[ELI5] is there a good explanation why passports need to be checked when departing and then again when arriving?


Why do they check when I’m arriving if I’ve been checked already on the way there?

In: Other

Because the authorities of your arrival destination do not trust the check in every departing location. Maybe you are a searched criminal only where you arrive?

Isn’t it so that they stamp the thing to say which country you have been in? Pretty sure that would be a fail safe if you are accused of illegally entering a country.

To verify that you are 1) Allowed to leave the country you’re in and 2) Allowed to enter the country you’re coming to.

Passport control at departure has typically two purposes.

First to verify that you have the proper paperwork to enter your destination. Nobody wants the hassle of people being denied at the other end.

Secondly if you are in a country with a departure tax they will verify you have paid it.

At your destination you will be checked to ensure you have the proper credentials to enter that country.

As far as U.S. travel goes some popular foreign airports have U.S. Customs staff on-site to process your entry before you leave, saving you the line here.

You generally don’t need your passport to depart from your location. You are just showing an attendant that you have a form of ID that matches your plane ticket, you could use a drivers license at that point. When you arrive in a new country you are not officially in that country until you go through customs. The check at customs is to make sure that your passport is good and you don’t have any issues with going into the new country.

Different countries have different customs requirements. If you take a trip from the US to Turkey, you will probably have a layover in Germany. Germany doesn’t check your passport but Turkey will when you arrive and go through customs. If the US checked your passport before you left, they would have to figure out to which location every passenger is going and do a different scan for each country. It’s simply not efficient to do a check at your departure site.