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BENHANDEL

Is a passport card sufficient?

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8 minutes ago, ryano said:

 

And I actually have another friend that flew home from Jamaica the SAME day with nothing but the card so the blanket statement "you cannot fly home with the card if something happens" is NOT true in every case. 

I've heard of many cases where passengers flew home from the port in an emergency without a passport. Do you recall what caused them to leave the cruise early?

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A Passport card is for land travel. Up here in Maine alot of people have them to go in between Canada (for folks who dont do other international travel other than that.)

 

Its pointless for a cruise. Either get a passport book of just use your ID/BC if you are comfortable with that. For us, Passports made for international travel, so if we are leaving US soil, we have our passports. 

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26 minutes ago, ryano said:

 

And I actually have another friend that flew home from Jamaica the SAME day with nothing but the card so the blanket statement "you cannot fly home with the card if something happens" is NOT true in every case. 

 

Its not that you cant. You just may be stuck in immigration control in either the departing country or the US for an indeterminate amount of time. 

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On 11/5/2018 at 8:37 PM, Chervil said:

As others have said. however, if for whatever reason you get stuck out of the country (medical emergency and have to fly home from a port, miss the boat because you got stuck in traffic on a non-carnival sanctioned excursion, etc.) then the passport card WILL NOT be sufficient to fly back home.
 

 

Not accurate. In an emergency a passport card can facilitate repatriation. There are numerous examples to be found on these boards of individuals and even large groups of citizens returning to the US in an emergency by air without passports.

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51 minutes ago, elcuchio24 said:

A Passport card is for land travel. Up here in Maine alot of people have them to go in between Canada (for folks who dont do other international travel other than that.)

 

Its pointless for a cruise. Either get a passport book of just use your ID/BC if you are comfortable with that. For us, Passports made for international travel, so if we are leaving US soil, we have our passports. 

It is also good for cruises within the WHTI and since the OP already has them why not use them? I felt the same way about them until I realized how much it would cost to replace DW's naturalization certificate if anything happened to it (presently around $550). Then I started looking at getting a passport card to use for cruises until the day came when we needed to get passports. Since Vermont issues EDLs I looked at them too and that is what we decided to go with because our license is something we always have with us and we'd need to either carry the passport card all of the time or remember to grab it. This of course opened up the Canadian border for us (8 miles from the front door). We maintain the EDLs because they are a good backup and it prevents us from having to get the passports out of the safe deposit box if we want to go to Canada.

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54 minutes ago, elcuchio24 said:

 

Its not that you cant. You just may be stuck in immigration control in either the departing country or the US for an indeterminate amount of time. 

As soon as they know you are a US citizen you are on your way, they have no cause to hold you longer than that, and they also have access to the passenger manifest for your cruise to verify your story (and I would expect that the cruise line would let CBP know if a passenger leaves mid-cruise).

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I dont know,  I think if it was me I would take the card and a certified copy of the birthcertificate.  That peice of paper isnt heavy and if anyone gives you a hard time with the card you can whip out the paper.  Be ready for anything and nothing bad will happen.

 

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52 minutes ago, broberts said:

 

Not accurate. In an emergency a passport card can facilitate repatriation. There are numerous examples to be found on these boards of individuals and even large groups of citizens returning to the US in an emergency by air without passports.

While there may be numerous examples of it actually working in an emergency, there is also the real possibility of it NOT working.
According to the actual US passport website the card CANNOT be used for international air travel and is only good for land and sea travel in Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean and Bermuda.

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/passports/apply-renew-passport/card.html


Not saying they don't occasionally make exceptions, but I wouldn't count on it.
And even if they did, it would likely become a long drawn out process.
Source: Friend admitted to hospital during cruise for a medical emergency and had to go through the long and tedious red tape cutting process due to no passport.

 

Also, if you have a card, you likely have a passport book. Why not just take it?
I usually keep my card on me in port and just leave my passport book in the safe, knowing that if I need it the cruise ship can be contacted and get it to me.

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58 minutes ago, sparks1093 said:

As soon as they know you are a US citizen you are on your way, they have no cause to hold you longer than that, and they also have access to the passenger manifest for your cruise to verify your story (and I would expect that the cruise line would let CBP know if a passenger leaves mid-cruise).

 

Yes, 'as soon as they know'. That verification can take any number of hours/days. 

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I got the passport card before my first cruise several years back. I've been on 3 cruises since, all closed loop all departing from Galveston. I've had stops in Jamaica, Cayman Islands, Belize, Mexico, and Honduras and have never had a problem. I originally got the passport card because it was cheaper than the passport and I was a poor college student at the time, and I'm a cheap skate.

Now when my card expires in a few years I'm going to get both the card and the book. The card is great for the convenience it can get wet its easier to hold on to etc etc. But it does have some limitations that have been lamented over in this threat.   Most people will be just fine with a passport card. There is the downside that you can't get your passport card stamped so there is that drawback.  If you have the card you have a 99% chance of being just fine. 

Just my 2 cents.

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10 minutes ago, elcuchio24 said:

 

Yes, 'as soon as they know'. That verification can take any number of hours/days. 

Doubtful, if you've left the cruise after everyone's been verified through the database the proof is there in their database already. And if they haven't gotten those checks done yet you still have your passport card (in the instant case) or other proof of citizenship with you. I've never heard of a secondary inspection lasting days but I suppose anything is possible (just not likely).

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31 minutes ago, sparks1093 said:

Doubtful, if you've left the cruise after everyone's been verified through the database the proof is there in their database already. And if they haven't gotten those checks done yet you still have your passport card (in the instant case) or other proof of citizenship with you. I've never heard of a secondary inspection lasting days but I suppose anything is possible (just not likely).

 

Doubtful? maybe...maybe not. I mean anything is possible. And this is just conjecture. What is true, is that if you have a passport book you have access to and from most countries in the world. I would rather know that myself and my family is covered rather than hope for the best and see if the bureaucracy goes my way. Obviously this is the age old debate on here. People can do whatever they want. When I leave my home country, I carry a passport. Seems pretty simple. 

Edited by elcuchio24

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15 minutes ago, elcuchio24 said:

 

Doubtful? maybe...maybe not. I mean anything is possible. And this is just conjecture. What is true, is that if you have a passport book you have access to and from most countries in the world. I would rather know that myself and my family is covered rather than hope for the best and see if the bureaucracy goes my way. Obviously this is the age old debate on here. People can do whatever they want. When I leave my home country, I carry a passport. Seems pretty simple. 

And that's a choice you make for you that is best for you. Other people are going to make a different choice. Having a passport to open up the world is only a small part of the equation and means nothing if one doesn't have the money or the time available to use it (the more important parts of the equation). 

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13 hours ago, Moviela said:

 

Here we go, I did not omit Caribbean because foreign countries in the Caribbean do not accept passport cards by treaty. The only countries that accept the cards is Canada, Mexico, and Bermuda.  The confusion for some comes from the fact that a passport card is valid for admission to the United States when you are returning from the Caribbean. The cruise line can embark you with a passport card on a closed loop cruise because the final destination is the USA. 

 

You might find yourself unable to enter a foreign country without a passport book. That is not to say that sometimes for cruise ship passengers some alternate ID's are acceptable.

 

 

 

 

 

more incorrect info, many tour operators in the Caribbean travel daily between islands on a boat. They all use passport cards. If they only had books they would fill up every month. Examples, St Thomas to BVI, St. Martin to Anguilla or St.Barts, so here you go. My son Captained boats in St.Thomas for years taking guests to BVI with a passport card

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3 hours ago, Chervil said:

While there may be numerous examples of it actually working in an emergency, there is also the real possibility of it NOT working.
...

 

I suppose anything is possible. However, it is extremely unlikely that a US citizen with a passport card would be denied boarding in an emergency situation. They certainly would not be denied entry into the US. Once citizenship has been established, entry is a certainty.

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41 minutes ago, broberts said:

 

I suppose anything is possible. However, it is extremely unlikely that a US citizen with a passport card would be denied boarding in an emergency situation. They certainly would not be denied entry into the US. Once citizenship has been established, entry is a certainty.

I know there are people who are arrogant enough to assume exceptions will be made because they are "'Merican" so the rules should be bent for them.

And while it is possible an exception might be made, why wouldn't someone want to make things as simple as possible?

If I know the rule of hand is that a passport card is not viable for air travel, and I have a passport book, why wouldn't I bring it (unless I'm just being self-centered and only concerned with what is easier for me?)

 

The original question was whether a passport card was sufficient.
The answer according to both the US Passport website and Carnival is....no.

 

Whatever chances someone is personally willing to take does not make the answer invalid.

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I could not agree more. You are spending a couple of grand for a vacation, $145 safety net is a very good investment. It's $14.50 a year, and maybe you might lucky enough to travel abroad in the next 10 years. The rules are very specific, a passport card is not allowed for international air travel. 

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33 minutes ago, Chervil said:

I know there are people who are arrogant enough to assume exceptions will be made because they are "'Merican" so the rules should be bent for them.

And while it is possible an exception might be made, why wouldn't someone want to make things as simple as possible?

If I know the rule of hand is that a passport card is not viable for air travel, and I have a passport book, why wouldn't I bring it (unless I'm just being self-centered and only concerned with what is easier for me?)

 

The original question was whether a passport card was sufficient.
The answer according to both the US Passport website and Carnival is....no.

 

Whatever chances someone is personally willing to take does not make the answer invalid.

The original question was is a passport card sufficient for a cruise and it absolutely is. (And you can bring whatever you want, it has no impact on anyone else, just as their choice doesn't impact you.)

Edited by sparks1093

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32 minutes ago, coevan said:

I could not agree more. You are spending a couple of grand for a vacation, $145 safety net is a very good investment. It's $14.50 a year, and maybe you might lucky enough to travel abroad in the next 10 years. The rules are very specific, a passport card is not allowed for international air travel. 

I consider it only a good investment if it's going to be used for what it is intended for which is international air travel. When we first started cruising it would have cost us $850 or so for passports for all of us and for a 4 day cruise that only cost something like $1400 we didn't see the need to spend that kind of money. If you think that is a good investment then by all means, spend the money. But everyone has different travel patterns which result in different needs for documentation. Passport is king, of that there is no doubt, but sometimes a queen or jack will do the trick. And in an emergency the rules are different and even without a passport card a US citizen will more likely than not be allowed to board a plane for the US where they will be sorted out in secondary inspection.

Edited by sparks1093

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We love cruises, but also enjoy land travel to the Caribbean, Europe, Central America and Asia, which requires a passport. This has become a very rhetorical conversation. We are mostly saying the same thing in a different manor.

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50 minutes ago, coevan said:

We love cruises, but also enjoy land travel to the Caribbean, Europe, Central America and Asia, which requires a passport. This has become a very rhetorical conversation. We are mostly saying the same thing in a different manor.

We didn't have the ability for land travel to any of those places, so having passports solely for closed loop cruises seemed like serious overkill. I don't think that my family is all that unique, many want to travel but can only do so via closed loop cruise every year or so. We knew that we wanted to travel to Europe but when we started cruising we had no idea when that would be possible so we decided to wait. That time came in 2015 and instead of having lost 6 years off our passports we had a full ten years to use and that will be at least 10 trips to Europe if things work out right. 

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5 hours ago, Chervil said:

I know there are people who are arrogant enough to assume exceptions will be made because they are "'Merican" so the rules should be bent for them.

...

 

It is not arrogance. A US citizen cannot and would not be denied entry into the US. 

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11 hours ago, Chervil said:
5 hours ago, sparks1093 said:

When we first started cruising it would have cost us $850 or so for passports for all of us and for a 4 day cruise that only cost something like $1400 we didn't see the need to spend that kind of money. If you think that is a good investment then by all means, spend the money. 

Also, if you have a card, you likely have a passport book. Why not just take it?
I usually keep my card on me in port and just leave my passport book in the safe, knowing that if I need it the cruise ship can be contacted and get it to me.

 

We made that major investment for a cruise 2 years ago. At that time we bought 5 passports, with five passport cards. We thought they looked neat and patriotic, and like the idea of having official identification for kids who were not yet old enough to have driver's licenses.

 

Since then, my son's passport book has gone missing. We are sure it is in the house somewhere, but can't find it. We are running out of time to replace it before this trip, and had planned to get him updated one when he turned 18. We like the idea of giving him that gift of travel to last the next 10 years.

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1 hour ago, broberts said:

 

It is not arrogance. A US citizen cannot and would not be denied entry into the US. 

 

True, and yet with a shadow.  I was active military, with active military id.  Was asked if i had a government passport.  Different because it is issued and is red.   No I didnt have a passport, that seemed to cause a stir.  My personal passport somehow got shipped with my household goods.  So i had to cool my jets waiting for them to sort it all out.  They had me concerned for a while but finally did me a favor and left me in.  So yes i got in just wasnt very smooth at all.  But then they have the duty to ensure that the person entering is valid to enter,  a passport declares that loudly. Oh and btw, i did cross from Germany to Belgium to catch the plane and they accepted the id without hesitation.  

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1 hour ago, BENHANDEL said:

 

We made that major investment for a cruise 2 years ago. At that time we bought 5 passports, with five passport cards. We thought they looked neat and patriotic, and like the idea of having official identification for kids who were not yet old enough to have driver's licenses.

 

Since then, my son's passport book has gone missing. We are sure it is in the house somewhere, but can't find it. We are running out of time to replace it before this trip, and had planned to get him updated one when he turned 18. We like the idea of giving him that gift of travel to last the next 10 years.

I like that "gift of travel"  that is a cool way of saying it.   What iwould do seriously is take the card of course but get his birth certificate and put it someplace that you will be able to get to it if some moron......  i mean a government official give you a rash over it.  You would be safe then no matter what. Just my 2 1/4 cents.  

 

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