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What size is a 2×2 photo?

A 2×2 photo, also known as a passport photo, is a small photo print that is 2 inches by 2 inches in size. Passport photos are a standard headshot photo size that is commonly used for passport applications, visa applications, and other official government documentation that requires a photo.

The 2×2 size has become the standard for these types of official photos across many countries. In the United States, 2×2 photos are required for passport applications and visa applications by the Department of State. Other countries like Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand also require 2×2 photos for passports.

So in summary, a 2×2 photo simply refers to a photo that is 2 inches wide by 2 inches high, resulting in a photo that is 2 inches by 2 inches in total size.

Standard Requirements for 2×2 Photos

When getting a passport photo taken, there are a number of requirements that must be met for a 2×2 photo to be acceptable to be used for official government documentation. Here are the standard requirements for 2×2 passport photos:

– The photo should measure 2 inches by 2 inches square. Any photos that are not exactly 2×2 inches will be rejected.

– It should be in color, with a plain white background. The photo should capture from slightly above the head to the shoulders.

– The head should be centered and take up 50-69% of the photo vertically. The eyes must be open, level, and directly facing the camera.

– The photo must show a neutral facial expression (no smiling or frowning), with both eyes open and clearly visible. Prescription glasses can be worn as long as the eyes are visible and there is no glare in the glasses.

– Photos must be high quality and in focus, with no pixels or graininess. The photo should be clear and taken in clothing normally worn on a daily basis.

– There should be no shadows or flash reflections on the face or background. The lighting should be bright and even.

– Hats, head coverings, and head phones should not be worn, except for religious purposes. Even then, the full face must be visible.

– Any head coverings worn for religious purposes must not obscure or cast shadows on the eyes or any part of the face.

How to Take a Proper 2×2 Photo

To take a proper 2×2 photo that meets all the requirements for passports and other documents, follow these tips:

– Use a high resolution digital camera that can take photos with at least 600×600 pixel resolution. Avoid using phone cameras if possible.

– Take the photo in a well-lit room with bright, even lighting on your face. Make sure there are no shadows. Position a white wall behind you for the background.

– Sit up straight and look directly at the camera with a neutral, non-smiling facial expression. Keep both eyes open and visible.

– Fill up most of the frame with your head and shoulders. Leave more space above the head than below the chin.

– Take the photo from a high angle slightly above your eye level. Point the center of the camera at your nose.

– Set the camera on a tripod or steady surface if you don’t have someone to take the photo for you. Use a timer mode to prevent blur.

– Take multiple photos and zoom in on the preview screen to check positioning, framing, lighting, shadows, focus and facial expression.

– Select a high quality photo and print on photo paper at the correct 2×2 size. Double check dimensions before submitting.

Following these steps will help ensure your 2×2 photo meets all the requirements needed for passports, visas, and other official documentation needing a standard headshot. Taking your own compliant passport photo can save time and money.

Printing Your Own 2×2 Photos

Once you have a high quality digital photo, printing your own 2×2 photos at home is easy. Here are some tips:

– Set your printer settings to borderless printing to allow full bleed of the 2×2 image on all sides. Select the highest print quality setting.

– Choose photo paper, glossy or matte finish. Avoid using plain paper which can look fuzzy.

– Create a 2×2 print size photo template in photo editing software. Simply open a new 2×2 inch canvas at 300 dpi resolution.

– Insert and center your headshot within the canvas template, leaving equal margins on all sides.

– Print the template onto the photo paper, trimming any excess edges to create the finished 2×2 print. Allow ink to dry fully.

– Use an online template or mobile app if you don’t have photo editing software. Upload your photo and size/crop it to 2×2.

– Take photos to a drug store photo printing kiosk for easy self-service 2×2 prints. Review before printing an entire sheet to save paper.

– Order 2×2 prints from an online printing service. Upload images and select the 2×2 size. This is a convenient option but can be more expensive per print.

With the right digital photo, some basic photo editing skills, and a high quality printer, you can create compliant 2×2 photos at home. This saves time and money compared to paying for professional passport photo services.

How Many 2×2 Photos Are Needed

The number of 2×2 photos required depends on what you need them for. Here is a quick rundown of how many 2×2 passport photos must be provided:

– **US Passport:** Submit 2 identical 2×2 photos with your US passport application.

– **USA Visa Application:** You’ll need 2 identical 2×2 photos for the visa application process.

– **Canadian Passport:** 4 identical 2×2 photos are required for a Canadian passport application.

– **UK Passport:** Submit 2 identical 2×2 photos when applying for or renewing a British passport.

– **Australian Passport:** 2 identical 2×2 photos are required for Australian passport applications.

– **New Zealand Passport:** Applicants need 2 identical 2×2 size photos for a New Zealand passport application.

So most countries will require you to provide 2 or 4 identical 2×2 passport photos when applying for official travel documentation like a passport or visa. It’s wise to print multiple extras when taking your own photos in case any get rejected.

Some visa applications may require additional photos or singles. Check the exact requirements beforehand for your specific situation. Having some extra 2×2 photos on hand can save an extra trip to get photos taken again.

How Much Do 2×2 Photos Cost

The cost for 2×2 passport photos can vary depending on where you get them printed. Here are the average price ranges:

– **Drug store kiosks:** $12-$15 for 2 printed photos

– **Post office:** $15 for 2 printed 2×2 photos

– **Walmart photo studio:** $8 for 4 printed 2×2 photos

– **Professional passport service:** $5-$20 per 2 prints

– **Online printing services:** $0.50-$1 per 2×2 print, plus shipping

– **DIY home printing:** Just a few cents per photo in ink and photo paper

As you can see, printing official passport photos at home can be the most budget-friendly option, sometimes up to 10 times cheaper than using a passport photo service or kiosk. Even factoring in the cost of higher end photo paper and ink, you can print multiple high quality 2×2 photos for just pennies each.

However, professional services may be more convenient if you don’t have the necessary camera, software, printer, or photo editing skills. You must also be sure to correctly meet all size, framing, and print quality requirements when taking DIY passport photos.

Uses of 2×2 Photos

While 2×2 photos are best known for their use in passport and visa applications, they can also serve other documentation purposes. Here are some of the most common uses and needs for the 2×2 sized headshot:

– Passport photos
– Visa application photos
– Permanent residence card photos
– Citizenship and naturalization certificate photos
– Driver’s license photos
– Immigration paperwork photos
– Military IDs
– Security ID badges
– Business IDs and credentials
– School and student IDs
– Public transportation cards
– Family genealogy records
– LinkedIn profile photo
– Dating site profile photos

Any application that requires a small formal headshot ID photo is likely to specify 2×2 size prints. Having a few compliantphotos on hand can save you time and money.

Differences in 2×2 Photo Size Requirements

While 2×2 usually refers to 2 inch by 2 inch passport photos, there can be some minor differences in the official size requirements for 2×2 photos by country.

Here is a comparison of the official 2×2 size dimensions:

Country Width Height
USA 2 inches 2 inches
Canada 35mm 45mm
UK 35mm 45mm
Australia 35mm 45mm

As you can see, while the USA specifies 2×2 photos as exactly 2 inches by 2 inches, other major countries specify the size for passport photos as 35mm x 45mm.

35mm is roughly 1 3/8 inches
45mm is roughly 1 3/4 inches

So there is a slight difference between US 2×2 measurement standards and other countries using millimeter measurements. Be sure to check the exact size needed for your specific passport or country documentation requirements when printing 2×2 photos. Having the wrong size can delay applications.

Common Mistakes to Avoid with 2×2 Photos

Since passport and visa applications will be rejected if 2×2 photos don’t meet all the specifications, it’s important to avoid these common mistakes:

– Incorrect size – Not exactly 2 inches x 2 inches.

– Low resolution – Pixelated or blurry image quality.

– Distracting background – Background not plain white.

– Shadows – On the face or background wall.

– Wrong positioning – Face not centered or head not sized correctly.

– Wrong lighting – Uneven light or shadows.

– No eye contact – Eyes not looking directly at camera.

– Obstructed face – Hair, glasses, hat, coverings hiding eyes or face.

– Emotional expressions – Smiling, frowning, etc. Neutral expression only.

– Tilted head – Head not upright, eyes not level.

– Red eye – Caused by direct flash.

– Ink smears – From wet ink when printed at home.

– Bent corners – Damaged prints.

Catching and fixing these common photography issues will ensure your 2×2 photos can be successfully used for any official documentation. Double check your photos against the standard requirements before printing and submitting.

Tips for Submitting 2×2 Photos

Follow these additional tips when submitting your 2×2 photos for passports and other documentation:

– Carefully check that photos meet all size, quality, framing and requirements. Refer to guidelines.

– Print the required number of identical photos needed. Often 2-4 prints.

– On the back of each photo lightly print your name and birthdate in pencil. Do not damage the front.

– Use an envelope or sleeve designed for 2×2 photos to protect them when mailing applications.

– Use a paperclip to safely attach photos to paper applications. Do not staple through the photos.

– Provide extra photos in case any get rejected or lost. Leftovers can be kept for future needs.

– Keep a digital copy of your photo on file so you can easily print replacements if needed.

Following proper photo handling and submission methods will give your application the best chance for quick and efficient processing without any rejections or delays.


A 2×2 photo refers to the universal standard size for passport photos, visa photos, and other official identification documentation requiring a headshot. The photo must physically measure 2 inches by 2 inches square. There are a number of strict technical, framing, and quality requirements the images must meet as well. With the right camera equipment, some photo editing skills, and high quality printer, you can create your own compliant 2×2 photos at home for just a few cents per printed photo. This saves significant time and money compared to using professional passport photo services. Just be vigilant in following all size, printing, and submission guidelines to avoid any processing delays or rejections. Keep extras on hand to easily submit proper 2×2 photos whenever needed.