Travelers crossing U.S. land and sea borders can now replace their passport book with a new passport card.
Federal passport officials started issuing the wallet-size cards on July 14.
More than 450,000 people have applied for the card, said Brenda Sprague, deputy assistant secretary of state for passport services, at a news conference Monday at the Port of Miami.
''The U.S. passport card is a less expensive and more affordable alternative to the U.S. passport book,'' Sprague said.
The brand new document — which looks similar to a drivers license — can be used for people returning to the United States from Mexico, Canada, the Caribbean and Bermuda.
The pros: It's cheaper [$45 for first-time applicants, $20 if the applicant already has a passport and $35 for children], it's valid for the same period as a passport book, and it's faster for border officials to check.
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