Should you carry your passport with you in London?

Should you carry your passport with you in London?

People walking on a walkway to the City of London School

Passports are not required by law to be carried with you at all times in London or the UK. Most people leave theirs in their hotel safe so as not to lose it while out on the town. 

There is of course more to this conversation, so let’s dive a little deeper.

What I do

I don’t like carrying my actual passport around with me while I am are out and about, a copy of my passport and your driver’s license has been sufficient as identification over the years in London and elsewhere in Europe. 

Passports and other valuables should always be kept in a hotel safe, according to the US State Department. That is what I do. Take a picture of it and keep that handy on my phone, but leave my passport in the hotel safe.

Remember that carrying your passport with you also increases the risk of it being stolen or lost.

Related: Should you carry your passport with you in Europe?
Related: Should you carry your passport with you in Germany?

But do I need to keep my passport on me in London?

If you are stopped by the authorities, you could be asked for both your passport or some form of ID that states your nation of origin. They can detain you if they would like while they review your paperwork and situation. The police are unlikely to require you to identify yourself unless you’re involved in a serious incident like a drug bust, terror raid or a fight though. 

Some other times you will need your passport in London, are checking into your hotel, changing money or renting a car. When you rent a car, you will also need to show your driver’s license. 

Even when you go out for the night. London bars will typically be fine seeing a US driver’s license. So you should be good without your passport for the night. 

You might feel differently if you are younger, or look younger. Then you might want to bring it so there aren’t any issues.

What is a valid ID in London?

There are a couple of types of ID you can use in the UK, depending on what you need it for:

A passport

A driver’s license with a photo on it

Biometric Residency Permit

Valid age-proving documents (like the PASS card)

Where should you keep your passport when in London? (Tips for traveling with your passport)

These things are important for keeping your passport safe and keeping track of it while you are in London or most any other international city or country.

Keep a color copy of your passport with you.

I have a friend who was in Cancun for a break from the winter weather in Minnesota. One day, she went to breakfast with friends and she left her passport on the table at the restaurant. She realized she had left it just a few minutes after leaving and ran back but it was too late: her passport had been stolen.

Leave it in a safe in your hotel

If you’re planning something, like swimming or a scuba dive where you feel like you won’t have a safe place to lock up your passport or keep it on you, you might want to leave it back at the hotel. I would.

Lock it up in the safe in your room. They are typically very safe and secure. Yes, I know they can be broken into if someone is really trying, but they typically are quite safe and unless you have someone who is really out to get you, or you have done something to make the hotel staff really grumpy, you will be fine.

Typically, people who try to tell you that hotel safes aren’t secure, are trying to sell you something… or are paranoid. Yes, even if it is a legit website or a close friend.

It boils down to personal preference and how much risk you’re willing to take on for yourself and those traveling with you during your trip abroad.

So You Know – You might get hassled by your insurance company if you don’t lock up your ID or passport in the hotel safe.

Carry a color copy of my passport and/or your driver’s license

You could carry another form of ID as well. If you were to lose your passport it could be hard to re-enter the US. It’s doable, but a bit of a hassle. Consider carrying a color copy of the Bio/identity page and the latest entry stamp if you do this.

Keep a digital copy on your phone

This could come in handy as well, especially in combination with the paper one.

If you need to, for any reason, be quickly admitted to the Embassy of your country, then carrying something that can prove your citizenship can be very beneficial for you.

Don’t just leave it in your luggage! 

It is more likely to get stolen there. Either by hotel staff, airport staff or pickpockets.

Be careful if someone starts talking to you in the middle of a busy touristy spot.

It might be fine, but it might not. It could be a distraction ploy by a pickpocket. They work in teams where one distracts, the other steals.

Be careful if a vendor requires you to leave your passport 

They might do it legitimately, with no ill-intent, as security to rent a car boat or scooter. Feel the situation out and see if you can leave them your paper copy. 

I just did that in Mexico to rent a scooter but they looked pretty legit, and I knew we weren’t going to be rally-driving the scooter so I felt the risk was pretty low. It turned out fine.

Though they could have scammed us by claiming that we damaged their vehicle… or kept it if we legitimately damaged the vehicle.

If it gets stolen, notify the authorities asap

If you do get your passport stolen, it’s important to notify the nearest authority and file a police report with as much information as possible:

The date, time, location (street address if possible), what color was the vehicle, license plate number, details of how you had your belongings (wallet or bag) open, etc.

Photocopy your passport two times

Make sure one of them is kept with someone who can email, text or fax it to you in an emergency, and the other you could keep with you at all times. 

Do the opposite of what I have suggested

Or carry the original passport and leave a copy in the hotel and pic of it on your phone in case you need to replace a lost original.  

To avoid losing any of these documents while traveling, I store copies of all documents, as well as a list of credit card numbers and phone numbers online.

Note – Having a copy of your passport won’t replace the original if your actual passport is lost or stolen and you need the original. But a copy might make things easier for the embassy staff and yourself if you need to get a replacement.

Make sure someone at home has a copy of your passport in case of an emergency

If you have any issues or if there is some unforeseen emergency, having someone who isn’t on the trip but is highly responsive and responsible keep a copy of your passport, digital or hardcopy, can be helpful. 

It certainly isn’t necessary, but for the same reasons that organizations ask for emergency contact on their applications and waivers, it could be good to have someone available to help with proof of your identity back home. 

Put an emergency contact person’s information inside your passport

And on that note, it would be good to paperclip in the back cover of your passport an emergency contact that has critical information about you and backups of your important documents. 

Do I have to carry my passport in London?

As I mentioned earlier, it is good to have a valid form of ID of some kind on you in London. It depends on your personal preference and how much risk you’re willing to take on for yourself and those traveling with you during your trip abroad. 

Do you need a passport to travel by train in London?

You don’t need a passport to board a train in London, you will need to have a ticket or pass that allows you to ride. But they won’t ask for ID.

Do they check passports on trains in London?

They don’t check passports on trains that are traveling within London. If however, you board a train in London that will be crossing into any other country they will check passports.

Can you travel without a passport to London?

If you are coming from the U.S., no, you cannot travel to London without a valid U.S. passport. And if you are traveling back to your country of origin from London, you will need a passport as well. 

Hope you have found this post helpful! 

Do I need to carry my passport with me in Germany?

Do I need to carry my passport with me in Germany?

German castle

Generally, you don’t need to have your passport on you at all times while in Germany. You will likely be escorted to where you keep your passport if for some reason you’re stopped and you don’t have it with you.

If you are carrying your passport, you don’t need to carry any additional identification.

Read on for answers to other questions you might have and for tips for traveling with your passport through Germany and other international locations.

How much time do I need on my passport to travel to Germany?

If you are a non-EU national (not a citizen of the European Union) you must have a valid passport that doesn’t expire till three months or later from when you will be leaving Germany to get into the country. 

Should you carry your passport around with you in Germany?

German law does require you carry your passport with you at all times. That being said, my wife and I haven’t been to Germany yet, but when we go, we will follow what we normally do when we are in any other foreign country, Carry our US driver’s licenses and a copy of our data page from our passports and leave our actual passports back where we are staying. 

No police officer has ever asked to see my passport while in a foreign country. Some might say I get out and have enough fun. I think I do. They just haven’t asked after I have told them what we were up to and shown them my driver’s license.

Related: Should you carry your passport with you in Europe?
Related: Should you carry your passport with you in London?

Tips for taking your passport to Germany

These tips and ideas are important for keeping your passport safe and keeping track of it while you are on your trip to Germany.

Keep a color copy of your passport with you.

I have a friend who was in Cancun for a break from the winter weather in Minnesota. One day, she went to breakfast with friends and she left her passport on the table at the restaurant. She realized she had left it just a few minutes after leaving and ran back but it was too late: her passport had been stolen.

Leave it in a safe in your hotel

If you’re planning something, like swimming or a scuba dive where you feel like you won’t have a safe place to lock up your passport or keep it on you, you might want to leave it back at the hotel. I typically do.

Lock it up in the safe in your room. They are typically very safe and secure. Yes, I know they can be broken into if someone is really trying, but they typically are quite safe and unless you have someone who is really out to get you, or you have done something to make the hotel staff grumpy, you will be fine.

Typically, people who try to tell you that hotel safes aren’t secure, are trying to sell you something… or are paranoid. Yes, even if it is a legit website or a close friend.

It boils down to personal preference and how much risk you’re willing to take on for yourself and those traveling with you during your trip abroad.

So You Know – You might get hassled by your insurance company if you don’t lock up your ID or passport in the hotel safe.

picture of a building in Germany

Carry a color copy of my passport and/or your driver’s license

You could carry another form of ID as well. If you were to lose your passport it could be hard to re-enter the US. It’s doable, but a bit of a hassle. Consider carrying a color copy of the Bio/identity page and the latest entry stamp if you do this.

Keep a digital copy on your phone

This could come in handy as well, especially in combination with the paper one.

If you need to, for any reason, be quickly admitted to the Embassy of your country, then carrying something that can prove your citizenship can be very beneficial for you.

Don’t just leave it in your luggage! 

It is more likely to get stolen there. Either by hotel staff, airport staff or pickpockets.

Be careful if someone starts talking to you in the middle of a busy touristy spot.

It might be fine, but it might not. It could be a distraction ploy by a pickpocket. They work in teams where one distracts, the other steals.

Be careful if a vendor requires you to leave your passport 

They might do it legitimately, with no ill-intent, as security to rent a car boat or scooter. Feel the situation out and see if you can leave them your paper copy. 

I just did that to rent a scooter but they looked pretty legit, and I knew we weren’t going to be rally-driving the scooter so I felt the risk was pretty low. It turned out fine.

Though they could have scammed us by claiming that we damaged their vehicle… or kept it if we legitimately damaged the vehicle.

Checkpoint Charlie Germany

If it gets stolen, notify the authorities asap

If you do get your passport stolen, it’s important to notify the nearest authority and file a police report with as much information as possible:

The date, time, location (street address if possible), what color was the vehicle, license plate number, details of how you had your belongings (wallet or bag) open, etc.

Photocopy your passport two times

Make sure one of them is kept with someone who can email, text or fax it to you in an emergency, and the other you could keep with you at all times. 

Do the opposite of what I have suggested

Or carry the original passport and leave a copy in the hotel and pic of it on your phone in case you need to replace a lost original.  

To avoid losing any of these documents while traveling, I store copies of all documents, as well as a list of credit card numbers and phone numbers online.

Note – Having a copy of your passport won’t replace the original if your actual passport is lost or stolen and you need the original. But a copy might make things easier for the embassy staff and yourself if you need to get a replacement.

Make sure someone at home has a copy of your passport in case of an emergency

If you have any issues or if there is some unforeseen emergency, having someone who isn’t on the trip but is highly responsive and responsible keep a copy of your passport, digital or hardcopy, can be helpful. 

It certainly isn’t necessary, but for the same reasons that organizations ask for emergency contact on their applications and waivers, it could be good to have someone available to help with proof of your identity back home. 

Put an emergency contact person’s information inside your passport

And on that note, it would be good to paperclip in the back cover of your passport an emergency contact that has critical information about you and backups of your important documents. 

Should I carry my passport with me in Germany?

German law requires that you have a valid passport to get into the country. However, you are not required to carry your passport with you everywhere you go. You can carry it with you if you want. Both German citizens aged 16 and over and foreigners are subject to needing to have a valid ID.

Does Germany have its own passport?

Germany does have its own passports. German citizens need them in order to travel internationally. Passports and national ID cards give citizens free movement rights and the right to reside in any country within the European Union, the European Economic Area, and Switzerland.

Do you have to carry an ID in Germany?

If you’re a German citizen

In Germany, citizens over 16 are required to carry an identity card or passport and present it to authorities on request under the German Act on Identity Cards and Electronic Identification.

If you’re not a German citizen

You need to have a passport or other verified approved documentation with you in the country. You need to be able to present this document to authorities upon request.

A personal identification card is required for citizens of most European countries, including Austria and Germany. German identification cards, also known as Ausweis, serve the same purpose as driver’s licenses in the U.S.

Can I travel to Germany with only 3 months left on my passport?

Yes, you can travel to Germany so long as your passport is valid for three months after you will be exiting the country at the end of your stay. 

Do I need a driver’s license to drive in Germany?

Tourists with US driving licenses can rent cars and drive in Germany for up to six months. To be able to drive in Germany after the first six months of being there, without being in violation of the law, non-EU (European Union) residents must obtain a German license after six months. 

Things NOT to do in Germany

I hope this article has been helpful!

Related: Do I have to carry my passport in Turkey?

*References

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/International-Travel-Country-Information-Pages/Germany.html

https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/germany

Do I have to carry my passport in Turkey?

Do I have to carry my passport in Turkey?

In Turkey the law requires you carry some form of photographic ID. Passports or residence permits should always be carried with you. Turkey’s authorities stop people from time tit time in busy areas, especially Istanbul, or at any number of roadside checkpoints to verify their identification. 

Turkey is not the only country in the UK or Middle East to ask for tourists to carry their passports at all times.

Also, you will also need to make sure your passport is valid for six months beyond the length of your stay in Turkey to enter the country. Doublecheck your expiration date on your passport.

This brief article is a collection of Turkish laws, passport best practices and some stories involving passports in Turkey. 

Does Turkey require you to keep your passport on you?

A recognized ID and evidence of legal status are technically required. A passport fills this requirement. Photocopies are no substitute. 

In most places, I don’t carry my passport. I leave it back at my hotel in the safe. But in Turkey, I do carry it. 

I haven’t ever needed to show my ID to the police anywhere I have been, but I wouldn’t chance it. I’m sure it would be fine in the end, but I don’t want the headache of having my day’s agenda interrupted by sitting in a Turkish police station while my wife and kids go to the hotel to get my actual passport. You know? 

Related: Should you carry your passport with you in Europe?
Related: Should you carry your passport with you in Germany?

Tips for taking your passport to Turkey

These tips and ideas are important for keeping your passport safe and keeping track of it while you’re in Turkey.

Keep a digital copy on your phone

This could come in handy as well, especially in combination with the paper one.

If you need to, for any reason, be quickly admitted to the Embassy of your country, then carrying something that can prove your citizenship can be very beneficial for you.

Don’t leave it in your luggage! 

It is more likely to get stolen there. Either by hotel staff, airport staff or pickpockets.

Be careful if someone starts talking to you in the middle of a busy touristy spot.

In busy markets, tourist attractions or stores, be careful. It might be fine, but it might not. It could be a distraction ploy by a pickpocket. They work in teams where one distracts, the other steals.

Be careful if a vendor requires you to leave your passport 

They might do it legitimately, with no ill-intent, as security to rent a car boat or scooter. Feel the situation out and see if you can leave them your paper copy. 

I just did that to rent a scooter but they looked pretty legit, and I knew we weren’t going to be rally-driving the scooter so I felt the risk was pretty low. It turned out fine.

Though they could have scammed us by claiming that we damaged their vehicle… or kept it if we legitimately damaged the vehicle.

If it gets stolen, notify the authorities asap

If you do get your passport stolen, it’s important to notify the nearest authority and file a police report with as much information as possible:

The date, time, location (street address if possible), what color was the vehicle, license plate number, details of how you had your belongings (wallet or bag) open, etc.

Photocopy your passport two times

Make sure one of them is kept with someone who can email, text or fax it to you in an emergency, and the other you could keep in your hotel safe. 

Keep a copy in your hotel

In Turkey carry your original passport and leave a copy in the hotel and pic of it on your phone in case you need to replace a lost original.  

I do have copies of all my documents and a list of phone numbers from credit cards, etc stored online in case I lose any of these while traveling.

Note – Having a copy of your passport won’t replace the original if your actual passport is lost or stolen and you need the original. But a copy might make things easier for the embassy staff and yourself if you need to get a replacement.

Make sure someone at home has a copy of your passport in case of an emergency

If you have any issues or if there is some unforeseen emergency, having someone who isn’t on the trip but is highly responsive and responsible keep a copy of your passport, digital or hardcopy, can be helpful. 

It certainly isn’t necessary to do this, but for the same reasons that organizations ask for emergency contact on their applications and waivers, it could be good to have someone back home available to help with proof of your identity. 

Put an emergency contact person’s information inside your passport

And on that note, it would be good to paperclip in the back cover of your passport an emergency contact that has critical information about you and backups of your important documents. 

Should you carry your passport with you in Turkey?

Yes, the law requires you to carry your passport in Turkey. Our documents were demanded last year after we were stopped. We had ours with us. But I did ask about photocopies. They said only originals would do. 

Despite the fact that they are required by law, it is up to you whether or not you carry them. How much risk are you willing to take for yourself and those traveling with you.

Do they ID you in Turkey?

Yes, they ID in Turkey. Whenever you travel to Turkey, make sure you have an identification with a photo. In fact, it’s illegal to go without identification. To avoid any unnecessary issues, do not carry a photocopy of your passport, carry the real thing.

Things Not To Do In Turkey

Related: Do I have to carry my passport in France?

*References

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/International-Travel-Country-Information-Pages/Turkey.html

http://vasington.be.mfa.gov.tr

https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/turkey/local-laws-and-customs

Should you carry your passport with you in France?

Should you carry your passport with you in France?

In France, it is advisable to carry a copy of your passport or your passport. A passport is not required as proof of identity in France; you must always carry some form of identification citizen card, your U.S. passport is your valid form of identification.

This is a collection of French laws, passport best practices and some stories involving passports in France. 

Does France require you to keep your passport on you?

A recognized ID and evidence of legal status are technically required. A passport fills this requirement. But if you’re obviously American, though, it’s rare that you are asked for your ID or papers. 

Exceptions to this rule are crimes and accidents. Police can place you in custody if you do not have an ID when they ask you for it. In practice, this would mean returning to the hotel to retrieve your passport. Theoretically, it might happen, but I’ve never heard of that happening.

So I generally don’t carry my passport and I know a lot of people do the same, making sure their wallet or passport does not get stolen or lost. I leave it back at my hotel in the safe. No police officer has ever asked to see my passport while I was traveling.

In my experience, I never had to present a passport for police business at a préfecture, just identification. The local police rarely get involved in what are essentially border issues.

Foreigners carrying passports comply with all French requirements. My driver’s license has not been questioned before when I was stopped randomly while driving.

Also, my driver’s license has been enough for ID in stores too.

TIP – You will also need a passport valid for three months beyond the length of your stay in France to enter the country. Doublecheck your expiration date on your passport.

Tips for taking your passport to France

These tips and ideas are important for keeping your passport safe and keeping track of it while you are in France.

Keep a color copy of your passport with you.

I have a friend who was in Cancun for a break from the winter weather in Minnesota. One day, she went to breakfast with friends and she left her passport on the table at the restaurant. She realized she had left it just a few minutes after leaving and ran back but it was too late: her passport had been stolen.

Related: Should you carry your passport with you in Europe?
Related: Should you carry your passport with you in Turkey?

Leave it in a safe in your hotel

If you’re planning something, like swimming or a scuba dive where you feel like you won’t have a safe place to lock up your passport or keep it on you, you might want to leave it back at the hotel. I would.

Lock it up in the safe in your room. They are typically very safe and secure. Yes, I know they can be broken into if someone is really trying, but they typically are quite safe and unless you have someone who is really out to get you, or you have done something to make the hotel staff grumpy, you will be fine.

Typically, people who try to tell you that hotel safes aren’t secure, are trying to sell you something… or are paranoid. Yes, even if it is a legit website or a close friend.

It boils down to personal preference and how much risk you’re willing to take on for yourself and those traveling with you during your trip abroad.

So You Know – You might get hassled by your insurance company if you don’t lock up your ID or passport in the hotel safe.

Carry a color copy of my passport and/or your driver’s license

You could carry another form of ID as well. If you were to lose your passport it could be hard to re-enter the US. It’s doable, but a bit of a hassle. Consider carrying a color copy of the Bio/identity page and the latest entry stamp if you do this.

Keep a digital copy on your phone

This could come in handy as well, especially in combination with the paper one.

If you need to, for any reason, be quickly admitted to the Embassy of your country, then carrying something that can prove your citizenship can be very beneficial for you.

Don’t just leave it in your luggage! 

It is more likely to get stolen there. Either by hotel staff, airport staff or pickpockets.

Be careful if someone starts talking to you in the middle of a busy touristy spot.

It might be fine, but it might not. It could be a distraction ploy by a pickpocket. They work in teams where one distracts, the other steals.

Be careful if a vendor requires you to leave your passport 

They might do it legitimately, with no ill-intent, as security to rent a car boat or scooter. Feel the situation out and see if you can leave them your paper copy. 

I just did that to rent a scooter but they looked pretty legit, and I knew we weren’t going to be rally-driving the scooter so I felt the risk was pretty low. It turned out fine.

Though they could have scammed us by claiming that we damaged their vehicle… or kept it if we legitimately damaged the vehicle.

If it gets stolen, notify the authorities asap

If you do get your passport stolen, it’s important to notify the nearest authority and file a police report with as much information as possible:

The date, time, location (street address if possible), what color was the vehicle, license plate number, details of how you had your belongings (wallet or bag) open, etc.

Photocopy your passport two times

Make sure one of them is kept with someone who can email, text or fax it to you in an emergency, and the other you could keep with you at all times. 

Do the opposite of what I have suggested

Or carry the original passport and leave a copy in the hotel and pic of it on your phone in case you need to replace a lost original.  

To avoid losing any of these documents while traveling, I store copies of all documents, as well as a list of credit card numbers and phone numbers online.

Note – Having a copy of your passport won’t replace the original if your actual passport is lost or stolen and you need the original. But a copy might make things easier for the embassy staff and yourself if you need to get a replacement.

Make sure someone at home has a copy of your passport in case of an emergency

If you have any issues or if there is some unforeseen emergency, having someone who isn’t on the trip but is highly responsive and responsible keep a copy of your passport, digital or hardcopy, can be helpful. 

It certainly isn’t necessary, but for the same reasons that organizations ask for emergency contact on their applications and waivers, it could be good to have someone available to help with proof of your identity back home. 

Put an emergency contact person’s information inside your passport

And on that note, it would be good to paperclip in the back cover of your passport an emergency contact that has critical information about you and backups of your important documents. 

Do you have to carry your passport with you in France?

Yes, the law requires you to carry your passport in France, but people don’t carry their passports with them. I don’t know anyone who has been stopped and asked for their passport, but I have read online of folks who have, and they just call back to the hotel or resort and get things sorted out pretty quickly.

It boils down to personal preference and how much risk you’re willing to take on for yourself and those traveling with you during your trip abroad.

I can’t tell you what to do, but just let you know what French law is and what I do. You can go from there.

Do you have to carry an ID in France?

You do have to carry some form of ID with you in France. French police would prefer you have that ID on you, but you can provide ID documentation at the police station, or Préfecture, within 4 hours of your encounter as well. ID options include passports, photo driving licenses, and other identity documents issued by government agencies. 

Do you have to carry your passport with you in Paris?

As discussed above, you should carry some form of identification on you in France. It is the same for Paris. It’s mandatory to carry some form of ID with you at all times in Paris. This does not need to be a passport. A citizen card or your U.S. passport will work great.

Things not to do in France

Related: Do I have to carry my passport in Mexico?

I hope you enjoyed this article!

*References

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/International-Travel-Country-Information-Pages/France.html

https://franceintheus.org/

Should you carry your passport with you in Mexico?

Should you carry your passport with you in Mexico?

mexican sign

When you are in Mexico on vacation or touring, you won’t need to carry your passport unless you know you’re going to need it for a specific reason… like to verify your identity when exchanging money or checking into your hotel. 

Does Mexico require you to keep your passport on you?

If you are stopped for immigration purposes, you could be asked for both your passport and entry permit. They can detain you if they would like while they review your paperwork and situation. There are immigration checkpoints in Mexico’s interior, including popular tourist destinations. These checkpoints are all over the country, not just at the border.

That being said, I typically leave my passport back at the hotel and I know lots of people who leave theirs at their hotel as well so as not to get their wallet or passport stolen or lose it somewhere. I have never been stopped by the police and asked to see my passport.

Related: Should you carry your passport with you in Europe?
Related: Should you carry your passport with you in France?

Tips for traveling with ID in Mexico

1. One thing you could do is keep a color copy of your passport with you if that makes you feel better.

I have a friend who was in Cancun for a break from the winter weather in Minnesota. One day, she went to breakfast with friends and she left her passport on the table at the restaurant. She realized she had left it just a few minutes after leaving and ran back but it was too late: her passport had been stolen.

2. If you’re planning something, like swimming or a scuba dive where you feel like you won’t have a safe place to lock up your passport or keep it on you, you might want to leave it back at the hotel. I would.

Lock it up in the safe in your room. They are typically very safe and secure. Yes, I know they can be broken into if someone is really trying, but they typically are quite safe and unless you have someone who is really out for you, or you have done something to make the hotel staff really grumpy, you will be fine.

Typically people that try to tell you hotel safes aren’t secure, are trying to sell you something… or are paranoid. Yes, even if it is a really legit website or a close friend.

It boils down to personal preference and how much risk you’re willing to take on for yourself and those traveling with you during your trip abroad.

mexican suburban street with cars and people

So You Know – You might get hassled by your insurance company if you don’t lock up your ID or passport in the hotel safe.

3. I carry a color copy of my passport or my driver’s license with me. You could carry another form of ID as well. If you were to lose your passport it could be hard to re-enter the US. It’s doable, but a bit of a hassle. Consider carrying a color copy of the Bio/identity page and the latest entry stamp if you do this.

4. Also, keep a digital copy on your phone. This could come in handy as well, especially in combination with the paper one.

mexico city and people

If you need to, for any reason, be quickly admitted to the Embassy of your country, then carrying something that can prove your citizenship can be very beneficial for you.

5. Don’t just leave it in your luggage! It is more likely to get stolen there.

6. Be careful if someone starts talking to you in the middle of a busy touristy spot. It might be fine, but it might not. It could be a distraction ploy by a pickpocket. They work in teams where one distracts, the other steals.

7. Be careful if a vendor of any kind requires you to leave your passport as security to rent a car boat or scooter! Feel the situation out and see if you can leave them your paper copy. 

I just did that in Mexico to rent a scooter but they looked pretty legit, and I knew we weren’t going to be rally-driving the scooter so I felt the risk was pretty low. It turned out fine.

Though they could have scammed us by claiming that we damaged their vehicle… or kept it if we legitimately damaged the vehicle.

8. If you do get your passport stolen, it’s important to notify the nearest Mexican authority and file a police report with as much information as possible:

The date, time, location (street address if possible), the vehicle’s color, license plate number, details of how you had your belongings (wallet or bag) open, etc.

Do you have to carry your passport with you in Mexico?

It boils down to personal preference and how much risk you’re willing to take on for yourself and those traveling with you during your trip abroad.

I can’t tell you what to do, but just let you know what Mexican law is and what I do. You can go from there.

The law requires it, but people don’t carry their passports with them. I don’t know anyone who has been stopped and asked for their passport, but I have read online of folks who have, and they just call back to the hotel or resort and get things sorted out pretty quickly.

mexican beach resort

Can I carry my passport outside the resort?

You can carry your passport off the resort, but I don’t. I only ever take my passport out of the hotel safe if I’m going to the bank to exchange money, checking out of the resort, or traveling from state to state in Mexico, even if I will be back later that day. There are frequent checkpoints when crossing state lines and they will ask to see your passport.

According to the law, you should keep it on you at all times.

TIP – Put a large paperclip inside the inside of the back cover of your passport book. They will issue you a receipt when you clear immigration in Mexico, which you may need to submit to them upon your departure from Mexico. Put this little receipt under the paperclip that you just added to the back of your passport. Doing it this way will reduce the risk of losing it, and you will have it right where you need it to show the immigration officers upon your return to the US.

Mexican burro taxi

Do I need to carry my passport with me in Cancun?

It is good to carry a valid form of identification in Mexico, as we mentioned earlier. The same goes for Cancun and other Mexican cities.

Do you have to carry an ID in Mexico?

The Mexican authorities want you to carry your ID with you if you are in Mexico, but you don’t have to. However, It could be helpful to carry photocopies of your passport and driver’s license with you though, just in case you get stopped and asked for some form of ID. 

Related: Do I have to carry my passport in Thailand?

I hope you found this post helpful.

*References

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/International-Travel-Country-Information-Pages/Mexico.html