How to take passport photos of children

I’ve been wanting to go on holiday abroad for absolutely ages, I think pretty much since Little Z was about 6 months old. The OH hasn’t been so keen though and wanted to wait till he was about 1.

So we waited.

I nagged and then we waited some more.

Till the day came when he relented when Z was about 14 months ish. My nagging needs a bit more work I think.

The balls been in my court ever since and, to be secretly honest, I suddenly got cold feet. How would we cope on a long flight? What if he got sick? What about milk? And I’ve kind of just dawdled over the last few months and done not very much about it. Then it hit me…. He turns 2 in December. That’s when we start to pay extra.


Ok, cost is not the only reason but it would save us a fair bit to go before December!

So the race is on. Which means I had to do what I’ve been dreading for a while.

Take Z to a Photobooth to get his passport photos done.

Who the hell makes these things? I’m pretty sure they’ve gone the way of everything else in this world (Curly Wurlys, Cadburys Creme Eggs, Monster Munch) and are now much smaller than they used to be, even for one person. Trying to get an adult and a wriggly toddler in there renders the privacy curtain a bit useless. You might just about get it shut but you end up flapping it constantly as you try to just turn around. Probably good entertainment for passerby.

It’s no wonder Little Z screamed his head off with “Noooooooo!” as soon as we entered it.

I spun the seat around both clockwise and anticlockwise for about 5 minutes trying to get it to its highest point so that Little Z could be the right position. I eventually realised it just doesn’t go up high enough. So more spinning later the seat thing is at the right height for him to stand on. Except he doesn’t want to stand. He wants to cling to me and play with all the buttons in front of him. Uh oh.

I stick in my fiver (FIVE quid for passport photos??! Bloody government) and we select the right option. I have a genius plan. I will let him cling to me, click my fingers in front of him a lot till he looks straight ahead, then take the photo whilst simultaneously jumping out of shot.

(The hubby earlier on suggested I take him to a professional photographer but they are even more extortionate than these robbing photobooths. I know what I am doing, obviously).

So…ready….click fingers rapidly…Little Z looks up…press button….jump out of shot!!

…and nothing. Eh??! Little Z starts to pull me back and…


The stupid machine has a delay on it. Arrrrrgh!! Hmmmm…maybe the passport agency will accept him looking down yes?

Fortunately we have two more attempts. Z starts to get more and more frazzled and wants to go outside to see the “Wain!” (Rain!) and I unsuccessfully try to persuade him that having his picture taken with no smiling and his mouth shut whilst looking straight ahead is much more fun.

We end up fudging the second attempt up and I start admitting defeat and looking around for a refund button. Oh. There isn’t one. Bloody government.

Our last valiant attempt resulted in me jumping out of shot quickly, Z trying to follow suit and us both being greeted (embarrassingly by a queue of 2 others waiting). We manage to get a sideways frowny photo of Little Z with one side of my face in it. Success. Not!

We then have to stand with the queue waiting for our photos to come out and do that drying thing before you can pick them up. Little Z is not phased in the slightest and waves bye bye to them as we scurry away.

Then yesterday the hubby drove us to his friends photography studio. It took him about 3 minutes in total and cost us £3.50.


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