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Requirement to Send in Old Passport to Renew Unnecessary and an PITA

Requirement to Send in Old Passport to Renew Unnecessary and an PITA

Old Jul 30, 18, 11:26 am
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Requirement to Send in Old Passport to Renew Unnecessary and an PITA

My US passport is expiring soon.

I am aware of the various ways to expedite so that I am not without a passport for too long.

However, I'm unclear on the rationale for the requirement to send in the old passport. Is it for ID purposes, or to cancel it so you don't sell it on the black market?

Seems to me it would be much easier for the public if one could apply for a new passport which would have an effective date the day after the current passport expires, with no need to send in the old passport.
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Old Jul 30, 18, 11:38 am
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Originally Posted by BigFlyer View Post
My US passport is expiring soon.

I am aware of the various ways to expedite so that I am not without a passport for too long.

However, I'm unclear on the rationale for the requirement to send in the old passport. Is it for ID purposes, or to cancel it so you don't sell it on the black market?

Seems to me it would be much easier for the public if one could apply for a new passport which would have an effective date the day after the current passport expires, with no need to send in the old passport.
That would create additional problems. Lots of countries require six months of more of validity on the passport for admission; if people had an existing passport valid until 9/30/18, and had just gotten a new one valid as of 10/1/18, they'd have to bring both passports. Also, people would lose the new one before it became valid, people would try to travel on a passport that wasn't officially issued yet, plus you'd have old passports that weren't explicitly and clearly voided.
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Old Jul 30, 18, 12:33 pm
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The main thing on mail-in renewals is that the old passport proves that you are you. The new pic you include for the new passport matches up to your old one, on back down the line. Without turning in your old passport, everyone would have to renew in-person somewhere.
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Old Jul 30, 18, 12:37 pm
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Originally Posted by catocony View Post
The main thing on mail-in renewals is that the old passport proves that you are you. The new pic you include for the new passport matches up to your old one, on back down the line. Without turning in your old passport, everyone would have to renew in-person somewhere.
That and the fact that the passport paper itself has value on the black market. That's why the old one comes back with "VOID" holes cut through it.

It may seem to be a PITA, but you are already mailing in a packet and many Americans forget the value of a US passport in large parts of the world.
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Old Jul 31, 18, 10:01 am
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On the last Facebook Live session I saw from the State Department, they indicated when they piloted online renewals that you would *NOT* be required to send your existing document in, but as soon as you finished the online renewal, your existing passport would be immediately invalidated (electronically) and should not be used.

Originally Posted by catocony View Post
The main thing on mail-in renewals is that the old passport proves that you are you. The new pic you include for the new passport matches up to your old one, on back down the line. Without turning in your old passport, everyone would have to renew in-person somewhere.
This is not the 90s, they store the photo from the prior passports digitally. They don't need the existing passport physically to compare the new photo to.

Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
That and the fact that the passport paper itself has value on the black market. That's why the old one comes back with "VOID" holes cut through it.

It may seem to be a PITA, but you are already mailing in a packet and many Americans forget the value of a US passport in large parts of the world.
This is a larger concern, but apparently one that the state department is going to ignore. It seems like online renewals will coincide (or be close enough to) the next generation passport which will have a document serial on all pages created via a laser that will effectively prevent the the lifting of pages from one passport book into another passport book, along with a polycarbonate bio page.

Still won't prevent misuse outside the US in particular of a renewed passport if the source doesn't verify with the state department.
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Old Jul 31, 18, 11:17 am
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Originally Posted by phltraveler View Post
On the last Facebook Live session I saw from the State Department, they indicated when they piloted online renewals that you would *NOT* be required to send your existing document in, but as soon as you finished the online renewal, your existing passport would be immediately invalidated (electronically) and should not be used.
I don't see why they would have to invalidate the old passport immediately - they should at least wait until after they send out the renewal passport. If there are a few days or weeks where both passports are valid that's not the end of the world.

<redacted>.

Last edited by TWA884; Aug 1, 18 at 8:38 am Reason: Going OMNI/PR
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Old Aug 2, 18, 4:22 am
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The UK (and possibly other countries) add up to nine months of the remaining validity of the old passport to the new one (https://www.gov.uk/renew-adult-passport/renew). It would be nice if the US were to do that.
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Old Aug 5, 18, 8:57 am
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If you didn't have to send in the old one, someone who looks a little bit like you and knows a little bit of information could get a new passport with their own photo in it, and you might not even notice.

Some countries want the old passport so they can verify that you are a citizen, as sometimes their databases are not so reliable (unlike the US where 99.99999% of passport applicants with a US birthplace are citizens)
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Old Aug 5, 18, 12:03 pm
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I get a bit tired of the paranoia, partly because it is a waste of resources better spent tackling genuine threats - including the government's own inefficiencies.

I dislike it every time I have to surrender my old passport because I don't trust the the Post Office. I've had a new passport go missing in the mail and been left hanging out to dry until I could replace the new, never received passport.

I keep my old passport for memories. It never leaves home. The only way it is going to fall into nefarious hands is if someone breaks into my home, does an absolutely exhaustive paper search while the alarm system is blaring and dialing the police, and finds it stashed away with other memories.

I suspect most folks who want to keep their old passport(s) do the same.
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Old Aug 6, 18, 4:21 pm
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Originally Posted by chollie View Post
I keep my old passport for memories. It never leaves home.
I keep it for old, active visas, and "geez, I looked like that once?"

Then it gets destroyed when no longer useful.

/not nostalgic.
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Old Aug 6, 18, 6:48 pm
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Originally Posted by RandomNobody View Post
I keep it for old, active visas, and "geez, I looked like that once?"

Then it gets destroyed when no longer useful.

/not nostalgic.
Forgot about unexpired multi-entry visas that I lose if the passport goes astray on its way back to me.

/absolutely nostalgic
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Old Aug 6, 18, 8:44 pm
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Originally Posted by chollie View Post
I get a bit tired of the paranoia, partly because it is a waste of resources better spent tackling genuine threats - including the government's own inefficiencies.

I dislike it every time I have to surrender my old passport because I don't trust the the Post Office. I've had a new passport go missing in the mail and been left hanging out to dry until I could replace the new, never received passport.

I keep my old passport for memories. It never leaves home. The only way it is going to fall into nefarious hands is if someone breaks into my home, does an absolutely exhaustive paper search while the alarm system is blaring and dialing the police, and finds it stashed away with other memories.

I suspect most folks who want to keep their old passport(s) do the same.
Agree totally. I have every passport Iíve ever been issued and actually one with my mother and sister before they started issuing children passports. Havenít counted them but at least five maybe six. Covers my familyís foreign travel to and from by sea England and the travel around Europe ages before the EU, then to be from Morocco by air, then my time with the Army in Germany, and finally my wifeís and my travels all over the world. Great memories and not to be lost.
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