It’s pretty a pretty sure bet that you’ll need a passport when you’re traveling by air across an ocean to another continent – North America to, for instance, or to Africa. But what if you’re traveling right across the U.S. border into , or into ? What if you’re driving your own car there? And what’s the protocol if you’re traveling by sea?
These are times when border procedures can get a little vague. Here are a few guidelines to help you out if you’re traveling from the U.S. into one of it’s bordering countries or nearby islands.
Air – All travelers are required to present a passport. Period.
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Sea – Currently no passport is needed to cross intofrom the U.S. by sea (cruise ship or boat). However, by all seagoing passengers coming back IN to the U.S. will be required to present a passport. It is assumed that the passport will be checked before departing for as well.
Land – Currently, no passport is needed to cross intofrom the U.S. by land (car, bus, other vehicle). However, proof of citizenship is required at checkpoints (birth certificate, driver’s license). By all visitors will be required to present a passport when returning to the U.S. from , so you will need one before crossing into .
The full story and more passport cover options after the jump . . .
Air – All travelers are required to present a passport.
Sea – Currently proof of citizenship is needed to cross back into the U.S. by sea from. Passports will be required as of to re-enter the U.S. In mid 2008, passports will be required of ALL travelers at ALL checkpoints to re-enter the U.S.
Land – The same guidelines apply to land entry as to sea entry.
There are varying entry requirements throughout the Caribbean islands. Your best bet is to have your passport ready before you book travel as you’ll need it to re-enter the U.S. anyway.
Regardless of where you’re traveling outside the United States, the safest bet is to get your passport or have your passport renewed at least three months before you leave the country. Though you may not need it to exit the U.S., you’ll definitely need it to re-enter the U.S.
Right now, the processing time for passports is roughly 6-8 weeks, depending on your location. If you live in a border city, the processing time may be even longer. Go to the U.S. Passport website for more information on applying for your passport, and further information on U.S. passport regulations.
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