Last spring, due to some poor planning and general flakiness, I ended up briefly living abroad without a passport. I wouldn’t recommend it.
I realized that it was about to expire less than 2 weeks before the expiration date, and, as part of the renewal process, I had to surrender my passport and mail it back to the States so they could issue me a new one. The stress of being without it was compounded by the fact that we had plans to go to France just over 2 weeks after I realized I needed a new passport. It didn’t turn out too badly — I got my passport back very quickly (in time for our trip to France and everything — thank you, American Consulate). Now I have it, and it’ll be valid until well after we’ve moved back to the U.S., so I pretty much won’t have to think about it again while I’m here.
Which COULD have been the end of the story. Except that I have a husband who apparently did not learn from my cautionary tale and who is significantly less organized and more flaky than I am. As stated previously, passports are important, and I’d recommend to anyone living abroad to keep their passport up to date. Don’t do what I did — get it renewed promptly or (even better) renew it BEFORE YOU LEAVE your home country and then you won’t have to even think about it the entire time you’re abroad. Makes sense.
Dan does not currently have a valid passport. His expired in the beginning of December. And, given that Christmas is next week and everything kind of shuts down around here for about 2 weeks, I’m guessing he’s not going to have a new one anytime soon. I’m a little afraid that they’re going to come and get him (although I’m not sure which “they” I’m worried about . . . and he does still have a valid visa . . kind of, in that it’s valid, but it’s not a visa . . . ). He’s not concerned. But he’s generally not concerned about anything until he gets concerned about it and then can’t sleep for a week.
Seriously. Don’t do things this way. Learn from our mistakes. Passports are important. VALID passports are even better.