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Passport Update

FINAL Passport Rule Issued for Land and Sea Borders

The Departments of Homeland Security and of State has issued the final rulemaking concerning the requirements of passports for land and sea border crossings under the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative. After years of development following 9/11, this ruling is the end of the process and can be considered FINAL to ensure you  have the proper identification when traveling.

U.S. citizens on cruise voyages that begin and end at the same U.S. port (closed-loop itineraries) must show proof of citizenship* and government-issued photo ID (such as a drivers license). A passport will not be required for passengers that fall into this category.

*Documents include: Original or certified copy of birth certificate; Naturalization papers; Consular Report of Birth Abroad issued by Department of State

U.S. citizens traveling on cruises that begin and end in different U.S. ports, or begin or end in a foreign port, must have a passport or other recognized document.   For a list of accepted documents, see

The good news for a majority of cruise passengers American citizens that leave and return on their cruise from the same U.S. port  is that the travel document requirements will remain largely unchanged from how the industry has been operating for several years.

Although Passports are not required for most cruise ship passengers, it is still highly recommended that you obtain a Passport anyway.

Please note that the above rules are for cruise ship travel only.  If you are flying or driving back into the US, you will be required to present a valid US Passport.

CLIA continues to encourage travelers to obtain passports to allow the broadest travel opportunities. You can visit  to obtain information on how to apply at more than 9,000 passport acceptance facilities in the United States, or visit your local Post Office for an application.

CLICK HERE for information about the new Enhanced Drivers Licenses