A lost or stolen passport is every traveler’s worst nightmare. You can prevent it from happening. But sometimes, it’s simply inevitable, like with the case of it being stolen or other factors you simply cannot prevent. However, as travelers, we can only prepare the best we can. Creating a copy of your passport is one of the methods you can try doing every time you travel. Consider this for a number of reasons as follows.

Proof of identification in case your passport is lost or stolen

Having a copy of your passport would make it easier to prove your identity when you’re obtaining a passport replacement. Imagine if you have nothing to prove that you’re you. While other methods of identification exist, having the copy of the thing that you lost would help recover its replacement. You’ll thank yourself for it.

Have your passport photo with you

Who knew keeping one or two passport photos with you can be very useful during a passport replacement? If you have some of your passport photos would help avoid retaking your picture for your new passport and it may further prove your identity in some cases.

An alternative to photocopying your passport

Some photocopy settings aren’t ideal for copying passports. Some details may be too obscured and therefore makes it difficult to read. If you want to avoid this as much as possible, then photocopying is out of the question. Take your passport to scan on your computer. Then you can print it out in color.

You can also store the digital copy of your passport in your phone or at a portable drive, ready for you to print out whenever you need it. This way, you’ll have your passport with you at all times. Be wary of uploading the digital copy of your passport to a cloud drive, though. If you decide to do it, make sure to do it encrypted and make sure only you have access to the file.

What should you do when your passport is stolen or lost?

While keeping calm during this time is next to impossible, having a copy of your passport ready would help keep you from outright panicking. Being prepared pays off. Contact your closest embassy as soon as you realize that your passport is nowhere to be found after you look for them at all of the places you can think of. After this, the embassy will ask you to prove your identity. Having a copy of your passport with you would help the process tremendously.

Once again, being prepared would pay off. For all it’s worth, having things prepared beforehand help ease the mental burden when the worse comes to worst (a.k.a. losing your passport).

Remember that the copy of your passport is still sensitive information

Guard the copy of your passport—be it digital or physical—as you would your real passport. The information contained in the copy of your passport is still the same information and therefore, have the potential to be exploited just like your authentic one.