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It creates options. No matter what happens in the world, you'll always have a place to go. You'll always have a ticket out. And as I'm fond of saying, nobody ever hijacks an airplane and threatens to kill all the Lithuanians. Second citizenship does bring a greater sense of security. Obtaining citizenship, however, is elusive for many people. Some people are lucky enough to come from a line of Irish, Polish, or Italian ancestors.

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For most, though, it takes a combination of three things:. If you're willing to simply pay for it, there are certain countries like St. Kitts and Dominica which offer citizenship to people who are simply willing to pay. Just about every country is willing to eventually naturalize permanent residents who reside in the country for a particular amount of time. It varies greatly from place to place. This past weekend, I learned from a subscriber who came down to Chile that, in Japan, it takes two decades of continuous residence.

Other places, like Belgium, offer naturalization after as little as three years, possibly two in extreme circumstances. This is a much easier option for most people, especially for such a valuable passport. Then there's the ability to obtain citizenship through what I call 'flexibility'. This may include something like getting married to a local, which in many countries can provide an extremely rapid path to naturalization. Easily the most valuable travel document on the planet, a Singaporean can travel almost anywhere without a visa, including to the US and Europe.

It takes two years of residence after obtaining permanent residency to qualify for naturalization. And obtaining permanent residence is a snap- you can simply set up a local company to qualify. Pitfalls: Singapore does have mandatory national service, and it's important to review the rules to find out whether you would fall within the window.

Traveling anywhere broadens ones horizons, the learning never stops, but I am a bit taken aback at the British attitude to helping its own citizens. Can really happen to anybody, although I can imagine that the 9 years of collected stamps really sucks… as well has having missed the wedding. Oy, things have changed in the last few years! My sister lost her passport in Israel of all places! And I am sorry, but putting it in the seat pocket in front of you??!?! The moment I read that, my sympathy went out the window. Doing that was an accident waiting to happen. No matter how many times you fly, always have your passport on your person!

I always fly with zipped pockets for this reason. Never have it separate from everything else your carrying. I was wondering why you tweeted about having an emergency passport…this explains it. So sorry about the passport and missed wedding. I know missing the wedding was a bummer but I might be more devastated about losing all those stamps.

It is definitely a pain to go through all of that but at least you were in Europe and not some place that would have REALLY been inconvenient. But honestly, which part upsets you the most — the wedding or the stamps? I can get more stamps but a wedding happens once in a lifetime!

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It sucks how something so small can screw up all of your plans. That is my worst nightmare! It would be one thing to lose your passport with a really good story to tell, like a kangaroo running off with it or something, but my own human error- that would drive me insane! Especially loosing all my stamps! Thanks for the good info for what to do in case of and the wake up call to us all to check, check, and triple check that we have our documents in our hot little hands!!! The equivalent of a consulate here put aside their bureaucratic inefficiency for a moment and issued me a same-day emergency passport we were traveling to Cambodia in like 5 days.

I did manage to get a one-year passport. I think that might be worse. At least I can keep hope alive that my stamps are somewhere out there…. It happened to me once and you definitly feel so stupid when you see the inmigration guy to explain that you probably forget it in the plane. Fortunately they allowed me to enter with the other papers I had and they finally found it a few days later. But I was quite lucky. I lost mine in a remote part of Thailand. It took about a week to get a temporary one and get on my way.

I even tracked down the TukTuk where I believed it was lost. I wish I had never brought it to Colorado but I always travel with it in case I loose my license or something. Dumb choice. So my traveling heart goes out to you guys! Sorry about all the inconveniences you went through by loosing your passport. Oh that is a horrible feeling! But yours, oh man I could only imagine. I feel for you. And then dealing with the gov is never fun.

Other than some waiting, everything is always a smooth process. I was surprised when such a seasoned traveler such as you said you lost your passport. But I like to think it lends a little credence to some of the stupid things we, as less seasoned travelers, do. However, I do wish you a quick resolution and back on track with your plans.

I can appreciate how bummed you were to lose your passport and the stamps. Sorry that happened. But Matt, as an international flight attendant with 34 years of service, I have to tell you it happens frequently to people who put their passport anywhere BUT in their bag, immediately after showing it.

I have helped many passengers in tears search for their passport after a LONG flight, when they are exhausted. Shit man, that must have sucked!!! I once lost my passport after all the stress of getting a new one about a month later police called me and said they found it in a park about kms away from where I actually lost it….

I left my wedding gift from my father in law in that damn pocket.. That would have been very painful.. Sorry to hear that you lost your passport with all these stamps!! I was not that worried because after Barcelona I was traveling back home, the only thing valuable there was my USA visa. Matt, my dear, I can only imagine how you feel because I know I get attached to my passport — I was thrilled that they give the old one back when you get a new one but you KNOW you have those stamps.

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Andy tells me to just take pictures of things I like and let them go if I lose them. When we travel, Andy never lets me hold on to my own passport — he is paranoid. I would never leave a passport outside my body though. As in, I would always be on my body, in a zipped pouch somewhere because if you fall asleep and if someone saw you put it in that pocket — well the world is nice and all but passports are a rare commodity and they are worth money — then they could snatch it.

But I feel for you and you are far from an idiot. Big hugs! I know. You can always make it up to your friend later. I totally feel your pain. I had my passport stolen in Spain. I wanted to die. It was my most beloved possession. So big hugs and just remember you will survive!

Actually a couple of girls decided to take an American souvenir with them from my Hostel. Good advice on getting a new passport however. I was in Ecuador and the Embassy gave me a few coupons for free Big Mac combos haha. So sorry — I feel your pain!! How do I get a replacement passport?

The last time I used it was in I am a girl of routine. And I recently lost my passport by leaving it on the plane. It gets worse. I am an exchange student in the United States, and my visa i loved my visa. I am leaving in about two months, and I am already in the process of getting a new passport. My I however, I have no time to replace this is the document that is the evidence for you leaving the States before your visa runs out.. Takes about 5 months to get a new one. But since I have no time, my student adviser OIE at the college and Customs and Border protection told me, that it all depends on how good I can convince the officer at the airport, when leaving — that the copies of my I and visa that I luckily am in position of are legit.

This is a very uncomfortable situation.. Especially when you have to apply for a new visa next year. How awful a person do you have to be, to steal someones passport? For everyone reading this. If you steal peoples passports, you WILL go to hell. Well, maybe they will cut you a break since you are leaving the country!

Do you get paranoid about it being used for fraud? So did I.

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So nothing can harm you as long as you have filed the report? They wont stop me next year when I am visiting, and tell me that I am wanted for some insane crime that I did not commit? I am young and inexperienced. I hope that makes it more okay. Thieves take the picture off. By the way, thanks for posting this. I was feeling more miserable before I read this. At least now I know that someone did the exact same thing.

What to Do When You Lose Your Passport (How to Get a New One)

Made me want to take photos of my passport pages just incase! I once did the same thing and left it in the magazine net but luckily my Gf triple searches! Sorry for your lose. Matt — This makes me feel a lot better about my passport getting stolen pick-pocketed in Madrid. I was about to fly home after living in Spain for 4 months, although it was actually my whole wallet so I had 5 euro to my name. Tip : Bring your checkbook so that you can pay for it.

In addition to the current fees find out how a passport costs here , you may find that you forgot to copy something important. Watch the mail because Your passport will arrive within about four to six weeks, depending on how busy it is at your regional office. The months leading up to summer are often much busier at the passport offices, so not only will you have a harder time finding appointments, but it definitely might take the full six weeks. Tip : Keep checking your mail. Your important personal documents, like your birth certificate, will arrive in a separate envelope from your new passport.

It sounds like a lot of work, but once it arrives, there is immense pleasure in knowing that you can book a ticket to anywhere in the world. I just did a project with my students at the end of this school year. I am doing my part to encourage the next generation of Americans to get out, get a passport, and see the world! And what better way to bring travel to the forefront than for teachers to travel and bring their experience into the classroom.

Thanks for sharing that resource Natasha — it looks like a wonderful source of information and well-tailored experiences :. So many great points here!! I think the greatest benefit of travel is breaking down fear and stereotypes. I was actually in a village in China last month that proudly has a photo of Bill Clinton hanging on one of the first walls you see when you enter the stone-walled fishing village.

I give Clinton props because it was no easy feat to get there… no roads, only the river — now we just need him to spread the word! Thanks Sofia! I am lucky to be from the states but unfortunately until you have experience life aboard most dont appreciate most of what we have here. I hear the same things that Jade does about the limited vacation and family but most of us tend to waste a lot of money that could be used towards traveling and other things.

Thanks for sharing your POV on this Kirk! The desire to travel has to be stronger than your desire to do other things. For people in Europe, traveling to other countries is so easy, because they are the size of some of our states! Maybe we should try and get Americans to travel more throughout America first and then they would start to see how traveling can change your life… small steps?! Well said Jade — you have to pioritize travel — and for some people other things and experiences truly are more important, but I think that those who really want it can find a way…and the first step is getting passported!

Thanks for weighing in on this, appreciate your POV and comments I read an article a few weeks ago that made this point. We can travel from country to country in Europe and tick them off our list. We can travel the same distance in the US — and never leave the US. You are fantastically lucky to have so much of Europe as your playground.. I totally agree that there are great benefits to international travel, and that Americans in particular could certainly use the mind opening that it tends to foster.

But I have a few caveats about your post. The first being that you seem to use the word travel almost exclusively to mean international travel. Many Americans actually travel a great deal, they just do so domestically rather than internationally. And one of the reasons this tends to be the case is that plane tickets for international destinations are so much more expensive. But this country is geographically enormous and it can cost as much, if not more, for us to reach those starting points as it does to cross an ocean. And the last few years have not been the best economic climate to make that leap for most of the people in this country.

At least not for vacations. Still none of this negates the points you make. They are true now, have always been true and will still be true in the future.

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Fortunately, technology has made it possible to gain many of these benefits without leaving home. But I have been seeing stories about young school children befriending classes in other countries, such as those in Asia, using videoconferencing. I firmly believe that this should be made mandatory in every grade from kindergarten through high school graduation.

It is so much more difficult to harbor prejudice against people from other countries when you have grown to know them, and their customs, personally. And this kind of contact makes an excellent substitute for the masses of people for whom travel is either impossible, or not often practical.