Our passports were stolen in Paris

Oct 28th, 2009, 05:05 AM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 1,033
Had my pocket picked in a bus station in Mendoza, Argentina....my cash and passport disappeared. Beautiful timing on the part of the thieves...they nailed me just as I got on the bus to Buenos Aires. I didn't discover the theft until I was seated and the bus had departed. My CCs and ATM card were in a different pocket, so those were spared. Trust me, it was a long, angry, brooding twelve-hour bus ride to BA!

The US Embassy in BA gave me a Limited-validity (one year from time of issue) passport. This took only a couple of hours...very efficient and helpful, those people were. To date, I've had no trouble exiting or entering the US with this document.
RedStater is offline  
Oct 28th, 2009, 05:27 AM
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So if my American passport would fetch $10,000, do you know a buyer with the ready cash so I can go ahead and book my next vacation?
cynthia_booker is offline  
Oct 28th, 2009, 09:59 AM
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I would love to know where the $10k figure comes from. New passports from modern countries are relatively worthless if they are stolen. If they still fetch $10k, that just means that the US has put any efficient security systems on their passports.

Of course, we have already had tons of examples of the CIA information being totally incorrect. WMD, anybody?
kerouac is online now  
Oct 28th, 2009, 10:00 AM
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read: has NOT put
kerouac is online now  
Oct 28th, 2009, 01:41 PM
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$10k? LOL.
nancicita is offline  
Oct 28th, 2009, 01:50 PM
Original Poster
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yeahhh It was great. getting to go back seeing the fall leaves and the different season . . . I really do love being in Paris. I love New York too.
"They" didn't want our passports . . . both were right there with the rest of my invalid stuff. The US dollars and the euros were the only missing items.
and Nikki If that ticket ever arrives . . . well, you've just GOT to go back and make "things" right!
cyndyq is offline  
Oct 28th, 2009, 03:05 PM
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"We carry two different credit cards and he carries both of one while I carry both of the other."

Sorry, I am trying to figure this out... does it mean, you have 4 cards? you have 2 and husband has 2? 4 cards in one family, do you pay 4 annual fees?
Dayenu is offline  
Oct 28th, 2009, 04:38 PM
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Lots of people have more cards than that. My beau and I each have a corporate card issued by our employer (no charge). And we each have (from before we were together) an AmEx, a Visa and a MC. the only ones that charge are AmEx - the others come free from the bank (but I believe you have to have a certain amount of business there or they do charge fees).

We don;t take all when we travel, just an AmEx and one other card each as well as a debit card to our respective checking accounts (different banks) - in case there is a problem getting cash with one.

And I sympathize with people not used to large cities - it must be disorienting to be in a different atmosphere than you're used to - as well as in a foreign country/different language etc. But I still believe that personal vigilance is your best bet. I've had 2 friends "lose" things in Erope - both admittedly their own fault. And if you read the above - most are situations that could be prevented:

You avoid having a bag pulled off your shoulder by a Vespa rider by keeping the bag next to the wall,, not the street

You avoid losing things in a breakfast room by keeping your bag with you - never leave it on a table or seat

You avoid falling victim to a scam by just walking straight ahead and ignoring importunate strangers - no matter what they say or do (pretend they're not there and just keep walking - if they try to get in front of you - say NO very loudly and give them an elbow if necessary (But this is all routine to someone who rides the Broadway local on a regular basis). I think a lot of people get in trouble be feeling that they need to be "nice". You don;t owe the world "nice" - self-protection is more important.
nytraveler is offline  
Oct 28th, 2009, 04:38 PM
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 204
There are SO many responses here but I'll add my little story as well. Many many years ago i was in Prague with my brother, husband and mother(84yrs. old). My mother and I bought a few trinkets at an outdoor market stand. When we stopped at the next vendor and reached into our purses (closed) to get our wallets - they were GONE! We were in total disbelief that without our having a clue, we'd been robbed. My husband then recalled the scene at the 1st vendor where two young women were standing directly behind us and one kind up bumped into one of us..my mother and I had not even noticed. The good news was that my mother and I were both savvy travelers so what was in our wallets was practically NO money, no credit cards, and certainly no passports. All of the above were either in zipped waist belts or in the safe at the hotel - I also only carry small amounts of money as I use my CC for most purchases and keep extra money and another cc also locked in the hotel safe or locked in my suitcase...hotel help do not steal whole suitcases!
The bottom line was that I had to congratulate the two young women for a job superbly done - probably wouldn't have felt so proud of them if I'd had a serious loss. BTW - we travel to Europe - mostly Italy at least twice a year and the pick-pocketing in Prague was the only time that has even happened to either me or my husband. My husband, actually carries his cc/money and sometimes passport in a pouch that fits into the front of his pants..it's on a loop on his belt. He would never carry a wallet in his pocket even though he has to reach down his pants to pay for dinner!
giannetta is offline  
Oct 28th, 2009, 05:47 PM
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Dayenu, I think it means each person carries both cards from the *same* acct.( his and hers) Otherwise, if each carried only the cards w/his or her own name on it, then if one of them was robbed, both accts would need to be cancelled, and they would be left w/o a functioning acct. Did I clarify or make it worse?

So that would be 2 total accts, 4 cards, but only 2 annual fees.
socialworker is offline  
Oct 28th, 2009, 07:13 PM
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I do not pay annual fees on any credit card accounts. I always travel with two that are in my name only, and my husband has two in his name only. I also have two ATM cards to different accounts in my own name. I keep one credit card and one ATM card in my wallet, and leave the rest in the hotel or apartment.

If we had two cards from the same account and my card was stolen, we would call and the account would be frozen, making my husband's card useless.
Nikki is online now  
Oct 29th, 2009, 06:25 AM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 2,598

The title of the original post is misleading. The poster's WALLET was stolen and the passports happened to be in it. The thieves ditched everything except the cash. They had no interest in the passports, which were in the possession of the police .

Why would a U.S. passport be worth 10k when it would be canceled as soon as the owner reports it missing?
Luisah is offline  
Oct 29th, 2009, 08:53 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 8,421
cyndyq: Thank you for reporting - and glad you were able to retrieve all your belongings!

We were in Paris those dates also and agree that the weather just could not have been more spectacular!

We went to Monet's Home and Gardens in Giverny on a Monday and had the place almost all to ourselves as not many know it's open Mondays now. The weather was glorious and the gardens were spectacular. The water lilies were in bloom - white, pink, dark pink - just awesome!
djkbooks is offline  
Oct 29th, 2009, 04:48 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Dayenu: We have two credit card accounts, only one of which we use regularly and pay off each month, by the way. No yearly fee on either.

DH carries both his and my card for one account. I carry both his and my card for the other. If something happens to the ones he's carrying, we still have a "good" card (the ones I'm holding).
MelJ is offline  

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