Costco Passport Photo Price Changes and Developments

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News on the Costco Passport Photo Price and Changes From DoNotPay

Getting passport photos is a chore that many of us want to be done as quickly and cheaply as possible.

Up until recently, Costco was one of the go-to stores for passport photos, but recent changes have seen the company close its in-store photo services countrywide.

DoNotPay can help with information about what the Costco passport photo price is, where you can still find the service, and what your alternatives are for getting passport photos.

Why Do I Need Special Passport Photos?

Passport photos have to conform to a set of strict requirements to be accepted by the Bureau for Consular Affairs.

The rules for passport photos are:

Passport Photo CriteriaExplanation
Photo sizeYour passport photo needs to be exactly 2 x 2” (5 cm x 5 cm), and your head should be between 1 and 1 3/8” (2.5 cm and 3.5 cm) when measured vertically
Background and compositionThe photo background should be plain white and should show no shadows. Your face needs to be in the center of the photo, with you looking directly into the camera
Facial expressionYou should have a neutral expression with eyes open and mouth closed. A natural smile is acceptable but should not distort the rest of your features
Clothing and glassesNeutral-colored clothing that doesn’t distract from your face is best. Headgear is not allowed unless required by your religion or for medical reasons. If you wear glasses, you should remove them, and sunglasses are expressly prohibited. Anything that obscures any part of your face should be removed or explained in writing

Can You Get Passport Photos at Costco?

Up to 2020, Costco offered a passport photo service at most of its 558 locations across the country.

Photos were competitively priced at $4.99 for two prints, and stores offered a while-you-wait or same-day service.

Starting in March 2021, Costco began phasing out its in-store photo services, so you may have to look elsewhere to get your passport photos.

What Are the Alternative Stores to Costco?

Now that Costco has stopped offering passport photos in its outlets, here are some alternatives:

  • Other retail outlets, such as Walmart or Target
  • U.S. passport offices, usually located within post offices
  • Courier services, like UPS, USPS, or FedEx
  • Pharmacies, including CVS and Walgreens
  • Other businesses, like AAA stores, print services, or travel bureaus

The prices charged in each of these stores are as follows:

  • Walmart—$7.44
  • Target—$12.99
  • UPS stores—$11.99
  • USPS—$15
  • FedEx—$14.95
  • CVS photo—$14.99
  • Walgreens—$14.99
  • AAA—between $10 and $15, depending on your membership level

When you work out the cost of getting your passport photos done in a store, you should also factor in travel, parking, and the time you will need. These costs will increase if you have to make a second trip to pick up your photos.

Can I Avoid the Expense by Taking Passport Photos at Home?

As long as your photos meet the government requirements, you can save money by taking and processing them at home.

You will need a good cell phone, tablet, or camera to take your digital photos, as well as:

  • A helper or a tripod—selfies are not allowed
  • Photo editing software or access to an online photo tool
  • A high-quality printer

The steps to taking your passport photo are as follows:

  1. Take the photo
  2. Edit the image
  3. Print the photo
  4. Cut it

Take the Photo

You should choose a well-lit area with multiple light sources to avoid shadows on your face or the background. Exterior light could be your best option.

You will probably need to take multiple shots to make sure that lighting, composition, and color balance are all in line with the requirements.

Edit the Image

You must crop the image to remove borders and reduce it to the correct size. Filters or digital manipulation—such as red-eye removal or blemish removal—are not allowed and will mean your photo is rejected by the passport office.

Print the Photo

You should print the photo on glossy or matte photo paper using the highest print quality settings your printer offers.

Cut It

The photo should be cut to exactly the correct size, with no frayed edges or creases.

Getting home-made passport photos right is certainly cheaper than in a store but can be complex and time-consuming.

DoNotPay has the solution—we can with zero hassle!

DoNotPay Gives You Perfect Passport Photos With No Fuss!

If you want to save on the expense of store-bought passport photos and don’t want to tackle the task of editing and processing them yourself, DoNotPay is here to help!

Using our Passport Photos feature, you can submit your digital passport photo and let us make it ready for your application. Here’s how:

  1. in your web browser
  2. Click on our Passport Photos product
  3. Upload your photo

We will take it from there! Our AI bots will send you a perfect passport-size digital photo via email right away. If you would prefer hard copies, we can print your photos and deliver them to you by mail within three to ten business days!

Find your place of residence in the table below to see where you can have your passport photo taken:

San DiegoSacramentoBostonAlbuquerqueRaleigh
HoustonAtlantaPhoenixSan FranciscoDenver
CincinnatiRochesterLos AngelesColumbusScottsdale
HonoluluMinneapolisChicagoTallahasseeKansas City
New York CityPortlandPhiladelphiaAustinRockville
SeattleCharlestonSan JoseSan AntonioCharlotte
HerndonColvilleIndianapolisLas VegasBrooklyn

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