Note: Our friends at the Kansas City Center for Inclusion have a community fund available to cover the cost of an affirming federal ID card, giving priority to those facing financial hardships. Learn more and apply here.


What is a U.S. passport card? 

It is a federally issued ID card that is Real ID compliant, meaning it can be used for domestic air travel and for land/sea entry from the United States to Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, and Caribbean countries. It is an alternative to a state issued ID, and can be used to verify your identity in numerous instances (but cannot be used as a driver’s license).

A passport card is different than a passport booklet, because you cannot use the passport card for international travel by air. Additionally, the passport card is the size of a credit card, meaning it can fit in your wallet just like a license.

Why apply for a U.S. passport card instead of/in addition to a state ID?

Federal IDs like passport cards allow you to select the gender marker you would like listed on your card, and provide you with a choice between “M,” “F,” and “X.” And you do not need supporting documentation to verify that gender marker you choose. 

This means you do not need a state birth certificate or driver’s license that matches the gender you select on your passport card, nor do you need to provide medical documentation to verify your gender. You can simply self-attest to the gender marker you would like to have listed. 

Who is eligible to receive a passport card?

You are eligible to apply for a passport card if you are a U.S. citizen by birth or naturalization, or if you are a qualifying U.S. non-citizen national. There is no age limit on passport cards, but if you are younger than 16 your parent/guardian must participate in the application with you.

How much will my passport card cost?

First, note that you will have to take a passport photo for your application. This photo is typically about $15. If you are over the age of 16 and applying for the first time, the application fee is $30, and the acceptance fee is $35. If you are 16 or younger, the application fee is $15, and the acceptance fee is $35.

In total, your application will cost about $80 if you’re over 16 and about $65 if you’re under 16. 

Check out the U.S. Department of State info page for more information on fees for passport cards and booklets.

If you’re concerned about the costs of accessing a passport card, there is a Federal ID Card Community Fund that assists low-income trans and gender diverse folks in Kansas and Missouri by covering the costs of their passport cards. It currently has limited capacity to assist individuals, but you can apply to be considered by the fund here.

Are there any downsides to selecting “X” as my gender on my passport card application?

If you plan to travel using your passport card, the U.S. Department of State – Bureau of Consular Affairs addresses safety issues that can arise while traveling with an “X” gender marker. It’s important to be aware of these concerns when making your gender marker decision. 

Outside of travel worries, an “X” marker may signal to those who check your ID that you are not cisgender. If you do not want to disclose your transgender identity to others because of your gender marker on your ID, then you might consider choosing the most affirming binary gender marker for you, if you feel comfortable with one of those options.

What happens if I get a passport card with a gender marker that is not listed on any of my other identity documents?
While there is nothing legally wrong with you having “mismatching” gender markers on your various identity documents, it can cause some issues in practice. Specifically, if you have to provide multiple identity documents that list different gender markers, this may lead to an unwanted disclosure of your transgender identity or additional questioning about your gender.
It is a personal decision whether accessing a passport card with an affirming gender marker, even though you may not be able to update your other identity documents to match that marker, is the right thing for you.

How do I apply for a passport card?

  1. First, go to
  2. Read the disclaimer, check the box that certifies that you read the disclaimer, then click submit.
  3. Under the "Fill out Online and Print" tab, click the "submit" button.
  4. Fill out the required "About the Applicant" materials:
    1. First name, last name, date of birth, city of birth, country of birth, state/territory of birth, social security number, gender, height, hair color, eye color, occupation. Then select "next."
      1. Occupation is mandatory for adults and must be completed as descriptively as possible if a title alone will not make it clear. If you are not employed, state so in the occupation field. If you are self-employed, the type of work you perform should be completed in occupation and “self-employed” in employer. Children should enter “student” or “child” in the occupation field; college students should enter “student” unless they have an occupation to enter.
      2. If you already have a passport that has an incorrect gender marker on it, then select “yes” under “changing gender marker?"
  5. Fill out the required “Contact Information:”
    1. Mailing address line 1, city, country, state, zip code, “is this your permanent address?” question, preferred method of communication, and email address. Then select “next.”
  6. You can skip the “travel plans” section by selecting “next.”
  7. You can skip the “Who should we contact in case of an emergency?” section as well, or fill it out if you would like to have an emergency contact associated with your passport card. Then select “next.”
  8. Fill out the “Your most recent passport” section:
    1. Under “Have you been issued any of the following?” select “passport book,” “passport card,” “both,” or “none.” If you select book, card, or both, then fill out the supplemental questions on the page. Then select “next.”
  9. Fill out the “Applicant's Parent & Spouse Information” section:
    1. Mother/father/parent 1 & 2 of the applicant (will be required to fill out first, middle, and last name at birth, gender, and U.S. citizenship of both parents).
      1. If you do not know one or both of your parents, select “unknown.”
      2. Under “spouse of the applicant,” select “yes” or “no” under “Has Applicant Ever Been Married?” Then, select “next.”
  10. You have the option to fill out the “List all other names you have used” section. If you do not have anything to fill out in that section, then select “next.”
  11. Review the answers you submitted on the “Personal Application Review” page. If any of it is incorrect, then select “edit” next to the incorrect section. If all of the information is correct, then select “next.”
  12. On the “Passport Products and Fees” page, select “passport card ($30),” then select the processing method you want. The routine service is free, but it will take 7-10 weeks. Expedited service will take 3-5 weeks, but it costs an additional $60. Then select “next.”
  13. Review the “Next Steps” page.
    1. Note the instructions under (2) “What to submit with your form(s).”
    2. Under (3) “Print your form(s),” check the box next to “I have read and acknowledged the steps and information contained above.”
    3. Then select “print form.” The form will download as a PDF onto your computer with your information on it.
  14. Print out the document on single-sided paper.
  15. Go to for details on how to take and submit your passport photo along with the form.
  16. Go to to see what documents you can provide to satisfy evidence of U.S. Citizenship.
    1. If you plan to use your Kansas birth certificate as evidence, please review the Identity Documents & Gender Markers – State and Federal Policy FAQ regarding current Kansas birth certificate policy regarding accessing and maintaining a gender marker change.
  17. Go to to see what documents you can provide to satisfy proof of identity.
  18. Go to to find the passport acceptance facility nearest to you.
  19. Bring your printed application form, proof of U.S. Citizenship, photo, correct passport fees, and proof of identity with you to the passport acceptance facility.