Mixed response from expats to hike in UK passport fees

DUBAI — The proposed hike in fees for a UK passport, announced by British embassy officials this week, has received mixed response from Dubai’s British expatriate community.

By A Staff Reporter

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Published: Wed 29 Jun 2005, 10:56 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 3:47 PM

The hike of 18 per cent in fee for a standard passport doesn’t concern Gail, an Accounts Manager in Bur Dubai. “It’s only about an extra £10 (Dh70), and you also receive your renewed passport within five days. In Britain, if you want your passport within five days, you have to pay a premium fee on top of the standard price for renewal. It works out to the same price really,” she said, adding: “Although, I do think the price for the under sixteen’s is excessive.”

Anne, a training consultant based in Dubai, is less impressed. “I think it is too much. It is a five day turnaround, but at least in the UK, you have the choice of going for the 28 day process which is much cheaper,” she said.

From July 1, the fee for a standard British passport in the UAE will rise from Dh410 to Dh485. This includes a five-day turnaround time. It brings the price in line with the UK rates, where the one-week Fast Track Service costs 70GBP (Dh490).

The rates for all other passport services will be up from next month as well. For the frequent traveller, the fee for a jumbo passport will go up from Dh490 to Dh575. For those under sixteen, it will be Dh315, an increase of Dh50. The fee for making amendments to a passport will rise from Dh340 to Dh400, an 18 per cent increase. Members of Commonwealth nations face a Dh40 hike for renewals and extensions from Dh250 to Dh290. The British embassy in the UAE issued 4,500 passports in 2004.

“There has been 27 per cent more passport issued in June of this year over 2004, and for the first six months of 2005, issues have risen by 12 per cent,” an embassy official said. The increase in passport fees follows the announcement by British embassy officials recently of the plan to increase visa charges for entry into the UK.

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