Required Travel Documentation and Information for Cruise Holidays

Required Travel Documentation

Carefully read the documentation that each guest must present at the pier prior to boarding. Travel to some destinations require special visas and travel authorizations. The information below explains what is required when travelling to each destination and how to obtain this documentation.

U.S. Citizens

For Cruises Leaving From a U.S. Port to the Caribbean, Bahamas & Florida, Bermuda, Alaska, Mexican Riviera, Canada & New England, Pacific Coastal

You’re required to carry:

A Valid Passport


Proof of Citizenship (see below) AND Government-issued photo ID

  • State certified U.S. birth certificate
  • (Baptismal paper, hospital certificates of birth, and Puerto Rico birth certificates issued prior to 7/1/10 are not acceptable.)

  • Original certificate of U.S. naturalization
  • Original certificate of U.S. citizenship
  • U.S. Consular report of your birth abroad


WHTI (Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative)-compliant documents (click here to for more information.)

*A U.S. citizen under the age of 16 does not require a government-issued photo ID.

Norwegian Cruise Line strongly recommends all guests to obtain a passport for their cruise holiday for the following reasons:

  • If you miss your ship at its scheduled U.S. departure port and need to travel outside the U.S. to meet your ship.
  • You unexpectedly need to depart the ship from a foreign port prior to the end of sailing, a passport would be required to leave or re-enter the U.S. by air.

If you need to obtain a passport quickly, please contact VisaCentral at 844-834-5702 and reference account 75006 for discounted VisaCentral service fees. VisaCentral can obtain a passport in as little as 48 hours.

Hawaii Cruises

There's no need for a passport when you sail on any Hawaii inter-island cruise. If your ship never sails beyond the islands of Hawaii, all you need is a government-issued photo I.D. which includes a passport or a valid driver's license with a photo.

Panama Canal

Valid passports are required to board the ship for all Panama Canal sailings. No passport cards, birth certificates or other form of proof of US citizenship will be accepted. Failure to present a valid passport at check-in will result in denial of boarding.

For Cruises Leaving a Non-U.S. port (Europe, Asia, South America, Australia itineraries)

You’re required to carry a valid passport, not expiring within six (6) months of the return of your cruise.

Specific visas may be required for entry into some European, Asian, Australian and South American ports. Some must be obtained in advance; some can be obtained onboard.

Click here for visa requirements and info on obtaining visas.

Domestic Airline Travel ID Requirements for U.S. Citizens

Beginning October 1, 2020, travellers who are 18 years of age and older will need a REAL ID or other acceptable form of identification in order to fly. Standard drivers' licenses will no longer be accepted by the TSA at airport security checkpoints starting in October of 2020. REAL IDs are marked by a star on the top of the card. Between now and the effective date of the new regulations, we encourage all travellers to check their IDs and obtain a REAL ID if they don't already have one. To obtain a REAL ID requires documentation beyond what is required for most standard drivers' licenses. Prepare to collect and present several documents to DMV officials that prove residency and identification.

Guests should take this into consideration when planning travels for their cruise.

To find out if your state is in compliance, please click here.

To learn more about REAL ID, please click here.

For more information, including other acceptable forms of identification, please click here.

Non-U.S. Citizens


All Non-U.S. Citizen Guests Must Carry A Valid Passport, (Not Expiring within (6) Months of Return Of Your Cruise). In addition, a tourist visa may be required for entry into certain countries/ports of call. To confirm the specific documents required, please be sure to check with the proper authorities (such as your local immigration office) for each port that you are entering. You can also contact VisaCentral to answer your questions.

U.S. Alien Resident Card (ARC) Holders

U.S. Alien Residents holding an Alien Resident Card (ARC), also known as a "Green Card" must be in possession of the ARC in order to sail. U.S. Alien Residents who do not have their ARC with them at check in will be denied boarding. It is recommended that these guests also carry their passports from their country of citizenship if available. In some instances, ARC holders may still be required to have travel permits and/or visas to enter countries Norwegian Cruise Line visits in these destinations.

Canadian Residency Permit (CRP) holders

Canadian Residency Permit (CRP) holders who are NOT in possession of their permanent resident papers or a valid Temporary Resident Visa will be denied boarding if the ship visits any Canadian port during the cruise. In addition, the Canadian resident can be refused re-entry into Canada without their proper resident documentation.

Important Information for Chinese Citizens Cruising in the United States

Effective November 29, 2016, all Chinese passport holders that have a 10 year B1/B2 non-immigrant visa are now required to fill out an Electronic Visa Update System (EVUS) enrollment in order to enter the United States. All Chinese guests with a 10 year B1/B2 visa must complete their EVUS enrollment prior to arriving to the pier. Proof of EVUS enrollment must be shown at check-in and is required to board the ship. This applies to all U.S. ports. For more information, please visit

Important Information for Guests Cruising and/or flying through Canada:

(Applicable for Alaska, Pacific Coastal, Hawaii & Canada New England Itineraries departing from a Canadian Port City – ie: Vancouver and Quebec City)

New Entry Requirements Effective September 29, 2016: Visa-exempt foreign nationals who enter Canada by air, must obtain and have in their possession a Canadian Electronic Travel Authorisation (eTA).

The eTA is not required by the following:

  • US passport holders
  • Canadian passport holders
  • Dual citizens (citizens of Canada and a visa-exempt country)
  • Canadian permanent residents (Guests with permanent residency status granted by the Canadian government which are not citizens of Canada)
  • Passengers arriving in Canada by land or sea

To apply for a Canadian eTA, please click on the following link: Guests may be denied boarding by the airline carrier or Norwegian Cruise Line without having proper documentation upon check-in.

For additional information regarding Canada’s new eTA requirement, please visit the following website:

Visa Restrictions for Canada

Based on Canadian entry requirements, some passengers may require a valid Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) in order to visit or travel through Canada. Click here for more information.

Travel Visa Requirements

Norwegian Cruise Line has partnered with VisaCentral to provide our guests with comprehensive, accurate information regarding travel visas. Some of VisaCentral’s guest travel services include visa application kits and assistance with obtaining other visas where required. Visit the Global Visa Support Centre on the VisaCentral ( page for assistance with visa applications.

Electronic Travel Authorisation - for Citizens of Visa Waiver Programme Countries (VWP) Entering the United States
Per the Visa Waiver Programme (VWP) requirements, all VWP travellers must obtain an electronic travel authorisation prior to boarding a travel carrier to enter the United States. This can be done by completing the online application on the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s website. Applications may be submitted at any time prior to travel. However, DHS recommends that applications be submitted no less than 72 hours prior to travel.

Schengen Visas - for Entry to the European Union for Applicable Nationalities
The Schengen Agreement (effective March 26, 1995) is an agreement between several member states of the European Union (EU) to remove immigration controls for travel within their collective territories. This creates a "borderless" region known as the Schengen Area, which changes the procedures for entering, connecting or travelling between any of the Schengen States. Click here for more information.

There are four types of Schengen visas; Type C is the one typically needed by passengers, which can be issued by any one of the Schengen states and is valid for all the others. Due to the type of itineraries in Europe, The Schengen Agreement maintains that certain nationalities require a visa to enter the EU zone. Guests who are not US, Canadian, or European nationals are strongly encouraged to contact the nearest EU-member country embassy to determine if a Schengen visa is necessary.

Some European itineraries require a Multiple Entry Schengen visa because the ship leaves and re-enters the Schengen Zone.

U.S. and Canadian Citizens

Visas Are Required for All U.S. and Canadian Citizens Travelling to Asia, Australia, and New Zealand

A specific visa may be required for entry to certain countries. SOME VISAS MUST BE OBTAINED IN ADVANCE and some CAN BE OBTAINED ONBOARD.

For All U.S. and Canadian Citizens Travelling to Asia, New Zealand, and Australia: Visas must be obtained in advance of departure if your cruise is visiting any of the destinations listed below:

  • India (an Embassy-issued visa sticker or an electronic visa)
  • Australia (obtained online)
  • New Zealand (obtained online)
  • Mainland China (excluding Sanya & Hong Kong)
  • Sri Lanka (obtained online)

Contact the embassy of the countries listed above or visit VisaCentral, a full service agency, for assistance with obtaining any visas that are required in advance of your cruise.

US and Canadian Passport holders require a visa to enter the countries listed below. Norwegian Cruise Line will obtain visas on your behalf if you have not done so before the cruise. Costs (ranging from $69 USD - $89 USD per visa) will be charged to your onboard account:

  • Cambodia
  • Vietnam

Travel Documentation Resources

Birth Certificates
To obtain an original or state certified copy of a birth certificate, you can contact your hospital of birth or the Vital Statistics Department of the County where you were born.

For more information on obtaining a passport, please visit the U.S. Passports & International Travel website, the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative, or VisaCentral.

Government-issued Photo I.D.’s
You can usually obtain a state-issued photo I.D. from your local driver’s license/Division of Motor Vehicles office. Contact your local office or visit your state’s DMV website for more information and instructions. You can also refer to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to access their list of State Departments of Motor Vehicles.

Electronic Travel Authorisation
Per the Visa Waiver Programme (VWP) requirements, all VWP travellers must obtain an electronic travel authorisation prior to boarding a travel carrier to enter the United States. This can be done by completing the online application on the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s website. Applications may be submitted at any time prior to travel. However, DHS recommends that applications be submitted no less than 72 hours prior to travel. In most cases you will receive a response within seconds. Potential responses include:

  • Authorisation Approved
  • Travel Not Authorised: Travellers must obtain a nonimmigrant visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate before travelling to the U.S.
  • Authorisation Pending: Travellers should check the ESTA website for updates and final response.

An approved travel authorisation will be:

  • Required for all VWP travellers prior to boarding a travel carrier to enter the United States under the VWP.
  • Valid unless revoked, for up to two (2) years or until the traveller's passport expires, whichever comes first;
  • Valid for multiple entries but not a guarantee of admissibility to the United States at a port of entry.


Norwegian Cruise Line guests can contact VisaCentral for visa enquires or assistance with the visa application process. Norwegian Cruise Line guests receive discounted VisaCentral service fees. Be sure to access the VisaCentral website at or calling (844) 834-5702 and reference account 75006 when calling to receive the discounted rates.

Age Requirements for Travel

Note: These terms are effective at the time of boarding.

Travelling with Infants:

  • At least six (6) months of age on the day of boarding
  • At least twelve (12) months of age on the day of boarding if your cruise has 3 or more consecutive days at sea.

Travelling with Minors and Young Adults:
Norwegian Cruise Line’s policy dictates that a minor or young adult must be accompanied in the same stateroom (or connecting stateroom) by a passenger 21 years of age or older at the time of boarding.

  • Minors – an individual under the age of 18 on the day of embarkation/boarding.
  • Young Adult– an individual between the ages of 18 and 20.

Note: Two people under the age of 21 may travel together in the same stateroom if they are a married couple and provide proof of marriage to a Norwegian Cruise Line representative at the pier prior to boarding.

Travelling with Minors Unaccompanied by Parent or Legal Guardian*:

For passengers under the age of 18 travelling with an accompanying adult, who is not the minor's parent or legal guardian, a Parent/Guardian Consent Form that authorises the minor's travel and further authorises medical treatment in case of an emergency must be delivered to a Norwegian representative at the pier during check-in. Failure to produce this letter at embarkation may result in boarding being denied. Both living parents/legal guardians must sign and complete this form and attach a copy of his/her driver's license or other government issued identification. Minors of the same parent(s)/legal guardian(s) may be listed on the same form:

  1. Download and Complete the Parental Consent Release form (PDF)
  2. Minors or the same parent(s)/legal guardian(s) may be listed on the same form

  3. Copy of both parents/legal guardians Driver’s License or other Government Issued ID
  4. Adoptive parents, legal guardians or persons separated or divorced are advised to keep legal and other relevant documents available in order to clarify custody rights.

*If travelling to Canada, you’ll need the following document in addition to items #1 and 2 (Alaska, Pacific Coastal, and Canada/New England Itineraries):

Canadian entry requirements stipulate that a child under the age of 18 travelling alone, or with person(s) other than both parents, should be in possession of a letter (preferably notarised) from the parents or legal guardian containing:

  • Authorisation for the child to travel with another person and to be outside the country;
  • The name and a 24-hour contact telephone number of the parents or guardian;
  • The destination and length of stay in Canada.

Travel Sanctions and Regulations

OFAC Sanctions/Regulations
The United States Department of the Treasury through the Office of Foreign Assets Control ("OFAC") has issued a series of comprehensive sanctions against various countries, specifically:

  • Crimea
  • North Korea (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea)
  • Cuba
  • Sudan
  • Syria
  • Iran

These sanctions limit the ability of cruise lines to conduct business with these countries and their citizens, which includes allowing certain citizens of those countries to sail onboard our ships. Accordingly, it is Norwegian's policy that if you are a citizen or resident of one of these sanctioned countries, we will be unable to accept your cruise reservation unless you can satisfy the following conditions:

  • Provide proof of citizenship in a non-sanctioned country; OR
  • Provide proof of residency in a non-sanctioned country AND evidence that you are funding the cruise, including all onboard charges, through a bank associated with a non-sanctioned country.

You must be able to satisfy all of the above criteria in order to sail onboard a Norwegian Cruise Line ship.