Nothing gives you a sick feeling in the pit of your stomach like a lost passport. Before you panic, try using the following strategies to see if you can locate this important document:
Step 1: Remain Calm
There's no sense in getting all worked up over a lost passport. Seriously, the more flustered you get, the less likely you are to be able to find it again. So, before you start looking, take a deep breath and calm down.
Step 2: Think Back
Now that you're calm, think back to the last time you had your passport. Was it the last time you traveled overseas, or did you use it as ID to apply for a job or a new driver's license? Once you remember where you had it last, consider where you might have put it.
Think carefully through this step. For example, if you remember putting it back in the drawer where it was supposed to be but it's not there now, ask yourself if you've rummaged through or reorganized the drawer since then.
Also, ask your family or anyone else who might have seen your passport to join you in this exercise.
Step 3: Make a List, Check it Twice
Now, make a list of all the possible places that you could have put your lost passport. Then, check each place thoroughly and methodically. Also, check the entire 18-inch area around the places where you think your passport might be. It might have gotten knocked underneath or between other objects. f you still haven't found your passport, go through the whole process again.
Step 4: Replacing your Lost Passport
Don't be afraid to repeat the process above more than once, but at some point you have to be willing to give up and move on. To replace a lost passport, you'll need to apply in person at a post office or other passport acceptance facility. Regular passport processing takes 6 weeks or longer, while the government's expedited processing takes 3 weeks. If you need faster service to replace your lost passport, you can apply at a Regional Passport Agency Office or use a private passport expediting company.