When your job involves a lot of travel, you always want to know that you’re prepared ahead of time and that you won’t run into any last minute snags. There are so many destinations to go to with different rules for travel documents. Don’t get caught up at the airport with a passport they won’t accept by following these simple tips.
1. Get your new passport before the old one expires
The first and most obvious tip is to make sure that you and your fellow travellers’ passports are valid. With long life spans of up to ten years, your passport might expire without you noticing.
When your passport expires or has less than six months left you need to get it renewed. Even if you don’t have a holiday or trip booked, get it sorted while you have time to avoid unnecessary stress, especially considering the recent delays in passport offices up and down the country.
2. Some countries require your passport to be valid for six months
Every country has slightly different rules about travel documentation. One of the traps that you could get caught in, through no fault of your own, is not having enough time left on your passport.
Some countries require you to have at least three months of validity left on your passport from when you arrive, some require as long as six months. For frequent fliers this means doing a little research on which place requires what.
Additionally there are many countries that require visiting travellers, whether for business or pleasure, to have a certain number of blank pages in their passport. If you have less than five pages then it would be worth checking the requirement of the country you are planning to head to.
3. Be careful not to damage your passport
If you’re a regular business traveller daily wear and tear is to be expected. You might be able to keep it in reasonable condition but watch out for serious damage that will invalidate your passport.
There are certain things that have been earmarked as unacceptable:
- Tears – whether accidentally or by getting it caught between books and files in your bag.
- Pen marks – keep it clear of leaky pens and don’t be tempted to use a blank page to jot down a quick note.
- Water damage – when you’re on the go you might be subject to the weather but make sure to keep it dry and off the airport bar, just in case.
4. You can always outsource the application if you need to
Unfortunately, no matter how careful we are, the best of us can lose our passports. Sadly, they can also be stolen or just need renewing. In any of these situations, you’ll want to get your old passport cancelled and a replacement as soon as possible.
Independent UK advice services, such as Passports Office, can help you. Their teams are experts in dealing with passport applications, they will have dealt with hundreds and they’ll know how to get your passport back to you as soon as possible.
They can complete the whole application process for you or offer you some advice. As a bonus, you won’t have to worry about constantly checking your mail tracking number hoping it gets to the office and back in time.