LOST passport applications have hit a five-year high, according to new figures.
It prompts fears for families heading abroad on a half term holiday this month during the school break.
According to the Telegraph, 487 passports were "confirmed as lost" while being delivered between January and September 2022 – the highest figure since 2018.
More than 100 new passports were also lost during a similar period when being delivered overseas.
Lib Dem MP Wera Hobhouse slammed the "incompetence" and said: "With more and more passports going missing each year, it’s no wonder people are fed up with this endless travel chaos.
“The Home Office needs to step up and take decisive action before more people are let down and lose confidence in these services.”
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It's not the only delay that Brits are facing with their passports.
The Passport Office advises leaving up to 10 weeks to get a new passport back.
However, many have seen their applications take much longer than this.
Last year, 5.39 per cent of passport applications took longer than the advised 10 weeks, working out to 409,063 passports.
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And with a feared 'spring surge' with a million more passports expected to be processed in the first half of the year, Brits are being warned to apply now.
Director General of HM Passport Office, Abi Tierney previously said that people shouldn't delay if they know they will need a new passport.
She said last year: “Now that international travel has resumed, we know people will be looking at going away on holiday and yet many people are leaving applying for a passport too late.
“If you need a new passport, we urge you to apply now."
The cost to renew a passport went up last week, the first time in five years.
It now costs £82.50, up from £75.50, while getting new passports for children has increased from £49 to £53.50.
Make sure you apply online for your passport too – doing in it person can cost you an extra £10 per person.
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