If you’re at all absentminded like me, at some point you’ll forget your passport one way or another, right before an international trip. But fear not! Even nightmares sometimes have happy-ish endings, and valuable lessons to teach. Here are my two lost passport nightmares, which ended positively and led to a lot of stressing and freaking out in the brief twenty-four hour periods. Fortunately, having the knowledge and resources necessary truly help.
Why is There No TSA Pre-Check…Oh…Nuts.
I had gone to visit the lady in New Jersey, from my base in upstate New York, before planning to fly out to Toronto for a friend’s wedding. However, I completely forgot about my passport, until checking in and wondering why there was no TSA pre-check on my ticket. This will be a common occurrence for me.
After realizing that Toronto is, in fact, not part of the United States, I panicked, as is usual for someone in this scenario. However, I lived in an apartment complex with friends nearby, and I was able to resolve the situation through asking for a favor
- Request building management to grant permission to a friend to enter my apartment
- Instruct friend on location of my passport
- Have said friend overnight passport to my address / post office in New Jersey
For the low price of $20-$30 for overnight shipping, it was a steal. I owed the friend a meal, and really appreciated his help on fixing this potential disaster. Thankfully, I received the passport hours before the flight from Newark, and had no issues on the trip!
Mexico is not part of the United States, yet!
Years later, I made plans to go to Cabo San Lucas before my amazing Japan trip. I was so focused on having my passport for the Japan trip, that I completely forgot that Cabo is not part of the United States. Again, I only found out when I was confused why there was no TSA pre-check on my ticket!
Clock was ticking – as I only had 24 hours until my flight. I employed the same techniques as before, letting my roommate know ASAP of the situation, and giving him the information necessary to overnight the passport to the hotel I was staying in (Westin San Francisco Airport).
Let me tell you, the hours and minutes I spent tracking the shipment and awaiting the arrival was some of the most nerve-wracking times I have had travelling.
Thankfully, it came through, and I enjoyed Cabo San Lucas without a hitch. However, it’s now a running joke among my friends, and so I’ve become even more careful with packing and planning.
Double, triple, quadruple check your essentials! Phone, keys, wallet, passport, etc. Understand that it’s not the end of the world, and be ready with an action plan. Within the US, it should be a relatively easy ordeal to have someone close overnight the passport to your location. So, make friends, and be sure to be grateful and return favors. If it’s truly lost, rather than misplaced, see my other post on replacing it quickly!
Also, make sure that if you’re travelling internationally, to plan and prepare ahead of time. Not everything is within your home country, and while that is easy to forget, there is more to the world. Lastly, I know I am forgetful, and I am working on that.
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