Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport
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Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 12:07:18 MST Print View

Interesting read on why most Americans don't travel abroad. Not surprisingly -- similar to how some folks who have never hiked have an inordinate fear of the wilds out there -- many Americans "harbor an unmatched fear of the world". And again, methinks just like with people who have never hiked, those who don't travel are really missing out as well...

Edited by ben2world on 02/18/2011 12:09:00 MST.

Chris W
(simplespirit) - MLife

Locale: .
Re: Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 12:08:29 MST Print View

I just got one in the last couple of years, but have yet to use it. The process for getting one now is so lengthy, I wanted to have it in case I caught a deal on going to say, New Zealand.

Sam Haraldson
(sharalds) - MLife

Locale: Gallatin Range
Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 13:38:42 MST Print View

Mine is expired. Does that mean I don't have one? Haven't used it since '98.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 13:40:24 MST Print View

"Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport"

And you can't get it unless you pry them from our cold, dead fingers. Or warm dead fingers if they get there soon enough....

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 13:41:38 MST Print View

I've got some cool stamps in mine. Croatia. Bosnia. East Germany. I've got a great story about getting the East Germany stamp. Well, I think it's great anyway.

John Whynot
(jdw01776)

Locale: Southeast Texas
Re: Re: Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 13:46:20 MST Print View

Saudi Arabia is my most exotic visa/stamp. Went there on business...

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 13:50:02 MST Print View

"Saudi Arabia is my most exotic visa/stamp. Went there on business..."

I went to Saudi Arabia once, by way of Iraq and Kuwait, on 'business.' They didn't stamp our passports though...... ;-)

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Saudi Arabia on 02/18/2011 14:15:21 MST Print View

I would LOVE to visit SA -- but tourist visas are only given to tour groups, and infidels are not allowed anywhere near Mecca or Medina!! Oh well...

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 14:15:22 MST Print View

I have one and work very hard to avoid out of country business trips. There are more great places to hike in the US than can be accomplished in a lifetime... so why go somewhere else?

I was going to go to Tanzania this year, but my wife nixed that idea :(

but I am sort of glad, because the dead time it takes to fly will be put to more constructive use.

It is my understanding that the new passports have biometric chips in them with personal information stored... no thanks Big Brother. I am going to let mine expire.

Gary Dunckel
(Zia-Grill-Guy) - MLife

Locale: Boulder
Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 14:20:04 MST Print View

I lived/worked in Saudi Arabia for over 5 years, and let me tell you, it isn't all that exotic. Well, camping in the Empty Quarter was special, but the rest of the country is pretty bleak. It would make a superb landfill.

As for visas, we had to have an EXIT visa just to get out of the country. They like to keep track of where their worker bees are. But those exit/re-entry visas were lifelines to sanity. And they allowed me to fill up 3 different passports and visit over 100 countries while I lived there.

. .
(biointegra) - MLife

Locale: Puget Sound
Re: Re: Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 14:39:06 MST Print View

It is my understanding that the new passports have biometric chips in them with personal information stored... no thanks Big Brother. I am going to let mine expire.

Yes, but more importantly, as a result of this, they now weigh almost twice as much as the old ones.


I highly recommend visiting Turkey. The country is beautiful and culturally rich, with many hospitable and kind souls. Single entry Tourist visas are $20 ($65 if you are Canadian) at Istanbul Airport port of entry and good for up to 90 days. The Lycian Way and St. Paul's (legitimately named) Trail are of note.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: Re: Re: Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 14:48:13 MST Print View

'Cause 70% of us can't afford to go anywhere.

Katharina ....
(Kat_P) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Coast
Passports and travelling on 02/18/2011 14:50:53 MST Print View

Travelling does tend to promote understanding and tolerance.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Re: Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 14:52:54 MST Print View

Do I need a passport to visit California? I've heard that's like another country.......

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Passports and travelling on 02/18/2011 14:55:50 MST Print View

"Travelling does tend to promote understanding and tolerance."

Very true. And just like wilderness hiking -- traveling also banishes the "fear of the unknown".

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: Passports and travelling on 02/18/2011 14:58:48 MST Print View

Understanding and tolerance are over rated. I'll stick to snap judgments. j/k

Douglas, you won't want to use the return ticket after you get here.

Tim Zen
(asdzxc57) - F

Locale: MI
Re: Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 15:21:05 MST Print View

The cost is just way too high. $110 for the passport. $25 for "processing fee" and then $10 for a picture. Seems odd we have to pay this much for a document that lets you travel outside of the country.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Passports and travelling on 02/18/2011 15:24:11 MST Print View

"Douglas, you won't want to use the return ticket after you get here."

I have no doubt that's true! But, of course, you all may want me to use that ticket by the time the weekend's over! ;-)

Lyan Jordan
(redmonk)

Locale: Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 16:06:39 MST Print View

I'd guess foreign travel is out of budget for the poor, working poor, and most of the middle class.

Why have a passport when there is no chance of using it ?

30% of Americans are able to entertain thoughts of foreign travel, thus they have a passport.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Only 30% of Americans Hold a Passport on 02/18/2011 16:16:47 MST Print View

Cameron:

Not to understate the plight of the poor among us... but reading the article, 30% is clearly very low for an affluent nation such as ours.