Surge in Passport Applications Prompts Extended Hours at Pakistani Passport Offices

In response to a record-breaking influx of passport applications, Pakistani authorities have announced extended operating hours at passport offices across the nation. With thousands of applicants flooding passport centers on a daily basis, the Directorate General of Immigration and Passport has taken decisive action to alleviate the strain on the system.

Effective immediately, passport delivery counters will remain open on weekends until March 15, 2024. This unprecedented move comes as authorities seek to accommodate the surging demand for passport services, particularly among those preparing for the upcoming Hajj pilgrimage.

Mustafa Qazi, spokesperson for the Directorate General of Immigration and Passport, underscored the significance of this decision in facilitating the Hajj pilgrims’ journey. He emphasized that passport delivery centers will now be accessible on Saturdays and Sundays, offering applicants additional opportunities to collect their passports.

Furthermore, in a bid to streamline the process for international travelers, passport offices will extend their hours on Fridays, operating from 9 am to 1 pm. This adjustment aims to ensure that individuals planning overseas trips have ample time to complete their passport applications.

The issuance of passports for Hajj pilgrims has already commenced nationwide, marking a significant milestone for thousands of aspiring pilgrims. Regional passport offices have also ramped up their operations, opening on Saturdays to accommodate the heightened demand.

Biometric verification remains a critical component of the passport application process, followed by submission to designated banks. Authorities have reiterated the importance of adhering to deadlines to facilitate the timely issuance of passports.

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In conjunction with these operational changes, Pakistani officials have introduced a new passport fee structure for 2024. This updated fee schedule aims to streamline payment processes and ensure fairness in passport issuance.

Applicants are reminded that the deadline for passport submission to banks is February 26, 2024. Failure to comply with this deadline may result in delays in processing passport applications.

The extension of operating hours and implementation of streamlined procedures underscore Pakistani authorities’ commitment to providing efficient and accessible passport services amid unprecedented demand. Stay tuned for further updates on this developing story.

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