How To Get a Second Passport?
I will be the first one to admit that I have two US passports and at least one person assumes I am an undercover spy. I will explain the why and how to get one, I am pretty confident you might consider it after this article.
First, is there really a need for a second passport? Sounds fishy, so why bother?
U.S. passports are good for a number of reasons: notably, they are valid for 10 years, and when you fill up the pages with lots of stamps and visas, the State Department located throughout the continental US can issue pages for an additional fee. No other major country of which I am aware offers a passport that includes both of these important features.
Even though the US passport is inherently more unique than any other country in the world, it still has its problems. First, when you visit politically sensitive countries, especially Middle Eastern countries, these countries entry stamps could cause you travel problems at a later date. For example, most Middle Eastern countries will not let you enter if you have an Israeli stamp in your passport. How to circumvent this? Have a second passport on hand!
I had a minor situation happen to me upon my reentry back into the US through Philadelphia when I returned from my Middle Eastern trip. The immigration officials wanted to know why I had so many Middle Eastern Stamps in my passport and were absurdly inquisitive about what I was doing in the Middle East.
What was uniquely appalling about the inquisitive immigration guards is that this was not my first time through customs. Usually I pass by with nothing more then a nod and smile. It got me thinking, what if this was a foreign country or a random airport stop in a foreign land? How would I navigate such intense scrutiny? The abrasive immigration officer then politely informed me to apply for a second passport. She stated a second passport would in all probability allow me to avoid the embarrassing separation from the rest of my plane.
Second, as I have engaged in extended stays in the Middle East it does take some finite scheduling to make sure I have the correct visas and they are valid upon entry. More times than not I found myself shipping my US passport back to the US in order to get a visa. Scary thought, being in a foreign land without the only identification that shows I am a US citizen. Basically you are stuck until the passport arrives back in the county.
Thus, the problem: to travel to fun places, you need visas, which will without a doubt requires you send off your passport for a short amount time. While your passport is sitting somewhere you are pretty much deemed immobile and it confines you to a linear itinerary.