When you are in the process of being accepted to speak on a ship, you will get inundated with forms to fill in. One thing the ship needs to know in advance is your passport info. I personally consider this info that bad guys want, so I either call it to them or make sure they have a site that is https for security.
You are required to have 6 months left on your term. AND you need to have 4 blank pages. If you fall short on either of these, get a new one NOW. All Post Offices have the forms. This can take a month or so…don’t delay. No passport – no trip. Ditto for your guest.
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Having a passport will enable you to fly from the U.S. to a foreign port in the event you miss your scheduled embarkation or to fly back to the U.S. if you need to disembark the ship mid-cruise due to an emergency. Always register with the state department in case of bad times. Go to the State website and check out any advisories for the countries.
A buddy had to get out of Kenya quickly due to an uprising a couple years ago. It’s easy for the govt to come to your rescue if they can find you. Email alerts work.
The ship will collect your passport upon boarding. They store them to make sure they are available to local authorities. This helps them get clearance when the ship arrives in a port. In a few cases they will give it to you before you go out on a tour….depending on the country.
A tip: Xerox (er, copy) everything in your wallet and your passport ID page. Make three copies….one in your suitcase, one on you and one for your contact at home. It is also a good idea to make a copy to keep for yourself at home. Some advise bringing one passport size photo in case the Embassy needs to make you a new one. Your call on that one.
Your name on your passport must be the same as on your on your cruise documents, boarding passes and such. My last cruise was almost a stopper. When I went to check in – they had an “A” in my name that doesn’t exist. All my other docs and passport were current. “Are you sure that your name is misspelled?” Duh.
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