Australian Passport Photo Specifications

When obtaining our passport photos in Australia, we need to follow the rules that the Australian Passport Office has established so that our photos will be accepted for our passport. Otherwise, unacceptable photos will delay us from receiving our passports in a timely manner.

Basic Passport Photo Guidelines
Passport photos must be glossy and 35mm to 40mm wide by 45mm to 50mm high. The size of the face from crown to chin must be no smaller than 32mm and no larger than 36mm. The person’s face must be centered with no head tilt. There cannot be other objects in the picture and the background must be light. The person’s glasses cannot have dark lenses, cannot have reflections, and cannot obscure the eyes in any way. Hair styles cannot obscure the face and must be brushed back from the face.

We cannot wear head coverings, hats, or anything that covers our head and face. The only exception to this rule are items worn for religious reasons and those cannot hide our faces even partially. Our faces must be uncovered from our chins to our foreheads, and both sides of our faces must be clearly visible.

We must keep a neutral expression, neither smiling nor frowning, when the photo is taken.

US Green Card Photo Specifications

Getting a United State Green card, or I-551 card, is the dream of many people from around the world. The chance to come to the United States and to live and work as a permanent resident is the kind of promise that this country was founded on.

If you’re applying for a US green card then you need to make sure that the photo specifications are met according to the Department of Homeland Security and Immigration. If you’re photo is not exactly as it needs to be then you’re application could be denied.

For most intents and purposes, the specifications for US green card, visa and passport photo are the same. They are:

  • Photos must be in color and on matte or glossy photo quality paper.
  • 2 x2 inches or 51mm x 51mm in size.
  • The head must be 1 inch to 1 3/8 inch in sized (this counts from the top of the head to bottom of the chin) within the 2 inch photo.
  • The photo must have been taken within the last 6 months of application.
  • The background must be plain white or off-white. No designs even if it matches the background color.
  • You must be directly facing the camera.
  • Your eyes must be open and no facial expression, i.e. no smiles or frowns.

However, where the difference occurs is with the Diversity Visa Lottery that the US Immigration holds. Here are the main differences. Remember, failure to precisely follow the instructions will result in your application being denied.

The Diversity Lottery applications are an online submission format. Every person who is applying for the green card must be included on the application.

    • The image must be in JPEG format.
    • You must submit in color. Monochrome will not be accepted.
    • Resolution must be at 300 pixels per inch when scanned, or 12 pixels per millimeter.
    • If you are using a photographic print to submit for the application then the image must be 2 inches by 2 inches.
    • The maximum image size for submission is 240 kB
    • 600×600 pixels in dimension for online application


UK Passport Photo Specifications

If you’re looking to get a UK passport then you should make sure that your passport photo software can specifically meet the requirements of what the United Kingdom now needs to issue your passport.

Passport application in the UK isn’t what it used to be. Just like the rest of the world governments, the UK has tightened the reigns. Passport applications are not taken lightly any longer. UK passports have now implemented facial biometric recognition technology so passport photos need to be specific and detailed.

UK Passport Photo Specifications and Application Requirements

  • You will need to submit two identical photos
  • The photos must be properly focused and clear
  • The size of the photo must be 45mm by 35mm with the head between 29mm and 34mm in size
  • Background must be light gray
  • Printed on high-quality, low-gloss photographic paper
  • No other objects, people or shadows
  • Photos must be in near mint condition with no creases or bends
  • The photo must be a full-facial view, straight on
  • Your mouth must be closed. No showing of teeth, smiling or frowning
  • No sunglasses, tinted lenses or hair can be obscuring the eyes
  • No glare or camera flash reflections on corrective lenses
  • If for religious or medical reasons you wear a head covering than it may be worn in your UK passport photo

UK Passport Photo Specifications for Children (under 5 years old)

Applying for a child’s passport have most of the same requirements as far as size and quality as that of adults and as noted above. However, the UK does allow for a little bit of latitude due to the nature of situation.

  • Must be a current, true likeness of the child
  • The head size of the child can be between 21mm and 34mm instead of the same as adults above
  • Neutral expressions and looking straight into the camera is are not a requirements
  • No supporting hands or fingers allowed in the photo
  • Babies that are 1 year old and under are not required to have their eyes open

This new criteria for UK passport is to prevent fraud and illegal immigration, as well as prevent security risks with illegal entry into ports of entry. Also, for security reasons the ability to track and accurately use biometrics for facial recognition is paramount and effective.

Schengen Visa Photo Specifications

When you think about it, the Schengen visa is a pretty good deal. What the Schengen visa does is make travel between the 25 members who participate in the program more streamlined, less problematic, and gives the traveler the ability to avoid the bureaucratic red tape that would go along with applying for a visa to each individual country.

That doesn’t mean that it’s a simple procedure, though. The Schengen visa still has most of the requirements that all other ultra-modern, biometric security procedures that other countries have. In fact, in some ways, the Schengen visa is more precise in its requirements since it has to meet the standards of all 25 participating countries. That’s why it’s important to have high quality, visa and passport photo software.

Requirements and Specifications for Schengen Visa Photo

  • The photo should be 45mm tall by 35mm wide with the face a minimum of 32mm from chin to crown and a maximum of 36mm from chin to crown
  • The photo must clearly show the person’s full facial features. The photo must be straight on
  • No headwear is authorized except for religious purposes and only if it is part of the person’s usual wardrobe
  • The photo should be sharp and in focus
  • No shadows or red-eye allowed in the photos
  • The background would ideally be a neutral, light gray color or white and must be in contrast to the facial tone of the person. There should be no pattern on the background.
  • No shadows in the background and only the person’s face in the photo. No chair backs.
  • High-quality, photo paper with a print resolution of at least 600 dpi.
  • The eyes must be open. The person must have a neutral facial expression.
  • Eye glasses may be worn without tinted lenses. No sunglasses allowed.
  • Hair and headwear may not cover or cast shadow over the eyes.
  • The photo must be of high quality.

The 25 Countries that Participate in the Schengen Visa Program:

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • The Czech Republic
  • Estonia
  • Denmark
  • France
  • Finland
  • Greece
  • Germany
  • Italy
  • Iceland
  • Hungary
  • Luxembourg
  • Portugal
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Poland
  • Norway
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland

Greek Passport Photo Specifications

As a result of 9/11, the world governments changed their requirements of passport applications, registration and tracking. The entire global community adopted a biometric identity and tracking system that ensures all nations are in step with new security measures so that individuals can be more easily tracked around the world.

Greek passport photo specifications changed just like the rest of the world did and even went a few steps further. In 2005, Greece adopted a new passport model that is now state of the art. The current Greek passport now has holograms, invisible ink, and biometric data on chips embedded within. They are among the most difficult to copy or fake in the world. That’s great for security but it may add some more difficulty in new passport applications.

New Greek Passport Photo Requirements:

  • The entire photo must by 40mm x 60mm with the head comprising between 50% and 60% of the photo and with the shoulders included the person must occupy 75% of the photo.
  • Glasses are allowed in the photos but it is a good practice to remove them for Greek passport photos. Removing them will reduce the chances of your passport application being returned for an inadequate picture and will save you time and a headache.
  • You must submit the application with 2 identical photos. These photos must have been taken within the last 3 months of your application. A good rule of thumb is to use more recent photos.
  • No showing of teeth, frowning or smiling of any kind.
  • Babies’ passport photos must not be showing parents holding them, to include any hands or fingers.
  • Irises of eyes must be clearly visible.
  • Natural skin color. No augmenting or over-tanning is allowed in the photos.
  • No shadows or other people are allowed to be seen in Greek Passport Photos. Also, make sure that there is no chair back or wall outlets showing.
  • Background must be on plain white or off-white background. No design of any kind on background.
  • High-quality photography that was chemically developed is also a requirement.
  • No red-eye allowed. Make sure that you have a good photo editor option if you’re using Passport Photo software in your home.


Greek is amongst the strictest of countries when it comes to passport photo specifications and requirements. However, this is all done in the name of security and should make us all feel safer. Make sure that you are aware of the passport specifications when applying for a Greek passport and your process should go smoothly.

Hong Kong Visa and Passport Photo Specifications

Hong Kong is one of the most beautiful and interesting country to explore. This place unveils hottest attractions and countless opportunities. Many individuals wish to travel to Hong Kong while some other also needs to leave the country for personal and professional purposes. People come and go but entering the country’s borders and boundaries calls for necessary travel documents that need to be complied. There are instances that you need to apply for a visa for legal entry and exit in Hong Kong.

Photo requirements are always tied up with your travel documents. Many people who are applying for Hong Kong Visa need to be very careful and mindful especially when it comes to visa photo specifications. The following photo requirements must be kept in mind:

  • The picture must show full frontal face with clear features of the face.
  • The photograph must have white and plain background.
  • The required size of the picture is 40mm in width by 50mm in height. The size from individual’s chin up to the crown in the photograph must be 32mm to 36mm. Another photo requirement is that there must be enough headroom.

Acceptable and Unacceptable Photos

When taking the photo, make sure not to wear headdress and avoid wearing heavy makeup. Subjects are also advised not to wear overly light or dark-colored clothing. Photographs will be denied if the applicant in the picture is:

  • Wearing frames across the eyes
  • Not centered
  • With hair across eyebrows or eyes
  • Viewed with flashy reflections on glasses or face
  • Too light
  • Too dark
  • With shadow

Through laser engraving, your picture will be personalized on your Doc/I or passport’s data pages. The image quality appearing on the Doc/I or passport somehow depends on the color and quality of original pictures furnish by applicants.

As much as possible do not staple, fold or write anything at the back of the photograph because these might be reasons of denial of your photograph. Also, refrain from attaching the photo on the application form with the use of paperclip. This will otherwise make the photograph unsuitable for Doc/I or passport personalization. Applications with substandard photographs will not be accepted and processed and assigned personnel will then be returning these to the applicants.

Acceptable and Valid File Format of Online Application Digital Photograph for (only for passport application)

  • Image type should be on JPEG format.
  • File size must be 600Kbytes or below
  • Acceptable dimension when captured by a scanner is 600dpi. The photograph size must be 40mm in width by 50mm in height.
  • When captured by a digital camera, image size must be 1200 pixel in width by 1600 pixel in     height.

Following the set photo requirements is highly essential to ensure that you will qualify for Hong Kong visa applications. Unaccepted photos are common reasons why most individuals are faced with visa application problems. To save yourself from experiencing the same scenario, make sure that photograph is taken the proper way and the dos and don’ts when it comes to your travel document’s photo requirement.

How to Start a Passport Photo Business with Passport Photo Software

One of the best ways to start your own business is with passport photo software. Many of the larger photo studios you see today started out as a passport photo business. If you’re interested in photography then this is a great way to get your foot in the door of the industry.

10 Steps to Start a Professional Passport Photo Business

1. Have a Business Plan

Make sure that you have all of your ducks in a row when it comes to starting your own business. It sounds great in theory but there are actually some risks involved. The main risk is whether you can rely, partly or completely, on the revenue your business will bring in.

2. Do Your Homework on the Requirements

Each country has their own standards on passport and visa photo requirements. Make sure that you are familiar with each of them. Have reference material on hand at all times. It will make you look more competent when you investigate questions instead of just guessing.

3. Get the Right Passport Photo Software

This is the most important part of starting your passport photo business…obviously. The right kind of passport photo software will be easy to use and capable of handling all of the requirements for the countries passports and visas you are servicing for.

4. Studio system of Computer, Camera, and Printer with Good lighting

No matter where you open your business you’re going to want a professional looking studio to include: the right backdrop for passport photos (white, off-white, or light gray), a good camera, quality printer with plenty of photo quality paper (to produce the level of photos needed), a computer and great lighting to avoid shadows and produce better images.

5. Let Family and Friends Know

Start your marketing plan by word of mouth. Let family and friends know via Facebook, telephone and email that you have started your own passport photo business and ask them to tell others.

6. Use your photo software to make some samples and a portfolio

Get a friend to come over and take some sample shots of popular passports templates and photos and put them in a binder to use as a portfolio and sample for prospective customers.

7. Begin a Real Advertising Campaign

Take an ad out in the local paper and start an online advertising campaign through Google, Bing or Yahoo!

8. Start in Home, Expand if and When You Can

If you can’t afford prime real estate in a visible area then start the business in your own home. Home based business is all the rage right now and cheap to maintain.

9. Incorporate Photos but always stay at the core

Eventually you can start to offer other photo services as part of the business but always stay true to the “passport photo” as your specialty so that you can build authority and reputation in the marketplace.

10. Enjoy the freedom of working for yourself

Being your own boss and owning your own business feels great. Enjoy it!

Guideliness for US Passport Photo and Visa Photo Specifications

If you’re applying for a passport then you don’t want the application process to take any longer than normal. You have places to go and people to see. You need to make sure that your passport processing isn’t delayed because you weren’t aware of the specifications that the United States State Department has on passport photos and visas.

There was a time when US Immigration and the State Department were a little lax on their passport and visa specifications and applications. Those are definitely not the times we live in today. 9/11 showed the US that it was vulnerable and they have since tightened the leash on these things.

United States Passport Photo Requirements

  • Photos must be in color and on matte or glossy photo quality paper.
  • 2 x2 inches or 51mm x 51mm in size.
  • The head must be 1 inch to 1 3/8 inch in sized (this counts from the top of the head to bottom of the chin) within the 2 inch photo.
  • The photo must have been taken within the last 6 months of application.
  • The background must be plain white or off-white. No designs even if it matches the background color.
  • You must be directly facing the camera.
  • Your eyes must be open and no facial expression, i.e. no smiles or frowns.

United States Visa Photo Requirements

While much of the same requirements remain the same as that of passport photos, there are some differences:

There is an additional requirment to the 1 in to 1 3/8 in top of the head to the bottom of the chin requirement. For visas, that portion of the image must comprise between 50% and 69% of the entire photo.
US Visa specifications also go more deeply into the way of dress for photos. You should wear the type of clothes that reflect those that you would wear in everyday with the following conditions:

  • No uniforms unless it is religious clothing that is worn on a daily basis.
  • No hats or head covering that obscure the hair or hairline. Full face must be visible. If you wear a head covering for religious purposes than it cannot cast a shadow over your face.
  • No headphones or wires in the photo.
  • Hearing-aides and glasses (with non-tinted lenses) may be worn.
  • No glare or reflections within the lenses of your glasses are allowed in the photo.

Singapore Passport Photo Specifications

People used to say “the world is changing”. Well, it’s a changed world. Countries that in the past were a little less strict on passport requirements must now follow the biometric standards that were agreed upon around the world by governments. Singapore is no different.

Singapore is as strict, or stricter (in some regards) as the rest of the world. When you’re traveling to the country make sure that you have your ducks in a row and your passport and passport photos are in line with the below requirements.

Many passport photo vendors and photography studios that provide passport photo services actually charge more for Singapore passport photos. It’s that strict.

Singapore Passport Requirements:

  • Overall size of the passport photo must be 45mm high by 35mm wide and on a matt paper of high-quality. Chin to crown, the head must be 35mm high and 25mm wide.
  • The photo must be borderless and taken within the last 3 months.
  • Full face, looking directly at the camera. Your eyes must be open, head straight without ANY hair across your eyes.
  • The top of the shoulders and the edges of your face must be visible.
  • For religious reasons hats and head coverings may be allowed. Other than that none of any sort. If you’re wearing glasses ensure that there is no reflection.
  • No sunglasses or eyeglasses with tint.
  • No redeyes. No uneven brightness on your face. (If you’re doing your passport photo with Passport Photo Software in your home then make sure it has a good photo editor included.)
  • If your hair or head covering is white then the photo may be taken against a light gray background. If you do not have a white head covering or hair then the background must be white.
  • Only you are allowed in the photo. No shadows. No chair back. No other people.

Singapore Online Application for Passports:

  • If you’re not mailing your passport registration and application in manually then there is an online option with the following requirements:
  • All of the above photo requirements, plus:
  • Total file size of your photo should not be larger than 150kb
  • You need to be familiar with JPEG compression in order to achieve the above size
  • Must be submitted in JPEG format.


Travelling to Singapore can be a great experience. Visiting friends and family is sometimes a necessity. Make sure that you have all of your passport photo requirements in order before applying or it could delay your travel.

How to Choose a Passport Photo Software

Passports are a serious business in this day and age. Governments, airport security, and customs officials all take passports very seriously and so should you. It would only make sense that you want to ensure that your passport photo is on point and done correctly. Or you may not be going anywhere.

Personal passport photo software is relatively new in the industry. Before the software you would have to make an appointment at a photography studio or passport photo service agent. You would wait days just to take the small, plain photo to submit to the immigration department for your passport issue. Now you can do it all in your own home, with no hassle, and within the correct specifications.

Things to Consider When Choosing Passport Photo Software

1. Make Sure it is Compatible with Your Equipment

Good passport photo software is compatible with a wide-range of equipment and operating systems. You shouldn’t have to be hassled trying to find one that will work on your computer and with your printer.

2. Photo Editor is a must

You need the software to be able to edit and adjust your photo so that it looks good. If it is blurry or has red-eye then chances are it won’t be accepted by immigration. Besides, you want to look presentable-even in your passport.

3. Ensure that Editing is Simple

You shouldn’t have to read a hundred page user guide or watch endless tutorials to be able to operate your passport photo software and edit your photos. Even people without a strong grasp of how computers, printers, and photography work should be able to operate the software and produce high-quality photos.

4. Easy Print Settings

Furthermore, we’re talking about passport photos here. You shouldn’t be paying the same as you would for a DLSR camera. The software should be affordable and able to work with the digital camera that you already have. Even the one in your smartphone or on your computer.

5. Make sure that It meets government requirements

Most importantly: the passport photo software should be true to its word. It should produce passport photos, within the immigration department’s required specifications, and do it simply. It should be software that is specifically designed to produce the types of photos that passports require.

Basic Passport Photo Requirements according to the US Passports and International Travel site:

  • Color photo
  • Printed on matte or glossy photo paper (no regular printer paper!)
  • 2 inches by 2 inches in size
  • The head from (top to chin) must be between 1 inch and 1 3/8 inch in size.
  • Photo taken within 6 months of passport application
  • Plain white or off-white background (no glamour shots!)
  • Full face view and directly facing the camera
  • Both eyes open and plain facial expression.


As you can see, good passport photo software has a lot of stiff requirements that it should live up to. The requirements are very specific and if your photo is not in compliance then you will have to wait even longer for a valid passport with which to travel. Make sure that your passport photo software covers all the bases.