Passport Validity And Why It Matters

A traveler gets to the airport with a valid passport in one hand and a valid ticket to their desired location in the other.  It’s been a trip that has been planned for months, everything is set, the hotel, rental car, tour plan…all of it set and ready to go.  Yet, when you get to the ticket counter they tell you that due to your passport not being valid for the specified amount of time you will not be allowed to board the plane.  The only remedy is a rush passport renewal which means you are not only going to miss your flight but all your plans are shot.  Not a good way to start a vacation but this is a reality we hear almost daily from travelers who had no idea about the need for a passport to be valid for specific amount of time.

It is a little known fact that many countries require your passport not only to be valid at the time you enter but also to be valid for a specific period of time after your entry.  The main reason for this validity requirement is they do not want you stuck in their country without a valid passport which can pose a problem for the country you are visiting.  Worse still is that many airlines will not allow you to board the plane for fear that you will get rejected at immigration.  Airlines get hit with fines and have to put you on the next flight back if you get denied entry.  For this reason, airlines will not even allow you to board the plane.  It is cheaper for them to deny you boarding than it is to pay the fines.

It is important to note that passport validity not only applies to adults but to all U.S. citizens. That’s right…this rule even applies to children’s passports.  Children’s passports are even more worrisome as they are only valid for 5 years not like an adult’s passport which is valid for 10.  This is more common as many travelers mistakenly think that a child’s passport has the same validity of an adult’s passport.

How can you avoid this?  It all boils down to being vigilant and knowing the year your passport and that of your children will expire.  This is key and before you plan your trip make sure of the passport validity requirements for that country.  A great site to find this out is the State Department’s website which details the required validity for each country.  It is also recommended to call the airline to be sure they acknowledge the specified validity.  The link for the State Department is:  https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel.html

A passport renewal can be applied before the passport expires.  As long as you are willing to pay for it, the passport is in good condition and it falls in the category of a passport renewal.  A frequent traveler should consider renewing their passport before it gets to within 6 months.  That is where it many countries that require a visa such as China, India and Russia require your passport to be valid.  As long as you keep your passport valid for more than 6 months you should not have to worry about watching your plane leave without you.

If you are interested in a rush passport renewal please call us at 888-336-0683 or visit our site at: http://www.passportsvisasandmore.com/

 

 

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