For those heading away on holiday, a passport is the primary items to pack. The travel document is an essential form of identity, used by Britons to pass through security checks and border control. Currently, as part of the European Union until the Brexit departure on March 29, the UK’s picture identity document allows free right of passage through all member states as part of the Schengen agreement. Yet for some travellers, simply possessing a passport might not be enough.
Passports in faulty and damaged condition might not be accepted.
So if there are any pages missing, corners ripped or dirty smears, this may prove a problem.
This means, according to traveller website Passports.co.uk, “it can no longer be used as a valid proof of your identity.”
So it may well be worth investing in a snazzy documents wallet, or at least a plastic bag, to protect them.
Official Government guidelines also stress when Britons need to apply for a new passport, should theirs be in too scrappy a state.
It states: “A damaged passport is one which isn’t in a condition to be accepted as proof of identity.”
It addresses examples of such damage, which include that “details are indecipherable” and “the laminate has lifted enough to allow the possibility of photo substitution.”
Meanwhile, “discolouration to the bio-data page, chemical or ink spillage on any page and missing or detached pages,” will also cause a problem.
Additionally, a passport is null and void if “the chip or antenna shows through the end paper on the back cover for the new style e-passports.”
What’s more, a document cannot be accepted if “the chip has been identified as damaged after investigation.”
Those who have passport stamps from one particular country may also face issues.
For travellers who have inadvertently picked up a stamp when visiting Israel, there may be repercussions.
A number of countries will not allow individuals access should they have evidence of visiting the country in their passport, so entry cards are usually handed out instead.
The UK Government website states entry cards are now the standard method of access into Israel for travellers entering at Ben Gurion airport.
Yet it states stamps can be given in the country and adds: “While this practice is in place at other ports of entry, there have been instances where passports have been stamped for entry purposes. You should keep your entry card with your passport until you leave.”