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Insurance Article

6 Things To Do If You Have Lost Passport & Documents Abroad

May 17 2016

Travelling to international destinations is an exciting prospect. However, it could turn into a frustrating experience if an unfortunate situation arises, such as the loss or theft of passport and other important documents. To cope with such circumstances in an international location, you need to immediate follow the steps given below.

To cope with such circumstances in an international location, consider the following pointers:

  1. Register an FIR
  2. The loss or theft of a passport, visa documents, credit/debit card, travellers’ cheques, etc. should be immediately reported to the police and an FIR should be filed. The copy of the FIR would help in other processes like re-issuing passport, visa and driving license.

  3. Procure a copy of lost documents
  4. The soft copy or photocopy of your lost documents and ID proofs will save you from a lot of hassle. Many insurers also have a provision to send you a soft copy of the travel insurance. These documents are extremely important when it comes to re-issue of emergency passport, visa and availing insurance-related services.

  5. Locate the Indian consulate or embassy
  6. Locate the Indian consulate with the help of the Indian embassy website or nearby government office and register your loss. There are two options available in this situation. Either one should apply for an Emergency Passport or for an Emergency certificate. The replacement passport will take around 1 week because the passports are printed in India and then sent to the Consulate. If your departure is scheduled within the next two to three days, a ‘single-way’ permit or emergency certificate will be granted.

  7. Locate the Indian consulate or embassy
  8. Any visa you had would have been lost along with the passport. Visit the respective embassy of the country that issued your visa. You will be required to produce the copies of your old visa and police report accompanied by your new passport.

  9. Block your credit or debit card
  10. Block your credit and debit cards via Internet banking. You need to provide your card number and necessary details like password and ATM PIN to avail this service. Some banks offer emergency credit card replacements and services. Though the services can cost you some charges, it can get you access to cash if you don’t have another source. Few banks like Bank of America and Citi offer virtual credit card numbers.

    Banks have international helpline numbers that provide assistance in case of lost or stolen cash cards, travellers’ cheques, debit cards, etc. These numbers should be saved in your phone and diary for easy access. Generally, a Forex card comes with a ‘back-up or replacement card’. Make sure you keep one of these cards securely in a locker or in a handbag for easy access. Such cards carry multiple currencies and can be refilled by your kin for emergency funding.

  11. Contact your travel insurance provider
  12. After completing the formalities of travel insurance,a card is provided that has emergency contact numbers of the country you are travelling to. Once you place the call and provide your card number, you can be assured of further assistance. Travel insurance bears the charges of temporary passport, emergency hotel accommodation, cancelled or delayed flights, and medical facilities, subject to conditions. Using these services will not only provide financial security but also ensure peace of mind.

    Worry-free travel is possible if you plan well and take precautionary measures.

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