Moving Must-haves February 4, 2020

A Guide to the Essential Documents Needed to Travel Abroad

Blake Shaw

Bostonian and residential moving and packing expert. Blake Shaw enjoys bar-hopping, music, and writing insightful content.

When making plans about traveling and moving overseas, documents needed to travel abroad may not be the first thing that comes to mind. But carefully informing yourself and gathering everything you need is crucial for a successful trip anywhere in the world. So, here’s a list of all the essential papers for your upcoming relocation.

First Things First, Get All the Information About Passport and Visa Requirements

This step may be obvious, but your passport is one of the essential international travel requirements. If you need a new one, you should apply for it several months in advance, and if you already have one, make sure it’s valid at least six months after you return home. Even if you don’t plan on coming back, certain countries have this type of restriction, so ensure your document is valid for long enough. This should be the first thing on your how to move abroad checklist.

Do You Need a Travel Visa, Besides Your Passport?

Many countries require visas, but in some cases, you don’t have to get them in advance. You can check on the official website of the country you’re planning to move abroad alone or with family if they require a visa. US citizens should look for the information on the US Department of State’s website or do a quick check online.

You Should Also Bring Your Driver’s License

If you are using an overseas vehicle shipping service for shipping a car overseas, don’t forget to bring your driver’s license. While some countries may grant you a specified driving period, most countries require an international driving permit (IDP), so prepare for that on time.

people crossing the street
You don’t have to be a pedestrian, IDP will allow you to drive on foreign roads

Consider Getting Additional Insurance

When asking yourself what do I need for international travel, keep in mind that many foreign medical facilities do not accept US insurance plans. You may want to consider getting some of these additional plans:

  • Health insurance – If yours doesn’t cover you overseas, think about buying supplemental insurance,
  • Emergency evacuation insurance – Covers situations where you are in need to leave the crisis area or the evacuation for medical treatment,
  • Additional insurance – Can cover unexpected expenses that can all add up, like the loss of luggage or delayed flight plans.

For additional tips on what do you need to travel to another country, take a look at the following video.

More Documents to Keep in Check – Itinerary Details and Medications

It’s important to have copies of all your flight details and any other reservations, to avoid potential problems. Tickets and booking confirmations are another thing to keep in check as proof that you have paid for everything.

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Immunization Requirements for People and Pets Traveling Abroad

While considering which are the best places to live overseas and looking up the friendliest countries in the world, research if there are any specific immunization requirements before entering that country. If you are planning on living abroad with family, consult with a medical professional to get more information about the immunization of children.

If you want to find out what are the required vaccines, visit the Center for Disease Control or that country’s official website. Those who are relocating with pets should also consult with their local veterinarian and ask if there are any special requirements for the pets. Usually, a rabies vaccine is necessary, but the terms can vary from one country to another, and also airline companies have different terms and policies for transporting pets.

Traveling With Doctor’s Notes on Prescribed Medication

Medications are one of those necessities to pack when moving abroad. While carrying some prescribed medication may be acceptable in one place, it might be a problem in another. Be sure you carry the proper documentation and that you keep them in their original packaging. Pack medications in your carry-on and keep them with you in case your luggage gets lost.

a doctor signing a paper
Be sure to visit your physician on time to get enough doses of medication for your trip

Notarized Permission From the Other Parent for International Travel With Children

When planning on living overseas, you may relocate separately from your partner. To obtain notarized permission for traveling alone with children, both legal parents carrying IDs should be present to sign the letter of consent. Also, remember to keep the children’s birth certificates as proof of relationship. It is also necessary for children to have their passports. Getting an international phone plan will help you keep in touch with friends and family at home.

little boy learning
Prepare your children for their adventure away from home

Make a Copy of All the Documents Needed to Travel Abroad

It’s common sense that you should make a copy of all the documents needed for international travel when moving internationally, but a really good piece of advice is to make several copies and pack them in different bags. Make a digital copy of your international driving permit, passport, ID, plane tickets, and other bookings. Give one copy to a friend, put one in a suitcase, and one in your carry-on. Your originals should always be in your carry-on with you. This will all come in handy if you are unfortunate enough to lose any documents needed to travel.

Make a copy of all your papers to ensure a stress-free trip

Gather All Your Documents and Get Ready for the Next Step in Your Life

Now that you have everything on this list checked, you can start looking up the best cities in Europe to live in or anywhere else in the world. Travel.State.Gov has detailed information on document requirements for air travel, so planning your relocation may come to life. Don’t forget to request a quote from a reputable international moving company, compare a few, and pick the best one.

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