Passport Photo Size in the U.S.

To get a passport, you first need to provide a passport photo—that’s quite obvious, and applications that are missing photographs are rather unheard of. But according to the statistics given by the U.S. Department of State, 80% of rejected passport applications are due to incorrect passport pictures. 

Turns out, it is not apparent that U.S. passport photographs have strict measurements. Which brings us to the question: what size is a passport photo?

Learn everything you need to know about the U.S. passport photo size.

U.S. passport photo size

The United States Department of State Bureau of Consular Affairs is the entity responsible for issuing passports and establishing passport regulations in the U.S.—and that includes determining the passport photo size. 

Citizens of the U.S. who wish to apply for or renew their U.S. passport books or U.S. passport cards are obliged to deliver 1 (one) passport photograph in the following dimensions: 2 inches wide and 2 inches high. 

In other words, the U.S. passport size photo is a square measuring 2 x 2 inches. 

Apart from the size of the photograph, there is one more measurement U.S. passport applicants should keep in mind—that is the size of their head.

As to the U.S. Department of State, your face should be in the center of the passport photograph and measure from 1 to 1 3/8 inches, from the chin to the top of the head. See the image below to get a better understanding of face dimensions. 

Measurements for the U.S. passport photo.

Is there more to know about the dimensions of passport size photos? See the list:

  • U.S. passport photographs must measure exactly 2 x 2 inches—any other variations are not acceptable;
  • U.S. passport photos are 51 x 51 mm in the metric system;
  • the face should measure from 25 to 35 mm in the metric system;     
  • the size ratio should be precisely 1:1 (a square).

Guidelines and requirements for passport photo size presented above are valid for all U.S. passport types: standard adult, standard minor, diplomatic, service, et cetera. 

U.S. passport size photo: digital images

Citizens of the U.S. can submit both paper and digital passport photos when lodging passport application papers. If you decide on the latter, your photograph must follow the same size standards as described above. 

Moreover, your digital U.S. passport photo is bound to follow additional criteria:

  • minimal acceptable size is 600px by 600px;
  • maximum acceptable size is 1200px by 1200px;
  • the file size should not exceed 240 kB (kilobytes);
  • the photo must have a resolution of minimum 300dpi.

For the U.S. passport application, digital photographs can not be digitally enhanced. You can crop your photo to desired size and proportions, but filters are not allowed. 

If you want to learn more about digital passport photos and where to get them, see our post.

How to get a passport size photo: Passport Photo Online

There are few options to get U.S. passport size photos: you can visit a professional photo studio, get your passport pictures at popular retail stores, or utilize a photo booth in a mall, to name some. 

But there is one more option: taking the passport photos from home. 

You can take your own passport photos with nothing more than your smartphone using Passport Photo Online – a professional passport photo converter. 

This innovative app uses AI to transform your images into passport photographs in 3 seconds. The program scans your picture, crops it to the correct size (considering all factors, including your face), and replaces any background of your photograph with a plain white one. No prior experience or knowledge of passport photo requirements is needed. 

With Passport Photo Online, you can get a set of perfect passport pictures in less time than dialing a photo studio’s phone number to book a session. And you can take photos from anywhere—your couch, kitchen, favorite park, or while reading this blog—the AI will handle any background.

See how easy it is to take U.S. passport size photos with Passport Photo Online:

A young woman with long blog hair in four passport images demonstrating benefits of Passport Photo Online.


U.S. passport photo size: FAQ

See answers to the most common questions about U.S. passport photo size.

What size is a passport photo in the U.S.?

The size of a U.S. passport photo is 2 (two) inches wide by 2 (two) inches high (2 x 2’’).

Is the U.S. passport photo 2 x 2 or 4 x 6?

Passport photos in the U.S. measure 2 x 2 inches, and it is the only acceptable size. However, if you have a proper template, you can print your passport pictures on 4 x 6 inch paper. See how to do it here.

How to get a passport-size photo?

There are various options to get a passport size photo in the U.S. You can visit a professional photo studio or go to a retail store, such as Walmart or Target. Some U.S. Post Offices offer a passport photo service. But you can also take passport photos yourself with your smartphone – get more information here

What is the U.S. passport photo size in inches?

The size of a U.S. passport photo in inches is 2 x 2’’.

What is the U.S. passport photo size in cm?

The size of a U.S. passport photo in centimeters is: 0,51 x 0,51 cm (51 x 51 mm).

Can you take a U.S. passport size photo on your phone?

Yes, you can take a U.S. passport size photo on your phone. However, if you wish to do so, it is best to use professional passport photo tools, such as Passport Photo Online. This app will crop the image to adequate dimensions and replace any background in your photo with a plain white one in 3 seconds.

Passport photo size in the U.S.: closing thoughts

If you wish not to be among the thousands of applicants who receive a “Rejected” stamp on their passport application, it is recommended that you study the requirements for a U.S. passport photo. 

The good news is that if you decide to take your passport photo at any studio or photo center, the staff will already know what the required passport photo size is. 

And if you wish to take the passport photo at home, saving yourself a trip to a studio, Passport Photo Online is there for you.

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