It's in mint condition otherwise but there are brown spots on every page around the numbers at the top of each page.

Not sure how it happened but when I got it new it didn't have the brown marks. Do I need a brand new passport?

enter image description here


2 Answers 2


This is not an issue. Some smudges and marks are common and increases upon usage. As long as the ID page is ok, this is not at all a problem.

  • but every page is in mint condition except for the brown marks around the numbers at the top of every page. is it water damage? cause the only time my passport MIGHT have been in danger, is when it was in a bag exposed to rain. wonder if the electronics are around the number at the top of the pages? people get refused entry for a slight bent page so curious if these brown spots are norm for a Canadian aging passport of five years?
    – verve
    Nov 23, 2019 at 4:39
  • @verve The chip is embedded in the back cover. You can try reading it with your phone if you are concerned about whether it still works. Nov 23, 2019 at 5:35
  • how do i read it with my phone? got an android s8.
    – verve
    Nov 23, 2019 at 5:36
  • @verve that'd be a question for a different stackexchange. Google 'read passport nfc app', though, it's fairly easy.
    – Mark Mayo
    Nov 23, 2019 at 5:57

It's not a problem. It's likely an artifact of the production process. I have exactly the same in the four Norwegian passports I have lying around.

Not as extreme, and to a varying degree, but still clearly visible.

enter image description here

I should also note that I have pages with tears (from stapled in entry notes), crossed out visas, overlapping stamps - and it lived in my inner pocket for four years, so the gold trim is half worn away. Yet I have never heard a single word about passport being worn out.

  • did your passport have the marks since the day you got it?
    – verve
    Nov 23, 2019 at 21:18
  • I have absolutely no idea. I note that that the most-used passport seems to have the most spots. Similarly aged passports are differently colored, but most used seems to be most colored. I'd guess some metal from the punching process or similar.
    – vidarlo
    Nov 23, 2019 at 21:21
  • 4
    Those holes are produced by a cutting laser during the production process before your personal data has been printed but after most of the security features have been printed. Both images look a bit like burn marks, which naturally occur from that process
    – artemist
    Nov 23, 2019 at 23:42
  • They are definitely burn marks from the cutting process. I picked up my new passport yesterday and the brand new passport also has such marks around the holes, perhaps even more prominent than my old passport. Nov 26, 2019 at 11:00

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .