Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) Provided Free by U.S. Government

Team Angels - US Consular Agent Vallarta
September 15, 2013

Kelly Trainor, our Puerto Vallarta U.S. Consulate, reminds our visitors about the free service provided by the U.S. Government to U.S. Citizens who are traveling to, or living in, a foreign country.

The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) allows you to enter information about your upcoming trip abroad so that the Department of State can better assist you in an emergency. STEP also allows Americans residing abroad to get routine information from the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.   

Why have you renamed the Registration with Embassies program to the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)?

Our goal is to encourage all U.S. citizens travelling or residing abroad to let us know their contact information so that, in an emergency, we can contact them. By changing the name of the link and designating it the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP), we hope to encourage more U.S citizens to utilize the service. If you have utilized our registration service before, you will notice that the change of the name to STEP will not affect your ability to continue to utilize the service. We are working to improve the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program to serve you better. Please feel free to e-mail us with your feedback at

How do I enroll in STEP?

First you will create an account by clicking on the "Create an Account" link and following the instructions provided. The account creation allows you to select a username and password so that you can access your travel data at any time. The account will also contain your personal information so that it can be saved and used again whenever you travel abroad. The personal information section will include basic information about yourself, and also for an emergency contact that is not traveling with you.

Once you have created an account, you will view your profile and add trips or overseas residences to register with a specific US Embassy or Consulate. Click on the "Add Trip" button or "Add Overseas Residence" buttons to add this information. Follow through the pages, and complete as much information as you have available. There are very few required fields, but thorough information enables the US Embassy to help you more efficiently if needed.

How can the embassy or consulate assist me while I am abroad?

U.S. consular officers assist Americans who encounter serious legal, medical, or financial difficulties. Although consular officers cannot act as your legal counsel or representative, they can provide the names of local attorneys and doctors, provide loans to destitute Americans, and provide information about dangerous conditions affecting your overseas travel or residence. Consular officers also perform non-emergency services, helping Americans with absentee voting, selective service registration, receiving federal benefits, and filing U.S. tax forms. Consular officers can notarize documents, issue passports, and register American children born abroad. Most embassies and consulates have web sites with more information.

Enrolling through this website is NOT considered proof of U.S. citizenship. If you apply for any American citizen services from the embassy or consulate while abroad, you will be asked by the consular staff to provide proof of U.S. citizenship, such as a U.S. passport or American birth certificate.

Where do I enroll my trip to the USA?

Please note that Smart Traveler enrollment is intended for U.S. citizens to enroll with a U.S. Embassy or Consulate when traveling or living abroad. If you are not a U.S. citizen and would like to submit your information online to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to receive travel authorization under the Visa Waiver Program for visits to the U.S.A., please visit here.

Smart Traveler Enrollment Program and Privacy

The U.S. Department of State is committed to ensuring that any personal information received by our overseas embassies and consulates pursuant to the STEP process, whether in person or otherwise, is safeguarded against unauthorized disclosure. The data that you provided the U.S. Department of State is subject to the provisions of the Privacy Act (5 USC 552a). This means that the U.S. Department of State will not disclose the information you provide us in your STEP application to any third parties unless you have given us written authorization to do so, or unless the disclosure is otherwise permitted by the Privacy Act.

To enroll in the STEP Program, visit Travel Registration.

The Puerto Vallarta Consulate office is located at Paradise Plaza, Paseo de los Cocoteros #85, Sur Paradise Plaza, Interior Local L-7, in Nuevo Vallarta. Telephones are (322) 222-0069 and (322) 223-3301. Email is

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