The definition and types of passports

Passport is an official document issued by a competent public authority to nationals or to alien resident (most stateless persons) of issuing country. For general, airlines passengers must hold a passport valid for all the countries to or via which they travel, unless:

  • An exemption to that effect is stated on the page of the countries concerned.
  • They pass through a country for flight without leaving the airport. But important note, a few countries do not allow this, so most safely if all flight passenger must have a passport.


A person’s nationality can be established by checking the specific information under “nationality” or “national status” in the travel document (e.g. passport or national identity card). In general the permission to enter a country without visa is based on nationality the person, an not on the country which issued the person’s travel document.

There is possibility a person may be a national or citizen of two (or more) countries, and may therefore hold more than one passport or any other travel document. Such passenger is entitled to travel on any of these documents, provided these will be accepted by the country of destination. The visa requirements will depend on the passport (or passport replacing document) used in each case.

Passport example

Passport example

There are some kind of passport as below. This information is very important to us to select the correct travel document as our need before traveling.

  • Normal passport.
  • Aliens passport. this passport is issued to alien residents of the issuing country.
  • Children identity cards. This travel document issued to minors instead of a passport (e.g. German “Kinderausweis”)
  • Diplomatic or consular passport. This passport issued to diplomatic, consular an other government officials on missions entitling the bearer to diplomatic or consular status under international law and custom.
  • Official, special or service passports. Issued to government officials or other persons on government missions. Type of passport has to be inserted by issuing authorities.
  • International Red Cross passports, “Laissez-Passer”, issued by the United Nations, etc.
  • Joint passports (family passports). Person traveling together may hold joint passports, which may be used to cover either: a. Husband and wife with/without children, b. Holder of the passport and child/children under a certain age (not necessarily related), c. Two or more children. For travel alone such passports may only be used by the person named first in the passport.
  • Examples: A wife may not use the passport for travel without her husband, or a child without its parent, or younger child without the elder. Some countries deviate from above regulation.
  • Temporary/emergency passports issued in emergency cases, by a country’s government to its own nationals. These passport have the same legal effect as normal passports, unless otherwise stated.

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