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Passports for day trip to France

(17 Posts)
KMG Sat 02-Feb-02 19:12:29

We're considering a day trip to France - does my 2.5 yr old need a passport? (I don't envisage taking him abroad again in the next few years, so don't want to get one, if it's not necessary). Also my 4.5 yr old has a passport, but it's 3.5 yrs old. Is it necessary to get the photo updated?

Azzie Sat 02-Feb-02 19:17:27

As far as I know, your 2.5 yr old does need a passport - children can no longer go on their parents passports. I think you'll find that children's passports last 5 years, so you shouldn't need to update your older child's. Certainly we've had no problems travelling with our daughter, who at 2 looks totally different from the 4-month-old baby photo on her passport!

Pupuce Sat 02-Feb-02 19:23:10

Completely agree with Azzie.

Selja Sat 02-Feb-02 19:46:14

My ex-husband went to France with just his Navy ID card. He got into France with no problem but they didn't want to let him out without his passport. Am I the only one who thinks this is odd? Then again the french tend to make up rules as they go along and ignore any they don't like. The rules are that you will need a passport.

Janus Sat 02-Feb-02 20:01:50

KMG - just been to France last weekend with our 18 month old and definately needed a passport. They didn't even ask us on the way over but was asked for 2 or 3 times on the way back and definately looked at daughter's too (unrecognisable from her literally weeks old photo but they did look). Your 2.5 year old needs one I'm afraid.

emsiewill Sat 02-Feb-02 20:48:53

All children, (who are not already on their parent's passports from when that was allowed) in fact all people need their own passport, even if you are only going to France for a day.
I know this as I used to work for Eurostar, and had to explain 50 times a day to the people who had forgotten theirs. They all said "but I thought we were in Europe now" etc, etc. The fact is that you don't need a passport as such, but some form of official ID. As we don't have ID cards in Britain, then the only acceptable form of ID is a passport. So the French can come here without their passports, as they do have ID cards, but we can't go there without ours.
This is a subject vv close to my heart, as I had many, many discussions (arguments) with people about this. One of the many reasons why I had to give up on "customer service". I just couldn't service them anymore. (OO-er missus!)

janh Sat 02-Feb-02 22:01:29

Hands up who thinks a national ID card is a really good idea and not an assault on our "civil liberties"???

janh Sat 02-Feb-02 22:18:22

Hands up who thinks a national ID card is a really good idea and not an assault on our "civil liberties"???

KMG Sun 03-Feb-02 10:17:19

Thank you everybody - answered my question! I better go and get a form ...

Emsiewill - Did you have to 'throw people off the train' then, if they didn't have passports?

emsiewill Sun 03-Feb-02 14:28:08

I never had to "throw someone off the train" personally, I worked in the station, and thank God got rid of them once they got on the train! (can you see why I had to give it up!) but if we became aware that someone didn't have their passport before they checked in, we had to tell them that they couldn't travel without it, which led to the angry exchanges I described earlier. The problem was that people didn't actually have to show their passports until they got to the other side, so unless it came up, we didn't know if they had them or not. There were a few cases of people being thrown in the cells (especially in Belgium), and then the company realised it needed to make it a lot clearer to people that they needed a passport to travel! I think the main problem was that British people are (or maybe "were" nowadays) not used to travelling to another country on a train.

Crunchie Sun 03-Feb-02 19:36:32

KMG, Two quick tips about passports for children. I have found in my experience it is hard to get the picture, so take them to a photo shop like Snappy Snaps where they have a special digital camera. We did this, and alhough it was £4 the first lot were useless and we didn't get charged and teh second lot were perfect. In fact the whole family got theirs like this. With babies (I knpow yours is polder) it is impossible in those booth thingys.

Secondly get the form checked and sent at the post office, they ensure it's all filled in right and guarentee it's back in less than two weeks. You pay a couple of quid, but it saved us when we had forgotten with only 14 days to go, the passport office was quoting over a month!

jasper Mon 04-Feb-02 00:00:22

To get a photo of our dd aged about 4 months my dh sat in the booth with her, holding her in his lap, with a sheet draped over his head so he would not show in the photos. Someone had suggested this method which I was convinced was a wind up, but did seem to work.

dm2 Mon 04-Feb-02 00:08:58

LOL Jasper - that's great!

bloss Mon 04-Feb-02 02:05:32

Message withdrawn

TigerMoth1 Mon 04-Feb-02 12:25:45

Oh, one bit of advice straight from the heart - if you have a wriggly toddler, don't try the white-sheet-over-you trick in a photo booth - unless you are brave and the photo machine is the advanced sort that will produce 4 identicals from one shot.

Armed with a sheet, I took my toddler to the booth in our local supermarket. We had to get two decent and near identical pictures of him that evening, because we were reaching the deadline for passport applications. Our first lot had just been rejected because they showed too much of my hands holding the toddler still.

I spent the best part of £20.00 trying to get two good photos of him, while my older son alternated between running havoc between the aisles and 'helping' me. My toddler was having a sreaming tantrum. I had lost my cool big time, and my admonishments to both sons were getting increasingly loud and hysterical, while manhandling my toddler into a suitable position on my lap and keeping the sheet draped over me.Á member of the store security staff asked if I was all right in a very pointed way, then stood near giving us a long hard look.

At last I had the required photos, but as I left the shop, still ultra wound up, with two screaming sons, my older son's deputy head came up to say hello. He had been waiting in a queue and must have heard everything. You know those times when someone speaks very slowly to you and looks you straight in the eye in a worried kind of way....

CAM Mon 04-Feb-02 14:27:19

It's always the way Tigermoth, you don't bump into people you know when the little darlings are being lovely !It's only when things go wrong !Never mind, I saw a teacher from my child's school loudly reprimanding her son and threatening him to behave recently whilst out - I tried not to be noticed because I knew she would die of embarassment but she did see me and was completely embarassed!

sml Mon 04-Feb-02 17:33:44

Tigermoth, I really sympathize. My children can be so horrendous at moments like this, and now that my daughter has started school, I am acutely aware of all the school friends and teachers who live in our town...my worst nightmare would be to meet her head teacher when they are all misbehaving. We too have had a few terrible scenes in the supermarket!

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