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Old Oct 11, 02, 9:20 am   #1
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The Travel With Children - Single Parent Travelling With Child(ren) Thread [Merged]

I am finding more & more countries want to see a notarized letter of consent when one parent is traveling with one or more children. This began with Mexico and Canada, and seems to be spreading. I guess they are tired of the legal hassles involved with parents abducting their kids after messy divorces.
In any case, here is a sample form that I find useful when taking my own kids while my spouse keeps the home fires warm:
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Old Oct 11, 02, 9:50 am   #2
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I made mine very generic so I can use the same letter over and over and only needed to get it notarized once. I've never had any trouble with it not being specific. It basically just says something to the effect of: My wife, letiole, has my permission to travel with my son, T-wiz, outside the US.
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Old Oct 11, 02, 1:38 pm   #3
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Doublecheck the requirements for countries you plan to visit. Some countries require that the letter be translated from English and/or notarized at the country's embassy or consulate. Fortunately Canada nor Mexico fall into this category but I have been told that some South American nations do.

[This message has been edited by El Cochinito (edited 10-11-2002).]
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Old Oct 11, 02, 3:31 pm   #4
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Interesting point regarding the translation. From this website it says Mexico actually requires it, but doesn't usually insist on it.

Some friends of mine found themselves in a sticky situation on this once. The father was already in Mexico, the mother and the children were flying down from LAX to meet him. They had no letter and, as he was already in Mexico, couldn't get one, especially not in time to make their flight. Turns out LAX - and perhaps other airport - has a notary there. They, um, found the childrens' "father" in the airport and got the letter notarized.
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Old Oct 14, 02, 8:13 am   #5
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What my brother has done when his wife travels with their children is have a letter notarized which notes his consent for her travels.
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Old Oct 17, 02, 10:52 am   #6
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My experience was a bit more difficult. My 3-year old and I had plans to go to Mexico to meet Mommie, who was already there. We didn't know we needed the document. Continental allowed us to fly from AUS to IAH but we could not board the IAH to Cancun flight without the document. My wife had to hire a cab to take her to a notary (actually a lawyer in Mexico) and this cost us over $200, not including the cab fare. She had to fax the document to CO in IAH. We were able to catch a later flight and had to show the document at IAH to the counter agent plus to Mexico customs when we arrived. It was a not-so-fun learning experience.
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Old Oct 22, 02, 7:52 pm   #7
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Very important to have this document when travelling to Asia, especially if child looks Asian. Also when travelling to China if one of the couple is of Asian ethnicity bring your marriage license, save yourself allot of hassel and some official nastiness.
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Old Oct 27, 02, 2:10 pm   #8
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I'm glad I read this. My husband will be in Africa for 2 months, basically unreachable, and I was planning on doing some travel with the kids. I didn't even consider that we might need a permission slip. Does anyone know about Singapore's requirements??
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Old Jun 22, 03, 10:28 am   #9
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Documentation for minors CR without one Parent

We are going to CR in July and I was wondering what we need for the children to enter without problems. We all have passports. My 12year old daughter from my first marriage will be coming with out her Mother (Joint Custody). My new Wifes 15 Year old daughter will be with us (She has full custody) and I am also bringing my Sisters 14 year old son. I emailed the CR consulate and all there reply was to cut and paste from there Internet site about just needing passports for minors. Please let me know if this is correct. Thanks in advance for your help.

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Old Jun 22, 03, 11:46 am   #10
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I think you should get a notarized letter of consent from the children's other parents. Alaska Air has a good template for such a letter
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Old Jun 23, 03, 5:48 am   #11
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A notarized letter is very simple to do, and will save any and all hassles. We did this earlier in the year when flying to PHX, my wife and daughter from Calgary, myself from Montreal. Immigration people are very thorough when it comes to children, as they should be.
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Old Nov 4, 04, 9:54 am   #12
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Countries that require "permission" document from non-travelling parent

Prompted by the thread:
Wife (permanent resident) traveling with infant (US citizen)

I thought I would share my recent experience travelling to Chile.

On our last trip to Chile we were questioned regarding our daughter. She travels on a Spanish passport and as such it shows both parents surnames (our case is a little odd as her second surname is not the same as mine due to my parents changing our surname when I was a child. Her Spanish passport and other documents were issued with my birth surname as per my birth certificate.......I digress). Finally we were able to explain that we were both her parents.

We were warned that if we entered the country together and then only one of us needed to leave Chile with our daughter we would need an Authorisation to Travel from the non-travelling parent. This would be necessary even though none of us are chilean (well, I was born there but am an Australian citizen).

We will again be travelling to Chile and we are now in the process of organising the Authorisation with a Chilean consulate here in Spain.

If one parent departs Spain with a child it is not necessary to have an authorisation from the second parent. This has been our experience for the past three years. Each time we travel we telephone different governement offices and get the response that nothing is necessary.

Anybody else have experiences with countries requiring tourists to have authorisation documents?

Last edited by Dani; Nov 4, 04 at 10:29 am
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Old Nov 4, 04, 10:50 am   #13
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You definitely need it traveling from the US to Mexico.

I've traveled to from US to Canada, Greece, Italy, UK and probably several other places with my son and have always carried a notarized letter from my husband, but have never been asked for it.

A friend of mine found out about the Mexico requirement when trying to leave LAX with her children to meet their father in Mexico. When she found out they wouldn't allow them to board the plane without a notarized letter, she "found" their father right there at LAX of all places and found that they had a notary at the airport. Many large airports do have notaries so all is not lost if you arrive at the airport without the letter.
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Old Nov 4, 04, 12:08 pm   #14
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My wife got a scolding from Canadian immigration a couple of weeks ago for traveling with our baby but without me (or a letter). I admire her for asking the agent point blank if he was going to refuse her entry. He didn't but I'm sure she now has a red mark on her permanent record.

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Old Nov 4, 04, 12:38 pm   #15
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My daughter has been travelling since she was 1 year old, and we never had any problems until earlier this year. My daughter is a dual citizen (US/Costa Rica), and in Costa Rica they wouldn't let her leave (with her mother) without a government endorsement in her passport.

This is a bit spotty, however, the next time we went (after I had spent 1 1/2 days standing in line at the CR government offices), they didn't even look at it.

However, it ruined a great vacation in Argentina for my wife and daughter. (I was in Argentina already, from the US).
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