Each country has a specific requirement for how long your passport must be valid beyond your scheduled return date. Failure to meet this requirement could result in you being denied entry to that country – no refund, no holiday, no happy days.
For many tourist destinations to the sun or Europe, your passport need only be valid for the duration of your trip, but some countries require your passport to be valid for another 6 months and one country (Togo) requires a full year. Many African countries also require you to present proof of immunization against Yellow Fever, and some even want you to have received the vaccine for Cholera or Polio or to present proof of an HIV test. Some require proof of private health insurance, 2 blank pages in your passport for a visa or may require your passport to be in good condition (Mexico & Thailand – no rips or tears in any pages).
Out of 181 countries, 1 required a year of validity past date of return, 107 required six months, 30 required 3 months, 1 required 1 month, 39 required it to be valid for the duration of your stay, and just 1 with no passport requirement.
The Canadian government’s travel website provides a comprehensive list of entry/exit requirements by country, as well as a bunch of important travel information on travel health, laws and customs, currency, and much more.
If you don’t already hold a passport but want to travel in the future, you will almost certainly need one – the only country that still doesn’t require a passport will be Jamaica (but the Canadian government still strongly urges you to travel with one).
Every other country requires a passport.
Here is a list of tropical sun destinations and their passport requirements as of April 11, 2012*:
- Mexico: valid for duration of your trip, no rips or tears in any pages
- Dominican Republic: (effective April 30, 2012 forward) valid for duration of your trip
- Cuba: valid for one month past scheduled departure date from Cuba, additional restrictions apply around GPS-enabled devices
- Bahamas: valid for six months past date of return to Canada