Apply for travel documents early to beat summer holidays rush

     Hong Kong residents intending to travel abroad during the summer holidays are reminded to apply for travel documents as early as possible.

     An Immigration Department spokesman said that the processing time required for Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) passport applications was 10 working days (excluding Saturdays, Sundays and general holidays) after receipt of all necessary documents, and 14 working days for children under 11 not holding a Hong Kong permanent identity card. Some countries require visitors to have a passport with validity of at least six months. For applications submitted by post, via drop-in-box or online, an extra two to three working days might be required. Applications for a replacement passport due to loss, damage or change of personal data should be made in person and require a longer processing time.

     Requests for the urgent issue of an HKSAR passport will be accepted only in justifiable circumstances, and no priority will normally be granted to pleasure trippers.

     Eligible applicants aged 18 or over may submit HKSAR passport applications at the self-service kiosks at Immigration Headquarters and six Immigration branch offices during office hours. Applicants who wish to apply for, or collect travel documents in person are encouraged to make an appointment in advance by visiting the website ( or calling the 24-hour hotline 2598 0888.

     At present, 143 countries and territories have granted visa-free access to HKSAR passport holders.

     HKSAR passport application forms and information leaflets on application procedures and documents required are available at Immigration Headquarters and all Immigration branch offices. The application forms can also be downloaded from the website at For enquiries, please visit the website or call the Immigration Department at 2824 6111 or fax your enquiry to 2877 7711.

Ends/Tuesday, June 14, 2011
Issued at HKT 15:02