Passports - 1923 - Pocket Handbook for Travelers

Passport regulations are quite likely to remain in force for some time to come in most foreign countries, although for Americans passports are not required for entry into or leaving their own country. For going to most foreign countries, however, they are still absolutely necessary, and an American traveler is unwise who neglects to provide himself with one. Even though it may be possible to get into a foreign country without such a credential, getting out may prove difficult.

Method of Obtaining.—In obtaining a passport, arrangements should be made well in advance. If one lives in or near New York, time may be saved by application at the Passport Bureau of the State Department in the New York Custom House. If near Washington, the passport may be obtained at the Passport Bureau of the State Department.

If one lives some distance from Washington or New York, one may apply through the Clerk of a Federal or State Court, who will supply application blanks, assist in filling them out and take the necessary affidavit. The application to Washington must be accompanied by two small photographs of the applicant, size 2x3 inches, and it is necessary for the prospective traveler to state the names of the countries he proposes to visit, his business therein, his occupation, and a few details about himself for identification purposes.

Countries Not Requiring Passports.—It is understood that passports are not required of American citizens for travel in the following countries: Bahamas, Bermuda, Canada, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Jamaica—when one is a tourist or winter visitor—Mexico, Newfoundland, Paraguay and Uruguay. No visa is required for Salvador.

Visas.—Before leaving the American port for a foreign country, it is necessary to have the passport viséed by the consul of that country, and if one plans to visit several countries, it is best to obtain visas before sailing from the consul of each country requiring such a formality. Such visas usually are good for three months only and after that must be renewed.

In cases where one's program is uncertain it is advisable to obtain visas as required. Travelers who expect to do considerable journeying about should take at least a dozen photographs to Europe. Such are often required of those seeking visas, permits to reside, and other official documents. Photographs should show the head and shoulders, and women as well as men should wear no hat in the photograph.

Costs of Visas.—Most foreign countries, retaliating for the American charge of $10 for viséing foreign passports, have imposed an equal tax for a visa on American passports. Great Britain, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Czechoslovakia now charge $10 for a consular visa, and even Monaco makes the same charge. Jugoslavia charges $10.50. France charges $5, but a French visa is good also for Corsica, Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Syria and other French colonies and protectorates.

A British visa is good for Egypt, Gibraltar, and Palestine, and is valid for one year. The American visitor to Holland requires no visa on his passport, provided his stay is limited to four weeks. For a longer visit, a visa is necessary, and costs $1.50. The charge for a Japanese visa is $2.50.

Sailing Permit.—It is no longer necessary for an American to have a sailing permit. An alien must, however, obtain such from the Collector of Internal Revenue, and it is issued only when the requirements of the Income Tax Law have been complied with.

Passport Formalities Here and in Europe

France.—Before the traveler leaves New York, the passport must be viséed at Pier 57, foot of West 15th Street, New York. The passport is inspected on steamer before the passenger disembarks at the French port. It serves as proper identification for a period of two months following the traveler's arrival in France. After that the visitor desiring to remain in France must have a carte d'identité.

To secure this the visitor first of all obtains a certificate of domicile from the proprietor of the hotel or boarding house in which he is staying, or from the concierge of the house, if he is occupying a leased apartment. He must take this certificate to the Commissariat of Police in the district in which he is residing. There it is stamped and legalized. The visitor then takes this certificate, together with five photographs and his passport, to the Bureau des Etrangers at the Préfecture of Police, in Paris, or to the Mairie, if in the provinces.

There is a brief questioning of the applicant, who pays a small fee, leaves his certificate of domicile and photographs and obtains In exchange a "receipt for a request for a carte d'identité." This serves as proper identification pending the issuance of the carte d'identité itself, which should be called for at the Préfecture or Malrie within two weeks. The passport is again inspected before the traveler boards the steamer.

It is not now necessary for American travelers from Paris to London to obtain visas at the Préfecture of Police in Paris. All that is required is an American passport, viséed by the British consul in Paris. When returning from London to Paris, the visa of the French consul is not required.

Tourist tax.—All tourists, whether French or foreigners, staying less than four weeks in a summer or winter resort, are subjected to a small tax of from ten centimes to two francs per day, according to the importance of the resort, the class of the hotel, etc. This tax is collected by the hotel, and is placed on the bill.

England.—The traveler bound for England must have his passport viséed at the British Consulate-General in New York, the passport office being at 20 Pearl St., or by the British Consular Officer in whose district he resides. This is inspected upon his arrival at a British port and, if the traveler conducts himself properly, no further passport formalities are required during his stay in England. except that his passport may be inspected at his port of departure from that country.

Italy.—An American citizen entering Italy direct from the United States or from a European country, must be in possession of a valid American passport, duly viséed by an Italian Consular representative abroad. The aforesaid visa, if one is proceeding directly from the United States, must be secured in the United States; if the traveler is not proceeding directly from the United States to Italy, the visa may be secured in the country from which he intends to proceed to Italy.

Spain.—The traveler to Spain may obtain a visa from the Spanish Consulate-General in New York, either in person by sending his passport by mail. The passport is inspected upon arrival in Spain, but no further formalities are necessary, except that if the traveler prolongs his stay a permis de séjour must be obtained from the Civil Governor. Before leaving Spain the passport must be viséed, and it is again inspected at the Port of Departure. Under a reciprocal arrangement between Spain and the United States, a wife and children under fifteen years of age may be included on the same passport issued to the husband. All persons over fifteen years old are required to have separate passports.

Belgium and Switzerland.—No visa necessary.

Holland.—No visa necessary for Americans, provided the holder of a passport limits his stay in the Netherlands to four weeks; if longer, he must have obtained a visa and report to the police in Holland and obtain an "identity card.2 Americans passing through Holland en route to another country must have the passport visa of the country of destination, and will be allowed a transit period of not more than eight days.

Denmark.—An American desiring to remain in Denmark after the expiration of his visa must apply to the nearest State Police official for an extension before the visa expires.

Sweden.—When the validity of a passport visa expires, permission to remain in Sweden must be obtained from the Foreign Office. A traveler desiring to leave Sweden and return should obtain permission to return before leaving.

Bulgaria.—A visa is good for one year, provided the passport is valid during that period. A medical examination is made at seaports, but most visitors arrive at Sofia by way of the Paris-Constantinople trunk line.

Czechoslovakia.—A Czechoslovakian visa on an American passport is good for the first visit only; for subsequent visas during the same year charges are graduated at $8.00, $4.00 or $2.00 "according to applicant's economic situation." The Legation at Washington and the Czechoslovak Consulates in the United States are authorized to grant "permanent visas" (good for six months) for an unlimited number of entries and departures from Czechoslovakia. For transit through Czechoslovakia a visa is necessary.

Germany.—A German visa is usually issued for three months, but is valid for the length of time stated in the endorsement. This holds good in any German state except Bavaria, where it is necessary to obtain from the Police a special permit if one intends remaining longer than 24 hours. For extension of the validity of a visa application must be made to a Magistrate or to Police Authorities.

Danzig.—While passports and visas are not necessary for entering Danzig, a person entering the free city by land or sea should have his passport viséed by the Polish Consul in whose district he resides in the United States, as it is probable he must cross Polish territory; otherwise, permission to enter Polish territory may be refused until a telegram can be sent to the Polish consul in the United States in whose district the traveler resides, to ascertain if there is any reason why the traveler should not be permitted to enter Polish territory—and a reply received. Those who enter by land must also have the visa of a German consular officer in the United States.

Latvia.—Passports, properly viséed by a Latvian consul, must be presented by travelers within 24 hours after arrival in Riga. Travelers in transit through Latvia may obtain a transit visa, costing $2.00, to extend the stay indicated on the entrance visa, a sojourn permit, (fee $3.00 required). Excursion groups are exempt from Latvian entrance, exit and sojourn fees.

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