A passport is an important document which helps in establishing national identity of an individual. The same concept is applicable for US citizens as well. The US passport is considered as one of the most powerful passports in the world. Issued by the US Department of State, the US passport is a blue colored book. Once an American citizen acquires a US passport, he/she can travel to any part of the world without any kinds of problems. Infact having a US passport also helps in getting visa exemptions from many nations. If you are traveling to a foreign destination, confirm if you need a visa with a US passport in hand. As per current news and reports, US citizens can travel to almost 155 countries without a visa. The numbers might change depending on global political and foreign policy regulations.
As an American citizen if you don’t have a passport yet, it is high time that you apply for one and get a passport soon. The document is not only needed for international traveling but as identity and nationality proof as well. The passport contains complete details of the individual including his/her name, photograph, age, sex, nationality, date of birth and other personal information. In a foreign land, this document helps in establishing identity easily and conveniently. Entries and departures to and from foreign countries are also recorded in the passport for any kind of reference. The importance of the US passport is hence clearly understood.
There is added importance and value of having a US passport. Some of these include:
• The rule–Having a valid US passport is mandatory for all US citizens, who are traveling to any place outside the United States. The passport is needed while departing from US, while making an entry into the foreign land and while re-entering the United States. A US passport has validity of 10 years, which is a long time. Possessing a US passport will keep you at peace for 10 years and then it needs renewal.
• Proof of identification – The US passport is one of the best documents to prove identification for US citizens. This document is considered to be reliable and is trusted globally. It is the US State Department that issues the US passport with lots of security features integrated in the same. Therefore it is practically impossible to duplicate or forge a US passport. This is the reason that there are no questions on the authenticity of US passports and it acts as a highly valued document for identification sake.
• Travel document– International traveling requires having a passport for sure. Having a valid US passport helps in managing various kinds of travel concerns which are common for international trips and travels. With a valid US passport, a person can travel to any part of the world without any kind of problem. In many countries different kinds of documents are needed to permit entry. But with a US passport, no other document is needed. There are many countries which allow entry to US citizens with evidence of citizenship in the form of driver’s license, birth certificate or other kinds of personal documents. These requirements might be different for different nations. Therefore there might be the need of carrying all these documents in original along with their copies. But if one carries a valid US passport, no other documents need to be carried at all. This one document replaces all the other documents easily. There is no obstacle or problem in entry or passage to a new country with a valid US passport.
• Evidence of citizenship – Along with being a photo identification proof, the passport is also an evidence of citizenship. Getting a US passport done is a rigorous process and the application procedure is quite extensive. Not being a citizen of US and applying for a US passport involves lots of formalities and other processes and procedures and it is almost impossible to get a passport easily. There are many instances in which the citizenship of an individual is questioned and proper answers and evidences need to be provided. The US passport can be shown in such situations easily to the governing authorities as evidence of citizenship. Producing the passport will help in clearing all kinds of confusions regarding the citizenship of an individual.
• Option of traveling without a visa for many countries – You must have heard about the Visa Waiver program. There are many countries where US citizens do not need a visa to travel. US citizens can travel to these countries via the Visa Waiver Program. In this waiver program, basically an agreement takes place between the United States and the other nations. There are some counter terrorism standards and certain security standards that have to be maintained for the visa waiver program. There are more than 100 nations where Americans can travel without a visa. But they need to have a valid US passport with abundant validity. On the contrary, United States of America permits citizens or nationals of just 36 countries who can travel to the country without a visa.
A holder of US passport can make a stay in Tunisia, United Kingdom and some other countries for quite long period of time. In these countries, the US citizen with a valid US passport can stay for a time span of almost 6 months without a visa. Again, nations like Canada and France permit US passport possessors to live in the country for 3 months without the need of a visa. Again, there are some countries, where US passport holders can stay without a visa for just one month.
Now that you have understood the value and importance of US passport, get one if you already don’t have one. Go to the website of the US Department of State and read in details about the requirements of getting a new US passport. Arrange the documents and photographs accordingly so that nothing is missed. Fill up the application form in an error-free manner and submit the required documents along with the passport processing fee to obtain a new US passport.