For expat mommies who have kids born in Thailand and will be travelling out of the country for the first time, it is important to bring 2 very essential documents aside from your kid’s passport. These are your child’s birth certificate both Thai and the English Translation, photocopies of the birth certificate.
Summer and I went to the Philippines for an emergency visit. As I was travelling with a kid, I didn’t want to bring any check-in luggage. It would definitely lessen the hassle. So I packed just the basic necessities, and a few shirts and shorts for Summer and I. I did not bother to really think about the documents to bring, which I normally do when travelling. I would even bring the not so necessary papers. But I was in a hurry, so I just brought my work permit, contract, and our passports. At first I did not bring the birth certificate thinking that the passport is already one good identification. When we were about to go I turned to my husband and asked ” should i bring Summer’s birth-certificate?” He glared with a huff and said “Dalaa uie! Naunsa gud!” (Bring it! ) and hurriedly took Summer’s birth certificate.
I was so thankful. I listened to my intuition. We were held a bit longer than usual in the immigration section of Hatyai International Airport. I was glad as well that we went there really very early. Had we used “Filipino or Thai time”, it would have been a disaster. Summer’s passport was “clean” – no stamps, no visa, no departure card. This had caused confusion to the officer. He had to make a call. And this scared me a bit. Although, technically everything is good. Summer was born in Thailand, we got her passport in the Philippine Embassy in Bangkok. It’s her first time to travel out of Thailand. The officer talked on the phone for a long time, asking questions every now and then – where did you get this passport? Where did you give birth to Summer? I listened intently to their conversation, and was relieved when the officer mentioned “ohk dai, chai mai?” (She can go out, right?). He then asked for the original and photocopy of the birth certificate.
At that moment, I was so thankful to all the angels who gave me that pressing feeling to ask and confirm to bring the birth certificate. I was thinking. OMG! Had I not brought the birth certificate, what would have had happened? Would they have asked me to go back home and get the document? or Would have they simply refused passage for Summer?
Do you have any similar experience with the immigration?
Feel free to post your comments, reactions, opinions or even share you own experience. Cheers!
Summer in Jollibee Philippines
5 thoughts on “Expat Babies Travel 101”
It’s really a big hassle to travel with little tots or minors because of many reasons to which I will refrain from naming them.
I, too, had to experience of travelling with my little girl before carrying her birth certificate, our marriage certificate, our passport + visa pages and authenticated paperwork from the DSWD there in the Philippines as proof that the child traveling with us is indeed our kid and not being kidnapped or anything. Such hassle! But now, my daughter is already turning 15, we just come and go and the immigration officers don’t ask for any proof anymore. I wonder why! But I still carry them just in case. You’ll never know who and where we’ll experience unexpected hassles. I do pray we don’t.
I used to travel a lot with my kids when they were small and aside from their passports, I never brought any other docs with me. I never had problems but guess immigrations were more lenient during those times. It was a good thing that you brought along her b/c.
I have never traveled with my kids yet out of the country but I will definitely bring with me all the necessary docus. Thanks for sharing.
It’s hard to travel with kids, physically and mentally! But I agree, being ready for anything should be on the top of our list. When we traveled with Jacob to the US last December, I brought everything! All of our birth certificates in original and photocopy form, our marriage certificate, his baby book in case he gets sick, all 3 of my old passports as well as my husbands and I think I also brought our baptismal certificates! You can never be too sure. Yes, it’s extra luggage to bring around, but at least you have all the documentations you may need.
Thank heavens, no immigration nightmare for me/ us yet. Not that I’m an expat mommy, ok? The closest I had experienced was in Japan when the arrival card they gave us onboard was the one for residents instead of tourists. So there was confusion at the immigration line