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BA Passport check - mines been in the washing machine

BA Passport check - mines been in the washing machine

Old Feb 15, 19, 5:55 am
  #1  
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BA Passport check - mines been in the washing machine

hi, whilst not strictly BA Iím flying out to AMS Monday then onto JNB / CPT on BA.

my passport has been through the washing machine - zipped up in a pocket - itís looks ok, rather damp.

will the E portion still work? The main page looks ok.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 5:59 am
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I suspect the answer is you won't know if the chip works until you try it.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 6:01 am
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Originally Posted by NeilP View Post
hi, whilst not strictly BA Iím flying out to AMS Monday then onto JNB / CPT on BA.

my passport has been through the washing machine - zipped up in a pocket - itís looks ok, rather damp.

will the E portion still work? The main page looks ok.
I haven't tried with mine to wash it but I think the chip inside the passport is well protected and wouldn't be an issue. I would say if you have one of the latest passport where the picture and the text is printed on a plastic page I think you should be fine. However if you have an older one where there is a sticker covers the whole page you could be in trouble if that sticker comes up at certain areas or that page has a dodgy looking...
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Old Feb 15, 19, 6:13 am
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I wouldnít worry too much about the chip not working. Mine has been broken for ~5 years and itís never been more than a mild inconvenience.

At LHR Iíve found that its quicker to try to use the eGate, then when it fails youíll be directly taken to a border force person.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 6:15 am
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If you have a phone that supports NFC, it should be able to detect the RFID chip in the passport and with the right app (for example NFC TagInfo on Android) read the data.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 6:47 am
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The better question is whether the cleansing did any outward damage to the document. Once dry, will it look the same. That is where people run into uneven treatment as the determination of whether a passport is "damaged" is purely subjective.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 7:13 am
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Originally Posted by AlbaGuBrath View Post
I wouldnít worry too much about the chip not working. Mine has been broken for ~5 years and itís never been more than a mild inconvenience.

At LHR Iíve found that its quicker to try to use the eGate, then when it fails youíll be directly taken to a border force person.
Total opposite for me! The chip must be damaged (gets rejected everytime) sent back to Passport Office who said it's fine and sent it back. Terminal 3 arrival queue is often diabolical after the eGate rejects me
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Old Feb 15, 19, 7:24 am
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Iíve just tried the app noted above on a functioning passport (that worked in an e-Gate in the last hour) and it doesnít scan the chip. So it might give you a false negative.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 7:28 am
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Originally Posted by dagohh View Post
If you have a phone that supports NFC, it should be able to detect the RFID chip in the passport and with the right app (for example NFC TagInfo on Android) read the data.
Can you recommend one for iPhone?
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Old Feb 15, 19, 7:58 am
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Originally Posted by AlbaGuBrath View Post

At LHR I’ve found that its quicker to try to use the eGate, then when it fails you’ll be directly taken to a border force person.
The issue that OP has is whether BA will let him board (or not) his flight to AMS with a possible damaged passport and whether the airline he is flying to JNB with (It's not clear if he's returning to LHR for the onward on BA or if he is flying direct from AMS on say KL) will let them board with it as they won't want to be fined by the SA authorities if the OP can't enter SA.

Entering the UK with a damaged passport will likely cause no problems but the Border Force agent will likely advise him to get a new passport ASAP (and in some cases with severely damaged ones they can retain them at the border)
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Old Feb 15, 19, 8:01 am
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Originally Posted by Will100 View Post


Can you recommend one for iPhone?
Apple don't expose the NFC hardware to developers, so there won't be one. That's why EU nationals with iPhones couldn't use the government app to apply for post-Brexit residency (maybe), and only those with Android could.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 8:35 am
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Well my passport didn't go through the washing machine but it was pretty thoroughly washed by hand (I'll spare you the details of WHY that was necessary). It was submerged, washed with detergent for some minutes and hung out to dry naturally,

It's worked fine since and never had any issues with it, in egates or by eye so you might be OK with it.
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Old Feb 15, 19, 9:32 am
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Same thing happened to me, many of the passport pages had run - No problem for me as I self scan as a gold in the first wing and was only going to to Paris.

On the way back, the Immigration officer strongly advised me to get a new one. Some countries are very unforgiving and "think you may be trying to hide something".

Edit: Wow I sound like a complete DYKWIA! It's self scan at the normal security too isn't it possibly?!

Last edited by Newbtravelle; Feb 15, 19 at 9:42 am
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Old Feb 15, 19, 9:56 am
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Originally Posted by Swanhunter View Post
Iíve just tried the app noted above on a functioning passport (that worked in an e-Gate in the last hour) and it doesnít scan the chip. So it might give you a false negative.
Might have to try a different app. I tried one when I first read about it here. Got several pages of info including the basics like my name, d.o.b. passport id, photo, document and country signing certificates, and a thing called Data Group Hashes. I've deleted the app as it try to keep only things I use regularly but I've kept the screenshots just in case I lose my passport while travelling - may come in helpful getting a replacement!
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Old Feb 15, 19, 11:07 am
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Originally Posted by notakeenflyer View Post
Apple don't expose the NFC hardware to developers.
It does now (happened last year I think)
https://developer.apple.com/documentation/corenfc
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