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Is it safe to email copy of passport?

Worcester...
Level Contributor
182 posts
97 reviews
82 helpful votes
Is it safe to email copy of passport?

We are leaving for Ecuador in a week , our trip is fully paid, and I received an email from our travel agency 2 days ago asking for the following information:

"We require one passport copy per group/reservation, your address (could be home or work), and a phone number (preferably home and cell phone). This information is for the Ecuadorian tax office. If you are not able to provide us with a copy of your passport, then unfortunately the price of your tour will raise with 12% Value Added Taxes"

Has anyone experienced this before? Is it safe to email a copy of my passport?

Many thanks in advance.

Tucson, Arizona
Destination Expert
for Quito, Ecuador
Level Contributor
15,335 posts
126 reviews
136 helpful votes
1. Re: Is it safe to email copy of passport?

Can you fax a copy instead? If e-mail is the only way to send it, I should think it'd be okay. It doesn't have your SS#, and the scan will probably reveal some security feature (like the word "void" or "copy").

It would save you a bundle of money; that tax is legit, not something tacked on by the travel agency.

Suffolk, United...
Level Contributor
1,689 posts
262 reviews
214 helpful votes
2. Re: Is it safe to email copy of passport?

Forgetting whether it is safe or not, is it a scam?

Who are the Agents?, perhaps somebody in Quito could advise if this is a known procedure.

We are going out there in October, Metropolitan Touring arranging, and to date have not been asked to supply anything like this, and the Tax Authorities have never been mentioned.

Edited: 13 years ago
Tucson, Arizona
Destination Expert
for Quito, Ecuador
Level Contributor
15,335 posts
126 reviews
136 helpful votes
3. Re: Is it safe to email copy of passport?

See this thread from November: http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g294310-i6637-k3209614-Ecuador_law_allows_no_to_charge_12_vat_tax_or_iva_tax-Galapagos_Islands.html

I do hope Metropolitan takes advantage of this law on your behalf.

Worcester...
Level Contributor
182 posts
97 reviews
82 helpful votes
4. Re: Is it safe to email copy of passport?

Thanks for the replies. Yes at first I wondered if it may be a scam, but they weren't asking for any money, just passport copy so i wouldn't have to pay more money. 12% of what we already have spent would have been a large chunk of money. I am glad they gave me this discount as I was not aware of the law.

5. Re: Is it safe to email copy of passport?

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