We’ve been asked lots of questions about passports and passport renewals.
Personally, we believe that every United States citizen should have a passport. We recommend you add getting a new passport or renewing your current passport to your 2023 To Do List.
We’ve seen too many people have to miss out on an amazing last-minute travel opportunity because they aren’t prepared.
What is a passport? A passport is an internationally recognized travel document verifying your identity and citizenship. Only the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Embassies and Consulates can issue or verify U.S. passports. Most foreign countries require a valid passport to enter and leave. All U.S. citizens traveling internationally by air must present a valid passport to reenter the U.S. For more information on how to apply, read https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports.html/
A routine passport takes approximately 6 to 9 weeks to process. If you need to expedite the process, it could take 3 to 5 weeks to process. There is an extra fee associated with the expedited request.
Do I need a passport if I’m just taking a Caribbean cruise from a U.S. port? It’s a really, really good idea but not a requirement in most situations, although many feel that it should be. When you depart and return to the same U.S. port, you must have proof of citizenship (a passport or your official birth certificate), a government-issued ID (driver’s license), plus a copy of your marriage license for women whose last name has changed since birth. A passport is a good idea, however, because if an issue should arise while you are abroad without a passport and you need to fly home, you’re in trouble! Also, if you become injured or ill and need to fly home, having a passport will significantly minimize the hassle…and you don’t need hassle when you are sick or hurt!
Do my children need passports? Yes! Every person, even an infant, must have their own passport to fly to a foreign destination. Make sure you check the expiration date on your children’s passports because passports for children under the age of 16 are only valid for five years.
This trip is our honeymoon. Can we travel as Mr. and Mrs. “Newlywed”? We can understand how romantic it sounds to use your brand-new last name on your honeymoon. However, we can assure you that your experience at airport check-in will not be romantic. You must travel under the name on your passport. Usually, that is your maiden name, so use that for your airline ticket. Your airline ticket’s name must match your passport’s name exactly. Once you arrive at your honeymoon destination, people will happily address you both as Mr. and Mrs. “Newlywed.” When you return and have the time, you can apply to have your name changed on your passport.
It is worth the time, energy, and financial investment to be a U.S. Passport holder. Don’t miss out on a great travel opportunity because you aren’t prepared! If you need assistance with the application process or have any questions…let us know.
Tillie and Joe James
Tillie James Travel LLC
804.997.9460 | firstname.lastname@example.org