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Old 10-04-2012, 10:50 AM   #1
exmli03
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Passport Question

We are new to DCL (first cruise out of Galveston in May 2013) and I am confused about the passport. We do not travel outside of the United States and so none of us 4 would have a reason to purchase the passport. Can I use our certified birth certificates to get on the boat? I really do not want to spend unnessary $ if I do not have to.

Thanks for your help,
Meredith
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Old 10-04-2012, 10:59 AM   #2
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You will get a variety of responses here, as some people feel very strongly about their position regarding passports.

Technically...it is a closed-loop cruise and therefore you are certainly allowed to travel using only a drivers license and CERTIFIED birth certificates. Make sure you have the "official" full birth certifcate forms, not a simple form from the hospital or photocopy; it may have a raised seal, hologram or something else that makes it "official."

Now, many people feel that a Passport is a important expense because you are traveling to foreign countires (or foreign waters even if you don't plan to disembark). If any kind of emergency arises which might require you to fly home immediately, you will not be able to do so (easily) without a full Passport book - no you would not be stuck forever in another country, but your departure would be delayed while dealing with the embassy to get an expediated Passport to allow you to fly home. In a medical emergency, this could seem like a long time. Therefore, many people feel a Passport is "worth" the expense as "insurance" that they could return home when/if the need were to arise.

Many others deem the likelihood of such an emergency to be very low and therefore they cruise without a Passport book. You will need to determine your family's tolerance risk and weigh the expense of Passports. Feel comfortable in your decision either way. My family has Passport cards because we live near a US border, but the cards have no value for flying, however we decided we were comfortable cruising with just the card (I don't recommend getting a Passport Card just to cruise).

Enjoy your cruise!
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Old 10-04-2012, 05:31 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by exmli03 View Post
We are new to DCL (first cruise out of Galveston in May 2013) and I am confused about the passport. We do not travel outside of the United States and so none of us 4 would have a reason to purchase the passport. Can I use our certified birth certificates to get on the boat? I really do not want to spend unnessary $ if I do not have to.

Thanks for your help,
Meredith
You will be fine We cruised out of Galveston in Jan. on Carnival and I found it very interesting when we went through customs after the cruise that there was a line for those with passports and those with out and there was FAR more people with out passports. Plus really how often do you hear/read about someone needing to fly home for an emergency??? rarely...just my 2 cents
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Old 10-04-2012, 05:46 PM   #4
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I'm firmly in the camp of having a passport. Never know when you might have the opportunity to use it for other reasons.
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Old 10-04-2012, 05:50 PM   #5
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i wouldn't cruise without one.
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