Losing, or getting your passport stolen can be one of the most stressful experiences that you have to go through on your travels. Hopefully, this is something that you will never have to experience in your lifetime, but if you are one of the unlucky few, then not to worry, there is an easy solution!
Far short of second guessing your footsteps and raising suspicion with people you have met, there is a simple solution to the problem, as well as several measures you can take before and during your travels.
Getting emergency travel documents:
If your passport is lost or stolen, then you will have to go to your nearest embassy and apply for emergency travel documents. Emergency travel documents act in lieu of a passport and mean that you can get home safely and hassle-free.
If your passport has been stolen, then it’s important to make sure that you get a police report. You will need to head down to the nearest police station and report the missing or stolen passport.
If you are applying for emergency travel documents, then you will need to get a crime reference number, as you will need to include this in your application.
After you have obtained this information, you will need to go to your nearest embassy and fill out aLSO1 form. Once filled out, the embassy can notify the relevant bodies.
After all of this has been completed, you can finally relax. Emergency travel documents usually take less than a day to come through, but if you are travelling home soon after, you may have to prepare yourself to rearrange your flights. In some cases, travel documents can take up to a week to arrive, however, this is very rare.
It’s important to note that travel documents only work as a temporary replacement for a passport, so when you’re back at home, you will have to make sure that you go to the passport office and get a replacement asap.
Getting a police report:
Getting a police report in a foreign country can be a little bit of a daunting task, but it’s imperative that you get the police report in order to get your crime number. This is for both insurance purposes and so that you can get your temporary travel documents.
As soon as you discover that your passport is stolen, you must take yourself to the nearest police station, as obtaining this reference can take quite a while (especially if you don’t speak the local language).
Taking preventative action:
If you have had your passport stolen or have lost it whilst abroad once, the chances are that this will never happen to you again, mostly because you will take extra precautions throughout the trip.
In future, it’s important to make sure that you take two forms of identification, such as a drivers license, as this can make the process of retrieving information from the embassy system much easier.
Additionally, it’s important to make sure that you scan your passport and all of your important documents, as this will ensure that you always have suitable proof of identification.
Always invest in a sturdy safe, or find a suitable hiding place for all of your important documents. Taking your passport with you everywhere you go can increase the risk of loss, so it’s important to make sure that you keep it safe and out of harm’s way.