Due to absenteeism and an increase in the number of passport applications just before the summer holidays, many municipalities face long queues at the counters. A number of municipalities have now managed to reduce waiting times, but the problems have not been resolved everywhere. This is evident from a tour of NU.nl along ten large cities.
He. She ad It was reported at the beginning of April that many municipalities faced long waiting periods in the Civil Affairs Service. Now most municipalities say these queues have been reduced, because the flu and corona wave is now over and many municipalities have hired additional staff.
It’s different in The Hague: residents sometimes have to wait up to ten weeks before they can collect their passports. Crowds can also be observed on the phone, with people sometimes hanging for twenty minutes.
Crowds at the passport office in The Hague can also be seen at other counters from the Town Hall. The municipality has taken a number of measures to overcome the long waiting times. For example, more staff have been hired, and the town hall is open on Saturdays, a spokesperson said.
The spokesperson says the municipality is doing its best to prevent overcrowding. “Certainly now that we are at the beginning of the height of summer, we want to serve the population as best and as quickly as possible in these busy times.”
Sick leave in Utrecht leads to long waiting times
Wait times in Utrecht are also still much longer than usual. Residents there wait about four to six weeks to get their passports. Usually this is arranged within ten days.
A spokesperson told NU.nl that this was mainly due to absenteeism, such as employees who contracted the Corona infection. In addition, people are traveling again, which means the number of orders is rising sharply,” the spokesperson said. “We give everyone their leave, so we do everything we can.”
In The Hague and Utrecht, people can submit urgent applications if they have to travel abroad quickly. The municipality is assessing if there is an emergency, so the leave request will not be responded to quickly, the speakers explain.
Zoetermeer has long wait times, Amsterdam is relatively short
Wait times are still very long at Zoetermeer. Residents there are now waiting nine weeks to get a passport, seven weeks longer than usual.
According to the municipality, the long waiting times are due, among other things, to absenteeism among employees. Like a few other municipalities, Zoetermeer cites the mandate of municipalities to receive Ukrainian refugees as one of the reasons for the increased waiting times.
In the capital, the waiting time is relatively short: an average of nine days. “This can vary during the week, as we are deploying additional capacity as it becomes available,” a spokesperson explains.
Other municipalities were able to clear the accumulated wells
Elsewhere in the country, waiting times seem not too bad. “We are sticking to the standard waiting time of one week,” a Breda municipality spokesman said. “But often people can go within a day.” Also in Eindhoven the waiting time is a little longer than usual.
And in a number of places, the backlog rose significantly in April, but is now down again. In Leiden, for example, where the waiting time is just under three weeks. This is comparable to last year. Remarkably, however, the number of applications this year is 30 to 40 percent higher than it was in 2021.
Enschede also managed to liquidate the backlog. The waiting time there is also three weeks. “Residents of Enschede municipality who are now planning to schedule a passport application can be faster than residents who scheduled an appointment a month ago, for example,” a spokesperson said.
In Nijmegen, the waiting time is now two weeks, longer than the usual five days. A month ago, it was still six to seven weeks. It’s also busier than usual in Almera. There you wait three to four weeks to get a passport.
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