Need my supporting docs back!

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    Has anyone tried to get their supporting documents back?
    I applied for my first adult U.K. passport and sent my EU passport as part of my supporting documents. My docs were received 3 weeks ago. I now need to travel urgently next week and request to have my still valid EU passport returned so that I can go. Unfortunately despite many many calls no one can tell me how to do it! I have been told that someone will call me back but so far no one has…


    Are you travelling to the EU?
    Do you have an identity card?
    Do you have settled status?

    If yes to all of the above, update the document in your settled status to be your identity card. You’ll get a confirmation near-instantly if it has a machine readable zone, or in a few days if you have an old-style card. If you do this and get the confirmation, you won’t have problems at the UK border. You may, depending on where you’re flying, have issues entering or exiting the EU/Schengen border or with the airline. Explain the situation, mention both settled status and permanent residency (IME, some border officials still don’t understand “settled status”), and carry links to the relevant information. Expect complication, but you’ll be OK.

    If you don’t have an identity card, see if you can get an emergency travel document. The Passport Office held my foreign passports for 13 weeks. In that timeframe, I had emergency work travel, and by law I have to enter the US on my US passport (even though I had received the British passport by that point). I went to the embassy and had a document in < 1 hour with no issues.

    Good luck!


    Hi, thanks so much for getting back to me.
    Unfortunately I don’t think it will apply to me , I travel to the Eu and have an ID card but I didn’t apply for settled status as I have a naturalisation certificate (so I’m a British citizen)


    Similar situation. My Italian partner (British citizen due to her mother being born here) is here in the UK (since Jan) and needs to go back for exams in 2 weeks. Her Italian passport is with the Durham passport office as a supporting document (documents signed for by the office on March 25th, application processing since April 13th).

    She only has an Italian ID card, but isn’t sure if this is sufficient to *leave* the UK. The last thing we need is for her to arrive at the airport and Ryanair say “no”.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 11 months ago by user123.

    user123, for what it’s worth, I flew with an Italian ID card and had no problems leaving the UK with Easyjet or British Airways. I did this five times (as I was without my passport for 13 weeks): to France, Spain, Belgium, and Italy (twice). I am fairly certain EU law requires the airlines to accept ID cards for travel to the EU, and that your partner would be eligible for EU-261 compensation if she were wrongly denied boarding.

    Your partner’s bigger problem could be getting back to the UK if she does not have Settled Status. If she does have Settled Status, follow the steps I listed above. Carry digital and physical copies of the following EU guidance and show it (if needed) to the border officials for the exit check and the airline:

    I had no problems whatsoever entering or leaving Italy, always explaining that I had settled status / permanent residence on exit. No problems with Belgium, though the immigration officers asked if I had a passport so they wouldn’t have to key in the ID card data. No problem entering Spain; on the exit, I had to go through a long explanation. France was a mess: at first, they didn’t want to let me ENTER, saying I needed a passport to travel from the UK (ignoring that I was presenting an EU ID). Then I was initially rejected on the exit check and by Easyjet, and had to get supervisors both times.

    The UK border was easy. The officials are trained on the ID card / Settled Status process.


    @LAD, thanks for the detailed reply and some gentle reassurance re: getting home to Italy.

    We had considered the problem of coming back to the UK. She doesn’t have settled status (she’s essentially an Italian resident having lived there her whole life, studying at an Italian Uni, and visiting the UK when she can). She’s a British citizen but without the proof yet (hence the passport application).

    A member of staff at the Italian Consulate in London advised her against travelling on her Italian ID card, saying that whilst they ‘think’ it’s possible to leave on the ID card, then her Italian passport wouldn’t be stamped as having left the UK. This makes us think there is no benefit to getting an Emergency Travel Document to leave on, as the situation would be the same.

    We may have to take the risk, and hope that either:
    1) The British passport and existing Italian passport can be posted out to her home address in Italy (directly or via myself) and that she can then just come/go on the British passport without issue.
    2) She declares the Italian passport as lost and gets a new one in Italy at a later date.

    I don’t know if border control would electronically link the new and old, and see a lack of ‘exit’ on the old one and then grill her / deny her entry the next time she wants to come back.

    It is surprisingly hard to know things for sure on all these matters! Not even Ryanair support seem to be able to answer whether they’d accept it for leaving the UK.

    On the upside, after 1.5 hours on the phone to the passport office today and 2 separate calls, we may be getting a call back from the progress team. Whether or not it’ll happen, we shall see… fingers crossed!

    , I hope you can get your passport returned!


    The UK doesn’t do exit checks or stamp passports on exit for anyone. Your girlfriend can add her ID card data as advanced passenger information on Ryanair or any other airline, and that is sufficient to leave the UK to go to the EU/EEA.

    The only risk is that she cannot get back into the UK without a passport. Assuming her British passport is approved, you can receive delivery of it and either bring it to her or post it to her.


    Renewed my child’s passport. Applied on 26th April, documents are still being processed but I understand that I can’t have her foreign passport back before the new British passport is issued. Is this true? How can HO justify hogging foreign travel documents for so long? Is there any way I could get her foreign passport?


    In a similar situation. Not sure if my British passport will come in time so am in the process of getting my EU passport back and British Citizenship (supporting documents)

    You can ring the advice line 0300 222 0000 (I believe?) The first number you press on the call line will be 8, then 3. You will be put through to an advisor. Explain you need your documents back and they can arrange for a call back from the ‘Customer Service Management Team’ within 48 hours. I’ve been told you just need to prove that you need them urgently for travel (not sure how as I am still waiting for call back!)

    It will pause your British passport application, and they ask to send back your documents within 6 weeks (otherwise they drop your passport application I think?)

    I hope this helps! I can update when I’ve got a call back and my own documents if that helps?



    It’s not that easy. I have called them numerous times on the 0300 number. They can return you the documents only if they no longer need them. I was told that I need to write a letter (not emails, an actual letter) to the passport office that has my passport requesting the documents back. I did that, sent my letter by special delivery and it was received early May. I have not received a response so continued to call to find out a progress of my request. They told me then that it takes at least 2 weeks for them to open my letter. They will need them to find my passport (and it takes at least 3 weeks to retrieve it) and THEN they will return it provided they don’t need it anymore. I have tried to cancel my application in order for the passport to be sent back but I was told that the timescale would be exactly the same as they have a backlog in the mailing centre.


    I was feeling hopeful after words from @LAD re: not being checked upon leaving the UK, but having tried to seek clarification from Ryanair over Twitter DM, where they asked about the route and I clearly stated this was *not* about entry to the UK but leaving, they came back with:

    “For travel from or to the UK will be necessary a valid passport”.

    I am continuing to question this and have provided a link to a PDF ( but my guess is they’ll fall back on ‘passport required’ again.

    We had a call back from the progress team but missed the call and the voicemail was indecipherable. Called back the generic helpline number and a disinterested advisor said they’d put in for another call back and it would take 2 days.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 11 months ago by user123.

    user123, Ryanair’s own terms and conditions say your girlfriend can travel on her ID card:

    “2.1.2 A valid national identity card issued by the government of Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden or Switzerland”

    There is verbiage that (correctly) says she cannot travel TO the UK on an identity card, but there is nothing to say she cannot travel FROM the UK.

    “From 1^st^ October 2021, nationals of the EEA/EU or Switzerland travelling to the United Kingdom must be in possession of a valid passport, as National ID cards issued by the EEA/EU and Switzerland are no longer acceptable to enter the UK (unless you hold a form of residence status in the UK)”

    I’m sceptical about the response you received, which doesn’t sound like it came from a native English speaker. I do not see how Ryanair could possibly deny a passenger with an Italian ID card from boarding a flight to Italy without falling afoul of EU-261 rules.

    If all else fails, try Easyjet or British Airways. I’ve travelled with both on an old-style Italian carta d’identita’ within the past three months, so I know first-hand it’s possible.


    Online / automated telephone service states documents are generally returned 2 weeks after your passport is issued.

    It’s worth baring mind it’s not as simple as the documents been revived, checked and sent back straight away. They will hold onto your documents until the time an examiner looks at your application to process it.

    As per the website applications can currently take up to 10 weeks to be processed and issued.


    Has anyone actually received their documents back within 2 weeks? I need my proof of name change back so I can use it for my sons application. Apparently they can’t link my application to his as mine has been approved so need to send in the document. I’m just hoping it arrives soon. My passport was approved last Tuesday and printed Thursday.


    Many thanks, that’s really helpful. I have travel booked for 23rd June, and MP team involved. Hopefully this will work! Let me know how you get on? I’ll update on my side too. Many thanks to you all!

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