Planning on taking a trip overseas? Well, you’ll need to show some credentials before you’re allowed to cross any borders. U.S. citizens can travel to some countries with just a passport, while other governments require travelers to have a special visa to enter their country. Remember, a visa is not the same thing as a passport.
U.S. passports are issued to citizens by the American government, while a visa is “permission granted by the government of a country to an alien to enter that country and to remain for a specific period of time,” according to USPassportNow.com. It’s your responsibility to find out whether or not you need a visa to visit a particular country, and you can apply for one through that country’s embassy or consulate. Of course, you always need a valid passport in addition to any required visas.
All of these technicalities can be enough to make you want to just stay home. But don’t cancel those travel plans just yet—now there is an interactive map from Passport Index that tells you exactly what kind of documentation you need to enter every country in the world.
Use the map above to get details about required documentation. Or, go to the comparison section and just select country of citizenship at the top, and it will fill in what you will need visa-wise for the list of countries at the left. You can also add additional country’s passports (say you’re American and traveling with a pal from the U.K.) and you’ll be able to see what is required for citizens of each country to enter the destination. How convenient!
As long as you’re getting organized for upcoming overseas adventures, here’s some more information about required travel documents. And, check out this official traveler’s checklist from the U.S. government. Also take a look at Travel + Leisure’s tips for international travelers.
Now that you’ve got all of the important things sorted out, it’s on to the more exciting aspects of travel—such as this transparent suitcase or this amazing suitcase that automatically turns into shelves when you open it up. Bon voyage!