Subject: Travel Documention for Kids and Grandkids
Hi Ziners:

Our warmest wishes for a Merry Xmas, and a Happy Hanukkah to all!

I want to share with you a recent experience relating to proper documents while travelling with kids and grandkids.

A childhood friend of my daughter's travelled from her home in Vancouver to Toronto, en route to Barbados with a large family group, for the holidays. She was travelling with her husband, 3 year old son and infant daughter. At the airport in Toronto, they were prevented from leaving, as they did not have the proper documents for the infant daughter. The rest of her family went on to Barbados, while the four of them stayed back, terribly upset, and went about trying to get a last minute passport. To complicate matters even more, it was Sunday. They were told to get passport photos from Walmart which they did, but needed a guarantor to sign the application. Living in Vancouver for so many years, they thought it would be impossible to find someone to do this.

Luckily, she spoke to my daughter who told them that I, as a Professional Engineer and knowing them for many years, could sign their passport. They rushed over with the application, photos, etc. for me to sign. They then went to the Passport Office where they had to pay an enormous premium to get an emergency passport on a Sunday.

They had been told by their travel agent that all they needed was the baby's birth certificate. The moral of this story is - make sure if you are travelling with kids or grandkids, to check offical requirements as to what is needed.

Fortunately, my friends were able to get a flight to Barbados the next day, and by then, if they hadn't needed a holiday before, they definitely needed one then!

Les on a rainy Xmas and Hanukkah day in Toronto