Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Another typical Steph/Anna international travel debacle

Anna & I are going to Canada tomorrow. We've done this before. More than once. Last time, she forgot her passport at her apartment and missed her plane. This time, she packed her passport weeks ago. This morning, she sat up in bed and realized: My passport is expired. 

Anna is a champion of internet research. She was able to tell me how much of what kinds of frozen Alaskan fish and game I could bring through customs, and she never missed a beat on Facebook. But even Anna doesn't need the Internet to know that she can't renew her passport in 18 hours. But she did find a place on the Canadian government website that states they will accept an expired passport with another form of ID. Anna's driver's license is valid, but for good measure, she's bringing her library card, her lease agreement, her electric bill, and a bank statement. She also printed out the Canadian website and underlined and circled and starred the word 'expired.'

Problem is, Anna's not certain she can return to the United States on an expired passport. In fact, she sounds fairly sure it will be a problem. But we talked ourselves through it:

Anna: "It doesn't explicitly say on the US State Department website that expired passports are NOT accepted."
Steph: "It just says you need a 'passport'? So really it could be from a crackerjack box?"
Anna: "It could be homemade."
Steph: "I guess the wording is in your favor. Did you print that out too?"
Anna: "Of course. My dad is a lawyer, and your dad is a lawyer, so between us, we are basically one whole lawyer. I don't think we will have a problem arguing this."
Steph: "Actually, my mom is a lawyer too, so between us, we are really ONE AND A HALF lawyers."
Anna: "That's right. We're well-represented. No problem."

That solved, we're meeting in Seattle tomorrow, and driving to Vancouver. Sunday, Anna's dad may get a call from a Canadian customs detention center... but, my dad's gotten a call from me in jail, so I can tell you first hand, lawyers can handle these things.


Anonymous said...

We await the outcome....
If the blog goes 404 we'll assume the worst... Homeland security and all that, I'd be a mite concerned!

Shannon said...

Good luck! This is making me nervous already.