A few important travel updates for certain destinations

Passport and Visa update

This month I have a few important travel updates to give you, with reference to certain destinations, which you may not be aware of:

 

FOR THE USA

From the 1st April 2016 ALL passengers MUST have the red and gold symbol for biometrics (as shown above) on their passport to visit the USA.

 

This symbol for biometrics is usually printed on the cover of passports.  Also known as a e-passport, epassport or a digital passport. These are a combined paper and electronic passport that contains biometric information that can be used to authenticate the identity of travellers. This should only effect people that have passports over 9 years old but is worth checking in order to avoid problems at the airport.

FOR VIETNAM

After last month’s fascinating article about Vietnam and Cambodia, we have had many requests for holidays to this part of the World. Until 30th June this Year you did not require a visa to visit Vietnam. This, unfortunately, has changed. As from the 1st July you will need to apply for a ‘Vietnam Visa Approval Letter’ ready for your arrival in the country. The system to apply is quite straight forward;

Firstly, apply for your Visa Approval letter on -   www.vietnam-evisa.org/apply-visa.html

- Receive a visa approval via email (attached with an entry and exit form)

- Print out the letter for entry and exit

- Fill out the entry and exit form

- Prepare 2 passport size photos 4x6cm plus you will need either $25 for single visa or $50 for a multiple entry visa as a stamping fee

- Put all the above in your passport and have them ready to give to the Immigration officer at your Vietnam arrival airport

If you have booked your holiday to Vietnam through a Travel Agent I’m sure they will be happy to do all this for you, just ask.

 

FOR CANADA

On the 15th March if you arrived by Air into Canada you were required to obtain an electronic visa on-line before arrival. Due to a lot of confusion the Canadian authorities have relaxed this regulation until then Autumn, stating that travellers who don’t have an eTA can board their flight, as long as they have appropriate travel documents (eg a valid passport). During this time, border services officers can let travellers arriving without an eTA into the country as long as they meet all other requirements to enter the country. i.e at least 6 months’ validity left on your Passport.

 

There are so many changes in regulations, and visas, travelling to Countries throughout the World that I would ask you to always check with your Travel Agent to see if your Passport is valid, and if you require any extra documentation. If you do not have a British Passport YOU will have to check with your own Embassy, and the Country you are visiting, for entry requirements. It may not be the same as a British Passport holder, so this must be checked BEFORE booking.

When booking on-line you should always be notified if a visa is needed, although this doesn’t always happen, and I’ve heard of many travellers being turned away at airports because they have not applied for a Visa, or their passports were not valid for the minimum duration required. Ultimately, it is YOUR responsibility to have all the correct documents for whichever country you are visiting.

You have been warned!

About the author

Anthony is our very own "Mr Travel" having left school at 16 and working within the industry ever since. Co-owner of Golden Ticket Travel he often appears as the travel expert on BBC Radio Devon and fills numerous guest speaker slots for local organisations and charities. Specialising in luxury holidays he is always on hand to share stories and tips gained from his extensive travels.

Errors and omissions excepted.

Any travel advice provided is intended to help you make better-informed decisions about foreign travel. We do not assume any responsibility, including legal responsibility, to those who read the travel advice and who choose to take it into account when making any decisions relating to a particular country, or to those affected by their decisions.

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