Man With Largest U.S. Passport

by Libby Zay 
Posted Oct 18th 2010 01:27 PMUpdated Oct 19th 2010 10:14 AM

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chris corwin, flickr

While many of us dream of traveling the world, the truth is only one in three Americans has a passport. International travelers collect passport stamps as little badges of pride, souvenirs neatly packaged in one place to show friends, family and fellow travelers where they have been.

One man, however, may be the exception to this rule. "I try my best... not to get stamps," Sanjeev Midha, a 49-year-old from New Jersey told ABCNews.com. Midha, who owns a technology company, is part of an elite group of pilots, celebrities and business travelers who have reached the maximum number of pages allowed in their passport.

The news outlet first found Midha, who had two additions of 24 pages each added to his passport until it was 96 pages long. At this point, he was forced to get a new one because no more pages could be added.

"Each page was crowded, crowded, crowded. There were stamps, stamps, stamps. We travel as a family, a lot," Midha explained with modesty to ABCNews.com.

Midha reserves between $150,000 and $250,000 per year to take his wife, Sunita and their two sons, Ashim, 18, and Akhil, 16, across the world. Ashim is a recent graduate of the private Peddie School in Highstown, N.J., where Akhil is a student. The school has a six-day school week and lengthy breaks, allowing the family to hit the road and skies.

"I strongly, strongly believe in experiences. We do a little bit of sightseeing, like most people," Midha told ABCNews.com, "but we like to eat only local food, go to local people's houses for dinner and try to speak local languages as much as possible."

Midha goes on eight to 10 trips each year with his wife, one or both of his sons, or the entire family. His company has offices in Singapore and India, which he visits on business from time to time.

Last summer, the family started their vacation in Paris where they traveled through the Champagne and Burgundy regions of France. Next they headed to Switzerland, Italy and Austria before flying to Turkey, and then went to Spain just in time for the World Cup finals. After a few days traveling through Barcelona, Valencia, Toledo and Segovia they flew home for one night.

Next the family packed their bags for Asia. They flew to China and Mongolia, where they went on a safari and slept in huts in the Mongolian wilderness. After visiting Beijing, seeing the Terra Cotta Warriors in Xian, spending some time in the countryside, and then stopping by the Expo 2010 in Shanghai, the family was again off to India for two weeks.

"Then we came back home, again, literally, for one day," Midha told ABCNews.com.

Next was a wedding in Toronto and then a weeklong trip to Belize.

Since there are still valid visas in his old passport, Midha must now travel with both. New passports issued after 1996 start with 20 pages reserved for stamps, and now have a maximum for 100 pages.

After visiting Kuwait, Bahrain and Qatar in December, Midha will bring the number of countries he has visited to 100. His 16-year-old son, Akhil, has already been to more than 80. His passport has now reached 72 pages.

"If people were to travel more to all parts of the world," Midha told the news outlet, "there would be more camaraderie and less distrust, for more people would be getting authentic experiences, getting rich in all aspects of life, including culture, art, architecture, history, languages, science, cuisines, climates, nature and religion."

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Get Real

Well it is so nice that you have the money to travel around the world but not everyone has that luxury. Now I would most happy if you make a small donation of $150,000 - $250,000 so that I could travel and I would start off in my country first. In addition, I would be able to pay off my debt in which wouldn't come close to that amount. Would you like my email to get in touch?

March 09 2011 at 2:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
HenryT2

I have about 124 pages in my passport (4 extensions). I was never told there was a maximum number of pages. There are still 11 pages empty, but I've still got 4 years left so they'll probably be filled. I had about 96 pages on my old passport. I'm sure I would have had about 170 pages if I'd just kept that passport.

As to why I'd want to keep such a big passport? Well, when you have multiple long term visas on your passport, you don't want to get rid of it. Many countries don't allow you to display expired or cancelled passports for the purpose of visas. You have to reapply. Consequently, you can either live with your phonebook sized passport, or go through the time and often considerable expense of getting many new visas.

And, to be honest, if Guinness was to contact me to give me "largest passport" ranking, I'd tell them to do a little more research. I'm sure there are plenty of people out there with bigger passports. The person who wrote or researched this article just didn't know what he/she was talking about.

March 09 2011 at 2:41 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Strong Eagle

Definitely not the largest passport by a long shot. Mine was over 140 pages before they made me get a new one. And I've seen larger.

http://www.herbhost.com/miscimg/passport.jpg

October 20 2010 at 4:11 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
drjm

My passport just expired with 120 pages in it. So I guess I had the largest US passport.
Did not spend the money the subject of the article did.
Relatively worthless article. This is not journalism, this is garbage writing.

October 19 2010 at 7:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
KlasAkt

" "If people were to travel more to all parts of the world," Midha told the news outlet, "there would be more camaraderie and less distrust, for more people would be getting authentic experiences, getting rich in all aspects of life, including culture, art, architecture, history, languages, science, cuisines, climates, nature and religion." " And where does he propose we all get the money to do the traveling and live the lifestyle he does? Thru hard work? Yeah, those 50 hours a week helped me and my husband achieve all that ... NOT. Not everyone will be so blessed as this man and his family. And hard work does not always achieve it either. I am glad he is using his good fortune to educate his family and give them the benefits it brings, but that statement is a Pollyanna ideology and very frivolous in today's world.

October 19 2010 at 4:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
mike

i feel left out ,,the u.s. govt. made me fly to viet nam in 1970 didnt even give me a passport, then when i went on r&r to thailand i didnt need a passport there either,, the way i see it the govt. owes me a passport with at least 4 stamps lol

October 19 2010 at 1:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
hrsngaround1

Yes, he has been all around the world, but has he been all around the United States (he is after all a US citizen). Before you globe trot you should see the diversity in your own country, both in scenery and people. I have been to every state in the union, numerous times. I always find new and exciting things.

October 19 2010 at 1:36 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
ADM

That's great. I think everyone should travel the world. My husband and I have been going on trips every year. Not as much as this guy but we find a way to go somewhere. We are 33yrs old and we try to get out and see the world and enjoy life. You only have one life ,so you should live it up to the fullest because tomorrow isn't promised. PEACE!!

October 19 2010 at 12:57 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
minnie

I am hoping this richy rich person is helping poor people in underdeveloped countries..seems a selfish lifestyle if he isn't

October 19 2010 at 12:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Mike

$250,000 PER YEAR??? Just for TRAVEL??? This dude must own every 7-11 and Holiday Inn on the East Coast. What was the point of this story, anyway? Elite group of pilots and celebritites? I had a maxed out passport and didn't spend $20,000 doing it. I'm not impressed that someone who clearly doesn't spend much time working for a living can fill their passport up with visas. So what?

October 19 2010 at 12:39 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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