We live in Germany and have residence permits (Aufenthaltstitel). Unfortunately, my wife lost her national passport. She applied for a new one, the process will take about three months.

Now, we need to travel to Spain. I am aware that the residence permit itself is not sufficient to travel even within the EU. This is sometimes checked by the airline companies.

My question is: if we decide to go for it (flying to Spain with the residence permit and copy of the passport only), what are the possible consequences?

  • She is denied boarding the flight from Germany. That only means she doesn't go anywhere.
  • She is denied boarding on our way back. This is more problematic, but we could try to book the next flight to check out luck. Otherwise, we can go back by train/car.
  • She is controlled by police (be it Spanish or German on our way back). Here I'm not sure what happens. In theory, she can easily prove her ID (residence permit + scan of the pass), but in the worst case, what will happen? Will she be deported to Germany or to her home country?

The most important question is, will she be able to come back to Germany and is there any risk that she loses her residence permit?

  • Does she have a national ID card? Can she get an emergency passport?
    – mdd
    Commented Aug 28, 2018 at 16:42
  • She has (a Russian equivalent) of the national ID card, it would be a great idea to take it with us. It will serve as an additional prove of identity, but it won't make her travel legal I think. As for the emergency passport, our country doesn't issue those :( Commented Aug 28, 2018 at 16:46
  • Is the copy a simple photocopy or does it carry a stamp from e.g. the German police or your country's consulate in Germany? Commented Aug 28, 2018 at 17:17
  • Unfortunately not. It is a simple photocopy. We will try to get a stamp on it, but I doubt they are going to make it official :( Commented Aug 28, 2018 at 17:26
  • 4
    @nvoigt: I think what he means is that she lost her passport of the country she is a citizen of (Russia, presumably), not of Germany. If she had a German passport, there would be no need for an Aufenthaltstitel.
    – mdd
    Commented Aug 28, 2018 at 20:13


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