What happens if you lose or have your passport stolen?

Make sure you report this right away to:

  1. Your local police department
  2. Passport Canada office(if you are in Canada)
  3. Nearest Canadian government office, could be the embassy (if you are outside of Canada)

Once you have reported your passport lost or stolen, you may no longer use it, even if you find it again. Your passport is no longer valid and cannot be used to travel with.

After you report your passport lost or stolen, you may then go ahead and apply for a replacement passport. You must visit a Passport Canada Office to apply. Now, if you are outside of Canada, apply at a Canadian government office abroad.  Visit the Passport Canada website to find application instructions.

In some cases the replacement passport may only be valid for a short period of time.  Before the passport office issues a replacement, the Canadian authorities will want to understand how you lost your passport. What happened? Where you were? And when you lost it? This investigation could delay you from getting your passport right away.

Here is a link with some more information to help you with Lost, Stolen, Found, Damaged, Destroyed or Inaccessible Passports.

Your Canadian passport is the most important and valuable official government IDs for Canadians living outside of Canada. Due to the high demand and reputation, Canadian Passports are among the most stolen and used passports globally. This means, you should be very careful with your passport when traveling abroad. You never know when bad luck might hit or someone tries to target you for theft of your passport.

Here are 4 tips to remember when traveling outside of Canada with your passport.


  1. Make photocopies of your passport – It is suggested you make two photocopies of your passport. Leave one with your family member or close friend. Take the other one with you, but make sure to keep the second copy in a different place.
  2.  Make a scanned copy of your passport – the pages with your information & pages with important valid visas – It is a good idea to scan a copy in your cellphone for easy access
  3. Be aware of where your passport is at all times. – Keep it close by, that could mean put it in your hand luggage or in a pocket with a zipper you can close.  Know where your passport is at all times so you can pull it out when you need it while traveling.
  4. Never leave your passport in the pocket in the seat in front you on the airplane – So many travelers lose their passport by leaving it in the pocket of the seat in front of you on an airplane. As soon as you pass all checkpoints and sit down at your seat, put away your passport in a safe place.
  5. If your passport is stolen or lost while traveling, make sure to report it to the local police and get in touch with the nearest Canadian Embassy– Generally speaking you should only spend a day looking for it, if you have no luck within that day, you must report it to the correct authorities. The legal process can be long, so don’t waste any time.
  6. If you lose your Canadian passport in the USA or Canada – It is a little easier to get the process going if you lose it in USA or Canada. Call the Passport Program line at (800) 567 – 6868 to report your passport lost or stolen.
  7. Once you report a passport lost or stolen, it is no longer valid – Now, if you by chance or by some miracle do find your passport, you cannot use it for travel regardless. This is to avoid fraud. Do not even try to be smart and cross borders with a passport reported lost or stolen. It wont be a fun time

Click the following link to explain how you can Protect Yourself from Passport Fraud. This is useful to read if you plan on traveling.


Take care of your passport

If you have asked for replacement passports multiple times because you reported it lost, stolen, or damaged, passport Canada office may:

  • Before giving you a new passport, they may ask for proof of travel
  • limit the time period your passport is valid
  • refuse to provide you with a new passport application


Canadian passport security looks at lost and stolen passports as the same thing. Either way, you don’t know where your passport is or someone could use it to commit fraud.

When you call the Canadian passport office to report your passport lost or stolen, they will:

  • Confirm you say who you are by asking for ID
    • you must be the passport holder (or legal parent or guardian for a child) in order to report a passport lost or stolen
  • Ask about how you lost it or when it was stolen.
  • Inform local authorities and border patrol agency so no one can try to use your passport.


The lesson is, keep your passport safe and close by, make extra copies of important passport pages like active visas and keep your passport in a zippered pocket. Following these rules should reduce the chances of you losing or having your passport stolen. When you do lose your passport you may need to re-take your photos. Photo Studio Calgary can help you with proper passport photos in Calgary.