If you have concerns about travel to a particular country at this time, we recommend consulting with the foreign country's embassy. Also view the travel information provided by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as the information provided by the Department of State's Office of Overseas Citizens.
A valid U.S. passport is required to enter and leave a foreign country. Only the U.S. Department of State has the authority to grant, issue, or verify U.S. passports.
Getting or renewing a passport is easy. The Passport Application Wizard will help you determine which passport form you need, help you to complete the form online, estimate your payment, and generate the form for you to print-all in one place.
In addition to a U.S. passport, you may also need to obtain a foreign visa to travel to certain countries. A visa is an official document issued by a foreign country that formally allows you to visit. Where required, visas are attached to your passport and allow you to enter a foreign nation.
To find information about obtaining a visa, see the Department of State's Country Specific Information.
Staying Safe on Your Trip
Before you travel overseas, it's always a good practice to investigate the local conditions, laws, political landscape, and culture of the country. And we're a good place to start.
The Department of State provides Country Specific Information for every country of the world about various issues, including the health conditions, crime, unusual currency or entry requirements, and any areas of instability.
We also encourage you to register your trip with the Department of State. Travel registration makes it possible to contact you if necessary. Whether there's a family emergency in the United States, or a crisis in the country you are visiting, registration assists the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in reaching you. Registration is free and can be done online.
Staying Healthy While Abroad
Find out if you are covered for a medical emergency overseas before you leave. Many foreign doctors and hospitals do not accept American insurance policies, and may require full cash payment in advance of your treatment. Your existing medical insurance company may require you to call back to an office in the U.S. for advance approval of any treatments or expenditures. Your policy may also set a dollar limit above which you'll have to pay. Read the fine print. You might need to purchase additional coverage. See more on www.travel.state.gov.
Authenticating U.S. Documents Abroad
Some countries require that you provide foreign authorities or your attorney with authenticated, translated copies of pertinent documents. Consult your adoption service provider or foreign attorney before going to the expense. An information flyer explaining the authentication process is available from the Office of American Citizens Services, either by mail or via our Internet Consular Affairs home page described below under "Additional Information."
The Department of State, Authentications Office is responsible for signing and issuing certificates under the Seal of the U.S. Department of Sate providing authentication services to U.S. citizens and foreign nationals on documents requiring such authentications that will be used overseas. This office receives a variety of documents from commercial organizations, private citizens, and officials of the Federal and State governments. Documents include but not limited to: company bylaws, powers of attorney, trademarks, diplomas, transcripts, distributorship agreements, articles of incorporation, good standing certificates, home studies, letters of reference etc. It also ensures that the requested information will serve in the interest of justice and is not contrary to U.S. policy.
The authentication fee is $8.00 per document.