Almost every day, we hear about children getting abducted everywhere in the world. It is very difficult to control this issue as any traveler who has the right illegal connections can take children to a different country for whatever selfish intentions they have. One important way to control this issue is by having a travel office at all ports of exit or entry. These offices must ask travelers to provide a minor consent form to travel if they will bring a child along. This applies whether the child is with one of the parents and especially if the child travels with anyone else but their parents.
Child Travel Consent Forms
What is a child travel consent form?
You can use a parental consent form for travel for any minor who has permission from a parent or guardian to travel with a group, organization, or individual. There are also common cases where a child may travel alone. Although one parent can give this permission, it’s always preferred that the consent form have the signatures of both parents.
- For domestic travel
Minors who travel alone by plane may undergo questioning. To avoid, this, they must show some identification along with a letter. But for domestic travel, this might not be strictly required in all states as some allow children to fly alone.
- For international travel
Minors who travel alone with someone who isn’t their parent or guardian or even if they’re only traveling with one parent will require a parental consent form to travel to another country. This form will be officially accepted by the immigration authorities in the country of origin and the destination country. It’s recommended for parents to have the consent notarized first to ensure its legality.
Minor Consent Forms To Travel
Where can I get a child travel consent form? And why do I need it anyways?
Because of the sudden increase in child abduction, safety is utmost important. It has become necessary to present a consent letter for minors when you travel with a child who isn’t your own and if you aren’t their legal guardian. The best way to have one ready is to download an online template and modify it as per your requirement.
Here are some things to keep in mind when traveling abroad with a minor:
- A child who travels internationally with just 1 parent or any other adult will have to present a consent letter to the immigration officers or airline personnel.
- It’s highly recommended to have the letter notarized to avoid any issues establishing the credibility and authority of the document.
- Parents who share custody of their children must bring copies of their legal custody documentation.
- It’s also recommended to reach out to the embassy of the destination country where the minor will travel to confirm the entry requirements for travel. Do this to avoid any issues at border crossings and during the minor’s stay abroad.
Do you need this form for domestic travel?
Children who will travel domestically without their legal guardians or parents should carry permission to travel letter from their parents. This will allow them to travel on their own. Having this written consent will allow minors to travel alone or with an authorized adult. Domestic travel doesn’t require children under the age of 18 to present identification when they enter security checkpoints. But having the document will promote ease of entry while serving as an insurance policy for any unexpected situations. The form is for minors who travel domestically and aren’t accompanied by their legal guardians or parents. Here are the cases when a child will need this document:
- If a child travels alone and will take a train, ship, or plane to their destination.
- If a child travels a part of a school trip.
- If there are any temporary changes to the child’s caretaker.
- If the child travels with friends or family members who aren’t their parents or legal guardians.
- If parents have shared custody of the child, and the child will only travel with one parent.
You do not need to attach any other documentation to this form like an authorization of medical coverage over the child unless you feel the need to. But if any emergency should arise for children who travel with chaperones other than their parent or legal guardians, authorities will let the chaperone who will authorize medical treatments and provide relevant health information about the child. In such a case, a medical consent form will be very useful to identify the person responsible and will provide the required information if needed.
Parental Consent Forms For Travel
How to write a child travel consent form?
Child travel consent forms are legal documents used to grant permission for minors to travel internationally or domestically without their parent or legal guardian. It’s customarily needed when a child will travel alone, with a group, or an adult. This form usually has the following elements:
- Name of the parents or legal guardians who have legal custody over the child.
- Name of the child along with their passport details, date of birth, and place of birth.
- The travel details like if the child will travel alone or with someone else.
- The name of the group or person who will travel with the child.
- The travel dates, country of origin, destination, and the purpose of the trip.
- The contact details of both parents or all emergency contact details.
- The signatures of the parents or legal guardians who aren’t traveling with the child.
- Signature of a notary public. Although this isn’t required in all states, it’s always better to have the form notarized.
When creating your form, make sure to include all important details. This is the relevant and necessary information that travel authorities usually ask for.
- Who will travel?
Children below 18 years of age should either travel with an authorized adult or have special permission stated in the form. If not, law enforcement authorities might consider them unaccompanied minors.
- Who will give permission?
The parent or legal guardian who has custody of the child must grant permission for the minor to travel alone or with someone else. A child who travels alone must have this form with the signatures of both parents or the legal guardians who have custody of the child.
- The details of the trip
Make sure to include all of the details in the form.
- Other important details
You may also include other important information about the child including any special needs or allergies. If needed, you may attach a child medical consent form. This will allow the adult they’re traveling with to make medical decisions or authorize medical treatments for the child if needed.
Practical tips for writing the form
Instead of creating your own template, downloading one will make things easier for you. But first, you have to check the embassy of the country of destination to find out if they have official templates you can use. If you have any questions or doubts, seek the advice of a children’s attorney before you write your consent letter. To help you out, here are some basic steps:
- Find out who to address the letter to
You must know the person you will address the letter to. This could be a travel agency, an embassy, an institutional administrative body, or a government entity. Address the letter formally. If you’re not sure how many individuals will read your letter during the child’s travel, it’s best to use general official language.
- Include all of the details
Prepare a draft of your letter to make sure that you have all of the important details, even if you already know the details by heart. If you’re writing a travel consent for more than one child, it’s recommended to write one letter for each child. You may write a single letter, but make sure you provide all of the required details. After you have written down all the details about your child, you will then include all the details of the people they will travel with including:
- Full names (as they appear on the passport)
- Passport numbers
- Their relationships with the child
- Why they will travel with the child
If your child will travel alone, include the name of the institution, people, or agency who will meet them when they arrive at their destination.
- Finalize your letter
When writing your letter, include the date when you wrote it, identify yourself and indicate your full legal name, and include your passport number, contact details, and address. Make sure to state your relationship with the child. State that you are either the parent or legal guardian of the child, then include the complete name of the other parent along with all other details too.
- Give your official consent
Aside from a comprehensive explanation of your consent to have your child travel, also list down the reasons why you have issued the consent. For instance, if your child will travel to watch a concert, go on an expedition, or visit a relative, provide the details of the purpose of travel and why you believe it’s necessary for your child to go on the trip. It’s best to explanation brief and straight to the point.
- State the validity of the consent
Remember that this letter should not have an open timeframe with no limits. You must provide this detail in a specific way. For instance, you can say something along the lines of “my child will travel from March 13 2022 to May 13, 2022. Although these dates could change due to travel delays in international flights or local transport.
- End your letter
Conclude your letter by signing your name. It’s also important to include the name and signature of the other parent if you share custody of the child. This opens the room for any concerns about the consent you have given. For contact purposes, include both your office and home numbers, your email address, and your address. This will facilitate the smooth transition of your child’s travel even if there are any incidences or eventualities. You should also consider adding a third party’s contact number (perhaps a trusted relative) in case you or the other parent are out of reach.
Make it a point to review your letter as you write it. Read through it and check if you missed significant details or if you added too many details. If needed, revise accordingly while checking on spelling and grammar. It’s recommended to ask someone else to proofread your consent to see if you missed anything or made any errors.
- Print your letter and affix your signature
After you have finished your letter you feel satisfied with all of the details, print it out, and affix your signature. As the other parent to affix their signature too.
- Attach other documentation if needed
If there is any required documentation that will give your letter more credence, attach these to the letter too. Some examples of such documentation are copies of your passports, a copy of your child’s birth certificate, and so on. Give these to your child or to the person traveling with them.
Consent Letters For Minor
Do you need to have it notarized?
Many countries around the world have strict requirements for traveling with children. The form for minor travel consent has become an important requirement because of the sudden rise in custody and child abduction cases. There is also the growing problem of child trafficking. According to the US Customs and Border Protection, all citizens of the US are now required to show a valid passport if they will re-enter the country by air, including children.
If a child will travel within the US or internationally by sea or land, presenting a birth certificate is usually enough. For instance, a notarized letter of consent would be enough for children who will travel without one or both parents or legal guardians. This notarized letter will ensure the legitimacy of the travel consent the accompanying adult presents.
If a child travels within the US, having the consent letter notarized isn’t usually required. For international travel, requirements vary by country. To make sure that they will consider your letter legitimate, especially when traveling abroad, have it’s best to have the letter notarized. You can find notary services in many credit unions and banks. You can even find one in your locale. There are even some mobile notary services available to make things much easier for you.