Eoghan Corry: Here's where the biggest passport delays are

More people applied for an Irish passport in Northern Ireland for the first time ever
Jack Quann
Jack Quann

12.19 3 May 2022

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Eoghan Corry: Here's where the...

Eoghan Corry: Here's where the biggest passport delays are

Jack Quann
Jack Quann

12.19 3 May 2022

Share this article

Those waiting on passports to travel this summer have been hit with delays for a number of reasons.

That's according to travel expert Eoghan Corry, who says May is a particularly bad month.

He told The Pat Kenny Show the problem has been developing since December.


"When you consider the number of applications that goes in every year for Irish passports, without the difficulties we've had over the last three years, May was always going to be the crisis month.

"It's the month that gets the most applications; April gets the second-most and then June the third.

"When it's very quiet - November/December - the passport applications are much lower."

Five year gap

Eoghan says the problem has been exacerbated for a number of reasons.

"We haven't been travelling in the [big] numbers for the last three years, so a lot of people are finding expired passports.

"That's not as big a problem if you can still apply online.

"All the problems seem to be arising if you have to seek a passport, go through the legal process.

"And you can't do that if your passport is expired by more than five years".

He says the numbers who have let their passport lapse are surprising.

"People ready for their three year holiday just let it all roll.

"A big problem arises with family members... one of the things that has helped is that a child's passport is now a five-year passport, not a three-year.

"And there's a big problem with newborn babies."

But Eoghan says people should be aware of one thing: "You don't have to wait for a PPS number for your newborn child to initiate the application, but it is much slower than it was pre-COVID.

"So apply for the passport for the newborn baby.

"Once it's online, things seem to be working".

However, those applying for a newborn passport have to send in their own passports as support documents.

And he says those looking for an emergency passport have also ran into difficulty.

"People who thought they would have it all rolling through in time, they found that once they had put the ordinary application in they couldn't get into the emergency system.

"A confluence of different problems, and there doesn't seem to be a very immediate solution to them".

Northern Ireland applications

Meanwhile, more people applied for an Irish passport over a British one in Northern Ireland for the first time ever in 2020.

Eoghan says he doesn't believe this will reverse.

"It was getting closer and closer anyway with the demographics of Northern Ireland.

"I suspect that we probably won't see that going back".

Asked about those who may hold both passports, he has this advice: "I can you assure the UK queue is never shorter.

"You travel frequently to Faroe - we've seen the huge queues for the non-EU passports there.

"Obviously a huge volume of British people going down, having the Irish passport - certainly for travel within the European Union - is a big, big advantage.

"Some countries require UK visitors to have a visa, Irish visitors do not.

"I'm in South Africa at the moment, one of the neighbouring countries - Zambia - would be an example of that.

"But there are examples throughout the world".

Eoghan Corry: Here's where the biggest passport delays are

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Main image: A man's hand holding an Irish passport in 2007. Picture by: Barry Mason / Alamy Stock Photo

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