A passport is an essential document for traveling internationally. Similar to a birth certificate, it is a form of personal identification. However, U.S. citizens cannot use their birth certificate for international air travel, although it can be accepted as secondary identification for domestic travel by air. As for using passports, there are a few things to know, including what the color of your document means.
There are no specific passport color regulations or guidelines. Each foreign and U.S. passport card is contained in a cover that may be red, blue, green, or black. Here is a look at what each of these passport colors means.
Member states of the European Union use burgundy passports, and countries such as Turkey with an interest in joining have changed their color. People who submit a passport renewal application may receive a different colored document cover than they had before. South American nations such as Columbia, Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru use this color as well.
Some nations select a color based on their political history, while Switzerland uses bright red for its passports. China, Poland, Romania, and other states with a communist past or present tend to have red passports as well.
Passports in the U.S. are now blue, but they have ranged from red at first, to green in the 1930s, to burgundy, and were black in the 1970s. Navy blue became the color of choice in 1976. Other nations that use blue include Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay.1 Caribbean nations with close oceanic and coastal connections all have blue on their passport covers.
Some countries select a color based on their religion. This includes most Islamic states and Niger, Senegal, and other members of the Economic Community of West African States. Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Morocco have chosen green, which is associated with the Prophet Muhammad in Islam.2 Green is also associated with the flags of several Islamic republics.
The rarest of the four, black is used for passports in African nations like Chad, Botswana, Angola, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. New Zealand does, too, and rare U.S. black passports mean their carriers have diplomatic immunity.
More About Passports
Canada is one of the only countries that doesn’t use the four key passport colors. White passports serve as temporary travel documents. In Norway, there is a selection of colors for travelers to choose from. Its new design reflects the nation’s identity; when put under a UV light, the depicted landscape transforms into a night scene with the northern lights.
The rules and regulations regarding passports are constantly changing. That makes it important to renew your personal identification and fill out passport forms sooner. Like acquiring a birth certificate, having the most up-to-date document is crucial if you are planning on traveling internationally.
If you are wondering how to get a birth certificate, there are easy ways to do so. Our process enables you to get a birth certificate replacement online with no hassle. Contact us online or call 415-528-2585 today!