The British passport remains one of the most secure documents in the world, allowing holders to travel without the need for an additional visa to many countries around the world.
Annie Taylor, Senior Passport, Immigration and Nationality Officer, explained:
“Passports are issued as a secure document to be used in establishing the nationality and identity of the holder when they are travelling. They are not intended for use to prove the holder’s age. Each year some passport holders who use their passports as proof of age documents misplace them, and then have to report the valuable document as lost or stolen. Despite the circumstances, applying for a replacement passport always incurs a fee.”
If a British passport is recovered and returned to the Isle of Man passport service it will be cancelled and destroyed in line with Her Majesty’s Passport Office policy to maintain the security and integrity of the British passport.
Mrs Taylor added:
“We recognise the upset having your passport stolen or lost can cause, and we will guide you in applying for a replacement passport, including providing details of the fees charged. Under no circumstances would a passport be returned to the holder after it has been found by a third party, as there is the possibility the passport may have been misused during the time it was out of the passport holder’s possession.”
If identification is required for proof of age, the Isle of Man Passport service would advise the public to apply for a Proof of Age Card at the Welcome Centre in Douglas.