Planning a trip usually brings in a lot of stress with it. Regardless of whether you’re planning a vacation, a business trip, a visit to family or friends, the planning itself is always stressful. You have so many things to think about: accommodation, who’s going to take care of things while you’re gone, travel expenses, flight schedules, and on and on. The last thing you need is to have to deal with passport problems.
Here are 9 things that you can do to avoid any problems with your passport and to ensure that you have a smooth and problem-free trip.
Find Out If You Need A Passport
Some countries do not require a passport from US travelers, but most countries do. Before you even start planning anything, check the country’s foreign requirements to find out if you need a passport.
Process Your Passport
There were times when it would have been advisable to apply for your passport at least 3 months before your planned trip. But those days are over, because you can now process your passport online and have it expedited. You can get your passport in as early as 24 hours.
Correctly Fill Out Forms
When filling out your passport forms online, make sure you put in all the correct information. After filling the forms out, double check before you submit. Incorrect information could delay your passport application.
Submit All Necessary Documents
Along with the necessary forms, there will be some required documentation that you need to submit as well. Make sure to use the passport processing checklist provided to help you ensure that all necessary documentation is submitted.
Sign All Necessary Fields
Some people tend to forget to provide their signatures because of all the other things that the forms and documents need. Without your signature, the forms won’t be valid, so make sure that you sign where needed.
Ask For More Pages
To limit the number of times you’ll need to deal with processing your passport, it is always better to just ask for more pages. This way, it will take longer before you need a passport replacement.
Signature And Information On Your Passport
Once you have your passport, make sure to check that the information there is all accurate. Then sign it and fill in the information needed.
Make Back-up Copies
At least two copies are advisable. Give one copy to someone who you can trust and who can easily be there in case you lose your passport or some other emergency happens. One copy should be with you while you’re traveling, along with the original. But keep them separate, so that if one gets lost, you still have another copy.
Secure Your Passport
Once you’re already on your trip, make sure that you keep your passport in a safe place. Keeping one copy in the hotel safe and one with you would be a good way to go. When you carry your passport with you, make sure that it is as close to your body as possible. A coat or jacket pocket would be advisable. Don’t place your passport in places that could be easily stolen – like your purse or your baggage.
Taking these steps to ensure that you don’t encounter any passport problems allows you the space to deal with the other things that need to be done for your trip. Also, check out Fastport Passport to learn about how you can have your passport expedited so you don’t have to keep worrying about it.
Do you have any tips to share when it comes to passport processing? Let us know in the comments below.