If you need to travel at short notice (you will be required to provide evidence) and you do not have your normal passport available, you can contact your local British Embassy/High Commission/Consulate to request emergency travel documentation. Find your local Embassy.
Who can apply:
Passport applicants requesting emergency travel documentation are required to apply in person.
All those travelling at short notice will need their own emergency travel documentation. If your whole family is travelling and you have all had your documents stolen, then each one individual will need a new document and will be charged accordingly. This includes babies and children.
Unlike your normal passport, which is valid for 10 years, an Emergency Travel Document (ETD) is valid for a prescribed journey to up to 5 destinations (not just back to the UK), within a specified time, after which it will become invalid. As the name suggests, it is designed to be issued quickly, to enable you to travel at short notice.
Any British National needing to travel urgently who does not have access to their normal passport can apply for an ETD. We are also able to issue these documents to Commonwealth and EU citizens who do not have local representation. However, if you are a Commonwealth or EU citizen, we will need to obtain prior approval from your country of nationality to issue an Emergency Travel Document.
When you apply for an Emergency Travel Document you will be asked to provide an itinerary for your journey. Your ETD will contain an observation showing the countries that you intend to travel to or through. If you need to return to the country in which you are applying, if you are a permanent resident there, the ETD can be issued for a return journey. Please note that the ETD can only be used for the journey shown on the observation page.
The ETD meets international standards for temporary travel documents and should therefore be acceptable worldwide. But you need to check the entry requirements for any of the countries you plan to visit or pass through. Visas will sometimes be required if you have complex emergency travel requirements which involve transiting a number of countries. Some countries also apply exit visas to passports. Please check the Embassy or Consulate of the country you are visiting or any countries you may be transiting.
The travel itinerary contained on your Emergency Travel Document cannot be changed. If your plans change after the document has been issued you will need to apply and pay for a new ETD to change the journey.