On June 1, 2009, the U.S. government will implement the full requirements of the land and sea phase of WHTI. The proposed rules require most U.S. citizens entering the United States at sea or land ports of entry to have a passport, passport card, or other travel document approved by the Department of Homeland Security.
U.S. Passport: U.S. citizens may present a valid U.S. passport when traveling via air, land or sea between the U.S. and Canada, Mexico, Bermuda and the countries of the Caribbean (Western Hemisphere countries). When traveling to all other countries (including Panama, Costa Rica and Columbia) all U.S. citizens must present a valid U.S. passport.
The Passport Card:. The passport card is the wallet-size travel document that can only be used to re-enter the United States at land border-crossings or sea ports-of-entry from Canada, Mexico, Bermuda and countries of the Caribbean (Western Hemisphere countries). For example, a Passport Card is not valid for travel to Panama, Costa Rica, and Columbia.
The card provides a less expensive, smaller, and more convenient alternative to the passport book for those who travel frequently to these destinations by land or by sea.
Other WHTI-Compliant Travel Documents for U.S. citizen travel via land or sea between the U.S. and Canada, Mexico, Bermuda and the countries of the Caribbean (Western Hemisphere countries), as of January 31, 2008:
- Trusted Traveler Cards (NEXUS, SENTRI, or FAST)
- State Issued Enhanced Driver’s License (currently available for NY, WA & VT)
- Enhanced Tribal Cards (when available)
- U.S. Military Identification with Military Travel Orders
- U.S. Merchant Mariner Document when traveling in conjunction with official maritime business
- Native American Tribal Photo Identification Card
- Form I-872 American Indian Card
EXCEPTION: U.S. citizens on closed-loop cruises (cruises that begin and end in the same U.S. port) and visit Canada, Mexico, Bermuda and/or countries of the Caribbean will be able to enter or depart the US with a birth certificate and government issued photo ID.
Examples of a closed–loop cruise would be:
- SEA-SEA (visiting Canada),
- FLL-FLL (visiting Caribbean and/or Bermuda),
- BOS-BOS (visiting Canada),
- SAN-SAN (visiting Mexico)
Please see the following link for helpful information www.getyouhome.gov
For further information see U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s website Ready, Set…Go!