I met my husband when we worked together in Jamaica in 2013. So we have different passports. Mine Canadian, his Jamaican. When I think of travel planning, visa requirements are a mandatory part of my research, and quite frankly a huge headache. Any Jamaican who has ever been turned down for a visa knows the feeling.
So it starts with a Google search for "countries Canadians can enter visa-free" showing 171 countries and "countries Jamaicans can enter visa-free" at 78 countries- based on the Henley & Partners Visa Restrictions Index (check the link for your country).
This would be a daunting realization for some. For me, it's simply a way to narrow down which destinations on the bucket list we'll tackle first. That cross-section of countries are the ones we know we can be spontaneous with - grab those last minute deals and roll out!
All other destinations will require a lot of lead time and paperwork! Or I could go alone right? There are so many reasons to travel solo, but I've done that. So although this is a unique perspective, we choose to travel visa-free first.
Here are some other things to consider when travelling with a partner from another country:
- cohabitation and submitting information from a shared bank account doesn't guarantee both parties will be approved for a visa
- some countries require you to have specific vaccinations prior to entry, do the research
- you both need to have sufficient pages in your passports, and sometimes require a minimum of 6 months before expiry
More great resources and stories about visa travel:
How To Legally Travel Around Europe For As Long As You Want - enter the Schengen Zone!
Overview of Central America's Border Crossings: Fees, Visas, Requirements, and Scams - from experts in South American travel.
How This Indian Couple Navigated a Complex Visa System to Travel the World - they never met a barrier they couldn't cross.
Travelscope: Interactive Map - how many countries any nationality can travel to visa free.