TRAVEL, with Stacy Wykes: Travel 101 - check your passport!

Having your passport, opens up the world for you to travel.

10 years of travelling before you need to renew it, but imagine planning and booking your last overseas holiday before you have to renew your passport, only to turn up at the airport to find out your non expired passport isn't valid.

I can hear you saying, this doesn't make sense.

How can a passport that hasn't expired, not be valid to travel on?

While you have 10 years validity on your passport, you really can only travel on a passport for 9.5 years, before having to renew it.

A lot of countries require you to have six months validity on your passport from date of entry or re-entry into Australia.

Not knowing or even overlooking this one little fact can not only turn your much needed holiday a nightmare, but it can also turn out to be quite a costly experience.

You may not be allowed to board your flight, and you will also have to find a passport office to renew your passport.

In some cases you can get an emergency passport which can be issued within two business days, only not all countries allow you entry on an emergency passport, and not all nationalities are eligible for an emergency passport.

Emergency passports only have four visa pages and don't have a chip.

If you need to travel on an emergency passport, you do need to check the requirements for that country.

Where you can enter some countries on an ordinary passport without a problem, you need to get a visa if you have an emergency passport. 

For example, traveling to the USA, you need not only a chip in your passport, but you also need a Visa Waiver, which is a simple five-minute application online.

If you were travelling on an emergency passport, you don't have a chip in your passport and you need a visa, which can take longer to get than the time you have, you are not allowed entry on the Visa Waiver program on an emergency passport.

Once you have confirmation of when you will have your passport, you can then re-book your tickets, at a fee.

Not to mention re-booking the rest of your trip, but at this stage of travel, you will have incurred cancellation fees of hotels and day trips.

If you are joining a tour the day or two after arriving at your destination, you will more than likely miss it.

Some tour companies will allow you to join at another city along the way, but getting there is another expense.

To avoid this happening to you, make checking your passport expiry your number one step when planning your next holiday.

It is such a small task potentially reducing the stress when checking in at the airport.

If you have less than 12 months on your passport, renew it, just to be safe.