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Travelling with two passports

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

Yo Dudes Hello Chaps, after living here for 15 years the missus and I finally had our citizenship interviews and will soon become US Citizens (yippee !) . we want to retain our old UK passports for travel in Europe (hopefully shorter border patrol lines) . I've been trying to find out the most unproblematic way of travelling with 2 passports to/from US/UK but have been unable to find a definitive answer anywhere. I know that we must enter and leave on the US passports and since US passport holders can visit the UK for 90 days travel to the UK is no issue. However it has been suggested that is it better to show the UK passport at checkin as the country you are going to rather than the passport from the country you are exiting, but show US passport to border officials, or could one show both of them ? and what about the advanced passenger information that the airlines ask for, would entering the US passport details at this point and the UK passport at check-in really blow their minds ?


Confused of Philadelphia :confused: 

Edited by nick_charles - 10/16/13 at 1:08pm
post #2 of 17

My question is; isn't it possible to just leave the US with your UK passport?

post #3 of 17
As an attorney who is married to a Hungarian with both a US and Hungarian passport you can keep both. For airline travel put down US citizen (it is the US government that pushed for that requirement from the airlines as part of the Patriot Act to combat terrorism) but use the US passport upon arrival in the US (much shorter lines) and the UK anywhere in the EU (again much shorter lines).

Do realize that the US does not, as most other countries do, recognize dual citizenship. What that means is the US government would not allow you to claim UK citizenship for legal problems or tax matters. However, the UK does recognize dual citizenship. It all comes down to what country you are standing in when you make a claim.

Edit: sorry I forgot to say welcome to the land of the free and the home of the brave. At least until Obama became president.
Edited by spook76 - 10/16/13 at 1:45pm
post #4 of 17
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by kookoo View Post

My question is; isn't it possible to just leave the US with your UK passport?


All the "official" sources say leave on the US passport, but some also say check-in using the passport you are travelling to as it shows you have the right to enter the UK, but you can always visit the UK on a US passport but then you are entering as a visitor 

post #5 of 17
I do not believe it matters under what citizenship you check in under as that information is used to check your name against the US no-fly list or the UK equivilant. What matters is what passport you present at Passport Control at the destination airport. My wife always uses her US passport when traveling to any country outside of the EU and her Hungarian passport in the EU.
post #6 of 17

My issue with traveling with 2 passports is trying to explain why I left with one but entered my destination with another (both are countries for which I hold citizenship). I can understand why it looks suss to them.

post #7 of 17
Private message me as I can better answer your question.
post #8 of 17

I still carry my russian and american passports. I travel with both of them regularly. Just depends on where I am going. 

post #9 of 17
Remember what passport you travel under DOES NOT deprive you of you legal rights as a citizen of your country. In the case of duel citizens (like the UK and US) when traveling to the UK you are a UK citizen upon arrival under UK law although that is not recognized by the US (purely form over substance). So the 90 day stay limit on US citizens traveling to the UK DOES NOT APPLY TO YOU. When in the UK you remain a UK citizen.
post #10 of 17

I did this last year (I'm a US citizen living in New Zealand, and I am a naturalised Australian with an Australian passport [sounds complicated, doesn't it?]).  When I went to the US I travelled on the US passport, and returned to New Zealand on my Australian passport (we have free movement between Australia and New Zealand, as in the EU).  The gate staff of the airline need to be able to verify that you are allowed to enter the country you are flying to.  Plus, arriving at LAX with a US passport saves a lot of time. :smile:

post #11 of 17

I've heard you shouldnt go about waving multiple passports at immigration and passport control... maybe select the one you want to use and leave the other one in your bag.


Not sure where you plan on travelling in Europe but there are no border controls when traveling between the 26 or so Schengen zone countries. Heathrow's non-citizen queues are crazy so being a citizen helps... and bring your partner with you through that line ;)



post #12 of 17

Like when arriving in and leaving from the US you must show your US passport, likewise in the UK you'd show your UK passport. 

post #13 of 17
Thread Starter 


Citizenship granted 10-25-2013, quite an emotional ceremony, the missus blubbed like a girl and even I got a bit choked up, applied for passport today

Edited by nick_charles - 10/28/13 at 1:14pm
post #14 of 17

Congratulations to you both, Nick.  :beerchug:

post #15 of 17

Am confused about this myself. Say if you're a holder of Japan passport and also US passport and you are coming back to Japan. Since Japan doesn't accept dual citizenship (with few exceptions), wouldn't the Japan customs be curious why you only have the Japan check-ins and check-outs of the country and nothing else? Would you be detained or something else? 

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