Call for an instant quote
0345 90 80 161
Open Mon to Fri 09:00 - 17:30 | Sat 09:00 - 16:00 (GMT)
10 June 2014 10:04
Half a million people face ruined summer holidays as a result of the passport backlog.
A backlog of passport applications is threatening to cause chaos for thousands of holidaymakers this summer.
Half a million people are currently waiting for new documents, according to some estimates, and it is feared the total could swell even more in the coming months as travellers look to soak up the rays in sunnier climes.
Reports even suggest that staff from outside the Passport Office have been drafted in to help deal with the escalating issue as applications are taking as long as two months to process in the most extreme cases.
Hundreds of holidaymakers have already missed out on pre-booked trips overseas after their passports failed to arrive before they were due to depart, leaving them out of pocket to the tune of hundreds of pounds.
Travel insurance can protect against cancellation and curtailment, so make sure you take out adequate cover when booking holidays.
The passport problems are understood to be most serious for those applying for children's passports, but Paul Pugh, the chief executive of the Passport Office, has strongly denied claims of a backlog.
He declared that more than 97% of straightforward passport renewal and child applications are being processed within the three-week target turnaround time, while more than 99% of straightforward applications are being processed within four weeks.
This is despite a period of "exceptional early summer demand" due to the improving economy and a rise in holiday bookings.
Mike Jones, from the Public and Commercial Services Union, recently wrote to Mr Pugh to demand urgent negotiations regarding pay and conditions for workers after reports emerged that staff are being forced to "paper over the cracks" of a passport backlog by working overtime.
Unions claim officials only acted when the backlog reached 350,000, by which time it was too late to make a significant impact.
06 December 2016
Eating a handful of nuts every day can help reduce your chances of suffering heart disease and other serious illnesses, scientists have claimed.
03 December 2016
Thousands of Britons could be heading off on snow-sports holidays without appropriate travel insurance cover, it has been warned.
01 December 2016
Pilots at German airline Lufthansa are on strike again after a two-day break in their campaign of walkouts.
02 December 2016
Britons are among the top spenders in Europe when it comes to holidays, new research has found.
30 November 2016
The UK should think about resuming flights to the popular tourism resort of Sharm el-Sheikh, according to a major United Nations agency.
29 November 2016
Plans are in place to develop a new aviation arrangement between the UK and US, to ensure holidaymakers can still fly between the two countries once Britain departs the EU.
26 November 2016
Hundreds of Lufthansa flights have been grounded after pilots working for the airline took part in a strike.
25 November 2016
The US is warning its citizens that Europe is facing a "heightened risk of terror attacks" at Christmas markets and other seasonal holiday events.
24 November 2016
A groundbreaking radiotherapy machine that can track the changing position of tumours in real time will soon be used to treat cancer patients in the UK.
23 November 2016
Top airline bosses are urging the government to scrap air passenger duty ahead of Wednesday's Autumn Statement.
22 November 2016
Winter sun is now the most popular holiday type, according to new research conducted by travel experts.
19 November 2016
A holiday price increase of 10% on trips to Europe could cause tourists to postpone their getaways next year, experts are warning.