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Protecting passport from bending - how?

I just renewed my passport and while it does seem a bit stiffer than previous versions it's still bendy.

My my most recent passport had a chip in it and was pretty flexible, more flexible than my new one. While I took good care of it, it did get bent a little while I carried it in a money belt. The chip never stopped working, but the scanners in Toronto had a tough time reading it on its last trip before renewal, so I am looking for ways to avoid bending my new one.

I haven't seen any particularly stiff passport cases on the market, and even if one existed I don't know that it would be slim enough to tuck it into my money belt comfortably.

When I wear a money belt I wear it at the small of my back because that's the flattest part of me, but it's still not genuinely flat. The various pieces of cardboard I've been experimenting with putting in with the passport aren't all that robust.

Does anyone have any tricks for keeping their passport from getting bent?

Posted by
353 posts

Let's assume I will be carrying my passport in a money belt.

Posted by
2454 posts

My husband carries our passports, etc. in a money pocket. The money pocket has loops that loop through his belt and the pocket hangs on the inside of his pants. I would recommend using one of these rather than a money belt which I find sweaty and uncomfortable. Eagle Creek sells the money pockets for $13.95.

Posted by
3982 posts

Mine have gotten a little bent too over the years worn on the small of my back. Could you try a different style such as a neck pouch or belt loop kind, pinned to your waist band if you don't wear a belt?

Posted by
3982 posts

@ Christa. Love the cheeky style of these passport covers. Would the airline checkin person and/or TSA require you to remove your passport from the case before you hand it over to them? I have not had any experience with a cover or case.

Posted by
1920 posts

hmmm....I bend mine on purpose to make it more comfortable! Never had an issue with that.

Posted by
353 posts

Thanks for the ideas so far! The etsy item is pretty cute. A neck pouch is an interesting idea too.

I think that a money pocket inside my waist band/pants will suffer from the same problem as a money belt - I have no flat surfaces, especially when I sit down. :-D

Posted by
8889 posts

If you do put it in a case you only have to take it out again at border controls. They need to see the ID page inside, scan the barcode, check it looks genuine and sometimes check all pages for stamps.
Handing over a passport in a case, which the passport person then has to extract, is a good way to annoy the person and hold up the queue.

Also, everyone should keep their own passports and hand them over individually. A group of people where one hands over a stack of passport is also a recipe for delays, the passport person then has to waste time matching passports up with people.

I wouldn't worry about getting bent, mine is somewhat posterior shaped from carrying it in a back pocket through airports. I would never do that outside, it goes on my bag, but for convenience I put it in a pocket in the airport. Getting it slightly bent does not stop the chip aerial from working, but bending it double might.
Passport theft is not a major problem.

Posted by
1194 posts

I too use a money pocket. I position it so it hangs down the side of my thigh. Not much bendy there. I safety pin both loops to my waistband, using two separate safety pins. If my navel were at 0 degrees and my hip at 90 degrees I would say that I position the pocket around 70-80 degrees.

Posted by
8586 posts

I understand exactly what you mean by "no flat surfaces". When I am in transit and may need to show passport, I will use a neck pouch for easier access. Maybe you can try cutting a piece of plastic from a plastic office folder (not a binder, the softer floppy folders or report covers) to a suitable shape and use that instead of cardboard.

Posted by
2788 posts

I have gone to Europe for 14 of the last 15 years, always taking my passport of course. I always keep it in my money belt, first a waist one then for some years a neck pouch. I keep it in a zip lock bag to protect it from moisture. I have never experienced a bent passport. Maybe I am just lucky.

Posted by
518 posts

I agree regarding everyone should keep their own passports on their person, for a variety of reasons, from in case of emergencies and the group gets split up to expedience at passport control. As for storage, I've tried many, from money belts, to neck pouches, to ankle wallets. I've found the ankle wallet (it doesn't really wear directly on your ankle, more like your lower leg) to be the most secure and less likely to bend. of course, if you're wearing shorts or skirts or whatever, then obviously that's not an option.

Posted by
2618 posts

Mona--At the airport I remove the passport because it needs to be shown several times and also placed on a scanner, just easier that way.

Posted by
14580 posts

True...the new US passport (renewed early last year) is stiffer than those in the past. I put my passport in a plastic "pouch" the type you used to get when there were bank books, which some banks still do use, basically they're a relic too. That passport in its plastic "pouch" (fits exactly right) goes into a light jacket inside pocket, covered by a zipper, put in by the tailor. I don't believe in carrying another person's passport. When I am in Europe with family, no one carries my Passport, and I don't carry theirs either.

Posted by
5697 posts

My "passport cover" is a sandwich-size Ziploc bag, just to keep sweat off. (Use snack-size bag for currency, for the same reason.) Bent or not, my passport works.

Posted by
630 posts

Here's a Passport Holder that will keep passports from bending. It holds the passport and the boarding pass. I don't have it, but I thought it might be an option to keep the passport from bending.