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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.

The UK government refuses to issue gender-neutral passports. This activist is challenging that

A landmark case in the United Kingdom will determine the future of gender-neutral passports in the country. The U.K. government is being taken to court after the Home Office refused to issue passports ...

Published:  Wed, 04 Dec 2019 04:54:00 GMT



Why the super-rich buy Maltese passports

There is growing scrutiny of its so-called "golden passports" scheme, which has been described by an EU Parliament delegation as risking "importing criminals and money laundering into the whole EU".

Published:  Tue, 03 Dec 2019 16:47:14 GMT



UK government taken to court over refusal to issue gender neutral passports

The UK could become the next country to issue gender neutral passports if an activist trying to force the government to overturn its policy wins a court appeal on Tuesday.

Published:  Tue, 03 Dec 2019 03:16:00 GMT



Lack of gender-neutral passports is discriminatory, Christie Elan-Cane claims

The Home Office's policy of not allowing gender-neutral or "X" passports is unlawful and breaches human rights, an activist told senior judges yesterday. Lawyers for Christie Elan-Cane urged the Court ...

Published:  Tue, 03 Dec 2019 15:01:00 GMT



How The EU Is Cracking Down On Golden Passports And Targeting Money Laundering

Even offenses committed after the passports were obtained can constitute a reason for revocation of citizenship, he added. Russian billionaire and businessman Viktor Vekselberg, 11th on Forbes' list ...

Published:  Tue, 03 Dec 2019 07:14:00 GMT



Home Office taken to court of appeal over refusal of gender-neutral passports

An activist has gone to the court of appeal to force the Home Office to provide gender-neutral, or "X" , passports to UK citizens as an alternative to opting for male or female identities. Tuesday's ...

Published:  Mon, 02 Dec 2019 23:38:33 GMT



The Case For Gender-Neutral UK Passports Is Being Heard In the Court Of Appeal Today

Campaigner Christie Elan-Cane will have the case they brought forward for gender-neutral passports herd in the Court of Appeal today (Dec. 3). Elan-Cane has been campaigning for over 25 years and ...

Published:  Tue, 03 Dec 2019 16:04:00 GMT



Animal Kingdom: Craig Gives Deran The Passports

In the aftermath of Smurf's heist, the Codys have to protect their reputation. Deran realizes there is only one way to keep Adrian safe.Craig struggles to adapt to a new pace of life as Pope and J's ...

Published:  Wed, 20 Nov 2019 16:02:00 GMT



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