The Fort Worth Central Library is issuing passports to applicants on a first-come, first-serve basis between 2 and 7 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays and 12 and 5 p.m. Saturdays.
Prompted by the U.S. State Department, the library began issuing passports by appointment only on June 2, said L.G. Swift, the library’s regional manager.
Swift said the passport service has been successful but is lacking in numbers of applicants, with the busiest day so far comprising up to 17 applicants and a normal day up to seven.
He said he hopes enough people come to necessitate printing tickets and calling out numbers, much like the system at a DMV office to designate the order in which applicants are served.
Library assistant Ulysses Avalos works in one of two booths in the office operated by bilingual staff members. He said the average person takes less than 15 minutes to complete the application process.
Avalos points out that if applicants do have to wait, they have plenty of material to keep them busy in the waiting area, where music and movie selections abound.
Only a few applicants entered the passport office within a two-hour period on Thursday afternoon.
Peggy Fairchild said she found out about the library’s passport services through an email sent out to library patrons and came Thursday to renew her passport. She said the process is a lot easier than most and is more conveniently located.
“We live right around the corner,” Fairchild said.
Applicant Alina Jaffery and her two children were also using the library’s passport services for the first time. She said the operating hours were ideal for her family.
The passport application process is outlined in this infographic.
Swift said the success of the library’s passport services will be evaluated in December.
The Fort Worth Central Library is located at 500 W. Third St, and the passport office is downstairs past the reference desk.