While Costco no longer offers in-store passport photo services, you can still obtain high-quality, affordable passport photos through its online photo center. This guide will walk you through “Does Costco Do Passport Photos?” and using Passport Photo Online to create compliant passport photos and print them at Costcophotocenter.com.
Costco Passport Photos Update: Costco has ceased in-store passport photo services; use their online center for compliant photos following U.S. guidelines.
Retail and Online Alternatives: Access passport photos through Walmart, UPS, FedEx, Staples, or online via services like photoAID, with varied pricing and features.
Home Photo Option: Create your own passport photos at home, adhering to strict guidelines for background, lighting, and photo quality.
In this article:
Reason Behind the Discontinuation of Costco’s Passport Photo Services
Costco’s decision to cease providing passport photos stemmed from a decline in demand driven by the increasing popularity of online photo services and the convenience of taking and printing passport photos at home.
This shift aligns with broader trends in the digital era, where traditional photo services are gradually giving way to more accessible and tech-savvy solutions.
Does Costco Do Passport Photos?
While in-store passport photo services are no longer available at Costco, you can still order passport photo prints through Costco’s online photo center. The process is simple:
- Take a passport photo that meets the U.S. Department of State guidelines.
- Upload your photo to Costco’s photo center.
- Select the quantity of photos you need and choose printing or shipping options.
- Place your order and complete the checkout process.
Exploring Alternative Options for Acquiring Passport Photos
Despite Costco discontinuing passport photo services, individuals still have many options for obtaining compliant passport photos. These options encompass in-person and online services, catering to diverse preferences and needs.
In-Person Passport Photo Services
Numerous retail stores continue to offer in-person passport photo services, providing a convenient and straightforward approach. These services typically involve visiting a designated photo booth or counter to have your photo taken and printed.
Retail Stores Offering In-Person Passport Photo Services
- Walmart: Walmart offers passport photo services for $7.44, making it one of the most affordable options.
- UPS: UPS provides passport photo services for $11.99, ensuring convenience with numerous locations nationwide.
- FedEx: FedEx offers passport photo services for $14.95, catering to those seeking a reliable and established service provider.
- Staples: Staples offers passport photo services for $14.99, providing additional options for office supply needs.
- Walgreens: Walgreens offers passport photo services for $14.99, ensuring widespread accessibility with numerous drugstore locations.
Online Passport Photo Services
In addition to in-person services, numerous online passport photo services offer convenience and flexibility. These services typically involve uploading a digital photo and receiving printed passport photos by mail or in-store pickup.
Online Passport Photo Service Providers
- photoAID: photoAID offers online passport photo services with a starting price of $6.99, ensuring affordability and ease of use.
- Passport-photo.online: passport-photo.online provides online passport photo services with a starting price of $7, offering a streamlined process and guaranteed acceptance.
- visafoto.com: visafoto.com offers online passport photo services with a starting price of $6.99, including various options for digital and printed photos.
- iVisa.com: iVisa.com provides online passport photo services with a starting price of $5, catering to those seeking additional travel services like visas and insurance.
|Varies by location
|avg. 7:00 am–8:30 pm
|Availability by today
|Digital passport photo available
|Yes + a money-back guarantee
|Printing & shipping from $2.69–$20.19 + the cost of the digital photo
|$13.95 (digital) $16.95 (printed photos + delivery included)
|Varies by location
|4″ x 6″
|2″ x 2″
|Meets all government requirements
|Meets all government requirements
|Meets all government requirements
Steps to Printing Costco Passport Photos
- Take your passport photos: Using Passport Photo Online, capture several photos to meet the passport photo requirements. The app will automatically guide you through the process.
- Select and confirm your photos: Choose the best two photos from the captured images and review them carefully for compliance with passport photo standards.
- Create the passport photo template: Passport Photo Online will generate a 4×6″ template containing your two compliant passport photos.
- Save the template: Save the 4×6″ template to your device’s photo library.
- Upload the template to Costcophotocenter.com: Visit Costcophotocenter.com and sign in to your Costco account.
- Select “Prints” from the menu: Click on the “Prints” option from the main menu.
- Upload the template: Click the “Upload” button and choose the 4×6″ template containing your passport photos.
- Select the quantity: Choose the number of prints you require (typically two for passport applications).
- Review and proceed to checkout: Review your order details and proceed to checkout.
- Complete the checkout process: Enter your shipping information and select your preferred payment method. Complete the checkout process to place your order.
DIY Passport Photo Option
For those seeking the ultimate convenience and cost-effectiveness, taking and printing passport photos at home is a viable option. This approach requires adherence to strict passport photo guidelines and access to a high-quality camera and printer.
Requirements for Taking Passport Photos at Home
- Background: Use a plain white or off-white background.
- Lighting: Ensure even and consistent lighting without shadows or glare.
- Focus and Composition: Keep the subject centered and in sharp focus.
- Facial Expression: Maintain a neutral expression with the mouth closed.
- Eyes: Keep eyes open and directly facing the camera.
- Headwear: Remove any headwear except for religious purposes.
- Glasses: Remove eyeglasses unless medically necessary.
Printing Passport Photos at Home
- High-Quality Photo Printer: Utilize a high-quality color photo printer to ensure clear and accurate prints.
- Photo Paper: Use matte photo paper with the appropriate dimensions for passport photos.
- Print Settings: Adjust printer settings to prioritize quality and minimize color variations.
Why choose Passport Photo Online?
Passport Photo Online offers several advantages for creating passport photos:
- Convenience: Take your passport photos anywhere using the app.
- Intuitive interface: The app guides you through the process seamlessly.
- Compliance guarantee: Passport Photo Online ensures your photos meet passport standards.
Following these instructions, you can obtain high-quality, affordable passport photos through Costco’s online photo center, saving you time and money compared to traditional photo studios.
Costco, a renowned wholesale retailer, has streamlined its photo services, discontinuing in-store passport photo capturing in February 2021. Despite this change, Costco members can still obtain passport photos through the company’s online photo center or utilize alternative methods.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What are the U.S. Department of State’s passport photo guidelines?
U.S. passport photos must meet the following guidelines:
- Size: 2 inches x 2 inches
- Resolution: 600 x 600 pixels
- Format: JPEG
- Background: White or off-white
- Expression: Neutral
- Face: Full view, looking directly at the camera
- Head: Must be centered and fill most of the frame
- Hair: Must not obscure the eyes or face
- Headwear: Not allowed, except for religious or medical reasons
- Glasses: Not allowed unless for medical reasons
Can I use a selfie for my passport photo?
No, selfies are not acceptable for passport photos. The photo must be taken by someone else, and the photographer must not appear in the photo.
How long does it take to get passport photos printed at Costco?
If you choose to have your passport photos printed in-store, they will be available for pickup within 1 hour. If you decide to have them shipped, they will typically arrive within 5 to 12 business days.
Do I need to be a Costco member to order passport photos?
Yes, you must be a Costco member to order passport photos through Costco’s online photo center. However, you can use the in-store photo printing services at some Costco locations without a membership.
Does Costco still offer passport photo services?
No, Costco discontinued passport photo services in February 2021.