Identity Documentation

Official Identity Documents

Depending on the country you are travelling to, you will need a valid identity card or passport.

In some cases, a visa is also required.

Please note: Some countries require your passport to be valid for 6 months after the date of your return.

Apply for your identity documents well in advance at your local Mairie. There can sometimes be delays of 3 weeks or more depending on the time of year.

Extending the Validity of your Identity Card

Since the 1st January 2014, the validity of national identity cards has been extended from 10 to 15 years for adults, without you having to take any measures. If your identity card was delivered between the 2nd January 2004 and the 31st December 2013, the 5-year extension will automatically be applied. To check if this extension applies to you, visit the French Government website.

Identity cards for minors are still only valid for 10 years from the date of issue.  

A few tips...

  • If you are travelling to Europe, remember to apply for your European Health Insurance Card at least 3 weeks in advance so you don’t have to pay medical costs abroad
  • Before leaving, scan all your documents and put them on a ‘cloud’ or in a safe place on your electronic device. They cannot replace the original documents, but they will be useful if you lose them.
  • Check-in on the airline website a few days before departure and download or print your boarding pass. It’s free and will prevent you from paying extra at the airport.

Children Travelling Abroad

To find out the latest regulations for children abroad without at least one of their parents, visit our page on Unaccompanied Minors (UM).