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Minister Flanagan announces Irish Passport Card

Minister Flanagan at the Launch of the Irish Passport Card

The new Irish Passport Card

The new Irish Passport Card will be accepted for travel within the European Union and the European Economic Area.

The passport card will be available from mid-July 2015 to all Irish citizens who are over 18 years and hold a valid Irish Passport. The new card will have a maximum validity of 5 years (or the remaining validity of an individual’s passport book) and will cost €35.

The card is a pioneering initiative of the Department’s Passport Service. It is the first of its kind in the world

The security features of the card have incorporated the advice of security experts including An Garda Síochána. One innovative feature of note is the embedded hologram photo on a strip on the reverse of the card. This is the first occasion on which this security feature will be used on travel documents.

Speaking at the launch of the passport card Minster Flanagan said:

“The new card will be particularly useful for frequent travellers as it will allow people to travel within Europe while their passport book is with an embassy as part of a visa application process. The new card will also provide a useful backup travel document within Europe in the event that someone loses their passport while travelling.

Applications for the Passport Card can be made through a smart phone app or online

Applications for the new passport card can be made online or using a new app from mid-July 2015.

Those using the app will be able to take a photograph on their phone, and the app will confirm that the photograph meets the international standards for passport photographs.

Minister Flanagan added:

“The card and app are further examples of the innovative approach of Ireland’s Passport Service, which is focused on providing a first-class service to Irish citizens. Recent innovations include the introduction of a new Passport Book; Passport Express, which aims to provide a turnaround time of 10 working days and an appointment service for those needing to travel urgently.”

Sample Irish Passport card - Front and Back

Details Passport Card

Last week the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade also launched a new Top Ten Travel Tips leaflet at the Holiday World show. The leaflet contains tips for those travelling abroad including taking out travel insurance and registering their details on before they travel.

Top Travel Tips - Passport Service Image

On the leaflet, Minister Flanagan stated:

“It contains useful tips for staying safe while abroad and reminds travellers that it is vital to take out comprehensive travel insurance before they holiday abroad and also to comply with local laws. It also has information on where to seek help if things go wrong while abroad.”

The Minister also reminded citizens to renew their passport in the off-peak period:

“January, the month of new year’s resolutions, is an ideal time to check if passports are up to date, and, if necessary to apply for a new passport booklet.”

Last year a quarter of all passport renewal applications were received during the months of May and June. Citizens are advised to renew their passports before the Summer rush to ensure the shortest renewal time.

Citizens who plan to renew their passport in 2015 are advised to do so in the off-peak period

Applying for a passport: