Dec 17th, 1998, 09:31 AM
Sarah Herbin
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I am looking into traveling last minute overseas to possibly Italy. Is it possible, and/or wise, to do so without a passport? I have lost mine, and have my birth certificate, but have heard yes and no. Since I have lost mine, do I have any alternatives?
Dec 17th, 1998, 09:42 AM
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Sarah: To the best of my knowledge, you cannot travel to any European country without a passport. I would contact your US congressman or the consulate and find out if they can help you, maybe to expedite one.

Good luck!
Dec 17th, 1998, 09:59 AM
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sarah, I don't even think they will let you on a plane leaving the staes without a pasport. I believe it is impossible to enter Ital and most other countries without one. You can however, go to a passport agency in NYC, CT, Miami, LA and other major cities and get one the same day if you are travelling within a few days. I did this for my first Europe trip which was a last minute business trip and had my passport in 15 minutes. I think there is a passport agency web site which will give you all the details. Good Luck
Dec 17th, 1998, 10:24 AM
wes fowler
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You MUST have a passport to enter any European country. Chuck is quite correct in saying you won't be allowed to board a plane in the US without one. He's equally correct about the speed with which you can get one. You may be able to expedite its issuance if you have the number of your lost passport.
Dec 17th, 1998, 11:03 AM
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If ever there was a reminder that it is good to have a xerox copy of your passport, this posting sure was one!
Dec 17th, 1998, 11:04 AM
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whoops - not to let anyone think you can actually TRAVEL on a xerox, but it does speed up getting a replacement!
Dec 17th, 1998, 02:36 PM
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Here's my lost passport story: Two weeks before my trip to Italy in 1993 I could not find my passport (I cannot believe I am admitting this, but to save you, I will). I live in a suburb of Chicago. I got out the yellow pages and looked up PASSPORT SERVICES, called a couple, decided on one, went downtown to Chicage immediately, and let the service handle it: the photo, the application, I signed, and then for about $35 service fee they went to the building where the passport officials are located and STOOD IN LINE for me while I was filling out paperwork and getting photo taken. Then I was walked across the street to sit until my runner came to the front of the line . . . then I went up, swore, etc., and was approved. In 3 days I had my passport.
Here's my girlfriend's EXPIRED passport story: found in the MIDDLE of a trip her passport expired the next day . . . she spent the next day in line in Singapore or Bankok or Timbuctoo or wherever she was . . . getting the new passport. Not good. She could not have gotten out of the country to get back to this country.

Ever seen "French Kiss"? Stolen passport, interview at embassy, wasted time. Lots of horror stories, I'm sure.

Don't Delay. Run, don't walk to your nearest yellow pages and get this nailed down. Do not buy an airline ticket and then cry to the gate official that you have your birth certificate and no passport: they don't care and they won't let you on the plane and you will not get a refund on your ticket.

Get it all done, take a deep breath, enjoy your trip.
Dec 18th, 1998, 06:11 AM
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You've been getting good advice. The only two countries I know that USA-ers can go to without a passport are Canada and Mexico [as far as I know], but I usually carry mine anyway.
If your timing is tight use a visa service. In Chicago I use Perry Visa. They got a passport [I used the expedited service AND an Australian visa [normally took a month in 1995] for me in about 2 weeks total when I decided at the last minute to travel "down under." Yes you pay for this. My sense is that the total fees were around $60. It was close... visa came two days before I was to leave, BUT it came [and I had a BLAST!]
Dec 18th, 1998, 04:28 PM
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I carry a reduced copy of my passport in my wallet. Find it helps overseas when hotel of money exchange or VAT forms need your number. Saves carrying your original around with you. Cannot believe anyone told anyone they could go to Europe on birth certificate. You cannot even get on the plane in the US to begin the trip, much less worry about arrival in Europe. Bad advice somewhere.
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