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Is it safe to leave passport in an apartment rental?

We'll be staying in an apartment during our Paris trip. Is it a good idea to leave our passports in the apartment -- assuming that we will not need it for any purchases/rental etc.?

Posted by
2193 posts

Only if they are in a safe or lockbox. I always carry my passport with me. It's my ID and I wouldn't leave it anywhere...that's just me.

Posted by
9110 posts

Eventually you'll get used to always keeping your passport with you. Realistically, it's the only id you'll have, anyway. Unless you carry your usual wallet full of junk when traveling.

Posted by
4411 posts

Keep it with you - it's your ID, and your way back into the USA. And no, it's not a good idea - how many people have rented that apt before you? Have you noticed the 'keys made here' signs? Plus, it's your ID...seems I've heard that somewhere before...;-)

Posted by
23471 posts

I am in the camp of always having your passport. It is the only thing that proves you are in the country legally. Others will argue that a copy is just as good. Tell that to the young guy that was hassled by the Spain police a couple years ago when he could not produce a passport. The posting may still be here but it was a couple of years ago.

Posted by
689 posts

I leave mine in the apartment. I'm far more likely to lose it, carrying it everywhere, than I am to have it stolen from inside an apartment. I have valuable stuff in my home here in Seattle, too, that someone could break in and steal, but you do what you can to keep things safe, and you don't get too paranoid. (Yes, getting a passport made in another country is a hassle, but not the end of the world by any means). Every Paris rental I've had has had an old fashioned key that could not have been copied (in the contract I agreed to pay to to have the whole door re-keyed if I lost it), so I don't think that's an issue.

Posted by
3551 posts

I would never leave my passport anywhere when traveling. Use a neck pouch for it. you will barely know it is on you. Also always make a copy of your passport (keep seaparately) in case you lose your passport you will have ID that a consulate can make a temp passport for you.

Posted by
3696 posts

I would not be without my passport... you are in a foreign country and your only way out is with that passport. I am usually pretty carefree and don't worry about all the 'what ifs", but this is the exception...what if there were a fire at the apartment.

Posted by
9436 posts

I agree with Christy. I left mine in our apartment.

Posted by
1064 posts

"I'm far more likely to lose it, carrying it everywhere..."
I thought passport protection was one of the main reasons for wearing a moneybelt.

Posted by
19170 posts

I never let my passport out of my sight (OK, I guess it is out-of-sight in my neck pouch). It's my "ticket" home. I feel that's the safest place it can be. Anyway, in some European countries, the police can stop you and ask for ID (and I don't believe a US drivers license or a passport photocopy is what they mean.) If you don't have it with you, they can detain you at the police station.

Posted by
56 posts

I don't worry about having my passport stolen from my apartment, I worry about not having it if I get into trouble. You are not in your home country. The law requires you to have legal identification with you in most European countries, and a driving licence does not cut it. Even in these days of quick electronic communication, waiting in a cop shop or hospital while they try to establish who you are does not appeal to me. Perhaps I am a bit oversensitive, but I come from an older generation where one could get in real trouble with authorities in foreign countries for little or no reason, and going out without your passport felt like going naked. Of course in those earlier days us folks in government needed special permission to go to some countries, and I would ALWAYS have both my regular and official passports on my person. Still feel undressed without one with me.

Posted by
813 posts

You need to keep your passport on your person at all times for ID purposes. Just last week we had a friend travelling through France who was stopped for a traffic violation. He did not have his tourist passport with him (he lives in Germany and only had a government-issued passport) and was heavily fined for not having the tourist passport.

Posted by
12172 posts

I keep my passport with me for two reasons: First, as has been said, it's your legal ID. The stamp in your passport also proves you are legally in the country. Europe is getting more and more picky about illegal immigration - so keep your proof with you (you are required to produce it if asked). Second, although it probably won't get stolen from your apartment, think about the consequences if it does. You will lose a lot of time replacing it, possibly miss your prepaid transportation connections (and what you paid for the tickets), have problems checking into new lodging, renting a car, etc. The loss of your passport is a potential vacation spoiler - so keep it with you and secure.

Posted by
934 posts

Since it is so easy to keep the passport in a moneybelt I cant imagine leaving it anyplace else.

Posted by
23471 posts

......old fashioned key that could not have been copied...... That doesn't make any sense. There isn't a key made that cannot be copied. (I know there are some very high tech keys that cannot be copied without special equipment but that is not the type key we are talking about here)

Posted by
4411 posts

"......old fashioned key that could not have been copied...... That doesn't make any sense." Yeah - haven't you people seen "Amelie"?!? ;-) (and frankly if you haven't seen "Amelie", you really should... just sayin'...)

Posted by
1136 posts

It must be time to re-watch Amelie cause I don't remember anything about a key! I'm with the "keep passport with me" at all times group. I had a neck pouch that I actually looped thru my bra strap instead of wearing it around my neck and then had the pouch tucked in my pants.

Posted by
977 posts

Totally agree with Jack and all the other posters who always carry their passport with them. I'm a big fan of the money belt. I wear it in the small of my back and am completely unaware of it.

Posted by
1501 posts

Here's the real deal regarding passports, having known people who had a hired driver (wealthy people) traveling together and left carry-ons in the car which was robbed including diabetis supplies, passports and everything! 1. Make 3 photocopies of your passport. Leave one at home in the U.S. with a trusted friend/relative. (along with your itinerary, phone #s, etc of hotels) 2. Put one copy of your passport into your checked luggage, along with contact info @ home and your overseas location (hotel, etc.) In case of lost luggage. 3. Keep your original passport in the "neck pouch" available at RS website, or any luggage shop 4. give the last copy of your passport to your travel-mate, and he/she should give a copy of his/hers to you. Reason in the case of a lost or stolen passport, as happenned to my friends, none of them even left a copy with their kids at home, or made a copy of it to keep anywhere......It was a mess involving a trip to the U.S. embassy, no one knew their passport numbers...... and diabetic supplies were gone!!! This may seem a little over the top, but better safe than sorry, and who wants a trip to the Embassy?!

Posted by
81 posts

Passport on you for piece of mind, for Id and for emergencies !

Posted by
80 posts

just as a side note, our passports were stolen in France in 2006 on the 3rd day of a 4 week trip. We called the embassy in Paris and were told we didnt need our passport until we flew home. We continued our vacation and finally went to the embassy upon returning to Paris (3 1/2) weeks later. It took about an hour to get new passports and cost 80 euros. We were not asked for our passports during the entire trip except on the first day for car rental. We were even stopped for a trafic violation and had no problem without our passports. I had a copy of my passport . My sister didnt, so the car rental agency faxed their copy of her passport to our hotel. For us, not having a passport was no big deal, surprisingly! The only ones who seemed upset were the imigration officers upon returning to Phila who couldnt understand how I lived in the US but had a passport issued in Paris!

Posted by
4411 posts

Lisa, you got lucky (so to speak). Imagine if the Passport Control officer at Paris, Barcelona, etc., was confused by your passport and decided to spend a few hours 'working' on the 'problem'...Oops! There went your flight home - WITHOUT you! It's happened. I'm glad your experience went the way it SHOULD HAVE. Yea!

Posted by
8 posts

It probably depends on where you are going, but my passport never left my person unless I was sleeping. In Italy I had my rail passes stolen from under my nose. The pickpockets are not what we are used to in the united states.

Posted by
21 posts

We leave ours in the apartment as well. We lock them in the safe and call it a day. I think it really depends on your personal comfort level. Ditto the advice on making sure you have copies of your passport to leave at home with someone and to take with you to keep separate from your actual passport, "just in case."

Posted by
307 posts

I dunno, passport + moneybelt is a winning combination for me... I've never worried about where my passport is, or what's happening to it as it's tucked discretely( and comfortably) in the small of my back using a lightweight, soft moneybelt. I own a couple of moneybelts..one from Eagle Creek, and Rick's silk moneybelt, and Rick's is by far the best IMHO.
Another advantage?...after walking extensively while on Europe trips, I tend to shed a few pounds, and the moneybelt helps take up the slack in my pants...lol