I am a US citizen living in the US. Though I am a legal adult and financially independent, I sometimes travel internationally with my parents. Once we arrive at our destination, my parents demand that I turn over my passport and withhold it from me until it is time to return home. This is unsafe because they can stop me from leaving the destination country. Moreover, as a matter of principle, I don't want anyone else to have possession of my passport. (If I refuse to turn over my passport, they will steal it while I'm sleeping or showering, etc.)

Is it possible to legally obtain a second, fake passport to satisfy my parents that I have turned over my passport to them, while keeping my real passport in my possession?

If not, is it possible to obtain a second, real passport in a fully legal fashion? (This is my preference if possible.)

  • 5
    If this was me, I would go to lengths to prevent my parents from taking my passport. For example, if staying in a hotel, I would ask the staff if they had a safe in which they could keep my passport. One way or the other, I would find a way to make it impossible for my parents to take it. I would also tell them in no uncertain terms that I didn't like what they were doing.
    – Fiksdal
    Aug 23, 2016 at 16:18
  • 35
    This is not an answer to your question, but if you are an adult and somebody, even your parents take your passport against your will it has been stolen and you should promptly contact the police in the area you are staying to report this as well as the consulate for your home country. In fact you are obliged to report the theft of your passport in most countries.
    – Vality
    Aug 23, 2016 at 16:22
  • 4
    @vality if saying 'no' to their parents isn't an option for the OP, I can't imagine a situation where reporting them as criminals will improve matters. Given the context, that really doesn't seem to be very suitable advice. Aug 23, 2016 at 17:14
  • 7
    I'd suggest reading, and commenting in the chat Lots of talk about police and comments like this from OP "They are not trying to kill me per se, but there is an imminent risk of it if I 'defy' them (do something they perceive as defiance)." Seems like a slightly more serious problem then parents take his passport.
    – gtwebb
    Aug 23, 2016 at 17:45
  • 11
    Sounds to me like the real problem is the parents, not the passport. Set some boundaries with your parents. If they don't respect them they don't respect you, which means you're in an abusive situation. Aug 24, 2016 at 3:51

4 Answers 4


Is it possible to legally obtain a second, fake passport?

The legality of obtaining a fake passport depends upon where you obtain it. I have seen market stalls in Cairo ready to sell any document you want legality notwithstanding. Not a market stall, but there's 'paper shops' in Belarus doing the same thing. For you it's a transaction like a souvenir, for the people who make them it's a different story. However, to have one in your possession in the EU (including the UK) is illegal, even if you didn't use it.

If not, is it possible to obtain a second, real passport in a fully legal fashion? (This is my preference if possible.)

This is common with people who need lots of visas so they flip-flop them to travel on one passport when the other is tied up in an application pipeline. You simply need a premise.

With respect to your strategy, consider this scenario...

You are at your relatives and give your parents a fake passport. You miss the bus or get waylaid in a brothel somewhere and do not show up at bed time. So your parents contact the police and innocently show them your fake passport. Won't this be a jolly hoot. So your strategy is blind to some of the things that can happen.

The 'best practices' prescription for your situation is to establish an independent lifestyle so that these impractical strategies are not needed.

  • 2
    Hm, that's a good point. As for the "independent lifestyle", I agree. I've moved 3 times because each time they found out where I lived. I trusted the wrong people. But next time I move, I'm cutting off contact with everyone who knows my parents because clearly someone is feeding them information about my whereabouts. Aug 23, 2016 at 0:18
  • 12
    @ElliottMurt I am fairly certain an 'independent lifestyle' doesn't mean what you think it means... Just my 2ct: Running away from problems rarely solves them, 'just' firmly set your boundaries and work from there. Aug 23, 2016 at 10:47
  • 18
    This goes beyond well beyond merely trying to have an independent lifestyle and into "how to escape from abuse". Escape may be the only long-term solution. Possibly to a different country ..
    – pjc50
    Aug 23, 2016 at 13:29
  • 6
    @DavidMulder I will be fleeing from an abusive family, thanks. Attempts to set boundaries will get me killed. Aug 23, 2016 at 14:32
  • 4
    "Won't this be a jolly hoot" bwahaha Aug 23, 2016 at 15:27

If not, is it possible to obtain a second, real passport in a fully legal fashion? (This is my preference if possible.)

Yes. In the US you can obtain a second legal (i.e. not fake) passport. It will be limited in duration, and will have the same number as your original passport. Either passport could be used to leave/entry the US, however you need to keep the one you used to enter the country, as it contains the entry stamp.

PS. Here's an official explanation of the procedure.


Here's an article explaining to frequent travelers how they can get a duplicate US passport.

The U.S. government allows independent travelers to obtain a duplicate (i.e., secondary) passport as long as you can demonstrate a need for it.

You need to fill out an application, including:

  1. Write a letter explaining your need for a second passport

You need to write a one-paragraph letter explaining why you need two passports. It helps if you can include an upcoming itinerary to sensitive countries, or at least a record of frequent international travel in the past.


Also, note that the second passport is only valid for two years. Unfortunately, you can’t get a second 10-year passport.

So write the letter, and maybe you will have a case.

I'm answering my own question since apparently it is a duplicate of a question I already answered.

  • 2
    Would they really accept "I need another passport because I don't want to tell my parents 'no'" as a valid reason though?
    – Dason
    Aug 23, 2016 at 13:59
  • 16
    No, but they might accept "I need another passport to satisfy threatening and abusive family members until I can flee" Aug 23, 2016 at 14:28
  • 2
    While we are delving into murky "legal" territory here, apply for a replacement instead of a duplicate. It would involve making a false statement that your original is lost (but it kind of is if you need to hand it over to people you fear), so that probably fails the "legal" test. Make sure you keep the replacement one, since the original one will be flagged/canceled. The "valid for two years" part is why I'm suggesting this. Aug 23, 2016 at 14:59
  • 2
    @AndrewMattson: I would call that "stolen", not "lost", and then it's a true statement. However they may require you to file a police report, and you'd be at the mercy of the police as to whether they would respect your wishes not to investigate/pursue the thief. Aug 23, 2016 at 17:31

Or you could just not go on holiday with your parents?

Or get a dual citizenship by living in another country for a long enough period of time to get their passport too.

Source: I have 2 legal passports from different countries. And live on my own >.>, not relying on my parents to pay for holiday

  • 2
    This is hardly a good solution as if their parents dont let them keep their passport, they most likely wont approve of going to live abroad for a long period of time.
    – JS Lavertu
    Aug 23, 2016 at 13:04
  • I can move to another country and I've looked into it. But I don't meet the immigration requirements of any country I'd want to live in, nor do I have job offers in those countries, nor am I willing to give up my current job. Aug 23, 2016 at 15:08
  • 15
    @ElliottMurt: Can I ask how old you are? You have a job but your parents hold you hostage when you go on family holidays? Why? How? This seems really absurd! Seems to me that you should fix this problem at source, rather than by subterfuge. Aug 23, 2016 at 15:28
  • @JSLavertu The comments to the question seem to say that the asker is an adult who lives on their own but somehow feels compelled to travel with their parents. So avoiding the situation seems to be exactly the answer. Aug 24, 2016 at 6:42
  • @David normally I would agree with you, but from the comments, we can see thats not an option.
    – JS Lavertu
    Aug 24, 2016 at 12:04

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