Different types of passport issued in
is a document, issued by a national
government, which certifies, for the purpose of international
travel, the identity and nationality of its holder. The elements of
identity are name, date of birth, sex, and place of birth. Most
often, nationality and citizenship are congruent
A passport does not of itself entitle the passport holder entry
into another country, nor to consular protection while abroad or
any other privileges, in the absence of any special agreements
which cover the situation. It does, however, normally entitle the
passport holder to return to the country that issued the passport.
Rights to consular protection arise from international agreements,
and the right to return arises from the laws of the issuing
country. A passport does not represent the right or the place of
residence of the passport holder in the country that issued the
One of the earliest known reference to what served the major role
of a passport is found in the Hebrew
. In , attributed to the time of the Persian Empire in about 450 BC, it is said
that Nehemiah, an official serving King Artaxerxes I of Persia, asked leave
to travel to Judea, and the
king granted leave and gave him a letter "to the governors beyond
the river" requesting safe passage for him as he traveled through
In the medieval Islamic Caliphate
, a form
of passport was used in the form of a bara'a
, a receipt
citizens who paid their zakah
) or jizya
were permitted to travel to different regions of the Caliphate,
thus the bara'a
receipt was a "traveller's basic
It is considered unlikely that the term "passport" is derived from
sea ports, but rather from a medieval document required to pass
through the gate ("porte") of a city wall. In medieval Europe
, such documents were issued to
travelers by local authorities, and generally contained a list of
towns and cities into which a document holder was permitted to
pass. On the whole, documents were not required for travel to sea
ports, which were considered open trading points, but documents
were required to travel inland from sea ports.
King Henry V of England
credited with having invented what some consider the first true
passport, notwithstanding the earlier examples cited, as a means of
helping his subjects prove who they were in foreign lands.
The rapid expansion of rail travel in Europe from the
mid-nineteenth century led to a breakdown of the European passport
system of the early part of the nineteenth century. The speed of
trains, as well as the numbers of passengers that crossed many
borders, made enforcement of passport laws difficult. The general
reaction was the relaxation of passport requirements. In the later
part of the nineteenth century and up to World War I
, passports were not required, on the
whole, for travel within Europe, and crossing a border was
straightforward. Consequently, comparatively few people had
passports. The Ottoman
Empire and the Russian
Empire maintained passport requirements for international
travel, in addition to an internal-passport system to control
travel within their borders.
Early passports included a description of the passport holder.
Photographs began to be attached to passports in the early decades
of the twentieth century, when photography became widespread.
During World War I
, European governments
introduced border passport requirements for security reasons (to
keep out spies) and to control the emigration of citizens with
useful skills, retaining potential manpower. These controls
remained in place after the war, and became standard procedure,
though not without controversy. British tourists of the 1920s
complained, especially about attached photographs and physical
descriptions, which they considered led to a "nasty
In 1920, the League of Nations
held a conference on passports and through tickets. Passport
guidelines resulted from the conference, which was followed up by
conferences in 1926 and 1927.
The United Nations held a travel conference in 1963, but passport
guidelines did not result from it. Passport standardisation came about in
1980, under the auspices of the International
Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).
The terminology related to passports has become generally
standardized around the world. The typical passports include:
- Ordinary passport, also called tourist passport
- Issued to ordinary citizens.
- Official passport, also called service passport
- Issued to government employees for work-related travel, and to
- Diplomatic passport
- Issued to diplomats and consuls for work-related travel, and to
accompanying dependents. Having a diplomatic passport is not the
equivalent of having diplomatic
immunity. A grant of diplomatic status, a privilege of which is
diplomatic immunity, has to come from the government of the country
in relation to which diplomatic status is claimed. Also, having a
diplomatic passport does not mean visa-free travel. A holder of a
diplomatic passport usually has to obtain a diplomatic visa, even
if a holder of an ordinary passport may enter a country visa-free
or may obtain a visa on arrival.
- In exceptional circumstances, a diplomatic passport is given to
a foreign citizen with no passport of his own, such as an exiled
VIP who lives, by invitation, in a foreign country.
- Emergency passport, also called temporary passport
- Issued to persons whose passports were lost or stolen, and who
do not have time to obtain replacement passports.
- Collective passport
- Issued to defined groups for travel together to particular
destinations, such as a group of school children on a school trip
to a specified country.
- Family passport
- Issued to family members—father, mother, son, daughter. There
is one passport holder. The passport holder may travel alone or
with one or more other family members. A family member who is not
the passport holder cannot use the passport for travel unless
accompanied by the passport holder.
- A document which is not a passport, but which serves the
function of a passport. Laissez-passer are issued by international
organizations to their officers and employees for official
- Alien's passport
- A document which is not a passport, but is a document issued
under certain circumstances, such as statelessness, to non-citizen
Latvia, an alien's passport is a passport for non-citizens - former citizens of the
Union who reside in Latvia, but are not entitled to
citizenship. It is used as an internal passport inside
Latvia, and as a travel document outside Latvia.
- Internal passport
- A document which is not a passport, but is an identity document which keeps track of
migration within a country. Examples: the internal passport of Russia, or
the hukou residence-registration system
in mainland China, both dating
back to imperial times.
- Camouflage and Fantasy Passports
- A Camouflage passport is a
document that appears to be a regular passport but is actually in
the name of a country that no longer exists or never existed.
Companies that sell camouflage passports make the rather dubious
claim that in the event of a hijacking they could be shown to
terrorists to aid escape. There is no known instance of this
happening. Because a camouflage passport is not issued in the name
of a real country, it is not a counterfeit and is not illegal per
se to have. However attempting to use it to actually enter a
country would be illegal in most jurisdictions.
- A fantasy passport is likewise a document not
issued by a recognized government and invalid for legitimate
travel. Fantasy passports are distinguished from camouflage
passports in that they are issued by an actual, existent group,
organization, or tribe. In some cases the goal of the fantasy
passport is to make a political statement or to denote membership
in the organization. In other cases they are issued more or less as
a joke or for souvenir purposes.
International Civil Aviation Organization Standards
International Civil Aviation
Organization (ICAO) issues passport standards which are treated
as recommendations to national governments.
The standard passport format includes the name of the issuing
country on a passport cover, a national symbol, a description of
the document (e.g., passport, official passport, diplomatic
passport), and, if the passport is biometric
, the biometric-passport symbol. Inside,
there is a title page, also naming the country. This is followed by
a data page, on which there is information about the bearer and the
issuing authority, although passports of some European Union member
states provide that information on the inside back cover. There are
blank pages available for foreign countries to affix visas, and to
stamp for entries and exit. Passports have numerical or
alphanumerical designators ("serial
") assigned by the issuing authority.
Standards for machine-readable
have also been issued by the ICAO, with an area set
aside where most of the information written as text is also printed
in a manner suitable for optical character
To conform with ICAO standards, a biometric passport
has an embedded
contactless smart card
contains data about the passport holder, a photograph in digital
format, and data about the passport itself. Many countries now
issue biometric passports. The objectives for the biometric
passports are to speed up clearance through immigration and the
prevention of identity fraud. These reasons are disputed by privacy
advocates. Governments are reluctant to acknowledge privacy
Although many countries issue biometric passports, few introduced
the equipment needed to read them at ports of entry. In the absence
of an international standard, it is not possible for one country to
read the biometric information in passports issued by another
A passport contains a message, usually near the front of a
passport, requesting that the bearer of the passport be allowed to
pass freely, and further requests that, in the event of need, the
bearer be granted assistance. The message is sometimes made in the
name of the government or the head of state, notionally by the
representative of the government. The message may be written in
more than one language, depending on the language policies of the
issuing authority. For example, the English passport message in a
Philippine passport is
- The Government of the Republic of the Philippines requests
all concerned authorities to permit the bearer, a citizen of the
Philippines, to pass safely and freely and in case of need to give
him/her all lawful aid and protection.
Other examples: United Kingdom; United States. However, such a
message is not always present, for instance not in Norwegian
An international conference on passports and through tickets, held
by the League of Nations
recommended that passports be issued in French, historically the
language of diplomacy, and one other language. Nowadays, the ICAO
recommends that passports be issued in English and French, or in
the national language of the issuing country and in either English
Some unusual language combinations are:
- Passports issued by member states of the European Union bear
all of the official languages of the EU. These are not printed in
each location, however. Two or three languages are printed at the
relevant point, followed by numbers which refer to the passport
pages on which translations into all the remaining languages appear
- Barbadian passports are
tri-lingual: English, French and Spanish.
- Belgium allows its citizens to choose which of its three
official languages (Dutch, French, German) is to appear first.
- The face page of the older, pre- EU- version of the Hungarian passport ("Útlevél" in
Hungarian, lit. "Roadletter") is in Hungarian only. Inside, there
is a second, Hungarian-English bilingual, page. The
personal-information page offers Hungarian, English, and French
explanations of the details. An additional page, which has
explanations in English, French, Chinese, Russian, Spanish and
Arabic, was later on also added.
- The first page of a Libyan passport is in Arabic only. The last
page has an English equivalent of the information on the first
page. Similar arrangements are found in passports of some other
- New Zealand passports are
in English and Maori.
- Pakistani passports are in
Urdu, English, Arabic and French.
- Swiss passports are in five
languages: German, French, Italian, Rumansch and English.
The design and layout of passports of the member states of the
European Union are a result of consensus and recommendation, rather
than of directive. Passports are issued by member states, not by
the EU. The data page can be at the front or at the back of a
passport, and there are small design differences to indicate which
member state is the issuer. The covers of ordinary passports are
burgundy-red, with "European Union" written in the national
language or languages. Below that are the name of the country, a
national symbol, the word or words in the national language or
languages for "passport", and, at the bottom, the symbol for a
Central America, the members of the
CA-4 Treaty (Guatemala, El
Salvador, Honduras, and Nicaragua) adopted a common-design passport, called the
Central American passport.
Although the design had been in
use by Nicaragua and El Salvador since the mid-1990s, it became the
norm for the CA-4 in January 2006. The main features are the
navy-blue cover with the words "América Central" and a map of
Central America, and with the territory of the issuing country
highlighted in gold. This substitutes one map for four national
symbols. At the bottom of the cover are the name of the issuing
country and the passport type. As of 2006, the Nicaraguan passport,
which is the model for the passports of the three other countries,
is issued in Spanish, French, and English.
The member states of the Caribbean
(CARICOM) recently began issuing passports to a
featuring the CARICOM symbol along with the national symbol and
name of the member state, rendered in an CARICOM official language
(English, French, Dutch). The member states which use the common design
are Antigua and
Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts
and Nevis, Saint
Lucia, Saint Vincent and the
Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago.
The member states of the Organisation of Eastern
(OECS) had originally planned for a common
January 1, 2003, but it was delayed. Plans to introduce a CARICOM
common passport would have made the OECS passport redundant, since
all full members of the OECS were also full members of CARICOM.
Thus, by November, 2004, the OECS governments agreed to give
CARICOM a deadline of May 2005, to introduce a CARICOM passport,
failure of which would have resulted in moving ahead with the
introduction of the OECS Passport. The CARICOM passport was
introduced in January 2005, by Suriname, so the idea of an OECS
passport was abandoned. Had the OECS passport been introduced,
however, it would not have been issued to economic citizens within
the OECS states.
declaration adopted in Cusco, Peru,
establishing the Union
of South American Nations, signalled an intention to establish
a common passport design, but this appears to be a long way
Already, some member states of regional sub-groupings
such as Mercosur
and the Andean Community of Nations
issue passports that bear their official names and seals, along
with the name of their regional grouping. Examples include
Paraguay and Ecuador.
The members of the Andean
Community of Nations
began, in 2001, the process of adopting a
common passport format. Specifications for the common passport
format were outlined in an Andean Council of Foreign Ministers
meeting in 2002. The member states also agreed to phase in new
, bearing the
official name of the regional body in Spanish (Comunidad
), by January, 2005. Previously-issued national
passports will be valid until their expiry dates. The Andean passport
is currently in use in Ecuador and Peru.
Bolivia and Colombia were to start issuing Andean passports in early
Andean passports are bordeaux (burgundy-red), with
words in gold. Above the national seal of the issuing country is
the name of the organization in Spanish, which is centred and is
printed in a large font. Below the seal is the official name of the
member country. At the bottom of the cover is the Spanish word
"pasaporte" meaning "passport" and the English word as well.
Venezuela left the Andean Community, so it is likely that the
country will no longer issue Andean passports.
Passports contain a statement of the nationality of the holder. A
country with complex nationality laws could issue various passports
which are similar in appearance but are representative of differing
national statuses. Due to the British colonial history and
contemporary laws, the United Kingdom has a number of classes of
United Kingdom nationality, and more than one relationship of
persons to the United Kingdom. The several classes and
relationships cause foreign governments to subject holders of
different UK passports to different entry requirements.
A version of Tongan citizenship is available through investment. An
investor is described in a Tongan passport as a Tongan protected
person. The status does not carry with it the right of abode in
Tonga. Many countries accept Tongan passports which reflect actual
Tongan citizenship, but do not accept Tongan passports which
reflect investment citizenship.
The Central People's Government of the People's Republic of China
(PRC) authorizes by law its Special Administrative Region
(Hong Kong and Macau) to issue passports to its permanent residents
with Chinese nationality under the one country, two systems
arrangement. Visa policies imposed by foreign authorities on Hong
Kong and Macau permanent residents holding such passports are
different from those holding ordinary passports of the People's
Republic of China. Although it should be noted that all holders of
these passports are considered Chinese citizens (i.e. possessing
the same Chinese nationality status) under the Nationality Law of
the People's Republic of China, and it is possible to be a
permanent resident of Hong Kong or Macau without being a Chinese
National conditions on passport issuance
Pakistan requires a Muslim citizen who applies for a passport to
subscribe to the following declaration:
- I am a Muslim and believe in the
absolute and unqualified finality of the Prophethood of Muhammad the last
of the Prophets.
- I do not recognize any one who claims to be a prophet in any sense of the word or any description
whatsoever, after Prophet Muhammad or recognize such a claimant as
a prophet or a religious reformer as
- I consider Mirza Ghulam Ahmad
Qadiani to be an impostor prophet and an infidel and
also consider his followers whether belonging to the Lahori,
Qadiani or Mirzai groups, to be non-Muslims.
The declaration was instituted by the Islamist military regime of
. The reason
for the declaration is to prevent Qadianis from going to Mecca or
Medina for Hajj
.In the Pakistani biometric passport, there is no
box for noting the religion of the passport holder. This seemingly
made the religious subscription unnecessary. However, deletion of
the box was reversed by the Pakistani government, in response to
the religious parties. Passports have the religion box on page 3.
Passports without the religion box have a rubber-stamp declaration
of the passport holder's religion. However religion is not
mentioned on the Pakistani CNIC (Computerised National Identity
In Finland male citizens aged 18–30 years have to prove that they
have completed, or are exempt from, the obligatory military service
when applying for a
passport. If they have not yet completed the service, the passport
is issued only until the end of their 28th year in order to ensure
that they will not flee the country and desert.
Passports as government property
Most countries declare by law that passports are government
property (perhaps even counterfeit ones), and may be limited or
revoked at any time, usually on specified grounds. A limitation or
a revocation is generally subject to judicial review.
Passports and bail
In many countries, surrender of a passport is made a condition of
. While on bail a person may be
barred from applying for a passport or collecting a passport
already applied for.
One passport per person
Many countries issue only one passport to each national. When
passport holders apply for a new passport (commonly, due to
expiration of an old passport or lack of blank pages), they may be
required to surrender the old passport for invalidation. In some
circumstances an expired passport is not required to be surrendered
or invalidated (for example, if it contains an unexpired
Some countries allow, under specified circumstances, the holding of
more than one passport by a citizen. One circumstance is a
disqualifying stamp in a passport, such as a stamp which shows
travel to Israel, and the citizen intends travel to a country which
does not recognize Israel. Another circumstance is frequent
international travel including to countries with protracted visa
application process. Awaiting a visa for a particular country, a
person with two passports may travel to other countries with the
second passport. Some countries issue restricted passports valid
only for travel to one or more neighbouring countries. A person may
hold at the same time a restricted passport for frequent travels to
neighbouring countries and an ordinary international passport for
travels to other countries.
At one time it was common for a parent's passport to include the
names and photos of his or her children. These "family passports"
allowed children to travel together with their parents without the
need to issue individual passports to each child. Family passports
were not valid for children to travel by themselves or with someone
other than a parent. The United States and the United Kingdom once
issued family passports, but no longer do so, whereas some
countries, such as France, still do. An Uruguayan passport still
has two photo pages, on which there can be a listing of up to six
children, each with his thumbprint and details.
In recent years concerns over international child abduction,
including abduction by a parent, have led some countries to require
both parents to sign a passport application. In the United States,
a person aged 16 years or older can apply for a passport
themselves. Applications by those aged 15 and under require the
signatures of both parents or a statement, signed under penalty of
perjury, as to why only one parent is physically capable of signing
Limitations on passport use
Current Brazilian passport, adopted in December 2006, with its
Most countries accept passports of other countries as valid for
international travel and valid for entry. There are exceptions,
such as when a country does not recognise the passport-issuing
country as a sovereign state. Likewise, the passport-issuing
country may also stamp restrictions on the passports of its
citizens not to go to certain countries due to poor or non-existent
foreign relations, or security or health risks.
countries do not maintain diplomatic relations with Brazil; therefore,
Diplomatic, Official and Work Passports are not accepted and visas
are only granted to tourist or business visitors, under Brazilian
“laissez-passer”. The countries included in this group are:
African Republic and Taiwan.
Mainland China and Taiwan
Republic of China (PRC) and the Republic of China (ROC) do not recognise each other as sovereign
They both claim themselves as the only legal
government representing the whole China.
Consistent with the 1992 Consensus
the PRC and ROC legally consider both citizens in mainland China
and Taiwan as their own citizens, but residing in different areas
of the same nation. Neither the PRC nor the ROC accepts passports
issued by the other as entry documents.
Citizens in Taiwan use identity documents issued by PRC
public-security authorities to enter mainland China. Citizens in
mainland China entering Taiwan must also use identity documents
issued by the ROC authority, and have their mainland documents
surrendered. The identity documents cannot be used for
international travel, and an endorsement must be obtained
separately to enable travel.
The ROC used to require its citizens who intended travel to
mainland China to obtain official approval for the travel, and
prescribed an administrative fine of NT$20,000 to NT$100,000 for
those who did not. However, the fine was often unenforceable
because such travel was untraceable by examination of travel
documents, except if an ROC citizen lost his ROC passport while on
the mainland, and, so, had to report the loss. The
official-approval requirement was abolished, except in relation to
ROC officials, of whom applications are required.
The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) issues passports,
but only Turkey recognises its statehood. TRNC passports are not
accepted for entry into the Republic of Cyprus via airports or sea
ports, but are accepted at the designated green line crossing
points. However all Turkish Cypriots are entitled by law to the
issue of a Republic of Cyprus EU passport, since the opening of the
borders between the two republics, Cypriot and EU citizens can
travel freely to the divided sides.The United Kingdom, United
States of America, Pakistan, Azerbaijan and Syria currently
officially accept TRNC passports with the relevant
visas.Until 2003, Turkey did not accept passports
issued by the Republic of
Cyprus, because the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus
does not recognize the Republic of Cyprus.
accepts Greek Cypriot passports, but does not stamp them. Rather,
Turkish immigration officials stamp a separate visa issued by
Republic of Turkey issues Turkish Republic of Northern
Cyprus citizens with Turkish passports upon request to
ease the travel restrictions which the TRNC passport
The Republic of Cyprus however does not accept
Turkish (Republic of Turkey) issued passports in any
The Republic of Cyprus refuses entry to holders of Yugoslav passports
which bear a renewal
stamp with "Macedonia".
After the fall of the Habsburg
monarchy in 1918 and the establishment of the Austrian Republic,
members of the former Imperial Family were exiled and forbidden to
enter Austrian territory. Nevertheless, they remained Austrian
citizens entitled to bear an Austrian passport. Such passports were
unique in bearing the stamp stating that "this passport is valid
for all countries except for Austria". The Habsburgs' exile
was eventually overturned by the European
Court of Human Rights and these special type of passport along with
Hong Kong and Macau
Hong Kong and Macau, local
entities of the People's Republic of China, are each empowered by
the Central People's Government under their respective Basic Law to issue passports.
A Hong Kong
Special Administrative Region passport
states that the holder
is a Chinese national with the right of abode in Hong Kong.
Similarly, a Macao Special
Administrative Region passport
states that the bearer is a
Chinese national with the right of abode in Macau.
Hong Kong and Macau each maintains border controls at all points of
entry. Even though neither travel to or from Hong Kong nor travel
to or from Macau and the mainland is international travel, a
Chinese passport means nothing and a traveller is required to have
a permit issued by the mainland government to enter.
The Public Security Bureau of Guangdong, the province adjacent to
Hong Kong and Macau, issues a permit, dubbed the Home Return Permit
, to Chinese citizens
domiciled in Hong Kong and Macau, to allow them to enter and exit
the mainlands. The Hong Kong
Special Administrative Region passport
and the Macao Special
Administrative Region passport
are for purposes of
international travel rather than interregional travel within the
PRC, a proposal that the Hong Kong
Special Administrative Region passport
should supplant this
permit was dismissed.
Many Chinese citizens who have the right of abode in Hong Kong hold
passports or British Citizen passports issued under the British Nationality
effected by the United Kingdom in the 1990s.
The PRC, for its part, considers such Chinese citizens domiciled in
Hong Kong to be solely PRC citizens. The PRC does not recognise
those BN(O) passports, and does not recognise the attendant United
Kingdom nationality of each, inasmuch as PRC law does not permit
dual nationality. Chinese citizens domiciled in Hong Kong who hold
those BN(O) and BC passports use a Home Return Permit to enter
as those who do not.
It is impermissible under Chinese law to renounce PRC nationality
on the basis of holding a form of British nationality obtained in
A Chinese citizen who has the right of abode in Hong Kong may not
use a BN(O) passport or an HKSAR passport in its own right
for entering Taiwan. They must be used in conjunction with the
issued by the ROC. In contrast, a British Citizen
passport obtained in Hong Kong by a Chinese citizen (or a person of
Chinese descent) domiciled in Hong Kong may be used in its own
right to enter Taiwan.(See Visa policy of the Republic
A person with the right of abode in Hong Kong, a Hong Kong resident
who holds a [Document of Identity for Visa Purposes], a person who
has the right to land, a person who is on unconditional stay in
Hong Kong, and a non-permanent resident who has a notification
label, may use his smart ID card for immigration purposes, that is,
to enter and exit Hong Kong. A smart ID card may not be used by a
person who is under eleven years old, other than at the Lo Wu
ROC citizens who travel to Hong Kong apply for entry permits and
collect them at airline counters. Repeat travellers satisfying
certain conditions may apply online up to twice a month, but it is
proposed that such restrictions may be relaxed.
The type of permit for travel to Hong Kong, issued to a Chinese
national who is domiciled on the mainland, depends on his place of
residence and the purpose of his visit.
years, Israeli passports bore the stamp "not valid for Germany", as in the aftermath of the Holocaust it was considered improper for
Israelis to visit Germany on any but official state business (for
which the government issued special passports to "authorized
With the gradual normalization of Germany–Israel relations
this limitation was removed from Israeli passports.
Some Muslim and African countries do not permit entry to people
using an Israeli passport. The countries which do not accept Israeli
passports, either to enter the country or to transit are: Algeria, Bangladesh, Brunei, Djibouti, Iran, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Malaysia , Pakistan, Saudi
Arabia, Sudan, Somalia , Syria, United Arab
Emirates , and Yemen.
In addition, Iran, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Sudan,
Syria and Yemen go further and do not allow entry to people with
evidence of travel to Israel, or whose passports have a used or an
unused Israeli visa.
To circumvent this travel restriction, Israel did not require
visitors to have passports stamped with Israeli visas or with
Israeli entry and exit stamps. The procedure made it impossible to
tell if a traveller had entered Israel. However, since September
2006, Israeli immigration officials will rarely agree not to stamp
The countries which do not allow entry to people with evidence of
travel to Israel are aware of the entry and exit stamps stamped in
passports by Egypt and Jordan at their respective land borders with
Israel. Non-allowing countries prohibit entry based on the presence
of a tell-tale Egyptian or Jordanian stamp. A traveller, for
example, would be denied entry based on the presence of an Egyptian
stamp, in his passport, which indicates that he crossed into or out
of Egypt at Taba on the Egyptian-Israeli border.
Furthermore, under Israeli law, Lebanon, Syria, Saudi Arabia, Iraq,
and Yemen are classified as "enemy countries" and an Israeli
citizen may not visit them without a special permit issued by the
Israeli minister of the Interior. An Israeli who visits these
countries, whether using an Israeli passport or not, may be
prosecuted when returning to Israel. This list was set in 1954, and
Egypt and Jordan were taken off the list when they signed a peace
treaty with Israel.
Since 2004, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs deemed
that bearers of its passports can't travel to Iraq due to the
security threats in that country. As such, Philippine passports
issued from that time are stamped "Not valid for travel to
Korea's viewpoint, travel from the section of the
Korean peninsula under South Korean
administration directly to the section of the Korean peninsula
Korean administration is not international travel.
South Korea claims by its constitution the whole Korean peninsula
as its territory. However, for security reasons, any South Korean
who is willing to travel to the tourist area in the North has to
carry their passport.
Spain and Gibraltar
Spain does not accept United Kingdom passports issued in Gibraltar
, on the
ground that the Government of
is not a competent authority for issuing UK passports
. Consequently, some Gibraltarians
were refused entry to
Spain. The word "Gibraltar" now appears beneath the words "United
Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland" on passport covers,
which is the usual format for passports of British overseas
Some countries decline to accept Tongan Protected Person passports,
though they accept Tongan citizen passports. Tongan Protected
Person passports are sold by the Government of Tonga to anyone who
is not a Tongan national. A holder of a Tongan Protected Person
passport is forbidden to enter or settle in Tonga. Generally, those
holders are refugees, stateless persons, and individuals who for
political reasons do not have access to any other passport-issuing
U.S. Department of the Treasury regulations require that persons subject to U.S.
jurisdiction be licensed in order to engage in any travel-related
transactions pursuant to travel to, from, and within Cuba.
Transactions related to tourist travel are not licensable. This
restriction includes tourist travel to Cuba from or through a third
country such as Mexico or Canada.
Some passports are issued for military dependents to travel to and
from a foreign destination with a restriction stamp stating that
the passport is only valid for official travel purposes. Further,
said passports are valid only for five years from date of issue as
opposed to ten years for adults.
International travel without passports
Citizens of the member countries of the European Union
are also citizens of the union
itself, and this is recognised on the passports. They bear both the
name of the European Union
and of the
issuing country (in the relevant language).
of the European Economic Area
(the European Union plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) enjoy the
freedom to travel and work in any European Union country without a
although transitory dispositions may restrict the rights of
citizens of new member states to work in other countries.
The same rights are also accorded to citizens of Switzerland,
although they remain separate from the EEA.
European citizens travelling within the European Union may use
standard compliant national ID cards rather than passports. Not all
EU countries produce standard compliant national ID cards, and in
other countries few people obtained one, which means that many
persons need a passport anyway. A special exception is Sweden which
requires a passport for people travelling to or from EU countries
outside the Schengen area..
The up-to-now 25 countries that have signed and applied the
(a subset of
) do not implement
passport controls between each other, unless exceptional
circumstances apply. Some remaining EU countries, plus
Liechtenstein, have signed the Schengen Agreement
, but are not allowed
to be included yet. The main reason is that, according to EU law,
the member states which joined the EU in 2004 would have to meet
strict criteria with respect to their protection of EU external
borders, before intra-EU border controls between the old member
states and new member states would be lifted. The Czech Republic,
Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Hungary, Malta, Poland, Slovakia and
Slovenia are already admitted. Switzerland and Liechtenstein
require some time to adapt their national airports and databases to
the standards of the EU. Switzerland joined the Schengen Area
on the 12 December 2008.
As a consequence of the above, a French citizen, for example, may
travel to the United Kingdom, another EEA nation, and then freely
work in that country. However, since the UK has not signed the
Schengen treaty, the French citizen will have to carry at least a
national ID card, which will be checked at the border. On the other
hand, the French citizen will be able to travel to Switzerland
without being stopped at the border, but he will not be able to
work freely in that country without authorization, because
Switzerland is not a member of the EEA. This is true
notwithstanding the fact that, in most cases, authorization to work
would nevertheless have to be granted by Swiss authorities
according to a specific treaty on free movement which had been
concluded between the EU and Switzerland.
Some European countries require all persons to carry, or, at least
possess, an ID card or a passport. So while Switzerland will not
check French travelers' passports at the border, they may have to
show their national ID cards within the country, such as when
required by police officers to do so.
Except at the border, ID cards are not required by UK law. There
is, however, a de-facto requirement to prove one's identity to
conduct business. A European has to show a European national ID
card to open a UK bank account or to prove eligibility to
Refugees and stateless persons, who do not have access to
passports, may be issued a travel
by the country in which they reside. Holders of those
travel documents generally require visas for international travel,
and are not be entitled to consular protection. Exceptions to this
include persons holding 1951
, who could benefit from some visa-free
travel under the convention, persons who reside in the Schengen
area, and persons who reside in the Nordic Passport Union
Entering the USA without a passport (Western Hemisphere Travel
The United States Passport Card
Canada and the United States: U.S. citizens flying to Canada need
passports. When traveling by land or sea between Canada and the
U.S., Canadian citizens and U.S. citizens must present a passport
booklet, a passport card, or a WHTI-compliant document.
Hemisphere Travel Initiative
(WHTI) implements the requirement
in the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004
(IRTPA) that, upon entry into the U.S. from a foreign country, each
traveler is to present a passport, or some other document of
identity and nationality.
does not apply to direct travel between the 50 states and the
Columbia at the one end and United States territories at the
other end. The territories include American
Samoa and Swains
Island, Guam, the
Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico and the
U.S. Virgin Islands.
That travel is not foreign travel, and, so,
is not subject to IRTPA. In practice, some form of identification
Each air traveler must present a passport or a passport
Each land or sea traveler who is a U.S. citizen must present a
passport booklet, a passport card, or a WHTI-compliant
As of April 13, 2008, types of WHTI-compliant documents are: (1)
Trusted Traveler cards
); state-issued enhanced
. Presently, only
licenses issued by the States of Washington and New
York qualify as WHTI compliant; enhanced tribal cards;
U.S. military ID cards plus military travel orders; U.S. merchant mariner ID card, when
traveling on maritime business; Native American tribal
ID cards; Form I-872 American Indian card.
- United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland: Citizens of the UK and
Ireland do not require a passport to travel between those two
countries (see Common Travel
Area). Other EEA
nationals must carry a national ID card or a passport. All other
nationals require passports.
- The CA-4 countries: Citizens of Guatemala, El Salvador,
Honduras, and Nicaragua do not require passports to travel between
or among any of the four countries. A national ID card (cédula) is
sufficient for entry. In addition, the CA-4 agreement implemented
the Central American Single Visa (Visa Única Centroamericana).
- CARICOM countries issue a CARICOM passport to their citizens, and as
of June 2009, eligible nationals in participating countries will be
permitted to use the CARICOM travel card which provides for
intra-community travel without a passport.
- Nordic countries—Denmark, including the Faroe Islands and
Greenland, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden: The Nordic Passport Union means that
Nordic citizens need only any valid identity card (which is often
needed inside each country anyway). They joined the larger Schengen Agreement region in 1997, where
a national identity card with citizenship is needed. The Nordic Passport Union is still valid
for Nordic citizens.
- Lebanon and Syria: Lebanese citizens entering Syria do not
require passports to enter Syria, if carrying Lebanese ID cards.
Similarly, Syrian citizens do not require passports to enter
Lebanon, if carrying Syrian ID cards.
- India, Nepal, and Bhutan: Passports are not needed by citizens
of India and Nepal to travel within each other's country, but some
identification is required for border crossing. Only Indians do not
require passports for travelling in Bhutan while Bhutanese can
travel with their citizenship identity cards.
- Croatia does not require passports of citizens of the member
states of European Union and Bosnia and Herzegovina who have
national ID cards. Bosnia and Herzegovina, Italy, Hungary,
Montenegro and Slovenia do not require Croatian citizens to have a
passport, only Croatian ID cards.
- Serbia does not require passports of citizens of Bosnia and
Herzegovina who have B&H ID cards. Bosnia and Herzegovina does
not require Serbian citizens to have passports, only Serbian ID
- Citizens of Serbia and citizens of Montenegro may travel
between the two countries with national ID cards.
- Montenegro does not require passports of citizens of Bosnia and
Herzegovina, Croatia and Serbia who have national ID cards.
and Herzegovina, Croatia (only for Herceg Novi, Kotor and
Tivat) and Serbia do not require Montenegrin citizens to
have a passport, only Montenegrin ID cards.
- Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania comprise the East African Community. Each country
may issue, to an eligible citizen, an East African passport. Those
passports are recognised by only the three countries, and are used
for travel between or among those countries. The requirements for
eligibility are less rigorous than are the requirements for
national passports used for other international travel.
member states of the Economic
Community of West African States (ECOWAS) do not require passports for their
citizens traveling within the community. National ID cards
are sufficient. The member states are Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape
Verde, Côte d'Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Mali,
Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo.
- Russia and some former Soviet Union republics: The
participating countries may require an internal passport, which is
the equivalent of a national ID card, rather than a passport.
- Many Central American and South American nationals can travel
within their respective regional economic zones, such as Mercosur and the Andean Community of Nations, or
on a bilateral basis (e.g., between Chile and Peru, between Brazil
and Chile), without passports, presenting instead their national ID
cards, or, for short stays, their voter-registration cards. In some
cases this travel must be done overland rather than by air. There
are plans to extend these rights to all of South America under a
Union of South American
- Turkey does not require a passport for citizens of several
European countries holding national ID cards. Citizens of Greece
must have the new ID card, which has the holder's details in both
the Greek and the Latin alphabets.
- Citizens of the Cooperation
Council for the Arab States of the Gulf countries need only
national ID cards (also referred to as civil ID cards) to cross the
borders of council countries.
- Italy and Vatican City: Italy does not require passports for
travel to Vatican City, and Vatican City does not require passports
for travel to Italy. The only way to get to Vatican City is through
Italy, inasmuch as Vatican City is surrounded by Rome, so Italian
immigration requirements are de facto those of Vatican City. The
Vatican issues its own passports to officials of the Roman Catholic
Church who reside in or near the Vatican, and who work there. Each
Pope is always given Vatican Passport No. 1.
and the Republic of
San Marino: San
Marino is a landlocked country between the Emilia-Romagna and Marche regions of Italy, and there are no border
control at all between the two countries.
Domestic travel that requires passports
special arrangement agreed during the formation of Malaysia, the East Malaysian
states of Sabah and
Sarawak can retain their respective immigration control
systems. As a result, a passport is required when
traveling from Peninsular Malaysia to East Malaysia, as well as the mutual travel
between the two states.
Previously, Malaysian citizens from
Peninsular Malaysia were required to present a Malaysian passport
when travelling to
East Malaysia from Peninsular Malaysia, but this is no longer
required for social/business visits up to 3 months as long as they
do not land in a third country (e.g. Singapore or Brunei).
However, West Malaysians are required to produce a Malaysian identity card
or, for children below 12
years, birth certificate
, fill in
a special immigration form (Document In Lieu of Internal Travel
Document, IMM.114), and retain the form until they leave East
Malaysia. One can avoid filling in the IMM.114 form by presenting a
Malaysian passport or a Restricted Travel Document, and hence enjoy
faster immigration clearance.
China authorizes Hong Kong and Macau, both Special Administrative
Regions, to have their own immigration control systems.
Travelling between Mainland China, Hong Kong and Macau, however,
is not considered international.
Although citizens of the
People's Republic of China do not use passports to travel between
the three regions (other documents, such as the Home Return Permit
are used instead),
foreigners are required to present their passports at the
immigration control points. Holders of Hong Kong or Macau permanent
resident ID cards (regardless of nationality), however, may use the
ID card to enter and exit the SAR that issues it without the
presentation of any passport.
the required "Shannon
Stopover" in effect
until 2008, early morning flights from Shannon to Dublin, Ireland
were often operated as extensions of international flights from
Passengers travelling on such flights had to
pass passport control on arrival in Dublin.
systems exist in
both Russia and in China, and have historically been issued by some
Immigration stamps in passports
For immigration control, immigration officials of many countries
stamp passports with entry stamps and exit stamps. A stamp can
serve different purposes. In the United Kingdom, an immigration
stamp in a passport includes the formal leave to enter
granted to a person subject to
entry control. Otherwise, a stamp activates or acknowledges the
continuing leave conferred in the passport bearer's entry clearance
Under the Schengen system, a foreign passport is stamped with a
date stamp which does not indicate any duration of stay. This stamp
is taken to mean that the person is deemed to have permission to
remain either for three months or for the period shown on his
Neither the UK nor a Schengen country is allowed to stamp the
passport of a person not subject to immigration control, whether a
citizen of that country or a national of another EU country.
Stamping is prohibited, because a passport stamp is imposition of a
control that the person is not subject to. This concept is not
applicable in other countries, where a stamp in a passport simply
acknowledges the entry or exit of a person.
Countries have different styles of stamps for entries and exits, to
make it easy to identify the movements of persons. The shape of the
stamp and the colour of the ink may also provide information about
movements. In Hong Kong, prior to and immediately after the 1997
transfer of sovereignty, entry and exit stamps were identical at
all ports of entry, but colours differed. Airport stamps used black
ink, land stamps used red ink, and sea stamps used purple ink. In
Macau, under Portuguese administration, the same colour of ink was
used for all stamps. The stamps had slightly-different borders to
indicate entry and exit by air, land, or sea. In several countries
the stamps or its colour are different if the person arrived in a
car in opposite to bus/boat/train/air passenger.
Immigration stamps are a useful reminder of travels. Some
travellers "collect" immigration stamps in passports, and will
choose to enter or exit countries via different means (for example,
land, sea or air) in order to have different stamps in their
Visas often take the form of a stamp, although many countries now
use adhesive stickers that incorporate security features to prevent
On July 14, 2008, the United States Department of State began to
issue a new form of travel document called the United States
, a credit card
sized (ISO/IEC 7810
ID-1) ID document
valid for land or sea travel to Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean and
Bermuda. The passport card has the same requirements and
adjudication standards for issuance as a regular passport, however
it costs only $20 for those who already have a passport.
The cost is $45 for those applying for
the first time. The purpose of the passport card is to provide a
secure document for those citizens who frequently cross the border
and need a more convenient document to comply with the Western
Hemisphere Travel Initiative requirements.
Some have speculated that the passport card may represent the
format that future travel documents will take. Visas, including the
"laser visa" issued to Mexican citizens, can be issued by computers
and tracked electronically, eliminating the need for a traditional
passport book with ink stamps.
- Marrus, Michael, The Unwanted: European Refugees in the
Twentieth Century. New York: Oxford University Press (1985),
- League of Nations 'International' or 'Standard'
- Queen and Passport - royal.gov.uk.
- See "Passport Message" in the United
States passport article.
- Resolutions of 23 June 1981, 30 June 1982, 14 July 1986 and 10
July 1995 concerning the introduction of a passport of uniform
pattern, OJEC, 19 September 1981, C 241, p. 1; 16 July 1982, C 179,
p. 1; 14 July 1986, C 185, p. 1; 4 August 1995, C 200, p. 1.
- Andean Community / Decision 525: Minimum specific
technical characteristics of Andean Passport.
- Brazil: Entry visa for foreigners
- Delta Advisory - Algeria
- Delta Advisory - Bangladesh
- Delta Advisory - Brunei
- Delta Advisory - Djibouti
- Delta Advisory - Iran
- Delta Advisory - Kuwait
- Delta Advisory - Lebanon
- Delta Advisory - Libya
- (Clearance permit needed from the Ministry of Internal
Security) Delta Advisory - Malaysia
- Delta Advisory - Pakistan
- Delta Advisory - Saudi Arabia
- Delta Advisory - Sudan
- Delta Advisory - Syria
- Delta Advisory - United Arab Emirates
- Jews of Yemen Delta Advisory - Yemen
- Travel Advice for Iran - Australian Department of
Foreign Affairs and Trade
- TRAVEL REPORT - Kuwait
- Travel Advice for Lebanon - Australian Department
of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Lebanese Ministry of Tourism
- Travel Advice for Libya - Australian Department of Foreign
Affairs and Trade
- Michael Freund, Canada defends Saudi policy of shunning tourists
who visited Israel, 7 December, 2008, Jerusalem Post
- Travel Advice for Sudan - Australian Department of Foreign
Affairs and Trade
- Travel Advice for Syria - Australian Department of Foreign
Affairs and Trade and Syrian Ministry of Tourism
- Travel Advice for Yemen - Australian Department of Foreign
Affairs and Trade
- Travel Advice for Israel and the Occupied
Palestinian Territories, Foreign & Commonwealth Office
- Filipino passports to be marked to prevent travel
- EU Regulation
- Unacceptable travel documents
- GEN 1.3 ENTRY, TRANSIT AND DEPARTURE OF PASSENGERS
- In the Court of the King of Tonga
- Fakta om nationellt id-kort
- Document In Lieu of Internal Travel Document
IMM.114, Immigration Department of Malaysia; retrieved 4 March
- Krueger, Stephen, Krueger on United States Passport
Law. Hong Kong: Crossbow Corporation (2nd ed. 1999 &
- Lloyd, Martin, The Passport: The History of Man's Most
Travelled Document. Canterbury, UK: Queen Anne's Fan (2nd
Edition revised 2008) (ISBN 9780-95471503-8)
- Salter, Mark B., Rights of Passage: The Passport in
International Relations. Boulder, Colo.: Lynne Rienner
- Torpey, John, The Invention of the Passport: Surveillance,
Citizenship, and the State. Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press (2000). ISBN 9780521634939
- The American Passport: Its History and a Digest of
Laws, Rulings and Regulations Governing Its Issuance,
DEPARTMENT OF STATE, (1898) at Internet Archive.
- League of Nations - Advisory and Technical Committee for Communications and
Transit Report to Governments- 1922. At Internet Archive