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illustration Laissez-passer



Part of speech: noun

Origin: French, 20th century


A document allowing the holder to pass; a permit.

Examples of Laissez-passer in a sentence

"Some countries allow travel across borders using a laissez-passer instead of an official passport."

"The consulate helped Victoria secure a laissez-passer to help her get home after her passport was stolen."

About Laissez-passer

“Laissez-passer” is a loanword from French, where it means “a pass,” or literally, “allow to pass.”

Did you Know?

“Laissez-passer” is a French word referring to a pass, but more than that, it translates literally to “allow to pass.” This is useful for understanding that a laissez-passer is a document separate from a passport, but it allows the bearer to travel as if it were an official passport. The term came into English use following World War I, during which passes were necessary for travel even inside some countries, though the modern application of “laissez-passer” is usually diplomatic and refers to a document used to cross an international border.

illustration Laissez-passer

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