When traveling, there are three things you don’t want to lose: Your luggage, your money, and your passport. While the first two are frustrating, losing your passport while traveling can be very scary. Your passport is one of the most important documents you’ll ever own. It’s what enables you the ability to leave the country, visit others and come back home. That power is why criminals will sometimes target travelers. A Canadian passport is one of the best in the world, which makes it a target. That said, there are also many accidental ways to lose it while traveling. It could have slipped out of your pocket or you’ve dropped to somewhere inaccessible. If you lose your passport while traveling, fret not – here’s what you need to do!
CONTACT THE GOVERNMENT IMMEDIATELY
The Canadian government has laid out some basic rules and regulations as it relates to lost or stolen passports. The first thing you need to do is report your passport as missing to the government. It’s important to make sure to do this as soon as possible. The passport needs to be marked as invalid, preventing any criminals from using it.
If you are traveling within Canada, you can call directly at 1-800-567-6868. If you lose your passport while traveling in a different country, you need to go to the local Canadian embassy or consulate in that country. You can find a full list for each country here.
REPORT A THEFT TO THE LOCAL POLICE
If the passport was stolen, the second thing you need to do is report it to the local police. The local police will document and investigate. While they may not recover the passport, it may help them identify thieves. If you’ve reported the theft/loss of your passport to the Canadian government first, then you need not worry.
GET A NEW PASSPORT
When you report your passport missing, you can also begin the process of being issued a new or temporary one. You will need a list of things completed to get the new passport issued. This usually includes:
- A completed application signed by a guarantor;
- Two copies of a passport photo;
- Proof of Canadian Citizenship;
- A declaration about the loss/theft;
- The filling fees.
There are two other ways to make your life a little bit easier if your passport is lost or stolen while traveling. The first is to have a good travel insurance plan. Your travel insurance policy could help with the costs associated with acquiring a new passport and returning to Canada. The second is to have photos of your important documents saved in a secure folder on a portable device. That can help with acquiring new travel documents and verifying current information.
Losing or having your passport stolen while traveling can be exceptionally stressful. If you want to avoid that stress, take great care of all your personal belongings. It is one of your most important documents that you will ever own! But, theft and accident occur. Fortunately, Canada has consulates and embassies in many major cities around the world that will make your life a lot easier.