Document Requirements For Foreign Travel

moving abroad

We’ve all had some challenging moments obtaining or finding our travel documents, right? But you may not know that annually about sixty thousand travelers get turned away at borders because their documents are not in order. And that’s just in airports! So it’s important to know the basics of document requirements for foreign travel well before you embark on your trip. Here’s what you need to know:

Traveling to the United States

Especially since 2001, there is heightened international border security for those entering the United States. At minimum, you’ll want to have:

  • Your passport, with an expiration date at least six months in the future beyond your travel date
  • A travel visa if required by the nature of your travel or the country in which you reside
  • Proof of current full vaccination against Covid-19
  • Special documents depending our your home country, such as China for which you will likely need and EVUS form.

In addition, you’ll want to carry your officially issued identification, typically your driver license. And it’s a good idea to carry copies of all of the above in the event that the originals are lost or misplaced.

Travelling to the European Union

Even though it consists of 27 different separate nations, the European Union has agreements to facilitate the movement of both goods and people. But that doesn’t mean it’s not a bit complicated!

There are specifics depending where you reside, who is traveling with you, and more. Check out the official and current requirements at Your Europe. And remember that international laws, even within the European Union, are constantly changing. So stay abreast of current requirements and check for current official policies before you plan your trip – and before you embark!

Travelling to Other Countries

The United States has specific relaxed requirements for citizens of a handful of other countries. The European Union likewise has similar travel agreements. Beyond that, your travel will require that you be aware of the requirements of each individual country you intend to visit. Probably the best source of document requirements for foreign travel can be found at, which maintains current rules and regulations for over 220 countries that is updated multiple times per day. There, you can find information on passports, visas, health requirements, airport taxes, customs regulations, currency laws, and even news of changes currently in progress. It’s a valuable resource for all travelers!

In Summary

Getting ready for your trip requires much more than just packing your bags and booking a flight. The last thing you want is to get surprised. To be delayed or even turned away because you don’t have complete or correct documents. Take the time to learn what’s required well ahead of time. Be sure you have everything together before you bid that “bon voyage!”

Ms. Career Girl

Ms. Career Girl was started in 2008 to help ambitious young professional women figure out who they are, what they want and how to get it.