Before You Go
TRAVEL DOCUMENTS, CHILDREN'S PERMISSIONS, PREVIOUS CONVICTIONS, ETC.
Canadian citizens may be able to travel to Mexico and other countries in the region with identity documents other than passports. Passports are however recommended for all travel outside Canada and are required for most countries. Canadian citizens travelling by air to the United States or in transit through a US airport, require a valid passport. Many countries also require visas and at least six months remaining on passports after the scheduled date of departure. Requirements depend on the country to be visited and the nationality of the traveller. Requirements may change without notice. Canadian passport information can be obtained from the Department of Foreign Affairs (1-800-567-6898). Visa information is best obtained from the consular offices of the country to be visited or by contacting Visa Connections at Calgary 403-215-7700 or both.
Other permissions such as work permits or health clearances etc may be required depending on individual circumstances.
Children travelling alone or without both parents will require special documents. In general a child under 18 travelling alone out of Canada will require legally certified documentation signed by both parents permitting the child to travel alone or with an adult (example a relative or teacher). A child travelling with one parent will require legally certified documentation of consent from the absent parent. In addition separation or divorce decrees or a death certificate may be required in certain circumstances. Legal advice should be sought where there is any doubt as to status or the consent required. The Dominican Republic is particularly strict with children under 13. Amongst other things, if they do not have the same last name as and are not accompanied by, both parents, they may be required to have permission letters translated into Spanish and notarised and legalised by the Dominican Consulate. Enquiries should be directed to the Dominican Consulate at 416-739-1237 or 514-284-5455.
Photo identification such as a drivers license is required by all travellers for boarding all flights within Canada, including domestic flights.
Previous convictions may prevent entry into the USA and other countries without special permissions or pardons. Legal advice should be obtained before booking.
Don't delay! Before you book you should establish what visas, permissions, passports and other documents you may be require for your trip and how long it will take to obtain these. Please note that you may not be able to recover amounts paid for cancelled Travel Services as these are often non-refundable in whole or in part.
STAY INFORMED, BE SAFE AND ENJOY: COUNTRY INFORMATION, TRAVEL ADVISORIES, HEALTH, WEATHER CONDITIONS, SECURITY
Important information on the country to be visited including Travel Advisories, health and security information, weather information and general conditions can be obtained on the website of the Department of Foreign Affairs at www.voyage.gc.ca. A Travel Report for your country of destination should be available on the link "Travel Reports" on their home page. The Department of Foreign Affairs can also be contacted at 1-800-267-6788. You should regularly monitor their website for any changes to conditions.
Specific Health Information can also be obtained at www.TravelHealth.gc.ca or by phoning their regional office in Alberta at (780) 495-2651.
A FEW SAFETY TIPS
- Check the Government web site www.voyage.gc.ca again just before you leave - apart from travel advisories it also has useful information on what to expect and general safety precautions - print it out and jot down the contact information for the Canadian Embassy or Consulate in your destination country.
- Avoid carrying a lot of cash and, if you must, use a money belt worn under your clothes.
- Don’t use fanny packs or shoulder bags – these can be sliced open easily by pick pockets – if you do carry a bag buy one which cannot easily be cut and wear it with the strap across your chest.
- Try not to look like a tourist – always look purposeful – even if you are lost.
- If confronted, don’t fight back – money, passports and cameras can be replaced.
- Leave a copy of your passport with someone at home and keep a note of the international phone number of your credit card company and the basic number of your card - so you can react quickly if it is stolen!
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