The number of applications for Irish passports hit its highest ever number last month.
Almost 138,000 people applied for a passport in January.
That figure is some 20,000 higher than has been seen previously.
This year is expected to see around 1.7 million passport applications submitted in Ireland.
The highest ever number was seen in 2019 before the pandemic, at about 935,000.
While staffing levels are also set to rise.
Last summer about 460 people were working in the Passport Office - that number currently stands at 770.
By the end of March, that figure will have risen to 900.
And an extra €10m has been set aside for passport services in 2022.
It comes as one Fine Gael Senator says a backlog in passport processing should be declared 'essentially an emergency'.
Senator Garret Ahearn is tabling a motion demanding an urgent upscaling of the service.
While Foreign Minister Simon Coveney has defended turnaround times, and says more people will be available to answer passport queries.
He says an online passport renewal for an adult has a guide period of 10 days - but the majority are done in 48 hours.
In the UK, the same can take 14 days. While a child renewal is no more than 15 working days in Ireland.
But Minister Coveney admits first-time applications are an issue.
He told Newstalk Breakfast: "It is true: at the moment it's taking about 40 working days for a first-time, online application.
"That's a problem and we have to get that turnaround time down, and we will.
"And we are putting more people on the phones".