Requirements for a biometric Passport Photo
Sharpness and Contrast
The face must be in focus, have good contrast and accurately reflect the subject’s skin tone. By uploading and using our Passport Photo Generator, you will be able to see if your photo is of sufficient resolution to print at high quality. Moreover, we also check, if desired, whether the ordered photos meet the biometric requirements.
The face must be evenly illuminated across all features, with no shadows. Reflections or shadows on the face as well as red eyes are also to be avoided. Therefore it is best if you, upon taking the photo, stand with your back against a wall which faces a window on the opposite site. In the near future we will also provide a short video explaining how a biometric passport photo is best taken.
The background must be one plain colour – ideally light grey or white -and bright enough to isolate the subject sufficiently whilst providing good contrast with the hair and facial features. In the case of light hair a grey background should be choosen, whereas for dark hair a light grey background is more suitable. Any kind of pattern or shadow on the background will not be acceptable.
Quality of the photo
The photo should be generated (especially when shooting with a digital camera, a Smartphone or Tablet) on high-quality paper with a print resolution of at least 600 dpi. The photo must be neutral in color and of reflect the skin tones naturally. The photo may have no kinks or impurities. The photo can be taken in black and white or color.
Head position and facial expression
A representation of the person with a tilted or rotated head (e.g. half-profile) is not allowed. The person must look with neutral facial expression and closed mouth straight into the camera. Both halves of the face (as also the ears) should be equally visible.
Eyes & sight
The person on the photo needs to look directly into the camera. The eyes must be open and clearly visible and may not be covered by hair or eyeglass frames.
Glasses or other eyewear
The eyes must be clear and evident (reflections on the glasses, tinted glasses and sunglasses are not permitted). The edge of the glass or the frame may not cover your eyes.
Head coverings are generally not permitted. Exceptions are permitted in particular for religious reasons. In this case: the face must be visible from the bottom of the chin to the forehead. There must be no shadows on the face.
Babys and younger children
For infants and young children up to the age of 5, deviations in the head position (not of the frontal intake!), the gaze into the camera, in the face and head size are permitted.
Size, format and orientation
The format of a biometric passport photo must be 35 mm x 45 mm. At this, 64-75% of the height of the photo should be filled out with the face , i.e. between 29-34 mm. Children until the age of 11, variations in the height of the face are allowed: the face height for children must occupy at least 50% of the photos. This is equivalent to a height of at least 23 mm from the tip of the chin up to the top of the head.
Finally, the face must be centered in the middle of the photo. You can crop your photo in our passport photo generator to the passport photo size, and align your face using a template.
Source: Federal Office of Police