Passport & Go: The Best International Stops For Travelers of Color, No Visa Application Needed

September 23, 2016 11:12 AM

Kim Lee Baker

Lifestyle Writer

Passport & Go: The Best International Stops For Travelers of Color, No Visa Application Needed

Your U.S. Passport has power. Where nationals of other countries are often denied visa or even, not permitted to enter at customs, you’re good. You’re more than good. Traveling as an American to other countries, is a taste of privilege Black Americans are not familiar with. This, plus the strength of the U.S. Dollar in many locations, should be appealing.


So, why not, go a little … give a taste, set some travel goals, grab your squad ! Experience some culture. These locations may get your wings flapping or inspire you to buy new luggage, at minimum.

Tulum, Mexico


Why: First, the obvious — it’s close by. Flight deals happen often (Cancun is the nearest airport) and accommodations are beyond reasonable. For the eyes, though, Tulum is spectacular. Not at all to be associated with the chaotic vibe of Cancun. Tulum gives you Mayan ruins, Cenotes that appear to be down right drinkable, yoga retreats, nude beach (I mean, why not ?) and the food, of course.
When: November-December are prime, to escape the hurricane season.
U.S. Entry: At the border office, you’ll need to purchase (about $20) a Forma Migratoria Multiple a.k.a. tourist card. This, along with your U.S. passport gives you up to 180 days.
Currency: $1.00 = 19.72pesos

Crete, Greece

Why: It’s friendly, it’s lovely and although on Euro currency it’s inexpensive. Crete is the largest of the Greek islands so it has loads of options. Rent yourself a scooter to fully enjoy cruising around. Since it’s a large Island, if you want to visit many areas, map wisely. You don’t want to spend your entire time getting from A to F.
When: July and August are the hottest months in Crete. If you want some summer fun, June is best or go for an end-of-summer trip in September.
Travel requirement: Greece is in Europe’s Schengen visa area. Your passport stamp gives you 90 days at entry, no paperwork. That same 90 counts in other Schengen visa countries, if you decide to venture to another country.
Currency: $1.00 = .89cents. But again, the economy in Greece is still struggling.

Chefchaouen, Morocco

Why: It’s blue—oh wow is it blue. I mean, Chefchaouen is like some tranquil, ancient, bottom of the ocean city. Morocco is giving us other equally stunning stops, if you’re after more architecture. Plus, it’s a lovely country to start with, for your bucketlist trip visit to Africa.
When: Generally, the weather is definitely manageable in Chefchaouen. Skip January and February, they’re notoriously rainy. August is the overall winner.
Travel requirement: Your U.S. passport gets you a 90-day stamp.
Currency: $1.00 = 9.73 Moroccan Dirham

Osaka, Japan


Why: Street food for days plus less expensive than Tokyo, Osaka deserves some attention. The Cherry Blossoms … yes, you want to see them. However, keep in mind tourism in Japan, especially since the 2020 Olympics announcement.
When: End of March for the Blossoms and autumn for their best weather, plus, clutch the pearls level, fall foliage
U.S. Entry: Easy breezy … again, your stamp gives you 90 days. Don’t be discouraged by the fingerprinting at entry.
Currency: $1.00 = 100.79 Japanese Yen

These 2 things …

1.    Do NOT get turned away because you have less than 6 months validity on your passport at entry and/or limited (2 minimum) blank pages available. Some country’s border police can be fickle. So check, check and double check before you book tickets.

2.    Keep this bookmarked for U.S. Department of State travel alerts. Also, reference this site for full, U.S. Citizen international travel requirements.

Currencies are as of September 23, 2016

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