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Travel with kids: must-have documents and must-know info
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Travel with kids: must-have documents and must-know info

Planning a trip with your child? To ensure smooth travels, be sure to prepare all the right documents before you go.

Some countries require a visa to enter. Remember that to get a visa, you must have a valid passport. This applies to kids too. Some countries may also ask to see certain documents relating to the child, such as proof of identity, citizenship, or documents concerning the custody of the child.

Not sure about the requirements for the country you’re travelling to? Check out voyage.gc.ca or communicate directly with the Canadian embassy or consulate of the country you’re visiting. Don’t forget that getting a visa can take a while, so be sure to apply for it well ahead of time! The cost also varies from country to country.

What to know in special circumstances

Separation and divorce don’t need to make things more complicated, as long as you’ve taken care of the necessary paperwork. Even if you’ve already submitted documents for your separation or divorce to receive your passport for your child, be sure to have copies of them with you when traveling.

These documents allow customs officers, immigration, and the police to check if you have the right to travel with your child. It needs to show the terms of custody, and the authorized travel or access rights of the other parent.

If you’re travelling with a child whose parent is deceased, it’s recommended to have the official death certificate with you too.

Other things to note before you leave

To be extra prepared, be sure to do the following before you set off on your trip:

  • Register with the Registration of Canadians Abroad with the Government of Canada. This way, the Government of Canada can reach you in case of an emergency.
  • Learn about the laws, vaccines and other particulars about the country you’re visiting. Again, the Government of Canada can give you this information.
  • Make photocopies of you and your family’s passports (specifically the page displaying the name and photo) and keep a copy in your luggage, or in a different place from where you store your passport. Give copies to a loved one who’s staying in Canada during your trip as well. These photocopies may be useful in case of loss or theft!
  • Check your insurance coverage including health insurance, travel insurance and life insurance.

Happy travels!

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