Do I Need A Travel Visa For The Country I'm Visiting?

July 12, 2018 Global Basecamps

Category Travel Tips

It’s good to be in the know when it comes to travel visas if you want to travel the world. If we plan to travel, especially as a United States citizen and to destinations outside of the EU (many of these countries do not require a travel visa for stays under 90 days), the majority of the time we will need a travel visa. A visa is an endorsement in one’s passport that allows the traveler to stay in a country or other territory for a specified duration of time. There are many types and lengths of travel visas, and there are several factors involved in getting them arranged for the country you’ll be visiting. With Global Basecamps putting together the best trips out there to dozens of countries, let’s get you started on your travel visa education!

What kind of travel visas are there?

Depending on what the time abroad is about, there is a visa for every traveler. Transit visas let you pass through for just a few days, while work visas can let you stay for years in some countries. Visas can be single or multiple-entry, allowing for only one, or numerous, entries. Most of us planning for an adventure abroad will be going after a tourist visa, many of which permit stays of 30 to 90 days. You can learn more general information about visas here.

When do I need to get my travel visa?

Planning for your visa should begin as early as possible before your trip, even a number of months. Turnaround time can vary quite widely, with some taking months to arrive after you apply for them online while still at home. Other countries, using Tanzania as an example, requires $100 for a single entry visa on arrival for US citizens, good for three months. Requirements include, but aren’t limited to the following:
  • A completed travel visa application form, signed by applicant.
  • The actual passport valid for at least 6 months.
  • Two passport sized photographs recently taken.
  • A prepaid self-addressed envelope to facilitate return of passport by the most secure mail.
  • Provide flight itinerary, ticket or tour operator package receipt.
The US Embassy website for the country (Tanzania’s is here) is good for more complete information; here and here are good places to get started on country visa requirements in general.

What about my passport?

All happy and smooth visa procedures rest on a valid and orderly passport. This means having plenty of visa pages left on yours to accommodate all entries and exits from the countries you will be (or might be!) visiting on your trip, bearing in mind that some visas take up an entire face of a page. One thing to remember that just recently came to pass in January of 2016 is that the U.S. Department of State no longer offers the service of adding visa pages to a passport, something that frequent travelers of yesteryear used to to do all the time. Also make sure that your passport will be valid for up to six months from the end of your planned trip. Travelers, take note! And if you’re a bit behind and still need to get a passport period, or are in need of passport renewal, get a move on right away here.

Don’t let the travel visa process discourage you - people travel around the world by the millions and successfully manage them all the time. Just plan ahead as best you can, get your documents in order, and be in touch with us to help you plan the perfect trip!

Tags: Travel Tips