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cruiselife

Sailing without Birth Certificate

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I just wanted to pass along something interesting that happened to some friends this weekend who were sailing on Oasis. They are not experienced cruisers and once they landed in Orlando they realized that one of them did not have their birth certificate with them and also did not have a passport. They asked us about it and I thought they were completely screwed but I didn't have the heart to tell them that they probably weren't going on their cruise. But to my surprise when they checked in they were told that if they could get a picture of the birth certificate they would let them board. Luckily we live close by and they have a key code on their door so we were able to send them a picture of it quickly and they boarded with no issues. It was such a relief because in a way I felt like I had let them down somehow as their local cruise nerd.

I thought I would pass this info along just in case this nightmare scenario happens to someone else. Does anyone know if this is common practice or if they got really, really lucky? Perhaps it is worth snapping a photo of everyone's birth certificates just in case someone forgets it? Obviously I would never rely on this method, but I thought it was worth noting. The true moral of the story is to always make sure you have all your documents before you leave for the port.

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I’m going to suggest that they got really lucky.  It is my understanding that the cruise line will ONLY accept a raised seal birth certificate and that even a certified copy (without a raised seal) would not be good enough. 

Hooray that you friends/neighbors were able sail but I think that there was a far better chance that they would have been denied if they had not gotten the right agent.  So glad it worked out.

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What about coming home and getting through customs and immigration at the port? Don't they check your passport and birth certificate to make sure you are a citizen when returning to the USA? I would think that would be up to the customs agent to decide if they can get back in. Maybe they haven't crossed that bridge yet. 

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17 hours ago, cruiselife said:

I just wanted to pass along something interesting that happened to some friends this weekend who were sailing on Oasis. They are not experienced cruisers and once they landed in Orlando they realized that one of them did not have their birth certificate with them and also did not have a passport. They asked us about it and I thought they were completely screwed but I didn't have the heart to tell them that they probably weren't going on their cruise. But to my surprise when they checked in they were told that if they could get a picture of the birth certificate they would let them board. Luckily we live close by and they have a key code on their door so we were able to send them a picture of it quickly and they boarded with no issues. It was such a relief because in a way I felt like I had let them down somehow as their local cruise nerd.

I thought I would pass this info along just in case this nightmare scenario happens to someone else. Does anyone know if this is common practice or if they got really, really lucky? Perhaps it is worth snapping a photo of everyone's birth certificates just in case someone forgets it? Obviously I would never rely on this method, but I thought it was worth noting. The true moral of the story is to always make sure you have all your documents before you leave for the port.

interesting!  I have heard of people taking pictures of the passport so they would have that information if they had to get them in a rush, but it hadn’t occurred to me to take a photo of the birth certificate. I agree with @WAAAYTOOO that it may not work in all cases, but it seems advisable under the “it could work” playbook. 🤓

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