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Dual citizens and travel

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Saint
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Postby Saint » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 1:43 pm

On thing that puzzles me, and it doesn't take a lot, you would have to book the flight under the UK passport, check in using UK passport, go through immigration using PH passport?

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Postby belladonna » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 1:47 pm

Saint wrote:On thing that puzzles me, and it doesn't take a lot, you would have to book the flight under the UK passport, check in using UK passport, go through immigration using PH passport?


Well, at this point I don't think I will be using the UK passport to travel there at all. :/ It seems like it might be too complicated, what with the new I-94 development. Sigh.

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Postby JR8 » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 2:33 pm

Ok BD.... From what you found on the web, yes, use that address.

The guy I mentioned is just the guy who physically sits at his PC and processes the corrections. He's a pretty typically gruff American bureaucrat, though more willing to help than the usual type. I was pretty stunned to one day end up speaking to him, and he just listed off from the system the 5 trips for which they had no exit-I-94s, from a decade earlier. For all the crap I'd had at 2ndary inspection over the previous few years, with NO explanation, it was a bit of an 'Oh my God! :-O' moment...

If your outstanding I-94 is on the UK passport, yeah I'd send it in, but keep in mind it might take them several months to process it. Even if they write you nice letters, even three or four times over months... doesn't mean they've changed your record (Take a copy of the I-94, and any correspondance in your hand luggage- USCB&P will likely just toss it aside, but it's better than not having any case at all). Otherwise, yeah go through the hell of getting a US visa on your PH passport... so you do the stress beforehand, rather than on arrival.

Good luck!

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Postby belladonna » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 2:42 pm

Thanks so much for the info, JR8. My I-94 was issued for my Philippine passport. I have never traveled to the US on the British one.

I hope you don't mind me asking, but during those secondary inspections before your records were corrected, did the Immigration Officials actually let you through? My biggest fear at this point is to go through all the trouble, plus a hellish long haul flight (I have allergic rhinitis and never do well on those), only to be turned away at the port of entry because of this fiasco. I am definitely going to make copies of whatever documents I send to the CBP / Homeland Security, but I don't know whether to expect any confirmation from them about updating my records. It would be such a shame if this hampered my travels, as I am looking forward to attending the wedding of two very good friends. :( I suppose it's a good thing I looked into this ahead of time.

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Postby Saint » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 2:50 pm

belladonna wrote:Thanks so much for the info, JR8. My I-94 was issued for my Philippine passport. I have never traveled to the US on the British one.



Thought problem was with your PH passport? Did warn you I get confused easily! If your UK passport is clean in the eyes of the US, travel on that one can?

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Postby belladonna » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 3:02 pm

^ Sorry for the confusion.

I was considering travelling on my British passport because of the convenience provided by the Visa Waiver Program. It is my impression that they would be able to pull up my previous travel records that show I have entered the US on a Philippine passport regardless, though.

I am basically a newbie when it comes to travelling to third countries as a dual citizen. I have always used my British passport in Europe, and my Philippine passport in Asia. I know the US is possibly one of the trickiest when it comes to immigration policies, so I just wanted to make sure all my plans are aboveboard.

I only realized that I still have the old I-94 this morning, after 6 years since my last US visit! I think I would rather sort out this complication regardless of whether I can enter on Visa Waiver or not...

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Postby JR8 » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 3:15 pm

OIC. So you could apply for a visa waiver with your UK passport (on ESTA) and the only potential issue is they connect the missing I-94 with your name and date of birth to your PH passport. Frankly I'd take that risk, (after having made a copy of the I-94, sent it off and kept correspondance, and having it on hand at immigration - just in case!)

USCB&P on arival will tell you that no previous visas, approvals etc matter, and they on your arrival are the sole and final arbiter. Well yes in a way that is true. But if ESTA gives you a waiver it hardly suggests their systems have a problem with you does it?

No problem, ask away. Yes I never got refused entry. The thing was for maybe the last ten times I visited, you'd sit in some big pokey room, wait for 1/2hr, and then be condescended to by some official in uniform behind a desk set a metre higher than you, whose complete presumption is you wanted to live in the States. When you just want to get out the airport and be on your way, it was not a great thing to look forward to on arrival! Crikey the last time they (two of them) even asked me in front of a room full of other people awaiting interrogation whether I intended to marry the girlfriend I was visiting. They then spent ten minutes accusing me of working in the States illegally, and cut off every answer I tried to give. As I said... not fun!

Yeah I understand your thinking. I'm a forward planner too, would rather take the stress in advance than panic on turning up at the border. But as I suggested why not apply for your waiver via ESTA on your UK passport. That should give you a good idea which way the wind is blowing.

Lodge your I-94. Ignore any gushingly polite letters from USCB&P saying they HAVE updated your records. I certainly got three identical letters over about six months, despite my record at port-of-entry not being updated.

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Postby belladonna » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 3:24 pm

^Ok, will do.

One more question... should my ESTA application be approved and I travel on my British passport, will there be any problems with Singapore immigration at all? If I present my UK passport at check in, won't the immigration officers notice the different passport number when I exit?

I am also considering that US immigration might find it strange that I have an absolutely spotless visa page on my UK passport, when I arrive from Singapore. Coupled with the I-94 issue, perhaps it might appear suspicious to them? I've heard some immigration horror stories just like the "interrogation" you have described. If only BOTH my citizenship countries were VWP eligible! Sigh.

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Postby Saint » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 3:26 pm

belladonna wrote:^Ok, will do.

One more question... should my ESTA application be approved and I travel on my British passport, will there be any problems with Singapore immigration at all? If I present my UK passport at check in, won't the immigration officers notice the different passport number when I exit?

I am also considering that US immigration might find it strange that I have an absolutely spotless visa page on my UK passport, when I arrive from Singapore. Coupled with the I-94 issue, perhaps it might appear suspicious to them? I've heard some immigration horror stories just like the "interrogation" you have described. If only BOTH my citizenship countries were VWP eligible! Sigh.


Check in isn't immigration, all the need to verify is that passport holder is passenger on ticket. You will them go through immigration with PH passport as I mentioned in earlier posting

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Postby belladonna » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 3:28 pm

^ But won't immigration take a look at the info on my ticket? Or look for stamps on my Philippine passport upon return from the US?

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Postby Saint » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 3:32 pm

belladonna wrote:^ But won't immigration take a look at the info on my ticket? Or look for stamps on my Philippine passport upon return from the US?


Immigration don't look at ticket and they wont care when you come back in what stamps you have

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Postby JR8 » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 3:46 pm

belladonna wrote:^Ok, will do.

One more question... should my ESTA application be approved and I travel on my British passport, will there be any problems with Singapore immigration at all? If I present my UK passport at check in, won't the immigration officers notice the different passport number when I exit?

I am also considering that US immigration might find it strange that I have an absolutely spotless visa page on my UK passport, when I arrive from Singapore. Coupled with the I-94 issue, perhaps it might appear suspicious to them? I've heard some immigration horror stories just like the "interrogation" you have described. If only BOTH my citizenship countries were VWP eligible! Sigh.


Well, I am just a frequent traveller, and not a lawyer... so have probably suggested as much as i reliably can, no point me pontificating on important details that are beyond me.

p.s. Consider that UK passport holders who only travel in the EU, have zero stamps in their passport. Also that when you arrive in the US, immigration is probably going to be a complete zoo, with people off mutiple flights. An empty passport (in my humble opinion) shouldn't really suggest anything unusual ...

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Postby belladonna » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 3:55 pm

Ok, I understand. :)

Thanks again, everyone. I am so grateful that you have taken some time out to respond to my posts. Your comments have really helped me think this all through. Will update if anything else comes up.

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Postby Strong Eagle » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 4:15 pm

JR8 wrote:
Strong Eagle wrote:Which passport has your EP stamp in it? Which passport do you normally travel with in and out of Singapore?

I normally travel in and out of Singapore on my US passport. I tried using my UK passport to get into Malaysia and they wouldn't take it because it had no residency stamp.


You've completely lost me here Eagle. I have no residency stamp, EP or anything else in my passport, as I'm here on an LTVP. I have no SG entry/exit stamps, nothing. I've never had a problem entering Malaysia or anywhere else.


Up until 2009, if you had an EP (green card) you also had two pages of your passport stamped; one for a re-entry permit and one for your work permit. I believe that EP's are no longer stamped at all.

When I got my PR, it too, took two pages, one for the PR stamp, one for the re-entry stamp. When I renewed my passport I no longer got a stamp but I am supposed to keep a copy of my PR status (which is printed out online) in my passport.

For PR and unlike EP, you can't just simply provide your NRIC because it can be valid but your re-entry permit can be expired.

Don't know about LTVP... never seen one.

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Postby JR8 » Thu, 25 Mar 2010 4:20 pm

Ohhhhh....

My LTVP is a standard (albeit green) NRIC.

Nothing gets stamped in my passport, in/out at SG immigration...


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