Many felons can recall having the desire to travel back when life was different and simpler, before their felony conviction.
They may have dreamed of traveling abroad before their conviction, and for some this may have been a reality.
This blog post will address the question of whether a felon can travel to London.
- Travel Restrictions
- Why London?
- Traveling to London
- Requirements to Enter England
- Encouraging a Felon to Travel to London
Upon release, felons must complete the terms of their sentence, including probation.
During the probation period, felons are restricted from leaving the district in which they reside without permission from their probation officer.
Travel outside the U.S. is out of the question until the conditions of probation have been satisfied entirely.
Once this is accomplished, travel beyond the U.S. border is possible.
They must obtain a passport allowing international travel. Felons are able to obtain a passport.
Being convicted of drug trafficking or a crime of treason against the U.S. may prevent felons from being able to obtain a passport, as well as for anyone owing at least a certain amount of child support.
Having current legal charges pending can also prevent having a passport. This is because leaving the country will be interpreted as an unlawful attempt to avoid prosecution, which is a federal crime.
Why would felons want to visit London? Well, for the same reasons anyone wants to travel there. Felons may have served time in prison, but they have the same interests as any other U.S. citizen.
Traveling to London is no exception.
London is located in southeast England. It is the largest city in Great Britain and Europe, serving as the capital of England and the United Kingdom.
London is famous for Buckingham Palace, the Royal home of the Queen.
There is modern and ancient architecture. Museums, art galleries, and beautiful gardens are everywhere. The London skyline is unique in its view. The Tube is the third largest metro system in the world.
England, home of London, is part of Europe but is not in the Schengen area. This a group of 26 countries that have joined together to have a common border for tourists, including felons, who can visit any of those countries with a single passport entry.
Traveling to London
The only restriction for them flying to London would be if they have a felony warrant outstanding against them.
The other possible issue would be if their name is on what is called the no-fly list maintained by the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) for those suspected of being terrorists.
There are about 3500 names on this list at any time. So, felons are probably OK for flying.
Going on a cruise is also a popular means of travel to London.
There are two types of cruises, closed loop and open loop. A closed loop cruise is one that starts and ends in the same U.S. port while an open loop cruise has different starting and final port city locations.
Felons may sail on either type of cruise, although the requirements for a closed loop cruise are less restrictive than for open loop cruises.
U.S. citizens going on a closed loop cruise can depart and enter the U.S. with only proof of citizenship. This proof consists of an original or copy of a birth certificate and a government issued photo ID.
Open loop cruises require a passport, regardless of the starting or destination port. A passport is recommended for felons in case their ship docks in a foreign port during the cruise.
Requirements to Enter England
England has several requirements all U.S. citizens, regardless of whether they are felons or not, must meet in order to gain entry.
First, the law in England states that they must have at least six valid months remaining on their passport when entering the country.
Those U.S. citizens who stay in the country less than 90 days need to have only a passport. No visa is required.
Any stay by a U.S. citizen of more than 90 days will require a visa, which must be obtained prior to departing form the U.S.
If you’re in a hurry to get your visa or want someone to walk you through the process, I recommend you use this website to help.
Felons would do best if they plan their stay in the country to be limited to less than 90 days in order not to be subjected to having their criminal record checked.
For felons especially, their conduct while in London is critical. Of course they will want to stay out of legal difficulties.
This would obviously result in significant problems for felons who may find it extremely difficult to gain their release. For those felons ending up in jail, good legal counsel will be necessary.
It is best to strictly obey all laws and be able to leave the country as planned.
Encouraging a Felon to Travel to London
Families of felons who visit London can be helpful to those felons by encouraging them to travel outside the country for a sense of peace and relaxation. A trip to London can also be a great opportunity to re-connect with their family.
Once the decision has been made to travel to London, be supportive of their making the trip.
It is important to remind them that as a traveler to a foreign country, just being there as an American will bring them under more scrutiny. For this reason and others, they must obey the laws and not draw the attention of the legal authorities to themselves.
Remind them of their commitment to live an honest life and how legal difficulties while in London will only defeat these efforts and may result in returning to prison.
Approximately 69% of those released from prison return within the first two years. Don’t let them be one of those statistics.
So what do you think about this blog post about how a felon can travel to London? Have you or someone you know traveled to London with a felony? What was that like and were they successful? Please tell us in the comments below.