Do I need my old passport to get a new one? Details in side.
January 28, 2013 6:34 AM   Subscribe

Details: When I was about 5 I got a US passport, my Dad was in the airforce so my brother, parents and I traveled around a lot. We'e been state side since about 1998. Since then we've not left the country. My Fiancee and I are going the caribbean for our honeymoon on a cruise & I need a passport. Do I need my old passport when applying for a new one? What if I can't find it?
posted by snow_mac to Travel & Transportation (10 answers total)
No. You're good just applying for a new one.
posted by goshling at 6:36 AM on January 28, 2013

Best answer: Had to do this a few years ago, and did have to apply in person and note that the 1988 passport was lost after 20 years. Not a big deal overall, provided you have a month or so have the whole process completed
posted by bendybendy at 6:38 AM on January 28, 2013

Response by poster: Thank you both so much. I have to have it by June 2, 2013.
posted by snow_mac at 6:45 AM on January 28, 2013

I had a passport as a child which I'm sure has been lost somewhere. When I applied for a new passport, it was basically a matter of making a sworn statement that the previous passport was, I think, "lost, stolen, or destroyed" and they issued me a new one with my new application & paperwork.
posted by gauche at 6:49 AM on January 28, 2013

Yeah, when I applied for a new passport last year, I had to make a statement saying that the old one was lost and where I had lost it. I answered honestly: "Probably in my basement somewhere." I got the new passport with no trouble.
posted by Faint of Butt at 6:59 AM on January 28, 2013

I had a passport from when I was a teenager, and had to renew it to go out of the country two years ago. The passport from when I was a teenager was at my parents' house. I knew exactly where it was, but I'd have had to call them and have them dig it out and mail it to me, which is kind of a pain in the ass.

So, when I went to apply for a passport I did it in a friendly place (the County Clerk's office instead of, for instance, a Post Office) and I did it at a low-volume time (about 10:30am). I sought out the kindest-looking person working there, and went to her counter to explain my situation. She called the state department, told them...a version...of my story, and had them fax us some kind of waiver for her to append to my forms.

All of this is to say: no, you ought to be fine. The probably-still-have-it-but-only-if-I-look-really-hard is kind of a gray area. I would suggest doing a little bit of recon to find someone who doesn't have the rulebook shoved up their ass when you go to get it sorted out.

Enjoy your trip!
posted by phunniemee at 7:03 AM on January 28, 2013

The fact that your previous passport was as a child and must be well and truly expired by now makes it even less relevant than if you trying to renew a lost but still valid passport.

You were 5 on your last one? How old are you now? How long ago was this? No one is going to question your previous passport under these circumstances.
posted by goshling at 7:43 AM on January 28, 2013

Same for me. Sure wish I had the old one as a memento, too: we had some great times, that little booklet and I... :7)
posted by wenestvedt at 8:22 AM on January 28, 2013

Response by poster: I'm 23 now, so atleast 18 years. They may have gotten it when I was born, I dunno.
posted by snow_mac at 9:37 AM on January 28, 2013

The only reason you need to keep an expired passport when you have a new one is for visas (they don't automatically transfer) - if you're a US citizen applying for a new US passport and you don't have visas you need to keep current, you're good to go. Mazel tov for your nuptials and enjoy your cruise!
posted by goo at 5:59 PM on January 28, 2013

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