Tips on Why and Where to Get a Second Passport

With the world economy in a turmoil and citizens worrying about the direction their government may be taking, there is more interest in moving to another country or acquiring a second passport than ever before. Why would you ever need a second passport? And, where could you get one if you determined that one would beneficial to you?

First, why would you ever need a second passport, and what are the advantages in having one? In our generation alone, the world has shrunk for all of us. With an emerging interconnected world economy and the ability to quickly and easily get to any part of the world, we have become to a degree, like it or not, world citizens. Yet we remain subject to the legal requirements of our particular country of citizenship. Reasons for possibly needing a second passport include the following.

There are citizens of certain countries that have become frequent targets for terrorists. Anti-American sentiment for example has made it safer at times to not travel with a U.S. passport. There are some other countries that have the same problem. In these cases, it might be beneficial to travel with a passport other than that of your native country

In like manner, you might wish to visit a country that is on the forbidden list for citizens of your country. In the case of U.S. citizens this includes Cuba and North Korea. With a second passport from a country that does not have that restriction, you could easily visit these countries. This would require leaving from the country of your second passport. Of course, you would still have to have your own country’s passport to leave and enter your own country.

You may be concerned about the political and economic direction in which your country is headed. In this case, having a second passport might be your way of giving you an “out” or second option should things go beyond where you feel comfortable

You may be interested in working in another country that requires citizenship as a prerequisite to doing so. An example of this would be having a second passport from one of the European Union member countries. This would allow you free movement among all members of the EU and in most cases allow you to work in them.

The second consideration is where and how to obtain a second passport. There are about as many countries that allow second passports as there are that forbid them. Your first step is to determine why you want the second passport and look for a country that will have one that serves your need.

Some countries issue a second passport due to heritage. There is a special program from children of parents born in Ireland for example. Israel’s Law of Return allows second passports based on being Jewish.

Some countries issue a second passport based on residency. I have already mentioned the benefits of having an EU passport. Even if you cannot get a second passport directly from one of these countries, you may be able to get one through residency in one of their territories. For example, after five years of residence in Curacao or Bonaire, you become eligible for a Dutch Passport.

Some issue second passports based on economic considerations. In the Caribbean area Dominica and St.Kitts & Nevis offer citizenship through the Caribbean economic citizenship programs. As part of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM, Dominican citizens have easy access to other Caribbean island nations. They are advertised as providing hassle free travel to over 100 countries. You can easily invest over a half million dollars to obtain one of these, so only the “well heeled” should consider this option.

I have tried to cover some of the main reasons a person might want a second passport and some considerations (and specific countries) related to obtaining one. Only you can decide if your economic, political, and lifestyle considerations make you a candidate for obtaining a second passport.

Dr. Lamar Ross is an author, educator, photographer, internet entrepreneur, and international traveler. He has a special interest in training individuals for expatriate living and providing information on unique travel destinations.He has lived in the United States, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and India and has traveled extensively in 29 different countries. He speaks both English and Spanish fluently and has a basic ability in several other languages. For more information on expatriate living, check out the blog Expatriate Traveler Notes

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