Passports are not just important travel documents. They also provide a record of where you’ve been. Each time you visit a new country, you get a new stamp on your passport. The US Department of State understands that passports mean a lot to people, so after you renew your passport, they’ll cancel the old one and send it back to you.
What can you do with an expired passport? You can’t travel with it, of course. You can leave it in a drawer and flip through it occasionally when you feel like reminiscing about trips you’ve taken in the past. But why not be a little more creative? Here are some other ideas:
Make a Scrapbook
If you (or a family member) likes to scrapbook, why not create a scrapbook based on your cancelled passport? Along with the stamped passport pages, you can include photographs from the trips you’ve taken and mementos like pressed flowers or train tickets. If you like to journal in your scrapbooks, you can include a written description of some of your favorite moments from each adventure.
Remember, if you damage or mutilate your passport before it expires, you’ll have to get a new one before you can travel again. So, if your passport is still valid, you might want to start the scrapbook now, while your memory is still fresh, and leave spaces to add passport pages and visa stamps once the passport has expired. Make a Travel Collage
You could also make a travel college using the pages of your passport and photos from each journey. Simply arrange the pictures and the passport pages on heavy cardstock until you are happy with the way it looks. Then, use glue or rubber cement to stick everything into place. Use glue diluted with water or a clear glossy sealant from an art supply store to create a nice finish.
Make an Electronic Work of Art
If you’d like to keep your expired passport intact but you also like the idea of making a scrapbook or a collage out of it, you can use a scanner to make electronic copies of the passport pages. Then, use Photoshop or a similar program to create your work of art!
If your passport is going to expire soon, it’s time to think about getting it renewed. If you renew your passport with normal processing, it can take 2 to 3 months for you to get your new passport in the mail. If you use the government’s expedited service, it will still take at least 3 weeks. A private passport expediting company can speed up the process, allowing your passport renewal to be processed in as little as 24 hours.