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Travel within 2 weeks, not meeting deadline because of wring helpline advice!!

Travel within 2 weeks, not meeting deadline because of wring helpline advice!!

Home Forums General Passport Application Discussion Travel within 2 weeks, not meeting deadline because of wring helpline advice!!

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  • #17022
    eugenia-shi
    Participant

    Hi everyone,

    Sorry for the long post, but this info is required to understand our situation fully.

    Three weeks ago my partner and I discovered that my partner’s passport needs to be renewed before our travel plans on the 21 of June. We didn’t think much of it, as we haven’t heard about the 10 week waiting time in the news and my partner submitted a standard renewal application. Only about an hour later, I saw the 10 weeks processing times and the option to get the passport quicker through added value services.

    We immediately called the helpline to make sure that we could change the application to fast track or premium service, and we were Told BY THE OFFICIAL ADVISOR that we need to cancel the application and try to book fast track or premium online. When we couldn’t find a way to cancel the standard application we called again, and a different advisor once again confirmed that we can book fast track and just post a letter to the passport office to cancel the standard one. We were assured having two active applications shouldn’t cause problems with booking the second appointment and the cancellation timeline (apparently up ton6 weeks as we later found out) was never mentioned.

    Fast forward to yesterday and my partner’s fast track appointment when they were refused service on the basis of having two active applications! The only choose was to post the old passport to the passport office in Peterborough and continue with the standard appointment and maybe try to upgrade it. £150 down the drain because they don’t give refunds and now we’re severely out of time before our trip (2 weeks)

    Later yesterday I called the helpline again and was told that the letter with the cancellation request has been received! So now the priority is to make sure that the standard application doesn’t get cancelled as well! This advisor was very helpful however, and said she will request an urgent callback for us. Needless to say that no one has called either of us so far.

    In any case, it seems like our only option so far is to go to the office without an appointment 48 hours prior to our trip, unless we magically manage to get an upgrade which seems highly unlikely. But my main question is, can we show up the day before our flight if the application gets cancelled because of that letter my partner has posted? Can we plead our case in that situation, or will we 100% not get let in? Thank you in advance!

    #17024
    wanting3
    Participant

    In my experience the staff at the call enter are useless! I only got anywhere by requesting a call back from the upgrade team who did call me 24 hours later. I’d say your best bet is to go to your nearest passport office 48 hours before. However, I do believe your documents do need to be sent and scanned into the system to be able to get anywhere. My documents took 12 days from actually being received until being scanned into the system. I’d send the passport and any other documents if required with a cover letter saying you no longer wish for you original application to be cancelled. I hope things get sorted for you

    #17028
    eugenia-shi
    Participant

    Thank you for the advice!

    How do you request a callback from the upgrade team? I’ve sent an email to PeterboroughUpgradeTeam@hmpo.gov.uk with all the details, but didn’t even get an automated response? Is there another way?

    We’ve sent the passport off yesterday without a cover letter unfortunately as we were in a rush and despair and the whole potential cancellation issue has arisen later in the day after another call to the helpline… it was received today so fingers crossed it will get scanned in before the 20th! 🤞

    #17029
    eugenia-shi
    Participant

    My worry is that we won’t be let in even 48 hours prior to travel, because we were convinced we had the passport in the bag when we got advice from the helpline and when we actually succeeded in getting the fast track appointment booked… so we never intended to go through with the standard application, so it will only be 4 weeks since we’ve applied and only nearly two weeks since the old passport has been signed for…

    We were counting on the fast track service, the belief which was back up by the passport office agents and we have paid to have the passport ready next week. And now we can’t even get a refund

    #17052
    wanting3
    Participant

    I just rang the number that’s on the website and followed the prompts. Try calling when the lines open, I got through straight away. I asked to get a call back as they couldn’t give me any useful advice to my query. They noted everything down and I was called the next day and the application approved the day after. The problem you might have is that the documents need to be scanned in for them to process your application. Usually that happens within 2 weeks. Unfortunately until the tracker shows documents received they won’t be able to help. I think things are being processed a bit quicker now so hopefully they will be updated soon. I think in your case you will be best to go to your local passport office 48 hours before you fly. I’ve had only a positive experience from the upgrade team but others haven’t.

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