Have Your Passports Ready!
January 11, 2008
By Bob Kraft
Category: Consumer Information
The following information is available on the Department of State's Web site.
Implemented on January 23, 2007, all individuals traveling by air between the United States and Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, and the Caribbean region are required to present a passport or other valid travel document to enter or re-enter the United States.
Beginning JANUARY 31, 2008, U.S. and Canadian citizens traveling by land and sea will need to present either a government-issued photo ID, such as a driver's license, plus proof of citizenship, such as a birth certificate or passport.
Please note the passport requirement does not apply to U.S. citizens traveling to or returning directly from a U.S. territory. U.S. territories include:
• American Samoa
• Northern Mariana Islands
• Puerto Rico
• Swains Island
• U.S. Virgin Islands
Due to the increase in passport applications, the effective dates of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative have been amended. At a later date, to be determined, the departments will implement the full requirements of the land and sea phase of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative. The proposed rules require U.S. citizens entering the United States at sea or land ports of entry to have either a U.S. passport; a U.S. passport card; a trusted traveler card such as NEXUS, FAST, or SENTRI; a valid Merchant Mariner Document (MMD) when traveling in conjunction with official maritime business; or a valid U.S. Military identification card when traveling on official orders. The expected date of implementation is Summer of 2008.
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