Travelling with young kids? How to get a useable passport photo in one easy step

You’re a new parent with a baby who’s the apple of your eye. Maybe she’s only a few weeks old, but you’ve already deleted your wedding video from your phone to make space for the hundreds of photos you’ve taken of her sleeping. She’s so adorable, you can’t imagine it’s anything but easy peasy to get a photo of her for her passport.

But then you see the requirements: head straight on, eyes open, mouth closed, no crying, and did we mention you can’t be in the photo yourself? Not to worry! Australia Post outlets are experts in the magical art of getting the perfect infant passport photo.

baby headshot sl

My husband and I are ex-pats, which makes us veterans when it comes to travelling with kids. When each of our sons was born, we aimed to get them home to Canada for their first white Christmases. For our eldest, that meant passport photos at eight weeks, and for our second it was a more modest 12 weeks. In both cases, neither boy was able to hold up his head, and he certainly wasn’t sitting, giving his best passport-appropriate blue steel.

I was a bit of a worrier as a new mum – my first spent a lot of his waking hours crying – and I in turn spent a lot of my waking hours before our trip trying to figure out how I’d create a window during which he was clean, happy and awake enough to take an acceptable photo.

Aus Post printed passport photos

If there’s one thing new parents need, it’s for life’s little administrative chores to be uncomplicated. Australia Post staff know exactly what the Australian Government requires when it comes to passport photos. Printing is fast so you and your baby don’t have to wait around, and best of all, you can get your photos done and lodge the passport application all in one visit. You can also buy a digital copy of your child’s photo to use for other online applications.

On top of this, the staff know how to take photos of young children quickly and properly. I went to an outlet for my youngest child’s photo, and they had plenty of tricks up their sleeves to get a good image. One lovely Aussie Post worker even entertained my son while I organised the paperwork.

girl n boy at the airport with a suitcase; Shutterstock ID 164637131; PO: 1034194; Job: MPOS1455; Client: Australia Post; License to Y&R Group?: Yes

If you’re going overseas with a young child, there are a few things you can do to make the photo-taking experience go smoothly. Try to schedule the appointment for a time of day when your baby is in a good mood. Is he a morning person? Does he buck the trend by being in excellent spirits around other baby’s witching hours? Make sure he’s got a clean nappy, has slept recently and I found if you could squeeze in a feed before the photo, a full belly makes for a happy baby.

There are a lot of elements to juggle when trying to wrangle a baby for passport photos, but if you can tick most of those boxes, Australia Post can do the rest.

Go online to find out which Australia Post outlets provide passport photo services. If you get your kids’ photos done before 30 June 2016, use the promo code Child20 to get 20 per cent off. As for surviving the flight itself, check out our handy tips on travelling with kids.

(This is a sponsored post for Australia Post)

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