STEP, Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, passports, visas, US Department of State STEP
If you’re the kind of person who travels internationally on a regular basis, or even if you only have one overseas trip planned, you might want to consider enrolling in the US Department of State STEP program. STEP stands for Smart Traveler Enrollment Program. It’s a free program that lets US citizens sign up for travel alerts and warnings that apply to countries that they will be visiting in the future or are currently living in. With this program, you have the ability to enter information about where you will be traveling to and receive alerts that may affect your travel plans.
For example, if you’re planning a trip to Israel, enrolling in STEP will help you stay on top of any safety concerns you might want to be aware of during the trip. You’ll receive current information as quickly as it is available either by e-mail or phone. The program also gives you easy access to information about local embassies so that you have a safe resource nearby if you get into any sort of trouble.
Another benefit of enrolling in STEP is that it makes it easier to work with the US Embassy in your travel destination if you lose your passport, get robbed, or run into any sort of legal trouble. Because you’re already signed up with the program, your local embassy will have more information about you and will be better able to assist you. Enrolling in STEP also makes it easier for your local embassies to assist you in the event that something goes wrong during your trip, such as a political event or a natural disaster. For example, the STEP program helped evacuate nearly 17,000 US citizens and their family members after the earthquake in Haiti. The program also assisted nearly 15,000 US citizens and their families during the civil unrest in Lebanon during 2006.
Enrolling in the program takes very little time and it is a great step toward keeping yourself safer while you travel. Learn more and enroll in STEP today by visiting the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program website.
As always, if you would like more information about expedited passports or visas to the countries you’re most interested in seeing, the team at Swift Passport Services is available to help around the clock. Give us a call at (877) 917-9438 learn more about our passport and visa services or about travel requirements to your upcoming travel destinations