MORE than a thousand passports were lost to couriers in the last year alone, another blow to British holidaymakers.
New figures have revealed a whopping 1,196 passports were lost in the first half of 2021 after 4.8 million applications.
This compares to just 519 lost applications in 2020 with 3.9 million applications, along with 437 in 2019 and 422 in 2018, of which there were about 6.7 million applications.
Figures released by the Daily Mirror show that the number of misplaced or lost passports has doubled in the past year.
The passports will be delivered by TNT, which is owned by FedEx, which has been awarded a three-year deal worth £77million to deliver new and renewed passports in 2019.
Brits have also complained on Twitter – one person wrote: “After 11 weeks I was advised by the Liverpool office to report the loss. However, the lost/stolen passport system is down. Flies on May 28th. It is ridiculous. “
A mother added: “They sent my son’s passport with the wrong date of birth. I sent it back to Durham by registered post and they lost it and didn’t know how to fix it. After about 40 hours of phone calls, I finally reported him as lost and reapplied.”
Prospect union general secretary Mike Clancy said this was already causing “a lot of uncertainty” for families with vacations booked.
He added: “Now we learn that the privatized delivery service is also losing passports at record speed.”
However, a spokesman for the passport office said “less than 0.04 percent” was lost, adding that “many of these items were later recovered.”
They also said: “Once reported, passports are immediately canceled in the system to mitigate the risk of misuse and we continue to work with our delivery partner to develop measures to reduce the number of losses overall.”
Passport applications are expected to hit a record high of 9.5 million this year after many expired during the pandemic.
The government is advising Brits to give at least 10 weeks for new passports to arrive. If your passport still hasn’t arrived by then, you’ll need to contact the passport office online or by phone on 0300 222 0000.
If it has been lost you must mark it as missing here on the government website and then submit a new application.
But because of the enormous delays in submitting applications in recent weeks, families have had to cancel their vacation abroad.
And it’s not just passports that get lost – a family’s £5,000 trip to Disneyland Paris was ruined after the wrong passport was sent to them.
A whopping four and a half million Britons could put their holiday at risk if their passport is not valid when they leave.
There are also new passport rules which holidaymakers have been warned about could affect their holidays as families have already been turned away at the airport.
The new rules require Brits to have at least three months left on their passport to travel to the EU.
A second rule no longer allows passports to be more than 10 years old – previous rules allowed them to be up to 10 years and nine months old.
Last month, a woman was kicked off her flight to Tenerife because of confusing passport rules.
Another woman lost her dream holiday worth £2,600 due to a similar passport error.
https://www.thesun.ie/travel/8802488/passport-warning-lost-post/ Passport warning after thousands lost in the mail