How to register a passport

Updated February 21, 2017

Registering your passport is a sound precaution against major, unexpected emergencies you might encounter while travelling abroad. The registration process simply informs the local U.S. Embassy or Consulate that you are in their area of responsibility, as well as telling them where to find you if necessary. Without this basic precaution, you might be overlooked should the American or local authorities take action to protect U.S. citizens, such as an evacuation before or after a natural disaster.

Open a travel account with the State Department at the website. Click the "Create Account" link on the main toolbar, and then select "Individual Account" on the following page.

Choose a user ID, password and security question, and then fill out and submit the electronic form on the next page. Complete the personal information form on the subsequent page, and be ready to supply your passport number on the page after that.

Fill out the emergency contact form page and select the privacy options for all the information you supplied to the State Department. You have now created your travel account with the State Department.

Log into your travel account at After doing this, click either the "Add a Trip" button or the "Add a Non-U.S. Residence" button, both in the lower right-hand corner of the screen.

Provide the destination country, and select the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate from the pull-down menu. Be ready to provide the following information: type of visit (extended, frequent, one-time or indefinite), your intended date of arrival and departure, purpose of visit and destination address. Then save that destination.

Fill out the passport information and contact data for any travelling companions you wish to register with the State Department along with yourself. If your companions do not wish to be registered, or if they will take care of this themselves, skip this step.

Select one or more countries about which you wish to receive State Department travel advisory e-mails. You should select at least the country you intend to visit.

Confirm all your information and choices, and submit the Web form. You have now registered your passport for your trip.


The alternative to registering your passport online is to call the relevant U.S. Embassy or Consulate directly and registering over the phone or by fax. You will need your contact information and passport number, just as in the online registration.

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