HOW DO I START?
A certified birth certificate copy is typically the initial document needed to begin the process of
obtaining a new US passport, a US passport for a minor child (under age 16), or to replace a lost/
stolen US passport. Different countries have different travel documents requirements for entry -
some may only require proof of citizenship (such as a birth certificate) while others require both a
passport and a visa. Start by knowing what you need.
Click on one of the categories below for requirements and details about these travel topics:
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WHTI TRAVEL DOCUMENTS
How to Comply with Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative
WHTI applies to all travelers after June 1, 2009
You need to know about WHTI travel documents if you are planning on traveling to any country including countries
in the Caribbean, Bermuda, Mexico or Canada. Consumers have many questions on how to comply with the Western
Hemisphere Travel Initiative (WHTI). The recommended method of compliance is to have compliant WHTI travel
documents prepared well in advance of your travel date.
WHTI and U.S. Passports
Typically the best method of travel document compliance is in the form of a U.S. passport. If you do not have
a U.S. passport, you can apply for a passport at your local post office, or at the U.S. Department of State.
Tips on obtaining WHTI Travel Documents: When applying for a U.S. passport, you will need a
certified copy of your birth certificate.
A certified copy typically has a raised seal. Your certified birth certificate copy will be returned to you when the
passport is processed.
Tips on Providing Proper Identification: In addition to providing a copy of your birth
certificate, you will need to provide a form of primary photo identification. For example, a
previously issued U.S. passport, a valid driver's license, military ID or other current
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