These Countries Follow The ‘Six Month Rule’ For Passports

These Countries Follow The ‘Six Month Rule’ For Passports

If your passport is set to expire soon and you have travel plans, you’ll want to watch out for the “six month rule”. Many countries require a six month buffer on your passport’s expiration date. Photo by Daniel Spiess.

Because of visa time limits, many countries require your passport to be valid for three to six months beyond your departure date. In a nutshell, this means if you travel to those countries and your passport expires in a month, it might not be valid and you may not be able to board a flight.

Some countries take it even further and require six months of buffer time. Your best bet is to renew your passport at least nine months before it expires, however, it’s useful to know which countries enforce the rule. US Today explains that the six month rule is pretty common in Asia, for example. US Passport Help Guide lists 50+ countries that require six-month validity. Here are a few of the most popular for tourists:

  • Bahamas
  • Belize
  • Bolivia
  • Brazil
  • Burma (Myanmar)
  • China
  • Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
  • Ecuador (including Galápagos Islands)
  • French Polynesia
  • Guyana
  • Honduras
  • Jamaica
  • Kenya
  • Mexico
  • Malaysia
  • Mauritius
  • Mozambique
  • Namibia
  • Nicaragua
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Philippines
  • Singapore
  • St Lucia
  • Taiwan
  • Thailand
  • Timor-Leste (East Timor)
  • Trinidad & Tobago
  • Venezuela
  • Vietnam

For more countries, head to the link below.

Six Months Validity Rule [U.S. Passport Help Guide]


  • Well timed, ran into this a few weeks ago travelling via fiji, was going to stop off for a few days, glad i checked the visa situation tho!

  • What it boils down to is that you get 9.5 years use out of the 10 year passport you paid for.

    Also not mentioned (‘cos it’s a US article) is that the USA also requires 6 months on your passport.

  • Are you sure this is true about the Bahamas? I just checked the site and it says passport needs to be valid at time of entry and nothing about 6 months. I am really freaking out! I leave next week and my passport expires in January, 2018. I realize 6 months is December, but now I’m worried now.

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