Friday, June 24, 2011

Passport Privilege

My Canadian and Barbadian passports side by side on TwitpicMy Canadian and Barbadian Passports side by side.

I've had Canadian passports since I was a teenager and thought nothing of it. I accepted it as a given - I'm Canadian, therefore I can have one, it's easy, end of story. I think at the time it was about $80 plus the photograph, which was (and still is) a fair amount of money, but my parents thought it was a needed expense and I got it. It wasn't until I spoke to some friends that I discovered they never got one because their parents couldn't afford it and they never went anywhere anyway.


This winter I applied for my Barbadian passport while I was visiting. I was supposed to get it back during the time I was there, but I ended up leaving early. My uncle had to pick it up and told me a friend of my father's would bring it back to me here in Montreal. He ended up staying longer, so I had to wait for my cousin to visit in May. It was a whole three months of waiting - and I don't really like having my personal identification out of my possession! When I finally got it, it made me feel like I'd won the lottery! Now I can pass through customs in Barbados or any of the CariCom countries much faster!


My discovery of the Passport Party Project last week reminded me what a privilege it is to have one, let alone two. (And yes, I realize I'm very privileged to be a citizen of two countries which allow dual citizenship!)

The fact is, if you're going to dream, you might as well dream big. A journey can start with one small step. So why not start with the passport and see if the rest of the cards start to fall into place? Don't be scared to take the first step.

A passport really is your ticket through the first door. It really does open up the rest of the world. And when you get it in your hands, you'll feel like you just won the lottery.

Picture Post

Friday, June 17, 2011

The Passport Party Project

I just got introduced to The Passport Party Project on my Twitter feed and you can find them on Facebook here.

Not being American, I didn't realize that only 30% Americans actually have a passport! (As of 2009, 56% of Canadians have a passport)

That's shocking to me, but The Passport Party Project aims to fix that and in a demographic close to my heart: young women.

Travel is some of the best education - it's powerful and can kill ignorance and racism. It opens your mind and more people need to do it. I think this is a wonderful initiative and I welcome any of those young ladies space to write a guest post here about their solo woman travels!
Happy Travels, Ladies!