VIDEO: Saying Goodbye to My Passport

Derek Videos 13 Comments

After 9.5 years, 110 pages and 319 stamps, it’s time for me to renew my passport. Here’s a short video I made that talks about my torn and worn out passport and why it’s the stories behind the stamps that is really the most important aspect of this little book.

How’s your passport? Care to share any stories behind your own stamps?

Previous video: My Visit to a Remote Village in Nepal


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Comments 13

  1. Feel the same way about my passport. The good news is with a US passport, they’ll punch a hole in it and return it to you, so you can always keep it as a memento. My question tho, is how do you receive your new one by mail if you’re nomadic, (and don’t you have to go back to the States to apply, or have a physical address there)? I’ve been on the road for (“just”) 2 years now and though I have a mail service that scans and uploads paper mail, anything more than that I have yet to figure out.

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      Hey Jennifer – If you apply overseas, you apply at a US Embassy in a different country. So you need to have an address in the country where you apply and then they will send it to you there. It can be any address where you can receive mail, so a friend’s place will work. And it’s actually not a guarantee that you’ll get your old passport back. While it does happen most of the time, they can keep your old passport and not return it.

  2. Always so hard to say goodbye to a passport! Though my last one only lasted a year – accidentally got it wet. Managed to get home with it then I had to replace it. Still, hold onto yours! Looks like it carries tons of memories.

  3. ‘Love your video Earl and totally understand!

    I love flicking through my old passport and looking at all the stamps and visas through the years especially Vietnam, India, Hong Kong, and countries in North Africa!

    Luckily for me, my expired British passport is always snipped off, but sent back to me! And now I have an extra passport too – a German one, as well as my British one. Because Brexit n’ all that…!

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  4. In my previous Passport, I really cherished the Machu Picchu passport stamps I got for hiking the Inca Trail. It was also particularly special to me because I did the hike one week shy of the 100th Anniversary of Hiram Bingham’s discovery of the beautiful Inca city. In my current passport, I really cherish my Brazilian Visa and my stamps from that trip as I was there during World Cup 2014. I am now in the habit of saving my expired passports for the same reasons you’re expressing sorrow in finishing off your current one. Each stamp, each Visa, and each page tells a story of your journey through life. Do you save any of your expired passports, Derek? If not, then are you going to start with this one?

  5. Hey Derek! Happy to see you’re still traveling 🙂

    I remember this feeling… it’s never fun to give up a passport. Especially when you’ve been so many places you have to use it to keep track of where you were and when.

  6. Tough one Derek! I recall handing in my passport to the US Consulate in Bali some 5 years ago. I filled it up in 2 short years; yep, doing those land runs in Thailand for months on end when it was legal. Now I love paging through and recalling stories behind each stamp, thinking of all the wonderful memories, and yep, even of some more intense stuff that happened to me on the road. Super video buddy.


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      Thanks Ryan! And yes, flipping through such a passport is something I hope to do for a long time in order to ensure I don’t forget the adventures of all these years. Also to remind myself how lucky I’ve been to see so much of the world.

  7. I always love leafing through my passport looking at the exotic stamps but I’m afraid that biometric passports and automatic gates will slowly put an end to this.I only managed to get a New Zealand stamp as I accidentally ticked the box at the automatic gate saying that I had a criminal record thus was directed to the normal passport check.I didn’t do it deliberately!

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      Hey Kevan – That is very true, stamps are on their way out. However, it’s not going to happen overnight as it will only be the countries with the more advanced systems that can make that happen. And for the majority of countries out there, that’s not the case. Eventually though, stamps will be gone for sure.

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