What to Do When You Lose Your Passport

Not sure what to do if you've lost your passport while on vacation? Take a deep breath, calm down, and follow these steps

If your passport is stolen or lost, don’t panic – you have options

Losing your passport is the ultimate travel nightmare. But if this worst-case scenario happens, here’s what to do

Your passport is an extremely valuable document, so keep it in a safe place at all times. However, if you do lose it, you need to report it immediately. If you’re in Canada, you can do that at any Passport Canada office or by calling the toll free number 1-800-567-5858.

If you are out of the country, you need to report it to the local police and the nearest Canadian Government office abroad. There is a list of them at Passport Canada.

Even if you find your lost or stolen passport, you can’t use it. You have to send it into Passport Canada and apply for a replacement passport, which can be a hassle. Canadian authorities will conduct an investigation into the circumstances.

What You Need to Re-apply for a Passport

You’ll pretty much need to give all of the information that is required when applying for a new passport. The pictures, the application signed by your guarantor, and proof of citizenship.

This may lead to delays in processing the replacement passport, which is a nightmare if you’re at your destination. It could lead to you having to extend the length of your trip, which could mean more hotel expenses and even having to buy a new airline ticket home.

To make things easier and keep yourself safe, it’s a good idea to make two copies of your passport: one for travel and one to give to a friend or relative for safekeeping. You should also scan the passport and e-mail it to a secure address that you can access anywhere in the world.

You should also get a travel insurance policy that covers you if your passport is lost or stolen — a lot of the policies have this included and it will ensure you’re not out of money if you need to stay longer.

These tips will come in handy if you ever do lose your passport, but hopefully that never happens! Better safe than sorry.

Founder and president of Travel Best Bets, Claire Newell has appeared on The Today Show, Fox & Friends, Good Day New York, ABC Morning News – Chicago, Martha Stewart Living Radio, and CNN Radio, and is the official travel consultant for Global TV. She has been a spokesperson for Disney’s www.family.com, and featured in promotions for the Vancouver International Airport and the Canadian Tourism Commission. Newell has authored or been featured in articles for Success, Professional Woman, Today’s Parent, Readers Digest and for various newspapers. She is the best selling author of Travel Best Bests – An Insider’s Guide to Taking Your Best Trips, Ever and has just finished her second book.
This wife and mother of two has also launched two lines of luggage & travel accessories. Visit www.clairenewell.com for more information.