Get Jacki’s Newsletter

Add this to the top of your 'What to Pack' list

Today’s blog might seem a bit off topic, but I wanted to share a suggestion with my friends and readers. Consider this a Public Service Announcement for anyone who loves to travel.

GET A PASSPORT.

I’ve had a passport for years, and I often assume most people have this pocket-sized blue booklet. A casual conversation with a friend of mine revealed that isn’t necessarily the case.

My friend mentioned that she unexpectedly had an opportunity to travel to Europe but was now in a mad scramble to get a passport. The process seemed straightforward enough…until she ran into problems with her birth certificate. She had to order a new one online since she no longer lives in the state where she was born. No problem, right? Wrong. That process was supposed to take two weeks and now four weeks later, she’s getting nervous.

So why do you need a passport…especially if you aren’t planning to travel abroad?

The most obvious reason is never say never. Like my friend, an unexpected opportunity to travel may present itself and you’ll be glad you’re prepared.

International travel will increase by 35% over the next 10 years, according to a 2016 study conducted by VISA. While work, finances and family obligations may preclude international travel right now, your situation may change in the not-too-distant future.

Any international travel, even venturing into Canada and Mexico from the U.S., requires a valid passport (or passport card). Dreaming of a Caribbean cruise? You’ll need a passport. Invited to a destination wedding in Cabo San Lucas? You’ll need a passport. And what happens if you win an all-expense paid Mexican vacation from LIVE! with Kelly & Ryan? You’ll need a passport!

Be prepared for any eventuality. In the event a close friend or family member experiences an emergency situation while traveling outside the U.S. and needs help, you’ll be ready to help out if you already have a passport.

Get it now to save money. The average cost of a passport is $140. There are additional costs for expedited services and the application fee could increase in the future.

A passport serves as a secondary form of photo ID. If you lose your driver’s license or other important documentation, having a passport on hand can minimize the inconvenience.

Don’t have the extra cash to get your passport? Put it on your wish list. The next time someone asks what you want for your birthday or special occasion, tell them you want a passport. Just be sure to send them a postcard from your first international destination to say thanks. (A check for $140 along with a passport application makes a terrific graduation gift also!)

If you’re ready to get started or want more information, visit the U.S. Passports & International Travel site.

Leave a Reply

1 Comment on "Add this to the top of your ‘What to Pack’ list"

Notify of
avatar
Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
JoAn V.
Guest

I actually just got my first passport this month. My sister and I are hoping to travel once she retires. It was a complex procedure when they ask questions about some one who you haven’t had any contact with in 20 years. LOL!

wpDiscuz