never a problem.
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Old Jul 19, 11, 4:11 pm
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I printed out my daughter's no problem.

I went to CVS for mine after I wasted too much time getting the sizing and color right (and avoiding shadows) to do those on my home printer. also no problem, even though CVS's picture wasn't great quality.

Perhaps soon State will allow you to upload a digital picture instead.
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Old Jul 19, 11, 8:58 pm
#14
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Originally Posted by drewguy View Post
I printed out my daughter's no problem.

I went to CVS for mine after I wasted too much time getting the sizing and color right (and avoiding shadows) to do those on my home printer. also no problem, even though CVS's picture wasn't great quality.

Perhaps soon State will allow you to upload a digital picture instead.
If it's not too late, scan the CVS photos. Then you can always print more copies out at home, knowing they'll be right size/color/etc.

Agree with the poster above who suggested that glossy paper can make all the difference. Matte finish can look less than crisp and even grainy.
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Old Jul 19, 11, 9:55 pm
#15

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I made my own. With a little bit of knowledge of mathematics to scale the picture correctly and a photo editing program it really isn't too difficult at all. I printed them from the one hour photo at Wal Mart. No problems getting my Indian visa or my passport with them. Just follow the guidelines for passport photos. No problems.
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