After a year-long “review,” the White House on August 12, 2013, approved the State Department’s proposed new “long form” questionnaires for some (unspecified) subset of applicants for US passports. Who gets this form? Why? And, what if they don’t have the information to fill it out? Are they denied movement?
Something is broken in America. Is it our national character or our sense of right and wrong. In travel, America is moving down the wrong path. Airline bankruptcies pillory their workers and reward ineffective managers. TSA patdowns infuriate and demean the public TSA is supposedly protecting. New laws proposed by sincere politicians who for some reason don’t see Big Brother lurking in their bills to restrict travel for tax issues.
Every frequent traveler learns, no matter how experienced, that everyone eventually makes mistakes. Fortunately most of them are the kind of things that can be laughed off later.
While we passengers are all but dropping our drawers to get on a airplane in the name of security, the passport office is issuing passports to bogus citizens with obvious ID problems. It was all part of a Government Accountability Office (GAO) sting.
We don’t think it’s fair or legal for the government to charge you a fee to exercise your rights under the First Amendment and international human rights treaties to enter or leave the USA. Those rights are all but absolute, and rules that restrict or burden them, such as by imposing fees, are subject to strict scrutiny.
A hot off the press add-on fee pertains to Americans, Canadians and Australians who are flying into the Buenos Aires airport. Effective December 28, 2009, the Argentine Immigration Office implemented a reciprocity fee.
Starting June 1, 2009, Americans traveling to Canada, Mexico and the Caribbean will need a passport or passport card to cross borders and return home. But, it’s not quite that simple. Here are three exceptions.
Now that most Americans have finished with tax season, it’s a good time to take care of other life maintenance issues. How about a quick passport check?
E-Passports, or biometric passports, have been touted as milestone in border security. However between problems of protecting the data contained in the embedded RFID chips and the possibility of cloning the embedded chip data to create new passports, there are still hurdles to overcome.