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TopConsumerReviews.com provides unique articles that you won't find anywhere else on the internet. These articles are designed to help you make the most informed decisions possible.

When Do You Need A Passport?

A passport is a document which is issued by a national government as a means of identification for the person who holds it. It certifies the identity and nationality of the person listed on the document, which is important when traveling internationally.

In the United States, passports are issued through one of the State Department's 14 passport issuing centers. They also can be issued through clerks at federal and state courts, designated post offices and U.S. consular authorities in foreign countries for citizens who are living abroad.

Passports expire every 10 years for citizens over the age of 18 and every five years for those under 18. Upon expiration, passports must be replaced if the holder wishes to continue having one. Because people change in appearance with age, passports cannot simply be renewed, but must be completely replaced, including with an updated photo of the passport holder.

There was a time when the only people who needed a passport were those who traveled internationally on a frequent basis, or those who worked as foreign diplomats. However, passports are becoming more widely used for more reasons than just travel. Since 2009, Americans have been required to possess a passport to cross the border into Canada when traveling by airplane, whereas before they only were required to have valid photo identification and a birth certificate to prove citizenship.

So with all of these changes afoot, when do you need a passport?

The primary reason to own one is for foreign travel purposes. Passports have been required for entry into foreign countries, as well as re-entry into the United States from foreign countries, since Dec. 15, 1915, when an executive order was issued requiring all who traveled abroad to possess one. Prior to that, passports rarely were used for foreign travel or re-entry into the United States from a foreign country. There are only a few exceptions to this rule:

  • Closed Loop Cruises. Cruises that begin and end at the same United States port, known as closed-loop cruises, do not require a passport. A certified birth certificate and valid photo identification, such as a driver's license, are all that is necessary.
  • Nexus Cardholders. A Nexus Card is issued jointly between the United States and Canadian governments and is designed for those travelers who frequently commute between the two countries. It is awarded to low-risk travelers following a rigorous application process and can be used in place of a passport to travel between the two companies.
  • Land or Sea Travel. Traveling by land or sea to Canada or Mexico does not require a passport. However, you still will need more than a traditional driver's license or birth certificate to enter these countries and then re-enter the United States. A Nexus Card, which we previously discussed, can be used for this kind of travel. Land or sea travelers to these countries also can use an enhanced driver's license if they are available through their states. Currently, only the states of New York, Michigan, Vermont and Washington offer enhanced driver's licenses.

Even if yours is a situation which does not require a passport for travel, it is highly recommended that all travelers possess one. During emergency situations, air travel which was not previously planned may become necessary, which would require a passport. For that reason, travelers should weigh the benefits and risks of not having a passport before they leave the country.

2 Rohingyas arrested for obtaining illegal Indian passports

Four persons including two Rohingyas have been arrested by police for obtaining Indian passports by producing fake ID proofs, in Hyderabad's Rachakonda on Monday. All four were nabbed by the sleuths of Balapur police and have been identified as Syed Nayeem ...

Published:  Mon, 21 May 2018 05:08:00 GMT



Utica passports supports local businesses and new city project

Upbeat music, beer and comic books. It's all a part of the Made In Utica's Passport Release Party at Woodland Farm Brewery in Marcy. This year's comic book-themed passports feature a story called, "The Big Tip" written and penciled by Dave Dellecese, with ...

Published:  Sat, 19 May 2018 21:00:00 GMT



Exclusive - Jumping ship: Brexit-hit EU staff ditch UK passports

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - About one in 10 British civil servants at the European Commission has taken another EU nationality since the Brexit vote, but are nonetheless resigned to scant prospects of future promotion. Figures from European Union data provided to ...

Published:  Mon, 14 May 2018 06:22:00 GMT



The Passport Index: a beautiful guide to the passports of the world

In much of the world, addresses are difficult to convey because they refer to locations on unnamed streets, in unnumbered buildings, in unincorporated townships, sometimes in disputed national boundaries (I have often corresponded with people in rural ...

Published:  Wed, 16 May 2018 09:43:00 GMT



The World Needs More Exciting Passports

Here are all the world's passports. They're basically all shades of red, green, and blue, with a few blacks thrown in. Why are there no yellow passports No white passports┬╣ No orange passports And only a couple of legitimate purple passports ...

Published:  Wed, 16 May 2018 09:59:00 GMT



Wine Trail passports a hit with customers

In the midst of the Great Recession, a handful of wineries between Ashland and Central Point conceived the idea of the Bear Creek Wine Trail passport. It was hardly an innovative idea, but at a time when local wineries needed a shot in the arm, the ...

Published:  Thu, 10 May 2018 18:21:00 GMT



The Equifax breach resulted in the leak of 56,200 drivers' licenses, passports, and other forms of ID

Equifax on Monday evening disclosed up-to-date details on its massive 2017 security breach. It was worse than we thought. Millions more people than originally reported had their details exposed; 56,200 passports, drivers' licenses, and other documents were ...

Published:  Thu, 10 May 2018 21:24:00 GMT



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