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SALLY FIXES IT: I can’t fly because my passport is 10 years old


We booked a week’s holiday with TUI to Albir in Spain to attend a friend’s 60th birthday party, traveling on the 16th of May.

When I checked in at Gatwick, my passport was declared expired, expiring 10th September 2023, and I was not allowed to fly.

It was issued on March 10, 2013. It appears that passports must have been issued no more than 10 years before the date of entry into the country and valid for at least three months after you plan to leave the EU.

I complained to TUI that the advanced passenger information form I filled out before traveling accepted my passport information, I even gave it a green tick, which I assumed was approval to travel.

The date of issue of the passport was not requested. I am disappointed with TUI, because the point of booking through a travel agency should be to ensure that all aspects of a booking are correct. We spent £1,200 on the holidays. Please help us.

TD, Peacehaven, E. Sussex.

Grounded: A reader was turned away at Gatwick airport because her passport, despite not having expired, had been issued more than 10 years ago.

Sally Hamilton replies: The ‘don’t forget your passport’ message is not enough these days. His experience is a clear warning that even examining the expiration date may not be appropriate.

Her Majesty’s Passport Office says that travelers wishing to visit the European Union (and other destinations in the Schengen Area, such as Iceland, Norway and Switzerland, which allow citizens of those countries to travel freely between member countries), should check your passports to make sure they are less than 10 years old from the date of issue. They must also be valid for at least three months from the date of your planned return home.

The exception to this rule is travel to Ireland, where only a valid UK passport is required.

Changes to the validity of passports came after Brexit, but with many people having just returned to their regular travel post-COVID-19, a large number of people are likely to be stuck, just like you.

The ‘more than 10 years’ issue arose because, between 2001 and September 9, 2018, any unused validity period could be extended on renewal, up to a maximum of nine months. The affected passports will remain in circulation until June 2029.

Since September 10, 2018, passports are issued only with a maximum age of 10 years for adults and five years for children.

If the HM Passport Office has details of a holder’s previous application, it will send a text message letting you know when your passport is about to expire or not be valid for travel to most countries in Europe.

The message will direct them to the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office website to verify the appropriate passport requirements.

The rules for countries outside the EU and the Schengen Area may differ. For example, visitors to the US only need to ensure their passport is valid for the duration of their trip, while those heading to New Zealand will need to have three months left in their passport beyond the date of travel. ride back. For a full list of passport and visa requirements for different countries, visit gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice.

To avoid the kind of stress you experienced, tourists should allow plenty of time for the passport renewal process, as it can take up to 10 weeks.

It costs from £82.50 for the basic 34-page passport. If you need it sooner, consider the premium online service, which takes at least two days and costs from £193.50, or the expedited service, which costs £155 and takes a week.

The Post Office offers renewal services which involve the application being checked before it is sent for £16 on top of the basic passport fee. Don’t be fooled by copycat websites offering to do the renewal for you. At best these sites charge extra and at worst they will keep your money and you will have no passport to show it.

I asked TUI if they missed anything in their case but they said it was not their fault and they remind customers of the passport rules once the booking has been confirmed. Seven days before departure, it encourages travelers to check that their passport is valid.

A spokesperson says: ‘We strongly advise our customers that their passports must be less than ten years old when traveling to European countries. This is a government policy, not a TUI policy, which is mentioned both on our website and in customer communications.

“The online form completed by the reader is not a passport verifier, it is for passengers to enter passport information in the correct format.”

Scam Watch – Cash Accident

Motorists should be on the lookout for scammers lurking on the highway who stage a collision and then demand cash.

Known as the ‘crash for cash’ scam, the tactic typically involves a pedestrian, cyclist or moped user accusing innocent drivers of causing an accident, such as cutting their mirror, in an attempt to extort money from them or their insurer.

The number of these scams reported to insurers has more than doubled this year compared to 2022, according to dashcam firm Nextbase.

Last month, the Insurance Fraud Office issued a warning that mopeds have been deliberately driving into oncoming traffic. Many of the suspected scammers are believed to be couriers delivering items.

Overall, the ‘crash for cash’ scam has caused £27 million in insurance claims, the anti-fraud group estimates.

Bryn Brooker, Nextbase’s head of road safety, says: “We are seeing a serious and worrying increase in criminal behaviour.”

If you suspect you have been hacked, please report it online to the Insurance Fraud Bureau CheatLine at insurancefraudbureau.org/cheatline or call 0800 422 0421.

It will then share the information you provide securely with insurers, the police and industry watchdogs.

The insurer will not replace stolen golf clubs

In January my golf clubs were stolen from the locked trunk of my car, which was parked in my driveway.

After beating me for months, demanding receipts and photos, my home insurer, Admiral, now says they won’t pay my £1,000 claim.

T. C., Surrey.

Sally Hamilton replies: By the time he contacted me, nearly six months after his clubs were blown, he had already been through what seemed like 18+ holes with Admiral Home Insurance, with his claim well and truly stuck.

Readers might wonder why you didn’t claim on your auto policy, since the sticks were taken from your car. You told me this had not occurred to you.

In any case, many drivers in your position would have avoided it. Not only do coverage limits tend to be quite low, but more importantly, any claim can affect a no-claims bonus, the discount applied by auto insurers to reward customers for claims-free periods.

The longer a customer goes without making a claim, the greater the discount, so drivers try to avoid giving up such valuable savings.

Typically, a loss like yours would be covered by the ‘personal property coverage’ of a homeowner’s policy. This is insurance lingo for items lost or stolen while you’re away from home. However, not all policies include this as standard and you will often have to pay more.

The level of coverage is usually capped, perhaps £1,000 or £2,000, unless the policyholder decides to pay an even higher premium. Covered items may include sports equipment, jewelry, laptops, and handbags, for example.

Your Admiral policy level did not include this coverage. But what his policy did include was cover for theft in areas outside the home, including “theft in outbuildings, garages and garden contents.” He was relieved that Admiral told him this would be relevant to his loss, with a maximum payment of £1,000.

Although the stolen equipment was worth more than this, you agreed that this was the most you would receive, less your excess £350. The excess is the amount that a policy states you must contribute to a claim.

Since proof of purchase is often required for these types of claims, he sent Admiral the only receipts he had: one for £899 for a set of irons (seven clubs) purchased in February last year and another for £99.99. for a set of 56 degree irons. wedge purchased in March 2022, both birthday gifts from his wife. He also provided a crime reference number obtained from police.

Weeks went by without hearing anything, but when he looked up March 28, to his fury, a call manager told him his claim had been denied earlier that month.

You complained about the lack of communication and asked why there was so much discussion, demand for receipts and photos, plus a confirmation of the excess, if the claim was not even valid.

An internal inquiry by Admiral found in their favour, the claim was accepted and £100 was paid as an apology.

But that was not the end. Another month passed and still no payment was received. Out of the blue, she received an email from Admiral saying, once again, that it was not covered and the file would be closed. You asked me to arbitrate the situation. I contacted Admiral and asked him to fix things.

I’m pleased to say that Admiral was quick to recognize that their service had been below par, which might be a good quality when playing golf, but not in other areas of life, especially customer service. The £1,000 claim was settled in full, with £200 added as an apology, plus interest, and no excess was collected.

An Admiral spokesperson said: ‘We would like to apologize for the service your reader has received. She has clearly had a difficult claims journey with us. There have been delays, miscommunication and mistakes made, for which we are sincerely sorry.’

He admitted that his claim should not have been denied and blamed human error. The agent involved has apparently received “urgent feedback.”

  • Write to Sally Hamilton at Sally Sorts It, Money Mail, Northcliffe House, 2 Derry Street, London W8 5TT or email sally@dailymail.co.uk; include phone number, address, and a note addressed to the offending organization giving permission to speak to Sally Hamilton. Please do not send original documents as we cannot be held responsible for them. The Daily Mail cannot accept any legal responsibility for the answers given.

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Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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