What to do if you lose your passport abroad.
If you are a British national and your UK passport has been lost, stolen or expired while you are abroad you can use an emergency travel document also known as 'an emergency passport' to leave the country you are in and return back to your destination. These can be issued on short notice whilst you are overseas.
Expired or damaged passports
If you are outside of the UK and your passport has expired or is several damaged and you are unable to use it on your return journey you should always try renewing or replacing it before using an emergency travel document.
Only apply for 'an emergency passport' if you need to travel before you can get a replacement passport.
If your passport has been stolen you must contact the local police and report it. Also make sure you retain any and all crime report details and any reference numbers given to you by the police as you may need these in your application form.
*Please note that in most cases your UK passport will need to be cancelled before you apply for an emergency travel document, to save it from being compromised and used for un-intended purposes such as ID theft.
What an emergency travel document can do.
An emergency travel document enables you to leave the country you are in and return to your final destination, either the United Kingdom or the country you are residing in.
The emergency travel document will allow you to travel via a maximum of 5 different countries.
Unlike a standard adult UK passport which is valid for 10 years an emergency travel document is only valid for a specific journey at a specific time.
• Having an emergency travel document doesn't automatically grant you entry to the country or countries you are travelling to or through, you may also need a visa. So please check with that countries Embassy or Consulate before travelling.
• Where possible they will inform you of any known countries where the emergency travel document has restrictions.
• You can ONLY travel to the destinations you have stated on your application.
• If you plans change after you receive you emergency travel document you will have to apply and pay for a new one to be issued.
• This 'emergency passport' is ONLY valid for the journey stated, if your emergency travel document is not kept by immigration at your final destination you must return it to your nearest British Embassy/High Commission/Consulate for processing and destruction.
Where can I get an emergency travel document from?
To obtain an emergency travel document whilst you are overseas you need to first find out where your nearest Embassy, High Commission or Consulate is. And the best way to do this is to visit www.gov.uk/fco and there you can find out exactly where to go depending on what country you are in.
Now although most Embassy's, High Commission's and Consulate's are able to provide you with an emergency passport, there are occasions where that is not possible. If the office you are directed to is unable to provide that service they help and guide you to the next nearest and available office. So please don't worry there is always someone that can help you.
How to apply.
You will need to apply in person for your emergency travel document and you will need to contact your nearest Embassy, High Commission or Consulate www.gov.uk/government/world/organisations to see if an appointment is necessary.
To the appointment please remember to bring the following:
• A completed emergency travel document application form
• A recent photograph of yourself
• Proof of your travel plans - eg, booking confirmations (or detailed written travel plans if you can't book ahead)
• A police report if your passport has been stolen
You will have to pay a fee in local currency, equivalent to £95.00.
The Consular staff will then commence checks to confirm your eligibility before issuing an emergency travel document.
Need more information?
Talk to the Passport Office team
Lines open 8am-8pm
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