NBAA and AOPA said that the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative that became effective January 23 this year and required air travelers to carry a passport to fly back into the U.S. from Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean or Bermuda was relaxed somewhat last month. Pilots or passengers caught in the midst of the overburdened process of applying for a passport can now simply provide proof that they have done so.
Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative
In lieu of a passport, U.S. citizens have been permitted to present a variety of documents to establish their identity and citizenship and right to enter the U.S. But soon a driver’s license or birth certificate will not be sufficient identification for certain travel. Beginning January 23, all U.S. citizens and nonimmigrant aliens from Canada, Bermuda and Mexico entering or reentering the U.S.
Flight crews and their passengers will be affected by a proposal from the Departments of State and Homeland Security to require a U.S. or foreign passport when traveling between the U.S. and other countries in the Western Hemisphere. Starting January 1 next year, a passport would be required for air and sea travel to and from Bermuda, the Caribbean and South America. Effective Jan.
Get ready for a passport shakeup as the rules change. There are countries you can travel to and from without showing a passport, but their number has already begun to shrink. Effective May 1, crewmembers are required to show a valid passport when entering Mexico. A proposal by the U.S. Depart-ment of Homeland Security, to go into effect in three phases, will take that even further.