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Passport with us or in hotel?

I saw this question asked but it was 3 years ago and I'm not sure if things have changed. Traveling in Italy only, staying at "boutique" type hotels (Rome, Florence, Venice), myself and 18 year old daughter. Do we keep passports 1) in our crossbody bags, 2) in my money belt, 3) in our hotel safe, or 4) hidden in luggage in hotel room?

Posted by
996 posts

You'll receive different replies, so this will depend on your own level of comfort. When I travel, I leave my passport in either the room safe or double locked inside a suitcase. Some people carry it on them - in hidden bags - in case they have to leave early OR in case someone robs their room.

It all depends on what you think will happen. Regardless, I always bring along a copy of my passport and store it separately from the real thing.

Posted by
6604 posts

Leave it in a hotel room or safe. It is less comfortable in a money belt and easier to lose in a cross body bag that someone could slash open

Posted by
5010 posts

BOTH.

If my room has a safe (and it looks like a safe I would trust) I leave it there.

When that's not the case, it's with me.

Posted by
2147 posts

I carry mine in my crossbody bag—in a deep, zipped pocket. If something happens, I’m ready to go.

Posted by
4555 posts

I always carry mine in my money belt, under my clothes.

As previously mentioned, you’ll receive various responses.

Here’s a recent post asking the same question.

Have a wonderful trip!

Posted by
171 posts

Traveling solo since 2003. Only time I carry the original is when I am transitioning to an airport. The original stays in a hidden pocket in my travel vest which can be placed inside a hotel safe or in my room. I carry a copy in my small crossbody bag. The copy has always been sufficient for any situation including most recently in Italy. I guard my passport even more vigilantly than money or credit cards.

Posted by
172 posts

Money belt under my clothes. I have tried the other options but feel safer using the money belt. It contains my password, American Express card, and the bulk of my cash.

Posted by
3413 posts

There are many schools of thought on this. Ask three people and you might get four opinions. We keep ours in our money belts along with extra credit cards and currency other than walking around day money. In the unlike event (riots, terrorism, fire, natural disaster) we can't get back to the hotel, having our passports and credit cards with us will allow us to still carry on. Some will say that is a pessimistic mind set. We prefer to consider it as expecting the best, but planning for contingences.

Posted by
2389 posts

I keep a copy of my passport face sheet with me at all times in my money belt, the original in the room safe. If no room safe, the hotel front desk safe. Last option-locked baggage. I tried carrying the original in my money belt and found it uncomfortable.

Posted by
2660 posts

It depends. I don't treat my passport like the gold other people do, but I am watchful of it. My preference is to carry it in my purse like my license. However, I consider my particular travel on each trip before deciding what to do with it. If I'm traveling on a trip in which it would be extremely difficult to get to the US Embassy to replace my passport, then I'd keep it hidden on my person or in my luggage. However, if I'm ending or traveling through a city with an embassy, I carry it in my purse like my license. I'm probably more careful with my backup financials than with my passport. It is really just knowing what makes you the most comfortable in the locations through which you are traveling. It's having a reliable system that makes you feel comfortable.

Posted by
942 posts

I always keep a copy on it in my bag while the real passport is in the hotel safe. Be aware that some attractions where you buy your tickets ahead, such as the Reichstag in Berlin, require you to provide your passport at the venue. But 99% of the time, I've left the passport locked up at hotel and never had anyone ask to see it.

Posted by
3640 posts

I keep mine in my money belt. Next option would be the hotel safe, but you have to remember to take it with you when you check out. I would never just carry it in my crossbody purse.

Posted by
2786 posts

In 16 trips to Europe we have always kept our passports in our properly worn money belts.

Posted by
20954 posts

Agree with Charlie. A copy is absolutely worthless if the passport is truly needed. I have carried it for almost 50 years and almost always in the money belt. In those nearly 50 years only needed it unexpectedly three times and I am glad I had it each time. I fail to see the difficult so many have in carrying their passport. I would never been without it. And the key word in Charlie's comment is "properly" worn money belt.

Posted by
2389 posts

Copy is useless? This from the US State Dept. website on how to replace a lost passport:
The following list identifies a number of documents/items you should take with you to the embassy/consulate. Even if you are unable to present all of the documents, the consular staff will do their best to assist you to replace your passport quickly.

Please provide:

A Passport Photo (one photo is required; get it in advance to speed the process of replacing your passport)
Identification (driver's license, expired passport etc.)
Evidence of U.S. citizenship (birth certificate, photocopy of your missing passport)
Travel Itinerary (airline/train tickets)
Police Report, if available
DS-11 Application for Passport (may be completed at time of application)
DS-64 Statement Regarding a Lost or Stolen Passport (may be completed at time of application)

So, unless you carry your birth certificate, that passport photocopy could come in handy.

Posted by
1262 posts

Before any trip to Europe, I fly to Europe and stash copies of my passport all over the continent for safe keeping. Every nook and cranny unwittingly holds a copy: cracks in walls, thumb-drives stashed in flower pots, hostel sofa cushions, loose floor boards in castles, underneath alpine boulders, coffins in Paris graves, art frames at the the Orangerie, goats - they are all great hiding places and hold a copy of my passport. Sure, laugh at me if you want but people also laughed at Bob Hope.

Posted by
2900 posts

laugh at me if you want but people also laughed at Bob Hope

They did? Next thing you know you'll be telling us that people laughed at Jerry Lewis.
By the way, I liked your response.

Posted by
160 posts

I'm with Charlie! Passport is in my money belt while out of this country. It's a small inconvenience but saves lots of worry about it being stolen or forgotten when you check out of a hotel. Also, if you have a medical emergency, you will be asked to produce it. My husband had this experience in Sicily but he only had a copy in his pocket. Fortunately, it was a minor emergency but one never knows what will happen!!

Posted by
20954 posts

I guess I should have qualified it bit. A copy of a passport is absolutely useless EXCEPT that it might provide to the consulate that you once had a passport. But a copy of a passport is so easy to forge, that it is practically useless as an id other than how accepting the other person is. If you don't want to carry the passport for any reason, then don't. But recognize that there is a potential risk to not carrying it. And there is risk of lost or theft if you do carry it. So weigh your risk and you decide the risk that is most important to you.

Posted by
59 posts

What are instances that you all can think of one would need to have their passport with them?
The venue in Berlin was a good thought. Naturall disasters and riots i think are a good reason also....Maybe more of those examples would help some of us decide.

Posted by
3413 posts

Member of a tour group we were in fell, broke a leg, and was transported to hospital to have immediate surgery. Missed the rest of the tour, but had passport (and other important documents) in a money belt. Greatly facilitated many aspects of the unfortunate incident.

Posted by
738 posts

Money belt

I have a friend who left her passport in the hotel safe and only realized it when she got to the airport. Never left anything in a hotel safe ever again.

I don’t trust hotel safes. I just wear my money belt. I feel safer.

Posted by
3151 posts

Do we keep passports 1) in our crossbody bags, 2) in my money belt, 3)
in our hotel safe, or 4) hidden in luggage in hotel room?

I carry it with me at all times in my moneybelt.

A quick note about hiding something in your luggage. If someone wants to steal something out of your hotel room, there is no hidden compartment in your luggage that is safe.

I never travel with anything valuable that I don't have on me at all times (like my wedding ring and passport).

Posted by
100 posts

I always carry mine with me. But I once read that, if you opt to stash your passport in the hotel safe, stick one shoe in the safe with it - you won't pack up that one shoe without its mate :)

Posted by
6604 posts

I have a friend who left her passport in the hotel safe and only realized it when she got to the airport. Never left anything in a hotel safe ever again.

What happened to your friend doesn't have anything to do with the safe. That is just absent minded ; that person could leave their passport at home on the day of an international flight no matter where they had it

Posted by
20954 posts

But that is the exact point. This is the test and solves your question. Is it better to have it and not need it or to need it and not have it? Simple answer.

Posted by
6162 posts

Curious. Don’t you put money belt in Hotel safe while you sleep?

Posted by
12154 posts

That is exactly one reason why I don't use the room safe to put anything. My passport stays in the inside zipped jacket pocket....not in a money belt.

Posted by
7076 posts

My passport stays in the inside zipped jacket pocket

Perfect solution....... until the temp is above 60F

Posted by
12154 posts

Quite right, it is the perfect solution. When the temp is too hot, which is very often the case as it is summer when I'm over there, then I carry that light jacket with me, and always out and about on a day trip taking a train, say from Vienna to Wiener Neustadt, or Vienna to Brno.