My Lebanese stamp collection

Passport stamps

Isn't this a beautiful sight?

source

There is something rather special about getting a stamp in your passport. It signifies travel, movement, change, adventure, escape, fun. Maybe not all the time (for those of you who travel a lot for work), but at least some of the time (I hope!).

That being said, it can get rather annoying when Immigration (aka. General Security) in a certain country..(::cough::cough::LEBANON::cough::cough) seems to have a rather peculiar obsession with your passport. Sometimes, keeping it for weeks on end! ..Only to return it to you full of useless stamps (which signify nothing but bureaucracy), which they then require you to pay for! Pffffffff…

All of this to say, I had to pay a pretty hefty fee to add more pages to my passport thanks to the darlings over at General Security and their obsession with stamps. Which got me thinking..maybe I should get into the stamps business?

Anyway, I got my passport back in the mail today (you have no idea how much I’ve come to appreciate this  type of service)..and while it’s nowhere near as slim as it used to be (it won’t even close!)..I at least have 48 brand new, unstamped pages for General Security to play with! That should keep them occupied for a while, right? Like, ..I’m thinking at least a year.

Adding pages to passport

Thanks General Security!

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16 Comments

Filed under life in Lebanon

16 responses to “My Lebanese stamp collection

  1. Joe

    Cant you just issue a new passport ?

    • I would’ve loved to do that actually..but no. Because my passport doesn’t expire for 4 more years! They only issue a new passport when yours is expired, lost, or stolen. 😦

  2. Az

    I actually like how the Lebanese General Security go with their stamping needs; they just open the last page and stamp right next to the last one. Here in Saudi, they just take your passport, find any empty page, and just stamp it! And now I am left with a passport with so many useless pages just because they have only one stamp on them!

    • Yeah, they are generally good with putting the newest stamp next to the last stamp..but when your passport has to go to immigration for any reason,,it comes out with about 20 different stamps, scribbles, and staples evening! It just looks like a hot mess!

  3. Youssef Chaker

    🙂
    that is all… started my day with a laugh thanks to you 😀

  4. my passport looks similar 😛 but you know whats my favorite stamp? the one that only says “GRATIS مجانا” Ive got now several of these but why do they have to put a stamp on my passport that only says I got the visa renewal for free? Its not like they dont put yet another stamp in there for the visa renewal itself. Oh Lebanon, how I miss you 😉

  5. The US needs to start issuing passports with more pages like every other country! When they put more pages in my passport, they did a crappy job.. so now my passport looks like I bought it out of the back of someone’s car on the side of the road in Chechnya :-/

    • Yeah..I’m kinda half expecting for the Lebanese immigration agents to give me a problem coz my passport looks fake. Seriously..it looks like i couldn’t done that job!

  6. You can have it replaced in case it’s full. But isn’t it annoying!!! I had papers glued on mine a couple of times..
    I guess they have to justify the fees they charge by using lots and lots of ink

    • From what I understood, they don’t want to issue new passports until the one you have is expired, lost, or stolen..hence why they give you the option to add more pages. But I reallllly would’ve liked to get a new one..all of these stamps and scribbles I have realllly don’t look good.

  7. My passport is also full but it expires in March so I’m just getting a new on this summer. Last time I entered Lebanon the General Security guy told me I needed new pages and I assured him I was getting a new passport soon. Then he squeezed the stamp in on the already full page. At least the stamp is small! I’ve never had them KEEP my passport and make me pay for anything. Maybe because I have a residence card.

    • Yeah, it’s probably because your employer applied for your residency before or soon after your arrival into Lebanon. 😀 I entered on a tourist visa and then proceeded to find work..much much much more difficult!

  8. Hey, I just ran across this site . . . looks great! I had a similar situation with passports before the got stolen in Mexico . . . bummer! They especially got marked up when I did the surfing from Israel to Lebanon thing last summer . . . http://bitly.com/kAIETa . The entire Levant had a run at my passports, including “Disneyland.” Cough. Cough.

    Love the blog! Keep going!

    Best,
    Jesse

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