How to Check if a Visa or Passport is Needed for Travel

31 01 2008

As a non-U.S. citizen, I always have to take the extra step in researching travel locations to find out if I need a visa to visit certain destinations.  Although a simple web search or a visit to a tourism website will yield this information for citizens of developed Western countries and Japan, oftentimes for smaller countries there is simply not a lot of useful information online.  This is especially true for countries like Taiwan, which is not officially recognized by many countries and international organizations as a sovereign nation.  Usually I end up looking at embassy websites or making a phone call to the consulate to ask.  Even this step can be difficult, however, as some embassies actually charge you to ask them visa questions (*cough* U.K. *cough*).

Anyway, I am writing this post today to alert you of a wonderful search engine I discovered while trying to look up, once again, if I needed a travel visa.  The Visa, Passport, and Health Information webpage from SkyTeam, the international airline partnership, is an efficient search engine that allows you to input your nationality, residency, and destination (including transit points) and find out if you need a passport or visa.  You can also find out if there are required health requirements, such as vaccinations, for the country you are visiting. 


The feature that sets this search engine apart from other resources is that you can input your residency.  This is important because for some countries in the Caribbean, you don’t need a Visa if you are a U.S. permanent resident (green card holder).  In addition, the website is searchable for all countries so you don’t have to waste time trudging through all these websites that are may or may not be in English.  A funny note is that Taiwan if known as Chinese Taipei on this website, just like in the Olympics.

Hopefully this will save you time next time you need to search whether or not you need a visa to go on your next adventure!

Here is the website written out:




One response

13 07 2010

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!!!!! I have been searching for that Sky Team site for ages. I used it a few years ago and couldn’t remember the name of it. It has the most helpful travel information I have come across for those who do not hold US passports.

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