This post provides a quick check of the passport and visa requirements to visit a list of 40 countries (and counting).
“How long do I need on my passport?” is the first question you need to check when you’re about to travel internationally. This post covers 40 countries and I have added links to the offical websites so you can drill down for more specific information pertaining to the nationality of your own passport and whether a visa is also required.
Because the answer is: it depends!
There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to travel requirements.
If you still can’t find the answer you’re looking for in the list below, my advice is to contact the airline you are flying with or embassy.
Some countries only require a valid passport for the duration of your holiday, others need three months on your passport, still others require a full six months clear AFTER you have departed. Some need you to apply for a visa and other’s don’t – depending on which passport your hold.
Little passport story which nearly caught me out: I was recently invited to Singapore to join a 5-day cruise (yes please) which will stop at Malaysia, Thailand and Cambodia. A no-brainer as a travel blogger and I said yes straight away, but then it randomly occurred to me (in the middle of the night, when these tend to do!) that my passport expires in five months and I need to quickly check how long it needs to be valid to visit each of those countries.
So what did I do? Why, I jumped onto this very post to double check and HELLO a new passport was needed! I popped into the chemist, got a quick photo taken and applied for my new passport online that afternoon.
I do hope you find this one-stop post of passport requirements helpful 😀
*Please note: I get so many questions from readers asking me about their own passport situations. I am not a travel agent. If you have specific questions about your own passport, please contact your travel agent, the airline you are flying with or the embassy of the country you are visiting. I won’t be publishing any more comments about individual passport questions. My aim in this post is to provide you with an easy one-stop article filled with helpful links so you can research further if you need to. Hope that makes sense 🙂
*I try and keep this post up to date, but sometimes the rules change and they don’t tell me! Please make sure you have checked onto the appropriate link for up to date information on passport and visa requirements for each country you plan to visit.
Passport and visa requirements
Click on the links for more detailed information, as many countries also require visas for entry, depending on which passport you hold.
Update: The ETIAS to visit Europe
From 2021, a new visa waiver to enter the EU is coming in. The ETIAS will be required for citizens from 60 countries to enter the Shengen area of Europe.
What is the Shengen area, you ask? Good question! I looked it up. It’s a group of some European Union (EU) and some non-EU countries who have signed up to a treaty in 1985 and covers 26 EU countries which have no passport controls because they are all joined together.
But for now, this list includes passport validity for European countries, assuming you are flying in to check through customs.
Argentina – just a passport valid for the duration of your stay. A visa is not required for stays up to 90 days.
Australia – just a passport valid for duration of stay. A visa is also required for passport holders from Britain, EU, Canada, USA.
Brazil – six months passport validity beyond your stay, plus a visa is required for US, Australian citizens. New Zealand and UK do not require a visa.
Cambodia – six months validity, plus a visa which can be obtained on arrival or in advance
Chile – passport valid for 90 days beyond departure date. A visa is not required for stays up to 90 days.
China – six months passport validity and you’ll also need a visa if you’re from the countries on this link. And here’s a very important detail: even if you are doing the 24 hour or 72 hour transit without a visa, if you stop twice in China you will need a visa. Despite my brother-in-law and his girlfriend doing all their research telling them no visa was required and boarding a flight to Beijing from Amsterdam, they were declined onward travel and had to purchase a new direct flight once they were in Beijing. €1500 later! It seems that one employee decided this was the rule, despite assurances by the airline it wasn’t. Moral of the story, don’t stop twice when transiting through China if you can help it!
Croatia – three months passport validity beyond the length of stay. A visa is not required but a return ticket is if you not travelling on an EU passport.
Cuba – You’ll need six months passport validity after departure and a visa. Read my 20 Things You Need To Know Before You Go To Cuba here >>
Fiji – six months passport validity
HELP: My passport expires in 3 months! Can I travel anywhere? Why yes you can. Most of Europe only needs 3 months, plus some countries will let you in as long as your passport is valid just for the duration of your stay. Check out Canada, UK, Japan, Argentina and Australia if you want to travel but your passport doesn’t have long enough.
France – three months passport validity
Germany – three months passport validity
Greece – three months passport validity
India – six months (actually they say 180 days) passport validity And you may need a visa if you’re from NZ, Australia, UK, USA, Canada or the EU
Indonesia/Bali – six months passport validity
Italy – six months passport validity beyond your departure date
Japan – passport needs to be valid for duration of stay
Laos – passports need to be valid for six months. You’ll also need a tourist visa (valid for 30 days). You can get your visa on arrival. You will need a passport photo.
Malaysia – six months validity after departure
Mexico – six months passport validity is recommended, although you may be able to have shorter if you can prove your length of stay is over before your passport expires. Read my post on Baja Mexico is the Next Big Thing >>
Myanmar – six months passport validity beyond the date of departure. Visas are also required and cannot be acquired upon arrival, you need to sort this out before you arrive.
Nepal – six months validity plus a page free for a visa. You get your visa on arrival for $25.
New Caledonia – three months passport validity, or duration of your stay for EU nationals
New Zealand – three months passport validity As of 1 October 2019, visitors will also need to apply for a NZeTA (like the US ESTA visa waiver).
Philippines – six months passport validity
Rarotonga (Cook Islands) – six months passport validity
Singapore – six months remaining on your passport
South Africa – one month passport validity (although I have had a note from a reader that this is now six months. So please check with the embassy or airline before you book.) Also note that visa rules have changed and New Zealanders are required to obtain a visa. Click here for the list of exempt countries >>
Thailand – six months passport validity required
UK – passport must be valid for length of stay
USA – passports must be valid for six months longer than your intended stay and a Visa Waiver must be purchased online at least 72 hours before departure for US$14.
Note: if you have EVER visited these seven “banned” countries: Syria, Sudan, Somalia, Libya, Iran, Iraq and Yemen, you will NEED a visa to enter the United States. You cannot use the ESTA visa waiver. But the good news is your visa is valid for 10 years. Just make sure you allow plenty of time (like maybe even a couple of months) to arrange your interview at your local US Consulate and the processing time.
USA Addendum: after this post was published, all sorts of hooha ensued about whether or not we can enter the United States with a passport valid for less than six months, and it turns out that New Zealand has signed an agreement with the USA that we can enter as long as our passport is valid for the duration of our stay.
(And here is my post with a link to apply for your ESTA Visa Waiver – don’t get duped and pay too much!)
Vietnam – six months required after your passport has expired. And yes, just about everyone needs a visa (Brits don’t if staying less than 15 days). Note: you cannot just get a visa on arrival any more! I learned this only recently when a friend’s daughter was blocked from boarding her flight out of New Zealand.
Things to note about getting a Vietnam visa
Here is the latest info on how to travel in Vietnam courtesy of Travcour, a visa service company based in Auckland, NZ: There are 3 ways to get your Vietnam visa.
2 Fill out old-school visa forms from your local Vietnam embassy and send it in.
3 Use a third-party website. Note: they charge an extra fee, but if you are caught out, they are your only option as they can do it immediately – for your fee.
But the really big thing to note is that IF you use a third-party site (and they can trick you by looking like the government website) you are actually only getting a “letter of invitation to Vietnam” and will be on a list and you will need to line up and pay for your visa on arrival. Two fees. In fact you will even be issued the list of visa applicants arriving that day and your name will be there along with all the others – which you get to see!
But if you are stuck, OR you come and go from Vietnam to say Cambodia and forgot that you are visiting Vietnam technically twice, then you’ll need to use one of these companies and are caught out. Here is a link to VietnamVisaCorp.com to try.
If you’re in New Zealand and you need to get a visa organised for any country, visit Travcour.co.nz