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A US passport is a travel document issued to citizens and nationals of the United States. US passports are issued by the U.S. Department of State. American citizens can obtain a passport book or a passport card. They’re both subject to the same requirements.
However, the passport book can be used to travel internationally while the passport card can only be used to travel to and from Canada, Bermuda, Mexico and the Caribbean.
To obtain a US passport for the first time it is necessary to provide proof of citizenship, often a birth certificate.