I am having problems finding help and assistance to get tourist visas for my wife. There is help for family members who are American citizens, but no assistance for family members who are not American citizens. My wife is a Filipino national and I would like to go vacationing with her outside of Germany. However, I don’t know what I need to do to get her a visa for many of the European countries or even if she needs one. Does her Status of Forces Agreement stamp in her Filipino passport allow her to travel throughout Europe or does she need to do something extra? Please help. Thank you.
Thank you for bringing this important, but sometimes confusing issue to light. First, visas and passports are mutually exclusive and are not interchangeable.
A passport is an official travel document issued by the U.S. State Department to U.S. citizens, authorizing them to travel to and from the U.S. Passports are also issued to non-U.S. citizens by their native country’s government. A visa is an insert to the passport and is documented evidence of permission and authority to enter other foreign countries. That country’s embassy has sole authority to either grant or deny access of a visa application.
The military personnel flight can assist you with a visa when the application is for official travel. In this instance, the assignments section identifies the visa requirement and coordinates the application through the passport office. They in turn, collect a copy of the official orders and a valid passport, and mail the necessary documents to the respective country’s embassy. Individuals who desire to travel to any foreign country for leisure should consult the Foreign Clearance Guide as restrictions and requirements on the website are updated daily and maintained by the Department of State.
The guide can be accessed at: http://www.fcg .pentagon.mil.It provides detailed, country-specific guidance for obtaining visas for U.S and non-U.S. citizens. The key to enjoying your stay and traveling is to plan ahead and check the FCG prior to planning travel. Individuals requiring more information may contact the passport office at 480-2240.