“Don’t lose your passport” – it’s the advice you hear whenever you go abroad. But in fact Britons are far more likely to lose their passports while at home. Of 279,000 lost or stolen passports reissued in a twelve-month period, more than 200,000 had been lost in the UK.

Far more people lose their passports in the UK than abroad

The number of people who lost their passport while abroad are only around 60,000 of the 279,000 total. This means the vast majority of the lost or stolen passports in the period (April 2009 to March 2010) occurred in the UK.

The Identity and Passport Service (IPS) is urging passport holders to take a few simple steps to keep their documents safe abroad and in the UK.

Keeping your passport safe

Steps you can take include:

  • keep your passport with you when travelling to your destination
  • think about where it is best to keep your passport at home and abroad
  • be wary if you are asked to surrender your passport
  • when travelling, take two photocopies of your passport: leave one at home and take one with you but keep it separate from your passport
  • you can also make a note of your passport number: this will help to track it if you need to get it replaced