Travellers have been warned they will be refused entry to a country and could be detained if they fail to satisfy border officials they have met all entry requirements.
As the summer season ramps up, the holiday car rental experts at StressFreeCarRental.com have told tourists ten reasons for their holiday to be ruined before it has begun.
Anyone hoping to travel abroad this Summer must ensure they comply with the conditions to enter or risk missing out on their holiday and being put on a return flight.
In the US alone, more than 270,000 travellers are denied entry at the border and forced to return home every year.
The strictness of entry requirements varies from country to country and with border protection officials given broad powers to decide if a traveller is eligible to enter refusal is common.
Tourists can be refused entry to a country for many reasons ranging from having incorrect travel documents to showing signs of a mental or physical illness. Holidaymakers can also be caught if there is damage to their passport, no matter how tiny it seems, and detained abroad.
These are ten reasons you could be denied entry to a country, according to StressFreeCarRental.com.
It is a requirement for visitors entering many countries to meet minimum health standards, and travellers may be found unfit to enter if they have certain medical conditions. Border forces who believe that someone is abusing substances, carrying prescription drugs, lacking vaccinations or possibly having a contagious disease may also be denied entry.
Travellers may need to prove to border protection that they have sufficient funds to cover their travel and trip to be admitted into certain countries. In the USA, If a holidaymaker is being hosted by someone else and has insufficient funds, it is advised that this is confirmed in writing to show border patrol officers. Spain also requires visitors to have €90 per day to sustain themselves in the country, or their entry could be rejected.
A criminal record may prevent holidaymakers from entering certain countries. Each country will have its own rules and criteria, which should be checked with the relevant embassy or immigration authorities beforehand to see if any documentation is required. Those who have committed serious crimes like murder, manslaughter, drug selling and assault will have trouble entering countries like New Zealand, India, Canada and the US.
Bringing/ not declaring restricted substances
Travellers should not attempt to bring dangerous items into a country; if they do, they must declare them. In Australia, travellers may be denied entry at the border if found to be bringing any unpermitted items into the country, which includes some types of food, plants, drugs and weapons.
Damage to passport
A tiny tear or the slightest water damage to a passport could be enough for immigration officials to render the travel document invalid. Any obvious flaw in the passport’s lamination is also enough to get travellers barred from a country, as well as discolouration, ink spillage and missing pages.
Passport holders may be denied entry to a country even if it is in date. EU and Brexit regulations now mean UK Citizens need a passport issued within the previous ten years, and it must be valid for at least three months after the date they plan to leave the EU country they are visiting. Outside of the EU, some passport requirements call for at least six months of validity from the date of departure.
Not having the number of blank passport pages required
Holidaymakers could be denied entry to foreign countries for failing to check passport blank pages. If a passport runs out of pages, the holder is expected to renew it sooner than the expiry date. Travellers should check the requirements of their destination, as South Africa requires at least two, and Italy requires a complete blank page.
Having a mental health condition
It is possible to be barred entry into some countries over mental illness. Many tourists have been turned away from entering the US because of their medical records and stopped from boarding flights. They can deny entry to people with a mental disorder that could pose a “threat to the property, safety or welfare” of themselves or others.
Getting done up for passport picture
Getting too glam for a passport picture could see makeup lovers banned from their flight if staff believe the picture isn’t them. Holidaymakers must get a new passport if they have altered their appearance so much that their picture no longer resembles them.
Not having an onward flight booking.
Some countries are very strict about having an onward or return booking flight if they deliberately or inadvertently overstay their visa and become difficult for authorities to track. Many Asian countries require travellers to prove when they will be leaving, and they have been asked to confirm they have a ticket out of there.
A spokesperson for StressFreeCarRental.com said: “Travellers should always research before heading off on vacation to check that they are eligible to enter the country.
“After spending hard-earned money on a holiday and looking forward to the break all year, nothing would be worse than being denied entry to the country and forced to fly back home. It is essential that holidaymakers ensure they have all the correct paperwork and that their passport is in good condition because border officials can turn people away for having the slightest bit of water damage or a minor tear.
“Most countries set and enforce their entry rules, and on arrival to a country, holidaymakers may be asked to share personal details and travel information with authorities. Having a criminal record and health conditions are just some reasons travellers can be turned away, but more surprising reasons include being too done up for a passport picture.”