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How to travel to UAE from Spain with 5 months left on passport?

by Patricia
(Las Vegas, NV)

Question: My daughter will be studying in Spain January through April of next year. Her passport expires in September next year and has already been submitted to obtain her student visa. She was planning on visiting Paris April 16-21 and then traveling to UAE from there to visit her father for one week in Abu Dhabi before returning to the US.


We are now reading that your passport must be valid for 6 months upon entering the UAE; hers will only be valid for 5 months. Is this a problem? How would she renew as her current information has already been sent to obtain her student visa? Or will she just have to pay a fee to enter the UAE?

Thanks very much for your help.

Answer: Yes, the passport will be a problem if it has less than 6 months validity remaining. However, there is a solution.

I recommend that your daughter travel to Spain on her current passport and then renew it at the U.S. Embassy in Madrid or the U.S. Consulate General in Barcelona while there. This can be done in person or by mail.

Surprisingly, passport applications are usually processed more quickly abroad than they are in the United States. Processing a passport renewal usually takes 2-3 weeks through an embassy or consulate compared to 4-6 weeks in the U.S. However, your daughter should check with the Consular services section to verify processing times.

No visa is required to visit the UAE as long as the stay is less than a month. Therefore, your daughter does not need to worry about getting a visa.

When her renewed passport is delivered to her, she will also receive her current passport back.

Passport Services - U.S. Embassy in Madrid

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