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Carrying passports everywhere...or leave in hotel/apartment?

Australia
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Carrying passports everywhere...or leave in hotel/apartment?

Hi all

I've tried searching for this but the answers seem to be spilt 50/50.

We are a family of five travelling to Europe soon. We had planned to keep our passports close to us by using under clothes pouches etc...but that might be a bit tricky with 5 passports to carry. The children are too young to be carrying their own passports on them.

So, what do other families with young children do? Keep passports at the hotel/apartment and carry photocopies? I know a few of the places we will be staying won't have safes.

Or do i keep them all on me in a cross body bag of sorts - i will be using one of these instead of a purse, so it will be close to me at all times.

Does anyone know how many passports would fit in one of those underclothes carrier things? My husband could carry 3 and i could carry 2?

Thank you in advance for any advice...we have never travelled overseas as a family before and i am completely clueless!!

Charlotte, North...
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1. Re: Carrying passports everywhere...or leave in hotel/apartment?

When available, I lock up the passports at the hotel. Whether you lose one passport or all of them, the interruption to your trip will be pretty much the same. It would probably be cheaper to replace just one, but the time will be pretty much the same whether one or five.

To my knowledge there is not a significant likelihood of a problem if you go out without the passport. If driving, the driver should have the passport.

West Yorkshire...
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for Family Travel
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2. Re: Carrying passports everywhere...or leave in hotel/apartment?

As jnhdrac says. It is better to keep them locked away in the hotel.

I always take a photocopy of ours and even better - scan this copy and email it to yourself. Then if anything happens you can log on and all the details are there for you to get the replacements.

If the hotel or apartment has no safe - then yes, take them out with you but just be careful. You I are unlikely to need them for id purposes in most tourist destinations in Europe. I have never had to show mine anywhere. Not even to prove the children's ages for entrance fee discounts.

I have had a passport stolen on holiday - many years ago - and it was a real pain having to get it sorted out.

Melbourne, Australia
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for Sydney, Bargain Travel, Food and Travel
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3. Re: Carrying passports everywhere...or leave in hotel/apartment?

Absolutely 100% keep it locked away.

I travelled maybe a dozen times to Europe over the past two years for business, and a number of times for leisure also, and I've never been approached.

Yes, the regulations are to produce a form of photo ID issued by your government, and in many cases of my friends, a drivers license and an explanation of the passport at the hotel has always sufficed.

Entirely ones own prerogative of course, but having to return to the hotel to produce ID - in the worst case scenario - compared to the hassle of a lost or stolen passport is hardly an inconvenience. The photocopy is always a good idea also.

Edited: 30 August 2014, 15:31
Toronto, Canada
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4. Re: Carrying passports everywhere...or leave in hotel/apartment?

Agree with the others.....keep them safely locked away at the hotel, and make photocopies as well.............the only time I can ever recall being asked to produce my passport (other than at Customs/Airport) was at a "Cambio" - Money exchange booth in Spain, many years ago...........

Australia
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5. Re: Carrying passports everywhere...or leave in hotel/apartment?

Thanks everyone!! I think we will keep them locked up where possible and just carry photocopies with us.

I kept imaging us having weird lumps all over from carrying all the passports under our clothes, lol.

The least amount of things we have to carry while trying to wrangle the kidlets the better!!

Washington
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for Seattle, Family Travel
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6. Re: Carrying passports everywhere...or leave in hotel/apartment?

Yes, keep your passports locked in the safe at the hotel. Many hotels in Europe will check your passports at the desk.

I always carry a paper copy of my passport in a separate location, as well as an electronic copy in an encrypted file on my phone or computer. Particularly when traveling with children, it's been a lifesaver.

Aubrey, Texas
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7. Re: Carrying passports everywhere...or leave in hotel/apartment?

We are in the carry them camp. My passport goes into my day pack and my wife's goes into hers before we leave home. They come out again when being checked by airlines and immigration and then when we get back home. When our children were small one of us carried their passports, too. It just seems simpler. Plus many places we stay like B&Bs don't have safes anyway.

8. Re: Carrying passports everywhere...or leave in hotel/apartment?

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