Passport Photos

Parent Q&A

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  • Canada Passport Photo

    (6 replies)

    Where can I get a photo taken for a Canadian passport? They have different requirements than US passports so need a place that really knows how to do them. Thanks!

    I had to take photos for a Japanese student visa and the requirements were also very fussy. What I found was a photo app so that I could take them with my phone. It had lots and lots of different specific options for different passports, visas, licenses etc from a wide variety of countries and was extremely easy to use.

    I needed photos for a Japanese student visa and found an app for my phone that was specifically for the purpose of taking passport, visa, license photos. It had preset options for lots of different countries and documents and was quite easy to use. Then I took my phone to Walgreens and got the photos printed out. No problem!

    Montclair 1-Hour Photo will do it. They're very familiar with the requirements for Canada.

    Montclair photo has been good for us for non-US passport pictures, they have the chart with specs for each country and are thoughtful in implementing them correctly.

    I used an online service for photos for a Chinese visa, using a digital photo we took at home against a plain white wall. I think it was this site,, but any service that is set up to meet the varying requirements of visa photos should fit the bill.

    I believe Express Photo on E18th in Oakland does international passports. 

  • Hi there, we are about to apply for a US passport for our 16 month old.

    Any tips on reliable, best places to get Toddler passport photos taken in Oakland/ Alameda during COVID?

    We have an appointment to submit our application at the Office of the City Clerk, Oakland in a week... I'd also welcome any tips on that front!

    Thank you everyone! 


    We took passport pictures for our 4y old at Walgreens. We took off his mask and they took a picture. However, not all Walgreens take the pics, some have you take a picture  home and order online. We took our pic at Walgreens in Berkeley Downtown. 

    There are phone apps that allow you to take your own (and help guide you to the right dimensions, etc). Then can print cheaply at Walgreens, CVS, etc. 

    Our daughter got hers taken at Walgreens in Alameda, just walked in - about 15 minutes - easy! Good luck!

    I've gotten passport photos taken for my toddler at a UPS Store (specifically the one on Piedmont Avenue, but they all do them - I think). I know they're open during the pandemic! And you don't need an appointment. :) 

    Former long-time expat here. We had the best luck with our 2 boys taking the photos ourselves (against a white background) and uploading the image to the photo tool available online through the state department ( or google “passport photo tool”), and then just sending the photo to print somewhere online or bringing it to a one-hour photo place.

    FedEx is quick and easy.

    I did my baby's passport photo in CVS at the time she was like 3 months so it was impossible to fulfill the requirements (open eyes mouth closed etc.) So I took the picture on a white blanket and took it there and downloaded from the cellphone and run the passport photo check there
    Walgreens and costco also have passport photo

    Might be too late for the original poster, but for everyone else - Do it yourself!  There are free apps and websites that help you size it properly and save it.  Then just have Walgreens, Target or CVS print it out - cheap! (You can send it to them digitally and just pick up the print out).  There will be a few copies of the image on each 4x6 photo, so just be prepared to cut it carefully (and/or get multiple copies).

    Also look at the photo tips at US Passport website and review the "YES" and "NO" examples so you know what to avoid.

    Also note that the passport might take up to three months to arrive (longer if they end up having to close the passport office again for COVID reasons).

    I took the photo myself (white background, can see both ears, took about 50 photos with my phone quickly and picked one that was good, you can find tips on yourtube and such), then used an online offering to make the photo the perfect size, and got it printed. I then just moved through the passport process as normal and it went great!

Archived Q&A and Reviews


Cheap passport photos?

Jan 2004

Anyone know where we can get passport photos done cheaply? We live in Berkeley. Pauline

If you have a digital camera, you can do your own passport photos through Ofoto. We've made our own, and it was very easy and cheap. Carol

We had our photos taken at Costco for $5-6, I think. Even cheaper- find someone with a digital camera to take your picture, and you can crop and size it and have it printed at a photo store or do-it-yourself kiosk. Jim

Costco has cheap passport pix available at the one-hour photo counter. There's also a place in downtown Berkeley. anon

I've always used EastBay Photo and found them both inexpensive and experienced. It's a little place on Shattuck, in the island where Shattuck divides in two, in between Addison and University (or is it Center and Addison?). Anyway, small place, but nice people. They also keep negatives on file so you can go back and year or two later and get more copies if you need them for visas or whatever. Dianna

If you are willing to make the trek to San Leandro, Costco offers the cheapest passport photos we've seen (I'm afraid I can't remember the exact dollar amount though). Got my passport

Walgreens. Patty

The two best options for cheap passort photos are 1. Take them yourself with a digital camera. You only need a neutral background, so stand against a plain wall, size them appropriately on your computer, and you can take as many as you like. Worked like a charm when it was time for my husband to renew his passport.

2. Go to the photo shop on Solano, just above Colusa Ave (Ritz camera?). They will take the photo digitally for a resonable cost. We did this for my daughter when she was 1 year old. Easy going on Rose @ Cedar took her photo 4 times and it was still fuzzy. Sarbers on Solano tried to take her photo and out of a ton of smiles they caught her when she looked like she had just sneezed - again the focus was not good. At the photo shop on Solano just above Colusa the took 6 or 8 photos of her - we got to pick the best photo and they charged us for the ''sitting'' that comes with two photos (since they only actually printed two copies and could just erase the others). I think it was $15 or $18 - Well worth getting a good photo Lois

If you or a friend has a membership, passport photos are $4.99 at Costco. They take a digital photo, so the photographer was nice enough to let me look at it before it was printed and ask if it was ok.

They weren't able to take pictures of my 1 year old son who isn't able to stand up and not squiggle, so we took our own. You can find the exact measurements on the web. I believe it is 2''x2'' with the face between 1 and 1 3/8''. The background has to be white or off-white. If you can get the proportions rights, you can just trim any recent photo. In our case, I happened to have the Kinko's passport photo template from my last photo, so I scanned it in and adjusted the size of a digital photo that someone had taken. Anita

Passport photos that are inexpensive AND well done can be taken at Easy Going travel store at Rose Street and Shattuck in Berkeley. The ones I had done there recently were much better than those I got elsewhere. Easy Going also has many travel- related items like luggage, packs, travel clothing and books. This really great store also has travel slide shows and book presentations from time to time. Christine V

Try Costco-it's only about $5 for two color photos, done while you wait. anon