Second citizenship

Citizenship: rights and obligations of Vanuatu passport holders

In addition to the fact that Vanuatu passport holders can travel around the world without a visa, they must observe the Vanuatu citizenship law, including renewing the passport as required by law and using it only for its intended purpose. We discuss the rights and obligations that arise after you obtain a Vanuatu passport by investment.

Rights and obligations of Vanuatu passport holders

Benefits of a Vanuatu passport: rights and opportunities

Traveling worldwide without a visa. Vanuatu passport holders can travel visa-free to 109 countries, including the UK, the Schengen countries, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Maximum length of stay without a visa with a Vanuatu passport

  • Up to 180 days per annum in the UK
  • Up to 90 days per annum in Hong Kong
  • Up to 30 days per annum in Singapore

Vanuatu citizens can also easily apply for a 5-year US tourist visa. For comparison, this type of visa is issued, if at all, for just 3 years to citizens of many other countries. 

With a Vanuatu passport, you can also apply for an 1-year Australian electronic visa, which is processed within a fortnight.

Safe haven. Having a second passport means you can change your place of residence at any time without applying for any additional permission. For example, with a second Vanuatu passport, you can move to Vanuatu immediately whenever you want or are required to unexpectedly leave your country of origin for health, safety, political or economic reasons. Moreover, as a Vanuatu passport holder, you can travel to Vanuatu at any time, even during a pandemic, when tourists with valid visas are not allowed to enter and those who are present have to leave.

Family reunification. The government allows Vanuatu passports to be issued to relatives of its citizens in the following cases.

Relatives of Vanuatu citizens can also be granted citizenship

If the applicant has a relative who is a Vanuatu citizensThey can apply for Vanuatu citizenship by submitting the relevant documents
1. A parent or grandparent of the applicant was a native inhabitant of Vanuatu or a Vanuatu citizen by birth or naturalisation when the applicant was bo .1. Original birth certificate.
2. Original birth certificate or certificate of Vanuatu citizenship of the parent or grandparent.
2. The applicant is the spouse of a Vanuatu citizen and had lived in Vanuatu for at least 2 years at the time they applied for citizenship.1. Marriage certificate.
2. Proof of residence in Vanuatu for at least two years.
3. The applicant is the spouse, child or parent of a Vanuatu citizen who obtained citizenship by investment.1. Investor’s naturalization certificate.
2. Proof of kinship, such as a birth certificate.

Adding a family member under the citizenship by investment program is the easiest option. An investor can add their close relatives to the application when they apply for citizenship or the relatives can be added to the application after the investor receives a Vanuatu passport.

An investor can add the following family members to their Vanuatu citizenship application

  • Spouse
  • Children of the investor or their spouse who are under 25 years of age, as well as adopted children. Only unmarried children over 18 years old can be included
  • Parents over 50 years old

Adding an eligible relative to the citizenship by investment application costs at least $15,000 per additional family member. Vanuatu citizenship by investment costs $135,129 when only the investor is included in the application.

The cost of adding eligible family members in the Vanuatu citizenship by investment program

Family memberIncluded together with the investor when the application was submittedAdded to the application at a later date by the investor
Эмодзи Apple и iOS Spouse$20,000$45,000
Эмодзи Apple и iOSЭмодзи Apple и iOS Children$15,000 per child$15,000 per child
Эмодзи Apple и iOSЭмодзи Apple и iOS Parents$15,000 per parent$15,000 per parent
Individual cost calculation of the Vanuatu citizenship

Name change. Vanuatu law allows you to change your name on your passport. However, in this case, you must also change your name in your passport issued by your country of origin. Vanuatu does not issue passports in different names for the same person.

I am studying fashion design at Saint Martins at the University of the Arts London. I changed my name on my original passport and my Vanuatu passport so that it was a better match with my brand name.

Max, student at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London
student at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London

Documents required to change your name in a Vanuatu passport:

  • name change application; 
  • a copy of the Vanuatu citizenship certificate;
  • a copy of your passport issued by your country of origin;
  • copy of your Vanuatu passport;
  • a copy of the no criminal record certificate in countries where you have been granted citizenship;
  • copy of birth certificate.

The cost of changing the name in the passport of an investor or a member of their family is $10,000.

Rights and obligations of Vanuatu passport holders
Vanuatu passports have to be renewed after 10 years

Obligations of a Vanuatu passport holder

There is no conscription in Vanuatu. Vanuatu citizens have two main obligations, which we describe in detail.

Passport renewal. A Vanuatu passport needs to be renewed every 10 years. You do not have to visit Vanuatu for this, as an application for renewal of your passport can be submitted at any Vanuatu consulate.

Documents required for renewing a Vanuatu passport

  1. Completed application form for renewal of your passport.
  2. Original certificate of citizenship.
  3. Two recent 5.1 x 5.1 cm passport photographs.
  4. Your latest Vanuatu passport.

The cost of renewing a Vanuatu passport for an adult ranges from $60 to $130, depending on how quickly you need it. For a child, the cost of renewing a passport ranges from $13 to $60, depending on the age of the child.

Vanuatu passports by investment cost $500 to renew.

The consequences for violating the Vanuatu citizenship law are enshrined in the Passport Act. Misuse of a Vanuatu passport is punishable by up to 5 years in prison or a fine of $45,000. 

The following actions are considered an offence:

  • traveling with an expired Vanuatu passport;
  • preparing or buying a fake Vanuatu passport;
  • intentionally using a fake Vanuatu passport;
  • making unauthorized changes, additions or marks in a Vanuatu passport;
  • selling a Vanuatu passport;
  • using someone else's Vanuatu passport.

To avoid problems with Vanuatu’s laws, Vanuatu passport holders need to renew their passport within the time period stipulated in the Passport Act. Immigrant Invest’s lawyers recommend starting the passport renewal procedure two months before its expiration date.

Investors who have participated in the Vanuatu citizenship by investment program do not have to deal with renewing their passport on their own. Immigrant Invest’s lawyers will prepare the necessary documents and deliver them to the address given by the investor.

Frequently asked questions

How often do I need to renew my Vanuatu passport?

Every 10 years. Passports can be renewed at any Vanuatu consulate or embassy in any country or at the passport office in Vanuatu. Apply for renewing a Vanuatu passport no later than two months before its expiry.

What are the rights of Vanuatu passport holders?

Vanuatu citizens can travel without a visa to 109 countries around the world, including the UK, the Schengen states, Hong Kong and Singapore. A Vanuatu passport holder can also easily apply for a 5-year U.S. tourist visa. They can also apply for an electronic 1-year Australian visa for up to 12 months.

What are the obligations of Vanuatu passport holders?

A Vanuatu passport needs to be renewed every 10 years. Vanuatu passport holders also need to comply with the requirements of the Vanuatu Passport Act, which states that the passport should be used only for its intended purpose, the passport holder should not let another person use their passport, and they should not be involved in any fraudulent activity.

Citizenship: rights and obligations of Vanuatu passport holders

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