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Travel & living abroad
Last updated at 10:18 (UK time) 8 Sep 2011

Gap year visas and passports

If you wish to travel abroad you need a passport, even for a day trip. Apply in good time. You can get advice from the Identity & Passport Service website or call them on 0300 222 0000 (calls are charged at your network provider's standard national rate).

Some countries have an immigration requirement for a passport to remain valid for a minimum period (usually at least six months) beyond the date of entry to the country. You can check each country's requirements by visiting


  • If you plan to travel overseas you may require a visa to enter the country you are going to
  • Check visa requirements with your travel agent or contact the Consulate or Embassy of the country you plan to visit
  • If you are a British Dependent Territories Citizen, British Overseas Citizen, British Subject, British National Overseas, or a British Protected Person, you may need a visa that is not required by British Citizens.

General Tips

  • Make a note of your passport number, date and place of issue and consider taking a photocopy (keep separately in a safe place)
  • Check the passport expiry date
  • Write the full details of your next of kin in your passport
  • Tell family and friends where you are going and leave them your contact details, insurance policy details and your itinerary and/or store them online using a secure date storage
  • Take a second means of photo-identification with you
  • Keep your passport in the hotel safe and carry a photocopy with you, unless local laws stipulate that you should carry the original
  • If your passport is lost or stolen overseas, contact the nearest British Embassy, High Commission or Consulate office immediately for advice.