Reply To: International Travel


Just got finished from a three week vacation overseas. I successfully flew from the US to Bosnia & Herzegovina with a brief flight transfer in Munich. I had no issues leaving the US, not even a sideways glance. Seeing how I was not entering a Schengen country I did not go through customs in Germany. Munich is an excellent airport to transfer through and Germans are very professional and polite. I also enjoy flying on Lufthansa, because they are polite and professional with all customers and don’t get involved in politics. It is all business. I arrived in Bosnia & Herzegovina, nervous as hell, as this was my first time out of the states since my conviction and with the new IML in effect. I had no issues getting my passport stamped. However, I gave my jurisdiction 22 days notice of my intent to travel with my itinerary, so I’m not sure if it had made it into their system yet. A bit later in my vacation I went to Croatia. At the Bosnian boarder I had a bit of a scare. The passport control officer scanned my passport, looked at his screen, started squinting, tilting his head, then called his supervisor. I was then asked to wait 15 -20 minutes. Supervisors were called over, calls made, but ultimately I was allowed to pass. No issues in Croatia, no issues re-entering Bosnia. A bit later I travelled to Montenegro and had no issues there either, nor re-entering Bosnia. I finally departed Bosnia after a lovely vacation. I’m currently still travelling and will send updates when possible.
Here are some tips to RSO travelers: only give the minimum notice to your jurisdiction as required by law and ensure it is dated and signed. Why? It probably takes two weeks to get through the US system and once the country is notified it takes awhile to get through their system. I think that is why I had no issues initially getting into Bosnia, it was not in their system yet. By the time I was leaving to go to Croatia it had hit, but then I was leaving their country. DO NOT give them time to notify, give them the MINIMUM. It’s their law, so suck it up. DON’T book hotels before your trip. Just find one when you arrive. You are not required to report what you don’t know. I did not book hotels. I just asked a taxi driver what a good affordable hotel was. I stayed at great hotels close to historic sights and the hotels were more than happy to accommodate me without a reservation. Unless you expect all hotels to be booked, then don’t bother. I also put a clause on my notification of intent to travel that if I was denied entry into any country that it would change my itinerary. I refuse to be locked into an itinerary that needs to be flexible. What if there is a terrorist attack? What if there is a political protest? What if weather closes an airport? What if there is a natural disaster? International travel is crazy, much less this BS law they have put into affect to further intimidate RSOs. Personally I refuse to be intimidated by these Gestapo tactics. I hope other will too. One last tip. It seems to me that they are turning RSOs away at airports, so you may want to find a country that accepts RSOs and then take another form of transportation (rail, auto, bus, ferry boat, etc.) Hell, if you have to backpack into the country you want to visit, then do it!