At one of the seminars at the New York Times Travel Show, we listened to representatives from the National Passport Agency talk about the still-low percentage of travelers who own a passport. They also described a new event, National Passport Day, happening on March 9.
I thought this was a brilliant idea to motivate people to sign up, especially before the summer crunch and planned to write about it.
Today, I went online to double-check that the event was still happening -- I want to share my enthusiasm for world travel and cuisine with everyone. But, to get beyond being an "armchair traveler," you need a passport. (Right, President Bush?).
Imagine my surprise when I read the opening lines from the National Passport Agency's own page -- nonetheless you can still participate in tomorrow's effort, if you can find a place to go.
Here's the exact text from their site:
Due to the budget sequestration, Department of State Passport Agencies will not be participating and will be CLOSED on Saturday, March 9.
Many Non-Department of State Passport Acceptance Facilities, such as post offices, clerks of court, and libraries will still participate. On Saturday, March 9, U.S. citizens may apply for or renew their passport book or passport card at participating non-State Department passport application acceptance facilities.
While Department of State Regional Passport Agencies and Centers will not be open for service on Saturday, March 9, many of the same services can be obtained at our acceptance facilities, such as application acceptance, including for children’s passports where both parents must be present, and expedited services.