Even the youngest babies need their own passports to travel, which parents can apply for with proof of their child’s British nationality.

A child passport is valid for five years and parents can apply for them on behalf of their children who are under 16.

To process your child’s application the passport office will need three essential items from you:

  • 2 photographs of your child – a digital photo if you apply online
  • Their full birth or adoption certificate (with parent’s details listed on it)
  • Proof that your children is a British national – which can be their parent’s UK passport or parent’s birth certificates, or a British registration certificate

How to take passport photos of babies and children?
Parents can be daunted by the prospect of capturing a photo of an energetic threenager, reluctant school child or baby. After all, a passport is such an important identification document. Snapping a cute milestone picture of a giggling, wriggling baby this is not! But by following some tried and tested tips, and avoiding some no-nos, you’ll be ready to travel in a flash.

Children under 1 do not have to have their eyes open and children under 6 do not have to be looking directly at the camera or have a plain expression, which makes the task slightly easier.

Passport photo musts
You can help to minimise the risk of your application being rejected by remembering some golden rules:

  • Remove yourself – children must be alone in the picture
  • Ditch props – for example, remove toys, hats, bows, bibs and dummies from view
  • No hands – supporting their head with your hand is fine, but hands cannot be visible
  • Lay children under one on a plain white sheet
  • Take the photo from above

Any tips for taking passport photos of children?
Some parents are adept at capturing photos of their camera-shy children, but we’ve listed our three favourite hints below, should you need help:

  • Be snap happy and take multiple photos at a time that’s good for your child – namely not when they are sleepy, hungry (hangry) or if they are feeling unwell
  • Ask someone to dangle a flashing toy above you so your baby can focus their gaze straight upwards
  • An adult covered in a sheet and sat in a chair (or even lying down) can offer support to an infant while providing the regulation plain backdrop

Does your child need a passport? If so, apply for a first child passport at GOV.UK, here – https://www.gov.uk/get-a-child-passport/first-child-passport

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