In the wake of the recent bust on Indian and Malaysian nationals travelling on fraudulent Visa’s, it made me realise that travelling to and from the Indonesian islands and surrounding territories is becoming increasingly harder for locals and tourists (both on business and pleasure). Although I chose flythomascook over other commercial airlines to get me to Greece, I decided to do as Allan’s parents did, and take a trail-trip through Europe but I didn’t realise how easy it was for me to travel in and out of countries, nearly hassle-free with my passport. So I thought as a guest poster today, I would share all my knowledge…which I guarantee won’t take long…I don’t know much. This is my passport and VISA guide for International travel.
Research, Research, Research
Each country has its own set of rules and regulations, don’t assume all countries need the same documents. They might need less or more than usual so check well in advance of your flight to make sure you can provide all the information necessary. Also, don’t make the mistake of thinking an airline will tell you whether you will need a Visa, always do your research and make sure to find out all the requirements well in advance, so that if you need to, you can reapply.
Check the Date…and damage
No one likes to renew their passport, often it requires standing in long queues staring at uninterested Government workers who want to be there less than you do. Make sure your passport expiration date is at least six months or greater from the date you want to apply for a Visa. Also, make sure that there is very little damage to your passport, especially your photo. Check that nothing’s wrinkled or can be misconstrued as being tampered with. Always check your pockets before throwing your pants in the washer…I left my passport in there once…and I regretted it
Photographs on the double
Always have multiple copies of your photograph in case you need to apply for multiple Visas. You usually need to submit two photos per application, and for jetsetters means having these photos on hand. It’s as simple as going to a local pharmacy or sometimes a van on the side of the road with a portable printer. As long as the image is clear and you are not wearing any facial obstructions (hats, glasses, hair in front of your face etc.) then the production of multiple passport photos is relatively inexpensive.
Don’t cry for me
If you have a European passport, (lucky, lucky) then travelling in the Schengen areas (26 countries) allows nearly 90 days Visa-free travel but almost all non-European destinations strictly require Visas. Remember not to skimp on the details as the strictness of flights to Australia and the UK especially, have rigorous questioning if something looks suspect, or they’ll decline you outright.
Make the Process Faster
Use a travel service to take care of your Visa needs at a fraction of the hassle. If these services are available, it shouldn’t cost you anymore than if you had to do it yourself. If you are currently living in the Euro-asia, Indonesian, Austro-asianey areas, check out Allan and Fanfan’s many Visa experiences and applications along their journey to get inside info on how they manoeuvre the complications and get successful applications.