UK passport: This could stop Brits from travelling
Many people aren’t aware of a rule that could make their UK passport invalid when it comes to travelling the world.
As an official document, a passport has strict regulations to conform to in terms of quality.
If it is damaged in any way, the holder can be stopped at the border and prevented from leaving the country.
Even if the passport owner is allowed onto the plane, train or other mode of transport, there is no guarantee they will be allowed entry to another country when they reach their destination.
If a passport is damaged in any way, the holder can be stopped at the border
Border security agents can deny entry to anyone whose passport is deemed “damaged”.
According to website passports-office.co.uk, which offers independent UK travel advice and passport services: “A damaged UK passport is classified as a passport that is in such a bad condition that it can no longer be used as a valid proof of your identity.
“In most cases this is classified under the terms ‘Beyond Reasonable Wear and Tear’ and this can in many cases be down to individual interpretation of what is classed as reasonable.”
The site gives a list of what might constitute damage that would stop a person from travelling.
- Personal details are indecipherable (non-readable)
- The laminate has lifted enough to allow the possibility of photo substitution
- Discolouration to the bio-data page
- Chemical or ink spillage on any page
- Missing or detached pages
- The chip or antenna shows through the endpaper on the back cover for the new style e-passports
- The chip has been identified as damaged following investigation or you have been told the chip is faulty during a border-check.
UK passport: A damaged travel document could prevent Brits from leaving the country
Stains or watermarks can be interpreted as damage too, as can rips and even the gold emblem becoming worn away on the front of the passport.
Again, as the idea of “damage” comes down to personal interpretation, it can vary from border patrol to border patrol.
A damaged passport can also throw another spanner in the works for UK travellers.
For those looking to renew their passport, the Premium renewal – where a new passport is issued the same day – isn’t possible if the document is damaged.