Dual Citizen

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Jul 5, 2016
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#1
When travelling with two passports should I present both passports or just the one that is more advantageous for the country I am visiting? Any thoughts on this?
 
Aug 30, 2015
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#3
The information provided by Neil is from the US government and is is good advice. Where you might have difficulty is travelling to the other country you have a passport for, because as noted, you have to use the US passport to leave the US but you might well have to use country B's passport to enter that country. Canada, for example, requires Canadian citizens to enter Canada on a Canadian passport.
 
Likes: VoR61
May 1, 2018
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#4
The general rule is that for countries where you hold a passport, you present only the passport for that country to immigration as you enter and leave. For all other countries, meaning countries for which you don't hold a passport, you enter and leave with the most advantageous passport you hold. In general, you do not present two passports at the same time, and you do not enter on one and leave with another.
 
Feb 3, 2019
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#8
that’s why they are looking at it when you leave.
Who is "they" in this scenario, and when are they looking at your passport?

CBP gets the vast majority of departure information for U.S. and other citizens alike from passenger manifests the airlines and maritime transportation companies provide. CBP does not routinely do inspections of the physical passports of U.S. or other citizens departing the country.

There is no requirement a U S. citizen present a valid U.S. passport to depart the United States. It is entirely possible for a dual citizen to book, check in for, and board a flight to another country using a non-US passport. All US citizens absolutely must have a valid US passport to come back, but they're free to leave the country without one.

Airlines, meanwhile, are confirming passengers have valid documentation to enter their destination country, as well as any intermediate connection points. They aren't policing whether any passenger might have another undisclosed citizenship and passport.
 
Apr 23, 2018
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#9
When travelling with two passports should I present both passports or just the one that is more advantageous for the country I am visiting? Any thoughts on this?
Two weeks ago when I flew from Canada to the US,when entering the US, the Customs & Immigrationfolks required me to show my US passport. I am a dual citizen and travel with both passports. The agent actually had to get a higher up to override my initial form after reviewing my presented CA passport and seeing I was born in the US. They were very nice about it. So best rule of thumb seems to be to show the passport of the country you are entering.
 

Neil Maley

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#10
Who is "they" in this scenario, and when are they looking at your passport?

CBP gets the vast majority of departure information for U.S. and other citizens alike from passenger manifests the airlines and maritime transportation companies provide. CBP does not routinely do inspections of the physical passports of U.S. or other citizens departing the country.

There is no requirement a U S. citizen present a valid U.S. passport to depart the United States. It is entirely possible for a dual citizen to book, check in for, and board a flight to another country using a non-US passport. All US citizens absolutely must have a valid US passport to come back, but they're free to leave the country without one.

Airlines, meanwhile, are confirming passengers have valid documentation to enter their destination country, as well as any intermediate connection points. They aren't policing whether any passenger might have another undisclosed citizenship and passport.
The requirement to show a valid passport upon leaving is to insure you have valid i.d. to enter the country you are traveling to, because if you arrive and are turned away the airline can face fines for allowing a passenger to travel without proper docs. And the airline has to pay to return them back home.
 
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Aug 30, 2015
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#11
Who is "they" in this scenario, and when are they looking at your passport?

CBP gets the vast majority of departure information for U.S. and other citizens alike from passenger manifests the airlines and maritime transportation companies provide. CBP does not routinely do inspections of the physical passports of U.S. or other citizens departing the country.

There is no requirement a U S. citizen present a valid U.S. passport to depart the United States. It is entirely possible for a dual citizen to book, check in for, and board a flight to another country using a non-US passport. All US citizens absolutely must have a valid US passport to come back, but they're free to leave the country without one.

Airlines, meanwhile, are confirming passengers have valid documentation to enter their destination country, as well as any intermediate connection points. They aren't policing whether any passenger might have another undisclosed citizenship and passport.
Since I am the one who brought up the fact that US Citizens "must use" a US passport to enter and leave the United States, and you are disputing that, let me show you where I got the information from. It is a United States government website. And it did say "must use" not "must present". Where did you get yours information?
Right near the bottom of the page:
https://travel.state.gov/content/tr...nality-Dual-Nationality/Dual-Nationality.html
U.S. nationals, including dual nationals, must use a U.S. passport to enter and leave the United States. Dual nationals may also be required by the foreign country to use its passport to enter and leave that country. Use of the foreign passport to travel to or from a country other than the United States is not inconsistent with U.S. law.
 
Aug 30, 2015
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#12
The requirement to show a valid passport upon leaving is to insure you have valid i.d. to enter the country you are traveling to, because if you arrive and are turned away the airline can face fines for allowing a passenger to travel without proper docs. And the airline has to pay to return them back home.
They are getting more fussy. United over the years never asked for my wife's permanent residence card when flying to Canada most of the time. She got asked for it once in the past decade. However, as of this year, they check it every time. The reason I've read up on the dual citizen thing is that my wife is about to become one.
 
Aug 30, 2015
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#14
It isn't just getting fussy - these are the TSA rules as well as the rules of the country you fly to. If they were lax before, so be it, but you must ensure you have the proper documents.
I might have used the term "fussy" loosely. The requirement to have the permanent resident card entering Canada has been there for awhile but now the Airlines are putting in technology which makes it both convenient and consistent that they check for these.My wife has a Nexus card, and when she gains her dual citizenship, both passports will be in there, I don't really see a process where she can use an American Passport to leave USA and Canadian to enter Canada using the airline system, so we will have to ask about that, but having Nexus in there allows the dots to be connected.
 
Likes: Neil Maley
Feb 3, 2019
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#15
Since I am the one who brought up the fact that US Citizens "must use" a US passport to enter and leave the United States, and you are disputing that,
I never disputed that the State Department website says that. I very explicitly questioned the basis for that policy, because the United States does not have exit immigration controls.

The requirement to show a valid passport upon leaving is to insure you have valid i.d. to enter the country you are traveling to, because if you arrive and are turned away the airline can face fines for allowing a passenger to travel without proper docs.
Again, I'm quite clear on the requirement for every individual to present valid documentation for entry into the destination country (and any transit countries) when checking in for any international flight (or other commercial carrier).

I don't really see a process where she can use an American Passport to leave USA and Canadian to enter Canada using the airline system
This is exactly the point I am trying to make.

There simply is no practical way to enforce the stated "requirement" that U.S. citizens depart the United States using U.S. passports. Dual citizens absolutely are able to depart the United States using non-U.S. passports. In fact, they don't even need to hold a valid U.S. passport at all. They cannot return to the United States without a valid U.S. passport (or explicit authorization from CBP to the carrier), but they can leave.

CBP gets information on departures from the United States directly from the passenger manifest the carrier provides. If a dual citizen appears on the manifest with the details of their non-U.S. nationality and passport, it's unclear how CBP would even know they are also a U.S. citizen. So if a U.S.-Canadian dual citizen is manifested as Canadian, even if they also showed a U.S. passport at check-in, have they or have they not departed using their U.S. passport?

For that matter, non-commercial border crossings don't even involve manifests. When I drive across the border to Canada, CBP does not stop me and ask me to present my U.S. passport before they allow me to leave. (The absence of reliable data on land border departures remains an issue for DHS when they try to calculate visa overstays.)

Again, I'm not questioning whether the State Department's guidance exists. It just doesn't make sense in practice. I would definitely be interested in hearing from a CBP employee who can explain how they actually enforce this.
 
Aug 30, 2015
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#16
I never disputed that the State Department website says that. I very explicitly questioned the basis for that policy, because the United States does not have exit immigration controls.


Again, I'm quite clear on the requirement for every individual to present valid documentation for entry into the destination country (and any transit countries) when checking in for any international flight (or other commercial carrier).


This is exactly the point I am trying to make.

There simply is no practical way to enforce the stated "requirement" that U.S. citizens depart the United States using U.S. passports. Dual citizens absolutely are able to depart the United States using non-U.S. passports. In fact, they don't even need to hold a valid U.S. passport at all. They cannot return to the United States without a valid U.S. passport (or explicit authorization from CBP to the carrier), but they can leave.

CBP gets information on departures from the United States directly from the passenger manifest the carrier provides. If a dual citizen appears on the manifest with the details of their non-U.S. nationality and passport, it's unclear how CBP would even know they are also a U.S. citizen. So if a U.S.-Canadian dual citizen is manifested as Canadian, even if they also showed a U.S. passport at check-in, have they or have they not departed using their U.S. passport?

For that matter, non-commercial border crossings don't even involve manifests. When I drive across the border to Canada, CBP does not stop me and ask me to present my U.S. passport before they allow me to leave. (The absence of reliable data on land border departures remains an issue for DHS when they try to calculate visa overstays.)

Again, I'm not questioning whether the State Department's guidance exists. It just doesn't make sense in practice. I would definitely be interested in hearing from a CBP employee who can explain how they actually enforce this.
I would be interested in hearing from the CBP about this issue also. However, in my wife's case, they will have the link between the two passports through the NEXUS system. Visitors to the USA can access their travel r
I never disputed that the State Department website says that. I very explicitly questioned the basis for that policy, because the United States does not have exit immigration controls.


Again, I'm quite clear on the requirement for every individual to present valid documentation for entry into the destination country (and any transit countries) when checking in for any international flight (or other commercial carrier).


This is exactly the point I am trying to make.

There simply is no practical way to enforce the stated "requirement" that U.S. citizens depart the United States using U.S. passports. Dual citizens absolutely are able to depart the United States using non-U.S. passports. In fact, they don't even need to hold a valid U.S. passport at all. They cannot return to the United States without a valid U.S. passport (or explicit authorization from CBP to the carrier), but they can leave.

CBP gets information on departures from the United States directly from the passenger manifest the carrier provides. If a dual citizen appears on the manifest with the details of their non-U.S. nationality and passport, it's unclear how CBP would even know they are also a U.S. citizen. So if a U.S.-Canadian dual citizen is manifested as Canadian, even if they also showed a U.S. passport at check-in, have they or have they not departed using their U.S. passport?

For that matter, non-commercial border crossings don't even involve manifests. When I drive across the border to Canada, CBP does not stop me and ask me to present my U.S. passport before they allow me to leave. (The absence of reliable data on land border departures remains an issue for DHS when they try to calculate visa overstays.)

Again, I'm not questioning whether the State Department's guidance exists. It just doesn't make sense in practice. I would definitely be interested in hearing from a CBP employee who can explain how they actually enforce this.
Visitors to the USA can have a look to see the I-94 data online. https://i94.cbp.dhs.gov/I94/#/home I can also see that when I enter the USA from Canada via land, the CBP/USCIS does tell the Canadian government that I've left. https://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/btb-pdf/ebsiip-asfipi-eng.html
I imagine the information is sent back to the American CBP when someone enters Canada. They are definitely increasing the collection of information.
 

Barry Graham

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Jan 7, 2015
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#19
My advice (as someone who has been in that situation) is to use your US passport every time except when entering the country that your second passport comes from. When leaving that country, if your passport was stamped upon entry, use the same passport to leave. Otherwise use your US passport when leaving. You should always use your US passport (and not any other passport) when leaving and entering the USA. US immigration doesn't appreciate seeing two passports even though there is nothing wrong with it by law.
 
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Barry Graham

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Jan 7, 2015
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#20
You also need to show your passport when you leave the USA.
What I was saying was that it's not true to say there are no exit controls since you do have to show it when you leave. I was saying that the comment you were responding to wasn't correct.