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Old 30.06.2014, 09:02
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Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

I just read in another thread that as a parent when travelling with your kids by yourself (without the other parent) you need to carry the following:

a notarized or witnessed travel consent form with all itinerary details, copy of the other parent passport, copy of child birth certificate, copy of marriage certificate and/or custody arrangement agreement.

What about when you are travelling with a child who is related to you (niece, cousin etc.) but has a different surname? Same deal? Both the adult and the child will be travelling on non-EU passports.

Thanks for any advice
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Old 30.06.2014, 11:04
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

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I just read in another thread that as a parent when travelling with your kids by yourself (without the other parent) you need to carry the following:

a notarized or witnessed travel consent form with all itinerary details, copy of the other parent passport, copy of child birth certificate, copy of marriage certificate and/or custody arrangement agreement.

What about when you are travelling with a child who is related to you (niece, cousin etc.) but has a different surname? Same deal? Both the adult and the child will be travelling on non-EU passports.

Thanks for any advice
What you read on the other thread is wrong, a non-separated/divorced parent does not require any of those things to travel with their own children. Border guards might ask a few questions, especialy if the child looks different to the parent, or anxious, but that's just them being careful about the child's safety.

However, travelling with a child that is not related to you in the first-degree (so you're the grand-parent, aunt, cousin, etc.) in theory at least does require formal permission; especially if you're intending on crossing state borders.
You won't need birth cerificates and so on, but a letter from the responsible adults or possibly a certified letter from a notary. As you're non-EU it might be best to ask what is required at your embassy or consulate.
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Old 30.06.2014, 11:54
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

I still don't understand how a border official will know if you are separated/divorced if you have the same surname as your child. This seems a really confusing matter
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Old 30.06.2014, 12:24
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

I suppose it's possible that such information is listed, so that when the passport is put under the reader ar some passport controls it shows up as 'may be suspicious, check'?
I doubt that somehow, but I do know that the separated/divorced parent who doesn't have everyday parental control can ask for a court ruling that the child/ren aren't allowed to travel outside their country of residence without their agreement. Which is usually granted if there's a suspicion that the child/ren will not be allowed to return.... basically kidnapping.

Last edited by Anjela; 30.06.2014 at 12:30. Reason: missed word out.
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Old 30.06.2014, 12:59
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

I'm divorced and my ex still lives in the UK, as such I travel a lot with my child. I just carry a copy of the child arrangements, but have never been asked for them.
My ex's current wife (for the first two years they were not married) and my parents also travel with my daughter, all with a different surname to the child. (ex's wife had not yet changed her passport last time either). For them me and/or my ex write a letter including flight and passport details of all persons and contact details of both parents.
My parents were stopped once and my ex's gf/wife was never stopped.
Passport officials are mostly looking at the behaviour of the child-adult(s). Quite often (well once with me, twice with my parents and once with ex's wife) they will ask the child some questions (in my case it was checking her name, in my parents it was who are these people and in ex's wife I don't know) but at the desk, and do not stress them out.
Mind you that is UK-CH and it might be different outside EEC.......
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Old 30.06.2014, 13:06
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

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I just read in another thread that as a parent when travelling with your kids by yourself (without the other parent) you need to carry the following:

a notarized or witnessed travel consent form with all itinerary details, copy of the other parent passport, copy of child birth certificate, copy of marriage certificate and/or custody arrangement agreement.

What about when you are travelling with a child who is related to you (niece, cousin etc.) but has a different surname? Same deal? Both the adult and the child will be travelling on non-EU passports.

Thanks for any advice
Always better to have more paperwork available to present if requested, than too little.

I have never had problems traveling anywhere with my own children (inevitably without dad/husband - as our travel schedules/itinerary rarely overlap even if we end up in the same place).

When I have taken a "friend" along I make sure to have a letter from the parent (w/signature) and a copy of parent's passport to validate identity. Once returning to UK from Norway, I was stopped at immigration and put through an absolute grilling about the 10 yr old who was with me and on British passport. The Norwegian immigration had just smiled at him and wished him a good holiday, but getting back into his "own" country was rather more harrowing. We waited close to an hour by which point the boy was a nervous wreck. The mother had not included a copy of her passport. The officer gave me a very long lecture about it being his responsibility to protect the safety of the child, blah blah, while just past the desks I could hear the wailing of a child being physically and verbally smacked by its mother

Last time I traveled into CH w/same friend I had all the necessary paperwork, the officer at immigration asked to see the letter then said " Enjoy your holiday"

Better safe than stressed but my experience is only within EU/EEA. If traveling further afield I might consider contacting the embassy of country you will be entering. Some airlines will not accept unaccompanied minors on certain routes, particularly to Far/Middle East/Africa, and I presume it is due to immigration difficulties.
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Old 30.06.2014, 13:13
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

Again from me. Wife travels with one or both of our kids without me. Never an issue or question from the border staff at either side.

Neither kids look remotely like their passport photo, both had passports done as weeks old babies and they are now 4.5 years and 1.5 years old!
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Old 30.06.2014, 15:52
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

Perhaps this is a country-specific thing.

But for the sake of adding a data point:

I traveled frequently with my nieces and nephews, minors at the time, family name different from mine, from the late 90s through about 2010. I would pick them up at LAX or ORD, flying with them then to Zürich, and from there elsewhere in Europe.

I was always asked for proof of parental consent when flying from or to the US. I was never asked for anything, infact nobody blinked an eye, when flying within Europe.
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Old 30.06.2014, 16:12
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

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What you read on the other thread is wrong, a non-separated/divorced parent does not require any of those things to travel with their own children. Border guards might ask a few questions, especialy if the child looks different to the parent, or anxious, but that's just them being careful about the child's safety.

However, travelling with a child that is not related to you in the first-degree (so you're the grand-parent, aunt, cousin, etc.) in theory at least does require formal permission; especially if you're intending on crossing state borders.
You won't need birth cerificates and so on, but a letter from the responsible adults or possibly a certified letter from a notary. As you're non-EU it might be best to ask what is required at your embassy or consulate.
I was the poster in the other thread who said a parent traveling alone should always carry these details - and I'm sorry but you shouldn't say that a non-separated/divorced parent doesn't need to carry these things because that's not true. I'm married. My kids have my last name and I have been asked every. single. time I have gone anywhere without my husband. I've been asked in the UK, in Germany, in Switzerland, in Austria, in Canada and in the US. It's not exclusive to overseas travel.

If any parent/relative is traveling alone with a child who is or isn't theirs they should always have some sort of documentation to prove they have permission to travel with the child. This to me is beyond basic common sense, especially as more and more children are taken across borders on a daily basis.

Why chance it? Just get everything together and have all of your bases covered.

Just wait - someone will start a thread claiming to have been arrested at the airport because they were trying to fly alone without the right papers.
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Old 30.06.2014, 16:16
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

Well, as I said in the other thread, I've been asked for proof that my daughter is actually my daughter, and that was flying out of Zurich on our way to Australia.

We have different surnames, although her father and I are definitely married.

All I can say is I was glad I'd thought to bring a copy of her birth certificate and our marriage certificate with me. It probably saved a bit of hassle, and made for a less stressful journey.

I will make sure I have these documents with me again next time we fly without her father.
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Old 30.06.2014, 16:30
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

Just say that you and the child are traveling separately.

Tom
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Old 30.06.2014, 17:08
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

I travel with three kids and have been to Australia Singapore, India, uk, Ireland, Amsterdam, Rome, Barcelona...

I have never had the children's identity or travel permission queried.

However, our kids all travel under the same surname And with the same country-of-origin passports.

My children have travelled with their grandparents (different surname) to Singapore, USA, uk and Netherlands, and what we give them with the travel documents is a letter outlining their travel plans, along with the contact information for both parents in case the authorities want to contact us directly. The letter is signed by both parents.

When the passport is checked at border control, it is scanned. I do not know how much information is loaded onto the international passport system, but when returning from Australia the Swiss passport control definitely know my previous exit/entry dates and I wonder it marital status Is in the system somewhere.

My children's aunty and uncle are minors and had a travel ban on their passports. They were not allowed to fly and both countries that could potentially give them a passport (Australia and Germany) were notified so that they could not be issued a new passport without the parent's permission.
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Old 30.06.2014, 17:10
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

According to their government website, the us government does not screen for outbound child abductions: https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/det...hild-abduction
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Old 30.06.2014, 17:12
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

And this article seems to imply that the biggest issue is people travelling with a different surname to their child.
http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandst...erent-surnames
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Old 30.06.2014, 17:14
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

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According to their government website, the us government does not screen for outbound child abductions: https://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/det...hild-abduction
Why the heck not? That's stupid, especially as the US is not signed up to the Hague convention.
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Old 30.06.2014, 17:50
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

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If any parent/relative is traveling alone with a child who is or isn't theirs they should always have some sort of documentation to prove they have permission to travel with the child. This to me is beyond basic common sense, especially as more and more children are taken across borders on a daily basis.

.
For a child who isn't theirs I completely agree and for divorced or seperated parents too but personally ( and for the majority of other posters too it appears) it would just never enter my head that to carry these papers when travelling with my own child who has the same surname as me and I'm married to his father so it's clearly not basic common sense to most people.
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Old 30.06.2014, 18:07
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

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I was the poster in the other thread who said a parent traveling alone should always carry these details - and I'm sorry but you shouldn't say that a non-separated/divorced parent doesn't need to carry these things because that's not true. I'm married. My kids have my last name and I have been asked every. single. time I have gone anywhere without my husband. I've been asked in the UK, in Germany, in Switzerland, in Austria, in Canada and in the US. It's not exclusive to overseas travel.

If any parent/relative is traveling alone with a child who is or isn't theirs they should always have some sort of documentation to prove they have permission to travel with the child. This to me is beyond basic common sense, especially as more and more children are taken across borders on a daily basis.

Why chance it? Just get everything together and have all of your bases covered.

Just wait - someone will start a thread claiming to have been arrested at the airport because they were trying to fly alone without the right papers.
Well, I'm sorry too, but I still think you're wrong.
Just because you've been stopped doesn't mean that it's the norm that everyone else will be.
I've also travelled extensively within Europe with my children and without my husband, I've never been stopped, nor had my right to be alone with my children queried. And damnèd right too, they're my children and I have the right to take them where I want to.
American border controls are possibly more suspicious, I wouldn't know and never intend to find out.

It's different if you're separated or divorced, the other parent can claim the right to have a say in whether the child/ren leaves the country or not.

A non-first degree relative is also adviced to have written permission to travel with the child, even if they do share a surname.

Oh, by the way... there's already been several threads started by people asking if they can travel without the right papers; expired passports, using just their driving licences, passports that are damaged, etc.
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Old 02.07.2014, 23:23
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

The reason you need documentation whatever your marital status is the fact that a ridiculously high percentage of child abduction cases involve....parents.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/n...es-on-the-rise
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Old 02.07.2014, 23:36
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

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The reason you need documentation whatever your marital status is the fact that a ridiculously high percentage of child abduction cases involve....parents.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/n...es-on-the-rise
Your link mentions a small but rising number of 'possible' parental abductions, 616 this year in the UK, all seem to concern mixed country-of-origin parents who are involved in custody disputes. And, pertain to this and the other recent thread, nowhere at all does it mention the requirement for either parent, even in a 'normal' family situation, to carry permission from the other parent to travel with their own child!
So, your point is?

Last edited by Anjela; 03.07.2014 at 00:05. Reason: Adding country concerned in link... Not CH
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Old 02.07.2014, 23:40
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Re: Travelling with a minor (relative), what documents?

When our kids where small, Switzerland was not in Schengen so passport control on every trip. Never, ever was either of us asked when we were traveling alone with the kids. And we have different last names...
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