It’s time to get a passport

I’m not sure why so many Americans are resistant to getting a passport (cost?  laziness?) but it really is time to bite the bullet and go ahead and get one. The government has been waffling back and forth for a couple of years, changing, re-changing, and delaying their own plans to phase in universal passport requirements for all border crossings (land, sea and air), but they will be tightening up the rules as of June 1, 2009.

 

This recent article does a good job of explaining what the new rules mean for cruisers, but if you scroll all the way to the bottom and read the comments you’ll see that even travel professionals have a hard time interpreting all the guidelines. 

Yes, there are still loopholes (like “closed loop” voyages) and less expensive options (like the “passport card“), but the safest course of action is to just go ahead and get a passport. It costs just $100 (less for children), it’s good for 10 years (5 years for kids 15 and under), and it’s the most universally accepted form of identification.

Plus, with a passport in your pocket, you’re ready for any last-minute travel opportunity that arises!

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You provided excellent guidance for us. I appreciated that you really had us think about what was most important to us when we were selecting the right cruise – and not to totally focus on what other people had to say. THANK YOU for helping to make this a memorable trip for our family! It really was a trip of a lifetime!

Clare and Mark (family cruise to Alaska)

The level of service we experienced was out of this world (and we did NOT make it easy on Ann). We weren’t quite sure where we wanted to go, when we would be able to go, or what “vibe” we were going for. After asking us some key questions (what we liked, didn’t like, why, etc.) Ann helped us narrow down our trip details and planned the honeymoon of our dreams. She helped book some of our excursions, answered some emergency questions while abroad and was always available/willing to help. I think it’s safe to say we won’t be using anyone else for future travel planning – Ann is a rockstar!

Carli (Italy and Spain)