Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Can you advise me on minimum-validity passport rules to the US?
Simon Calder’s career in travel started at Gatwick Airport, where he cleaned aircraft for Laker Airways and later worked as a security officer. He became The Independent’s Travel Correspondent in 1994, and is known as “the Man Who Pays His Way” because he does not accept free travel facilities. He writes across the Independent titles, as well as for the Evening Standard.
Friday 10 May 2013
Q. I am going to the USA in Oct 2013 and Feb 2014 and my full UK passport expires in Mar 2014, does the passport have to be valid under the six months clear rule or do I need to renew in September?
A. Renew in June 2013! There is no legal need to do so, since the US - unlike many other non-EU nations - has no minimum-validity stipulation for British passport holders. "Your passport should be valid for the proposed duration of your stay. You don't need any additional period of validity on your passport beyond this," says the Foreign Office.
But if you renew a passport within nine months of its expiry date, you get full credit for outstanding time. In other words, if your passport expires on 1 March 2014, and you renew it any time from 1 June 2013, the replacement will be valid until 1 March 2024. And the "Esta" (electronic permission to visit the US) you will require for the trips is valid for two years, or until the passport expires, whichever is the sooner. Indeed, the only reason I can see for not getting a fresh passport next month is if you already have an Esta that will be valid for your two forthcoming trips.
Click HERE to email Simon.
You can also tweet him your questions @SimonCalder
The Independent travel offers: Discover a world of inspiring destinations
The 50 Best spas
Luton airport voted worst in Britain for second time running
Mystery as 'lake' appears in middle of Tunisian desert and becomes overnight tourist attraction
August Bank Holiday 2014: Five ways to make the most of it
Madame Tussauds has shown off its Beyoncé waxwork in Regent's Park - but why is the tourist attraction still pulling in the crowds?
- 1 'Alien thigh bone' on Mars: Excitement from alien hunters at 'evidence' of extraterrestrial life
- 2 West poised to join forces with President Assad in face of Islamic State
- 3 Mother fed her daughter tapeworms to make her skinny for pageant
- 4 Pamela Anderson rejects ice bucket challenge because of ALS experiments on animals: 'Mice had holes drilled into their skulls'
- 5 ALS ice bucket challenge co-founder Corey Griffin drowns, aged 27
Richard Dawkins on babies with Down Syndrome: 'Abort it and try again – it would be immoral to bring it into the world'
Scottish independence: English people overwhelmingly want Scotland to stay in the UK
Isis threat: Cameron wants an alliance with Iran
Michael Brown shooting: Chaos erupts on the streets of Ferguson after autopsy shows teenager was shot six times – twice in the head
Disgusting, frustrating, but intriguing: how the country really feels about its politicians
Bin bag full of cats' heads discovered near Manchester's Curry Mile
£6000 - £50000 per annum + Bonus+Benefits+Package: Harrington Starr: Oracle 11...
£17K OTE £30K: Charter Selection: Highly successful and innovative specialist...
£45000 - £55000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Working with an exciting ...
£23,000: Sauce Recruitment: A global leader in sports and entertainment is now...