Passport card worth the extra $30?

Discussion in 'Off-topic' started by frankr, Oct 7, 2010.

  1. frankr

    frankr Active Member

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    My passport is expiring in the next nine months so I plan to renew it soon to give the State department plenty of time to get it processed. They provide the option to get a drivers license-sized card for an extra $30 ($140 vs $110) - http://travel.state.gov/passport/fees/fees_837.html.

    Is it worth it? I have never seen one before except from sample pictures online. In the last 10 years, I have been to several foreign countries, but all of them would have required the full book even if I had the card.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. ber950

    ber950 Active Member

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    I opted not to spend the money. If you travel out of the country by car, it makes some sense. However, if you travel out of the country and have to fly back because of an emergency you need your regular passport. If you have to carry your regular passport anyway what good is it :?:
     

  3. frankr

    frankr Active Member

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    Hmm. I missed that before "The passport card cannot be used for international air travel". If it is not even good for catching a flight to Vancouver, BC, then it really doesn't sound particularly useful.
     
  4. RickN

    RickN New Member

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    I just got back from an Alaskan cruise where we flew into Vancouver, BC and back from Fairbanks, AK. We crossed into Canada on one sidetrip. Neither of us have passport cards.

    We had to have the passport book for the flights (so customs could stamp it, I guess), but we could have used the card on the sidetrip (car and train border crossings - no stamping). Since the card fits in a wallet, it would have been more convenient than carrying the book and I would have left it there for the next 10 years with my drivers license.

    If I had to renew soon I'd probably get both just to have both.
     
  5. yrualeg

    yrualeg Member

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    If you are traveling via Aircraft outside the US you must have a valid passport book and not the passport card. If you only plan to Cruise get the card it's cheaper....
     
  6. gsusnake

    gsusnake Token Liberal Hippie

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    I produce a passport instead of a driver's license when prompted for ID, unless I'm driving.

    It establishes everything anyone needs to know (my name, what I look like, my citizenship status, and my DOB - for alcohol purchases) and absolutely nothing that anyone doesn't need to know (like my address).

    I used to have lots of fun while open carrying and being stopped by the cops and presenting my passport, along with nothing else, when ID was demanded. "What's this? No, I want your driver's license!" "I'm not operating a vehicle, officer. AIFTG?"


    I think a passport card would be easier than the book, at least for those purposes.
     
  7. Fallschirmjäger

    Fallschirmjäger I watch the watchers

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    I do the same thing as the ginzusnake, and for the same reasons. :lol: 8)
     
  8. Seca

    Seca New Member

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    lol trouble makers.... :righton:
     
  9. ookoshi

    ookoshi Moderator

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    I have my passport card for the same reason as Fallschirmjäger and gsusnake. When asked for my ID for anything that's not driving related, I use my passport card. Last time I went to the bank, they asked for my ID. I gave them my passport card. They looked at it for about 30 seconds, then said they needed something with my signature on it. I handed them my GWL. They looked at that for 30 seconds, then said they needed something with my picture on it. I said my Passport card has my picture on it. Then they asked how they needed a way to verify that the GWL is actually me, I said my Passport card verifies my name, and they could get my fingerprint if they wanted to. They kinda looked at me funny and just let me do my business.
     
  10. GAGunOwner

    GAGunOwner Active Member

    1) It shows U.S. citizenship (incase you are in Arizona :D ).
    2) Its official without having your address on it.
    3) It fun to show it to people instead of your DL.

    I got mine for $20 not that long ago I think.
     
  11. Fallschirmjäger

    Fallschirmjäger I watch the watchers

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  12. ber950

    ber950 Active Member

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    For that reason I may get one for me next time around, but I was buying passports for the wife and kid at the time and trying to save money. $90 made a difference.
     
  13. TimBob

    TimBob Old, Slow, Boring Dude

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    OK, I'll go ahead and say what many of you are thinking:

    The passport card is here to condition us and get us ready for a national ID card. It's coming...


    <Crawling back into my cave with the rest of my conspiracy theorist buddies...>
     
  14. Fallschirmjäger

    Fallschirmjäger I watch the watchers

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    That would still be a step ahead of letting non-resident aliens, undocumented workers, or mmm..what's the latest?... displaced foreign travelers apply for state issued driver's licenses or state issued identification.

    Just as long as they don't require it to be carried 24/7 as European citizens and subjects are required to do.
     
  15. ookoshi

    ookoshi Moderator

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    I doubt it, almost no one has a passport card. 90% of the time when I use it people are like "They issue passports as cards now?!" If they are using it as a tool to condition the masses, they chose a really poor tool to do so.
     
  16. gsusnake

    gsusnake Token Liberal Hippie

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    When I renew my passport in 2011 (expires in 2012) I will be getting both a book and a card.
     
  17. TimBob

    TimBob Old, Slow, Boring Dude

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    Well, the apparatus is already in place, so that once our borders are completely open (like in Europe today)... then that passport card will be required!

    And oh, has anyone noticed that the new passport books... have an RFID chip in them?

    But don't worry... I'm just a nut case... Now, where did I put my tin foil hat?
     
  18. frankr

    frankr Active Member

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    I am personally not thrilled with trading my non-chipped passport book with the new chipped variety. It is possible that the document could have a tragic microwave accident.

    By the way, if anything is not clear on what chip this is, then please read this:
    http://www.schneier.com/blog/archives/2 ... _pass.html
     
  19. ICP_Juggalo

    ICP_Juggalo Professional Troll

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    +100000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000

    Made my wife get one when she became a U.S. Citizen last month.

    Besides the Certificate the INS gives them is to big to carry around and they said that if it ever needed to be replaced, it would cost $600!

    Passport card is way cheaper and easier to carry for citizenship verification purposes
     
  20. NTA

    NTA Well-Known Member

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    put it in the microwave for a few seconds, 3 or 4