Passport Validity for Business and Holiday Travel

A passport, if used correctly, is literally a ticket to freedom. However, it doesn’t come with an instruction manual and whilst it may seem fairly obvious how to use it, there are a myriad of requirements and restrictions that affect its validity for entering or transiting. These include passport nationality, duration of stay, expiry date, place of issue, number of blank pages, valid visas and permits, and the state of the passport.<br />
Passport Names<br />
Most adults know their own names but they don’t always know their own passport names. Passport names are the only names that are permitted on international tickets. Whilst the middle name isn’t essential, the first name and surname on the ticket must match exactly how they appear on the passport.<br />
Once a ticket is issued, the airline will charge fees to process a name change – even if the error is in a single letter. It’s a surprisingly complex error to fix even in this era of electronic ticketing. And if there are two or more airlines in the one booking, it can be an expensive mistake. To proceed to the airport without first rectifying the error, is to risk being denied boarding.<br />
All international travellers need passports including new born infants. Infant and child passports are usually valid for a shorter time than adults because their faces change so quickly. Travel for infants can still be booked ahead of birth as long as the intended passport names are already known. However, passports can only be applied for after birth.<br />
Passport Expiry<br />
Most passports are valid for between five to ten years. For people who don’t travel often, it’s important to check the validity of passports as soon as the decision is made to travel. Many people only discover their passports have already expired or will expire halfway through their trip, once they arrive at the airport. And by then it’s too late.<br />
Many modern passports are biometric and can be digitally scanned. Some older passports and passports issued in countries other than the passport holder’s, are not machine-readable and therefore no longer valid for entry to many countries without a visa. Post September 11, U.S. and U.K. customs and immigration require all international travellers to have machine readable passports if they wish to enter without a visa.<br />
Length of Visit<br />
All countries have entry restrictions that are determined by passport nationality. Whilst it may not be necessary to obtain an entry visa to visit a particular country, there will still be restrictions on duration of permitted stay and how long the passport must be valid for after you leave the country. For example, a New Zealand passport holder can visit Singapore for 30 days without a visa, but the passport must also be valid for six months beyond the period of stay.<br />
Visa restrictions may also apply if in transit to a third country. For example, a Polish passport holder will require a transit visa for Australia even if he is in transit for two hours only.<br />
Visa Requirements<br />
It’s always the passport nationality that determines if tourist or business visas are required for entry. For example, a New Zealand passport holder does not require a visa to visit Australia. However, a U.K. passport holder with official New Zealand residency, will still require a visa to visit Australia.<br />
A responsible travel agent will always advise the visa requirements, if any, that apply to their client’s travel itinerary. If travel has been booked online then travellers should check the consulate and embassy websites for the countries they intend to transit or visit.<br />
Passport Renewal<br />
Passports must have space available for stamps and visas. Business travellers often have to renew their passports long before they expire because they run out of spare pages. Some nationalities used to be able to get additional pages inserted into their passports. However, with the introduction of tightened security measures, this no longer applies. If a passport has to be renewed before its expiry date, then all current business or tourist visas need to either be transferred or reapplied for.<br />
Most passports don’t take kindly to being put through the laundry. If there is water damage or the edges are starting to lift, it’s worth getting a new one to eliminate risk of being denied boarding or entry.<br />
Passport Requirements and Restrictions<br />
A valid passport is required for all international travel. Validity is determined by both the passport itself and the requirements and restrictions of the countries being visited.<br />
<br />

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *