Replacement UK ID card
August 10, 2009 4:55 AM   Subscribe

I've lost my UK identity card for foreign nationals and was planning to travel in 3 weeks. Is there any way to get a replacement, fast?

I have lost my identity card and only discovered it this weekend when preparing for visa applications for a dream vacation in mid-September. Gulp. After tracking down, with some difficulty, the website page saying what to do, I've learnt it takes 4-14 weeks to get a replacement by post, and requires that I file a police report. There is no fast-track service listed. Does anyone have experience of getting a replacement? How long did it take? Was there any way of getting accelerated service which is not mentioned on the website? I haven't called the Borders Agency to ask, because I'd rather not report it lost until I've done that last final sweep.
posted by anonymous to Travel & Transportation around United Kingdom (3 answers total)
Call them, they might have a provision for getting one over the counter or quickly.

(Yet another reason the ID card is a dumb idea -- WHY separate the VISA from the passport?)
posted by gadha at 5:11 AM on August 10, 2009

Seconding calling them - just don't tell them your name.

As I see it, your biggest problem won't be getting visas for your vacation, but getting back into the UK afterwards - am I right?

Do you have a copy of the old card? Any other proof you received the visa (letter from the Home Office/Border Agency, etc)? You may be able to be allowed back into the UK with such documents (plus proof that you've applied for a new card) while you are waiting for the replacement to arrive. I would think that somewhere in their fancy computer system, they would know that your passport number is associated with x visa. IANAL, but it may be worth checking with an immigration advisor or lawyer to see if and how you would be let back in without the ID card.

On a slightly unrelated note, if you need to cancel and you have travel insurance, they may cover the cost of the trip.
posted by peanut butter milkshake at 5:55 AM on August 10, 2009

Okay, duh, after reading the guidance notes for the application form, you have to submit your passport when applying.

You still may be able to travel first and apply for the card upon returning. Another option is to apply ASAP and write a cover letter explaining you have urgent travel plans (including copies of your itinerary, etc). It says on the guidance notes that they aim to decide 70% of applications within four weeks, so you could potentially have your stuff back before your holiday and in time to apply for the visa(s) you need.

Call them. You may be able to post the application today and they'll have it tomorrow morning.
posted by peanut butter milkshake at 6:12 AM on August 10, 2009

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