UK Passport Photo Requirements & Size

A Complete Guide (2023 Update)
  • 35x45 mm size
  • Photograph in colour
  • Recent image only
  • No hair covering
  • Do not smile
  • Empty background
See all rules below
  • standard size and dimensions of British passport photos
  • no black-and-white photos, only in colour
  • no accessories like sunglasses or other objects visible in background
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  4. By the Guidelines

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  5. Right Size

    Check a shot against UK passport photo requirements in our free online tool. We'll make sure its parameters meet the guidelines for British passport pictures.
  6. Children & Adults

    We make compliant images for every age (infants, too!). They meet the size standards for a British passport photo and age-dependent requirements.

UK Passport Photo Guidelines & Examples

  1. proportions and neutral face expression
    Read moreClose
    Like in many other countries, the standard passport photo size is 45 x 35 millimetres (3.5 x 4.5 centimetres). Also, the official requirements clearly state your head size: it should fill most of the space and be centred and proportioned between 29 and 34 mm from your chin to the top.
    Pose in such a way that your full face is clearly visible in the photo, and your hair cannot cover any part of it. In addition to that, please make sure there is no tilt.
    With our British passport application, however, you can take a digital photo even at your full height: after conversion, your entire head and visible upper body will be right-sized anyway.
  2. try not to smile, as it is forbidden by the guidelines
    Read moreClose
    The UK passport photo requirements tell you to keep a straight face in your photo: lips closed, maintain an upright position, look straight at the iPhone or Android phone or camera you're using, keep a neutral expression, eyes open, and shoulders facing the objective lens.
    If you've made a digital photo where you're smiling, don't try to edit it, just take a new one of the same photo size. Any editing is against the rules: if retouched, your headshot will be rejected during the British passport application process.
  3. only a shadow-free digital photo will be accepted
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    According to the official specifications, you can't have them on your face or anywhere else. Glare, reflections on your face or spectacles aren't allowed as well. Also, photos taken in a dark room are not accepted, as you should be fully visible. To avoid mistakes, adjust brightness, contrast and photo size on your digital camera beforehand.
    To ensure there’s enough natural lighting (which will help make a perfect passport photo), stand or sit in a room with at least one window. Also, you can turn on the flashlight on your smartphone, tablet or another mobile device you're taking your photos with (although a sharp light source may not make good lighting).
  4. backdrop
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    As recommended in the government's rules and instructions, you should choose plain light-coloured background (grey or off-white is the best choice). Remember that there must not be any other objects of any size or other people posing in your photos.
    The official requirements do not allow any shadows in the backdrop behind you as well. As for colours, black-and-white headshots will not be accepted, too, as only coloured British passport photos meet the guidelines.
    If you want to have your background removed automatically, use our professional service to do it instantly!
  5. headwear is allowed for medical reasons only, with no exceptions
    Read moreClose
    You cannot wear a hat or headgear except for religious or medical reasons (for instance, hearing aids). Both exceptions require a signed statement from you. While religious attire is permitted in photos, remember that your face must be clearly visible. As for uniforms, the guidelines prohibit wearing them at all.
    Also, hair in UK passport photos should be of a reasonable size, as it can’t cover any part of your face. As for cosmetics, the current passport application guidelines allow to wear a simple makeup.
  6. no black-and white photos, image editing is also forbidden
    Read moreClose
    The UK passport photo requirements forbid using any editing computer software, PhotoShop-like apps, retouch tools or editing web services. Also, do not apply any special effects or makeup filters to your new photos.
    Only an unaltered picture can be used to renew your passport or get a new one. Even if there's a red eye effect, we wouldn't recommend to try and remove it. In most cases, it's safer to take a new headshot than edit your digital photos.
  7. digital and printout proportions in centimetres or inches
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    If you apply for a UK passport online with a digital photo at home with your phone, your image must be at least 600 pixels wide and 750 pixels high for online application. The size of your own passport photo must be at least 50 KB and no more than 10MB. Blurry, pixelated, grainy pictures and shots with other visible defects will be rejected.
    If you apply for a British passport with photos in print, make sure they have the required 35mm x 45mm size. Also, use good-quality paper and a printer with at least 300 DPI settings. No borders are allowed on printouts.
  8. no spectacles
    Read moreClose
    If you wear prescription spectacles on a daily basis for medical purposes and can't move around without them, you don't need to worry. As long as there is no glare or reflection in the photos, it's not against the guidelines to keep them.
    But mind that even prescription glasses with a tint or big-size frames over a large part of your face are not permitted in UK passport photos (and neither are tinted glasses). Also, you cannot wear sunglasses (or any other accessory completely or partially hiding your eyes).
  9. young child or infant
    Read moreClose
    According to the UK passport photo requirements, your little one must be alone in the image, no matter what size he or she is. Holding a toy or a similar object in the photo is not acceptable for infants. Also, when a parent takes digital photos, they must remove their hand from the frame.
    Make sure your kiddo keeps more or less neutral expression (mouth closed preferably) and the same head size and proportions while facing the camera directly. When taking pictures of a newborn, mind that it's okay if the toddler's eyes aren't open entirely.
Already have a photo?

UK Passport Photo Standards & Dimensions

  1. What are the requirements for a UK passport photo?

    HM Passport Office issues up-to-date requirements and regulations – both for digital shots and paper printouts.
    As for general UK passport specifications, your photo has to be taken within the last month, i. e. your appearance in it should be as actual as possible. Also, if you’re struggling when taking a headshot by yourself, ask a family member or friend to be your photographer. For the backdrop, use a uniform light-coloured background.
    The other (more specific) guidelines and specs for both digital passport photos and their printouts specify major principles of acceptance/denial. These specifications cover digital photo resolution and focus, correct size, right clothing (including that worn for religious or medical reasons), prescription glasses, earrings and other jewellery, hair, beard, lighting, neutral expression, and no tinted glasses.
    See the details above and use our free online UK photo checker to confirm your picture against UK passport requirements. In case of doubts, use our free photo maker to submit a picture that meets all the photo guidelines for a British passport application.

  2. What are the requirements for a baby passport photo UK?

    Although it’s way harder to take a good snapshot of your little one, the official rules for such a UK passport photo happen to be generally less strict. After all, you can’t tell the young British citizen to hold still and keep calm, right? So, the strict rules effective for adults do not apply to infants and their shots to the same extent.
    For example, your girl or boy may smile or open their mouth a bit (not too much though). Also, if he or she is under six, it is not necessary to look straight at the camera or keep a strictly neutral expression. But still, no matter the age, holding toys or dummies is not allowed, and there shouldn’t be any other objects in the picture.
    In addition to that, the baby passport photo requirements clearly state that parents can’t be present in the photo as well.
    As for applicants less than 12 months old, the requirements are even less stringent for them. While all the rules mentioned in the paragraph above still apply, there are some differences. For one, they can have their eyes closed.
    There’s also this life hack on the official government website: lay your little one on a light grey or cream bed sheet (to use as your makeshift background) and take a digital photo from above. You can support his or her head with your hand as long as it isn’t visible in the frame.

  3. What size is a passport photo UK in cm?

    The dimensions for printed photos are very precise: they must be 4.5 cm high and 3.5 cm wide (in line with the requirements). If we measure this in inches, the equivalent dimensions will be 1.375 x 1.75 in.
    These specifications are some of the most common ones, as they apply in many states around the world (both for passports and other identity papers). For instance, if you’re off on a business trip to Europe, you can also use a photo of these dimensions for your visa and/or other supporting documents in most cases. As we make 35×45 mm shots exactly, PhotoBooth Online can be your all-in-one cropping tool that’s both time- and cost-effective. Pretty convenient, right?

  4. What size is a digital passport photo UK?

    If you don’t feel like submitting in person, choose the online application service: in this case, the aspect ratio of the file you upload will remain the same. According to the universal standards, the proportions will still be 35×45 in millimetres (which equals 3.5 by 4.5 in centimetres and 1.375 by 1.75 inches).
    If we go into technical details, the resolution of your digital passport photo should be at least 750 by 600 (the height and width measured in pixels, not cm or mm). The reason for this requirement is that your picture must not be too blurry or pixelated–after all, you need to be easily identifiable in your official shot (that’s the whole point, isn’t it). There is no specified maximum dimension in pixels, but it obviously should be within reason, as the image cannot take up more than 10MB of space, with 50KB being the minimum.

  5. How to resize a photo to passport size?

    It’s easy to change a larger JPEG to the proper proportions for a British passport online. So, instead of spending lots of time and money on a visit to the nearest photo shop, we suggest you try the following (the entire process is super-easy):

    1. Visit the PhotoBooth Online website
    2. Select the Upload button
    3. Provide a new photo taken with your iPhone or Android smartphone within the last 30 days
    4. The app will automatically run the cropping format program per the applicable requirements for a British passport photo
    5. Wait a few seconds to get your UK passport-size photo cut to the allowed proportions in pixels
    6. Proceed to download the resulting file for printing

    When you obtain your photo, it should be submitted. In case you want to proceed without leaving home, apply immediately at the UK passport online submission page, following the easy step-by-step process. This is the most efficient way in terms of time and money. Plus, they will have your photo checked against the applicable standards beforehand to see if it’s all okay.
    If you don’t want to send in your digital passport photo through the online application page, you can do it in person by mail. Simply take the photo to the nearest post office to submit it to the government and use it for your new British travel document.

  6. How to make sure my shot meets the requirements for UK passport photos?

    This can pose quite a challenge, since most photo booths (and, frankly speaking, some stores) do not verify your photo once it’s taken. Instead, they leave it to you to check if you have a plain light-coloured background, keep a neutral facial expression and keep your mouth closed (and eyes open) in your brand-new passport photo.
    Not too great service, isn’t it? Thankfully, there are some options that make the verification much easier:

    • Apply on the official government website. Should a British citizen choose to submit his or her passport application online, their shot will be checked automatically. A special meter will evaluate the quality of your photo compliance-wise and tell you if something is wrong.
    • Use the Check and Send service at a post branch. For £16, one of the employees will thoroughly check your passport photo and the supporting documents to make sure you can send it all to HMPO without risking rejection. But please mind that they do not provide the service separately—if you want your photo examined by the staff, you’ll have to take it at their premises first.
    • Upload your digital passport photo to an online verification tool (other than the one at the page). Why do that if there’s an official option? For instance, this option will be useful for those who just want to ensure their shot meets the specifications before making it into a couple of printed photos (to submit them by post).
      Our service helps you do just that! Whether you’ve made your photo with your phone or digital camera, simply upload it here. We’ll run our integrated checker and correct your picture (if it needs adjustment in the first place). For instance, we’ll replace the photo background with the compliant one and crop your shot to the standard size.

Make Sure You Meet All UK Passport Photo Rules

Correct Photo Size

The full head dimensions must be between 29 and 34 mm. Our tool will help you verify and validate the head proportions to ensure your application will pass with no trouble.

Right Digital Photo

We process your shots per the requirements for UK passport photo size and quality: your acceptable shot will be 600 pixels wide and 750 pixels high, as per the official rules.

Plain Light Background

When renewing your passport or getting a new one, use our digital passport photo maker. If the background is wrong, we'll automatically set it to cream or light grey.

High Resolution

We'll make sure there is no blurry mess or shadow. Your clear HD photo for documents will be ready for printing and attaching to the application form (or submitting online).

No Shadows

Aside from being shadow-free, your photo must have the proper brightness, right size and contrast. We'll help check if it's all OK so that you're ready for submitting.

Any Number of Photos

Want to process 3, 10 or 15 headshots for your UK passport? Not a problem, we don't set any limits for uploaded photos. It’s a free app with no fee or hidden payments.