Advice for the Tropical Traveler
Passport Requirements -
The Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention
Act of 2004 requires that by January 1, 2008, travelers
to and from the Caribbean, Bermuda, Panama, Mexico and
Canada have a passport or other secure, accepted document
to enter or re-enter the United States. For more information,
Notice to Travelers.
Of course, the requirement that
anyone traveling from other foreign countries still
apply: you must possess a valid, unexpired passport
to be allowed into the United States which means you
must have one with you when you leave the US.
In general, all countries require
that your passport still have 6 months of validity on
them before they will allow you to enter. So, you should
apply for a passport renewal ASAP if you plan a trip
to a foreign country within the next year and your passport
expires within 6 months of your planned departure date.
Don't procrastinate because processing the application
could take some time.
For more information on obtaining
or renewing a passport, see Passport
Requirements for International Travel.
Tips for Tropical Travel -
With today's transportation security concerns, there
is a high likelihood-- maybe even a certainty-- that
your checked bags will be opened for screening. Obviously,
that means you can't lock your bag if you expect it
to arrive at your destination intact. You hate to send
your valuable dive equipment, such as your BCD (which
is really too bulky to take in your carry-on bag) in
an unlocked suitcase. What to do?
Security and Orthopedic Implants
- To minimize the potential for
hassle in passing through airport security, if you have
an orthopedic implant, you should have a note from your
you need to know about trip insurance
- The first thing to know is that you should always
have trip insurance. Divers should pay particular consideration
to getting a policy that gives them adequate coverage.
for your trip
- buy books or check them out of a library. Don't just
read guidebooks and travel books to help you find facts
and recommended places to stay, dine, see. You can extend
the excitement of your trip by reading history and literature
of your destination. Even novels set in the locale can
help you be there long before you leave for the airport.
And if you are going to carry a novel to read on the
plane, why not make it one in which the characters live
in your destination? And when you return, what fun it
is to read books set in the place you have experienced
first hand. Can you picture in your mind the place where
the action of the novel occurs? Did the author get it
right? By reading, your tropical vacation doesn't have
to be just the few weeks you were actually there.
To Avoid Jet-Lag- You
don't have to suffer from jet-lag if you take a few
common sense precautions. Primarily, you want to get
your body reset to the local time of your destination
as quickly as possible. I have some tips for how to
Did you know that when you travel to the South Pacific
from the West Coast of the US, you may "lose a
day" but you probably won't experience much jet
lag. That's because the flights there are "body
friendly" ones that take off from LAX or Vancouver
in the late evening. You have dinner, watch a movie,
go to sleep, and wake for breakfast just before you
land. Your body doesn't know that you are miles away
from home; it feels like morning in a place where it
actually is morning!
concerns - Know before you go,
insure your trip, use common sense: there's no reason
not to be safe on your tropical travels.