Not carrier but by packaging. My passport has been mailed and will be arriving within a week, and I am wondering how it will be packaged. I wonder because I want it to be a surprise, and my girlfriend checks the mail often and I don't want her to come across a giant package that says, "HERE IS YOUR PASSPORT! ENJOY TRAVELING!" You get my point. Is the package just a large envelope addressed from the department, or does it explicitly say what it is?

I'm sure I can get the appropriate answers here.

  • In the past, you needed to send a return envelope with your documents. With name and address on it and stamps. – Salahadin X Jan 23 at 16:46
  • @SalahadinX I don't remember having to do that, but I think I've only ever renewed a passport by mail once. – phoog Jan 23 at 17:57

It should come to you in a large priority mail envelope (like this, or here's a fragment of one that is actually from a passport renewal). It won't say "here's your passport" on it in giant letters, but it will be clearly marked as coming from the US Department of State. If you paid for overnight delivery, I believe they send it FedEx Overnight in a FedEx envelope instead.

Here's a picture of what the envelope looks like: Passport renewal envelope Photo credit: Michael Hampton

If you sent in any documents that get returned to you, such as an old passport, they usually send that back to you separately via First Class Mail in a brown envelope.


It has been a couple of year since my last renewal, but it came in a simple envelope, no words on the outside other than address information. Though it is pretty easy to guess if you handle the envelope.


I don't recall exactly how it came but I do recall that I didn't immediately recognize it was the passport despite knowing it was coming.

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