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I have two passports. My old passport was made in 2014 and it is to expire in July 2020. It is empty with no visas on it. I wanted to apply for a 2-year Master's program in Germany that will start in October 2018.

However someone told me my passport should be valid 6 months after my intended return date. So to stay on the safe side, I applied for a new passport a month ago and my old one has been cancelled. They put a stamp on it that a new passport had been issued.

Now the new one is the one I have to use. Will it create any problem at the German embassy? Will they ask why I got a new one while the old one was not yet expired? I will carry both passports on my interview day, but could this be a cause of visa rejection?

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This is an absolutely normal thing to do, for exactly the reason you did it. You have nothing to worry about. Good luck with your interview and your studies.

  • Thank you for your comment. I will try to explain my reason to them as best as possible. – hacker804 Jul 20 '18 at 3:37
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    To be honest I can't imagine they would ask. Your passport is expiring soon so you got a new one. You have the old one there so it's not like you're trying to hide anything. Don't bring it up unless they ask about it! – ajd Jul 20 '18 at 5:10
  • Yes I will just show them both my old and new passports. I hope the Visa Officer does not check the expiry of the old passport and just checks the pages for the travel history and returns it. But if they do ask, then I will have to give a solid reason. – hacker804 Jul 20 '18 at 5:25
  • Can we have a chat over at chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/info/80425/travel?tab=general – hacker804 Jul 20 '18 at 5:27
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    @hacker804 If you want to discus this in chat, better come to the general room on Travel Stack Exchange, chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/591/you-are-here you are way more likely to get good advice and mostly there are people in or pingable. – Willeke Jul 20 '18 at 13:55
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While I haven't been able to verify your info about the validity of the passport, I don't think you have to worry. According to this site, the passport has to be valid for three months upon arrival. On the other hand, they suggest that the passport be valid for the duration of the course.

As ajd already mentioned, people frequently apply for a new passport before the old one expires, mostly to get the new passport before the old one expires (regular processing time in Germany is 4-6 weeks, just to give you some numbers), or because they changed their name, because the pages are full, because they don't resemble their picture any more, ...

I don't think you will be asked about the renewal, but if they ask, don't overexplain. A simple "I wanted the passport to be valid for the entire duration so I don't have to worry about it" sounds like a perfectly valid reason to me.

  • Thank you. That seems like a perfectly valid answer. I will work up on it a bit and explain it to them. I think they will probably understand. – hacker804 Jul 21 '18 at 5:35
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The old one is cancelled, so expiration date and all the data in there has no more meaning.

But if you wrote somewhere in the form the number of your old passport, it is better to have with you also the cancelled one. It will speed up things: it shows up that you control both passports (so no identity theft), and that both passport are for the same person (especially if you have a common name, this could slow down things).

  • The only place I wrote it is when I booked an appointment for the interview at the German Embassy. I will carry both, but I do not know if this will result in any issues or not. – hacker804 Jul 21 '18 at 5:34
  • Issues: no. Just speed-up and less probability of confusion. – Giacomo Catenazzi Jul 21 '18 at 9:58
  • So should I just tell them that I booked the appointment with my old passport and want to submit the new and valid one for visa? I am asking because I do not know if there is a computerized database with booking information that they cannot change. – hacker804 Jul 21 '18 at 10:46
  • I would not worry much. When they ask for the passport, you should show both. They will tell you if they need only the new one, or if they must use the first one to confirm your appointment. Every embassy has different rules and procedures, OTOH they are often flexible (especially outside the most asked visa [tourism]) – Giacomo Catenazzi Jul 22 '18 at 14:37

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