If you believed that passengers traveling abroad with incorrect documentation was a minor issue, please think again. About 60,000 travellers are turned back at destination or transfer points by immigration authorities due to incomplete documentation. It’s imperative to check the required documents for your destination, before embarking on international travel. Based on your itinerary and unique situation, the travel and health documentation needed for your trip may vary.
Passport, Travel Visa and National ID Card
Proper identification is the foundation of international travel. As a result, you should ensure to always have an official identification document with you. You can even consider having multiple documents such as your passport, national ID card or driver’s licence. If you don’t feel comfortable bringing several documents, you can consider bringing copies. These can be especially useful if you lose your passport and must take steps to prove your citizenship at your country’s embassy or consulate.
When traveling abroad, it is also essential to have a valid passport. Many travellers don’t realise that most countries apply rules in regard to the passport expiration date. For most countries, visitors must have a valid passport for six-months after they plan to arrive at their destination, however this period can vary. Either way, if you are planning a trip abroad, always make sure to check the passport validity requirements and the expiry date of your passport. This will help avoid unfortunate issues at the airport or at immigration at your destination country.
Health Travel Documents
Health travel documents are not new to international travel. Certain countries have long lasting entry requirements such as yellow fever vaccination certificates, however this was limited to specific countries whereas the COVID-19 travel document entry requirements have been enforced by the majority of countries around the world. Currently, we are seeing a reduction in COVID-19 travel restrictions, however it’s still important to check the latest rules before your departure as some might be implemented at a short notice.
Travel Itinerary Details
Flight ticket details, accommodation reservations, car rental confirmation, all are important for your trip. Keeping up with all your reservations can be difficult and having copies of your itinerary and reservations with you can make your trip go much smoother. It can help sort out any issues during check-in at the airport or hotel and it’s a simple way of helping you keep track of your travel plans. You can have these as printed copies or use one of the several Travel Planner apps or tools that you can find online. You can even set yourself a reminder to do your check-in or to book a taxi to the airport in advance.
Medical and Travel Insurance Proof
Unforeseen situations can occur and they can be especially stressful when you are abroad. That is why travel insurance is important. Travel insurance can be summed up in two main categories:
- Insurance for medical expenses and
- Insurance for trip cancelations.
It is important to have a copy of your travel insurance certificate with you. Insurance companies often provide a printer-friendly card or summary that includes emergency contact details which you should always have with you or you can use their mobile app so that you have all the required information at your fingertips. It is also recommended to contact your insurance provider to verify what exactly is covered under your insurance plan.
Other Things you need to travel abroad
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic several countries have introduced passenger locator forms which must be presented at check-in or at immigration. After filling the form, travellers are often provided with a QR code or a reference number. Other documents could also be required, that is why it is always important to check what is required for your trip when planning your holiday and ideally verifying the requirements once again closer to your departure date as entry rules and regulations change on a daily basis.
Foreign currency when traveling
When traveling abroad, it is recommended that you arrange the relevant currency before reaching your destination.
This saves you time as you will not need to organize it once you have arrived.
By obtaining the correct currency in advance, you can also save money. You avoid having to use your credit or debit card overseas, which can incur extra fees.
Make Passport Copies
It is recommended to make copies of the photo page of your passport, in case it is lost or stolen.
Always travel with a copy, and keep it separate from your passport.
Why Do I Need a Visa to Travel?
A travel visa is often a mandatory document for international passengers to be granted access into their destination.
Each government has its own visa policy, which serves a purpose that is specific to the country’s needs.
Generally, the function of a travel visa allows authorities to:
- Tackle illegal immigration
- Manage security concerns
- Reciprocate visa restrictions imposed on their own nationals
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