Peninsula Visa, a visa and passport processing company in California, announced earlier this month that it would accept Bitcoin as a payment method. The company also said that the US State Department's activities are returning to normal. Customers are now able to use Bitcoin to pay for specific passport services.
With the support of retail payment facilitator Coinbase Commerce, the company will be providing passport renewals and name change services, apart from second passport applications. US citizens aged over 16 are permitted to own a “primary” passport book or card valid for 10 years. Peninsula Visa COO Evan James said: “Offering travelers the ability to pay via Bitcoin feels like the right move at the right time.”
After the first closure of government offices and companies in March following steps to counter the pandemic's spread, several of the 26 passport agencies were affected throughout the continental United States and Puerto Rico, prompting interruptions in first time passport applications and renewals as well as updating documents. In-person applications are the solution that several of the offices of the State Department have suggested to remove the setbacks.
Although Bitcoin holders could purchase international flights with tokens, for some services governments appear not so eager to start taking crypto payments. Bitcoin was briefly listed in June as a form for paying passport requests from Venezuelan citizens living abroad, however the service was be disabled on the next day.