Washington DC easily falls on any list of the most inviting and enjoyable international locations in the world. Tours of Washington DC let you take in views of not just the White House, but also various other landmarks, parks, museums and entertainment venues which the place boasts of. It is also well known for the bevy of other rich options it serves up to its visitors. Getting to the nation’s capital district is pretty easy, because it maintains airline connections with over 30 international cities. Below is a series of things to keep in mind when traveling to this beautiful destination from overseas.
Familiarize the Visa, Passport and Customs Requirements
All travelers traveling from abroad to the United States are obligated to have a passport that would be legally acceptable for at least six months from the date on which they board the flight. In addition, citizens traveling to the U.S from some of the other countries as well are required to have a visa for which they should apply at an American embassy or consulate. It is also mandatory for you to have your immigration and customs forms completely filled and pre-processed when you reach the U.S., even if the country is not set as the end of your journey.
Meet the Relevant Extra Security Requirements
Anyone flying to the United States from Canada, Mexico, South America, Central America, the Caribbean, and Bermuda, would need to present on arrival a valid passport, and also a U.S. Coast Guard Merchant Mariner Document, Air NEXUS card, Alien Registration Card, Form I-551, if applicable. The official government site gives more details on this.
Furthermore, if you are an International tourist who wishes to take a trip to the U.S, then you would need to undergo enhanced security measures, and also be requested to make an administrative fee payment. Another important thing to watch is that you keep hard and soft copies of your passport with you, so that you are able to give proof of citizenship in case the original gets stolen or misplaced in any way.
Locate Multilingual Services for Language Needs
Enough people travel to Washington DC from abroad that you will find a number of multilingual services available in the city. Do good research on the linguistic services you find there, and see what works for you if you ever need help in that department. You can get brochures in many different languages at most of the attractions in the city including the Library of Congress, White House Visitors Center, Newseum, The Smithsonian, Kennedy Center, Mount Vernon and many more. You could also join foreign language tours to the National Museum of African Art, Hirshhorn Museum, Freer Sackler Gallery of Art, and Sculpture Garden, by appointment.
Gather Information from your Embassy
When planning your tour of Washington DC, it would generally be good to ask for help from your embassy.
Most embassies in Washington are also noted historic attractions, so that kills two birds with one stone if you are favorably inclines. Moreover, if you are not a U.S. citizen and would like to make a trip to the White House, you need to place a request at your respective embassy in the city.
U.S. Currency and Foreign Exchange
The standard currency used in the U.S for monetary transactions is the dollar. One of the best options for currency money exchanges is at ATMs, because many of the conversion centers found all through the city and at airports charge an extra fee for service. Calculate the worth of your currency in dollars using an app, and keep things simple and cheap.
If you insist on getting that done at an exchange and skipping the hassle, there are several currency exchange locations available in the city including at BWI Airport, Dulles International Airport, Union Station, Reagan National Airport, 1800 K Street NW Washington, Potomac Mills Mall, and Tysons Corner Center.
Planning How to Travel Around
Driving and navigation through DC can get very difficult because of the almost constantly heavy traffic here. Parking too can be hard to find, not to mention expensive. Where you can, it is best to just use public transportation for as long as you are in the city.
However, if you really wish to drive across the city you could rent a car for the same. In order to drive through the city, you would need both a driving license from your native country and also an International Driver’s Permit. You would be able to get a rental car from any of the important airports in the city. Your trip would always be much better if you plan your route and take a look at the map in advance before you start your journey.