If so, you may still have a lot to think about before you leave, but make sure you have the most up-to-date information available to enjoy your trip. Below are some resources to help you travel smoothly and return home safely.
Things to do:
Make sure you have a U.S. passport. Most countries have specific requirements for validity dates (i.e. at least 6 months left before expiration) and number of pages available for stamps. Make copies of all your documents and keep them somewhere safe or with someone else in the U.S. during your trip in case of an emergency.
Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) – This is a free service offered by the Department of State to allow U.S. citizens and nationals traveling and living abroad to enroll their trip with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
Current Travel Warnings – Check the State Department warnings for specific countries across the globe for any updates before you depart.
Additionally, you may wish to apply to enroll in one of the Trusted Traveler Programs to facilitate your return to the United States.
In case of an emergency while traveling:
Contact U.S. Citizen Services – If you have a personal emergency abroad, make sure you notify the nearest Embassy or Consular Section to ask for help from the U.S. Citizen Services. Consular Officers can assist with welfare checks (i.e. hospitals, jails, etc…), emergency loans, lists of local attorneys, and replacement passports.
Task Force Registration – Register for updates if you or someone you know is traveling abroad and affected by a natural disaster, national emergency, or civil unrest)
Returning to the United States:
Check the current wait times at the Airport or Border where you will be entering the United States.
For U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents: Expedite your re-entry with a mobile passport.
In this section, you will find information on the many ways my office can help you and your family. Below is a list of the issues we commonly address. If you cannot find what you're looking for, please either email me or call my Palo Alto District Office and we will do our best to answer any questions you may have.