There were 20,690,491 passports issued this year in the United States alone. How many of those people worry about a lost or stolen passport?
You'd be surprised to learn that a majority of passport holders feel that they have the ability to keep their passport safe while on holiday.
What do they know that some of us may not? With identity theft such a problem today, it's wise to take safety precautions with your ID while traveling.
If you do find yourself in a bind with a stolen passport, it's not the end of the world, but it can be a hassle. Stick with us to learn what to do about a stolen passport.
Steps to Take When Dealing With a Stolen Passport
You're traveling around Europe and you realize you've had your passport stolen! What do you do? Where do you report a stolen passport? How do you get a replacement passport?
Report Your Missing Passport
Once your passport is reported missing or stolen, it will no longer be valid for travel. If you think you may have lost it, rather than had it stolen, do a thorough search before reporting.
You can report it online, by mail and by phone. See the Travel.State.Gov site for more details.
Click on the "Report Lost or Stolen" tab.
Find Form DS-64, fill it out, and sign it. Send it to the address on the form.
Call the toll-free number 1-877-487-2778 to report the theft.
Traveling Within the United States
If you are traveling within the US, your next step will be to go to the nearest passport agency to replace your passport.
Gather all of the necessary paperwork and get your passport picture at a place that takes passport-appropriate photos.
Fill out Form DS-11 and submit it in person.
Outside the United States
If you are traveling outside of the US, there's no reason to panic. Contact the closest US Embassy or Consulate for assistance.
You will not be able to travel back home until you have a replacement passport.
You will need a passport photo, a valid ID, proof of US citizenship, and your travel itinerary (airline or train tickets). Fill out the necessary form (DS-11) to get a new passport.
Proof of citizenship can be a tough one while overseas. The staff at the embassy will do all they can to assist you with the necessary paperwork. In the future, it's helpful to have a copy of your passport with you.
Filing a police report with the local authorities is helpful, but not mandatory. A police report will confirm the circumstances of the loss, however.
Keeping Your Valuables Safe
Now that you know the ins and outs of dealing with a stolen passport, you'll want to make sure you take extra precautions when traveling. Visit our products page for all of our signature anti-theft, but stylish handbags. Our bags will have you looking chic while keeping your valuables safe on your next adventure.