It’s very important that all travelers have the appropriate and correct documents for travel outside of the United States. We’ve outlined below what you need and how to get it.
Passports and Visas
Every citizen of the United States is required to have a valid passport any time they leave the country. In preparation for your tour, we require your passport number and expiration date be supplied to your tour coordinator a minimum of 90 days prior to departure. If you do not have a valid passport when you enroll for your tour, make sure to send the number, expiration date, and confirm the name on your passort to your tour coordinator as soon as the document is received.
Validity: Passports must be valid for 6 months after your return from Europe. As an example, if you are traveling from June 1-15, 2017, your passport must be valid until December 16, 2017, 6 months after your return date. It’s important to check passport expiration dates immediately upon enrolling for your tour and apply for or renew your passport as soon as possible.
How to apply for a new passport or renew an expired passport: All the information you need to apply for your passport is outlined on the State Department website
Enrolling for your tour without a valid passport: It’s important that you enroll for your tour as soon as possible. It’s not necessary to have a valid passport to enroll, however you should apply for your passport as soon as possible after enrollment. When it is received, forward the number, expiration date, and confirm the name on your passport to your tour coordinator by email. Do not enroll and second time for your tour. NOTE: If you are renewing your passport the number on the new document will be different from your old one.
Passport name: it is extremely important that the name on your passport match the name on your airline ticket. If they do not match, you risk being denied boarding at the airport. If you are enrolling without a valid passport, use your given name as it appears on your birth certificate, and confirm this with your tour coordinator when you supply the new document information. If you have recently married or your name has changed, it is not mandatory that you renew your passport, however, it is important that your airline ticket be issued in the same name that appears on your passport.
Visas: Visas are not needed by United States citizens traveling to countries within the EU. If your tour is traveling to a country that requires US citizens to have an advance visa, you will advised by your tour coordinator.
Copy your documents: Make 2 copies of your documents and credit cards. Leave one at home with a trusted friend and take the other with you, kept separately from the originals.
Airline tickets are now issued electronically. In your travel documents, you will receive only a receipt that includes your ticket number and flight schedule. When checking in for your flight, you will be asked for your passport as identification, and then will be issued a boarding pass to be used when clearing security and boarding the airplane. It is important that the name in which your ticket is issued, match your passport name. As a reminder it is generally not possible to confirm seat assignments until airport check in.