Passport delay wreaks havoc on local travelers

Passport delays are plaguing travellers in Amarillo and across the nation.   It's left at least one local student left stranded.

Cassie Wiley hoped to be unpacking her bags in Mexico today. "I don't think I have any more tears left because, yeah it's been really stressful," she admits.  A passport delay forced her to miss her flight and postpone her study abroad plans.  Her travel agent says the processing time for new passports - now around fourteen weeks - is grounding many other travellers in Amarillo as well.

Juli Morrison notes "what it does is it just costs extra time to rebook and redo everything for the client to try to salvage their vacation."  After endless phone calls to try to expedite the process Wiley says she's spent hundreds of dollars in airfare fees and cell phone bills.. plus she'll have to make up the missed classwork.

Wiley has been told her passport will arrive Wednesday, so she can leave for mexico in the afternoon.  Until it does, her bags will remain ready by the door. If you find yourself in a similiar passport crunch, there are some things you can do. When applying, you can pay an extra fee to expedite the process.

Plus, your travel agent can tell you about courier services that will deliver your application to out-of-town passport offices in person.   You can also consult your congressman for help in a passport emergency.