If you thought that passengers traveling with the incorrect documentation was a minor issue for the world's cruises, think again. The 60,000 travelers turned back at destination or transfer points by immigration authorities each year cause stressful and frustrating situations for travelers.
Whether it is rules implemented at a short notice or papers presented in the wrong format or language, passengers and cruise ship can struggle to keep up with ever changing requirements. This is why it's more important than ever to be well prepared for your trip and to make sure that you have the correct travel documents, especially when traveling internationally.
The travel and health documents required for your trip can vary based on your itinerary and personal situation. This is why it is important to prepare in advance and use tools such as the IATA Travel Centre to get personalized travel advice. The IATA immigration specialists consistently update this information, but rules and regulations change on a daily basis. Nonetheless, you can be certain that these documents will be useful for any trip:
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 ambassy or consulate.
When traveling abroad, it is also essential to have a valid passport. Many travelers don't realize 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 port or at immigration at your destination country.
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.
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:
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.
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, travelers 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.
Where Can you Find the Latest Travel and Health Document Requirements?Visa information >>
Passport requirements and recommendations
Visa requirements and recommendations
Health requirements and recommendations