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Which passport do you use with the airline?

Which passport do you use with the airline?

Old Jul 24th 2016, 9:41 pm
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Default Which passport do you use with the airline?

I've been doing this for years but I'm never sure what to do. When giving my passport info to the airline, online, and I'm going from the US to the UK for a visit, do I give the UK passport info? But then I'm leaving the US on a UK passport, which you're not supposed to do? Enter and leave on US passport always?

I used to give the passport of the country I was entering and leaving from. One time, I gave my US passport info to the lady at check-in in the US, when flying to the UK. When I arrived in the UK, I gave the immigration guy my UK passport. He was confused because he had a list of passengers for my plane, and there was no one with my name and a UK passport, because I had given the US one. (Edited to say I think actually it was the other way around because I was living in the UK)

So confusing. So do you give the passport for the country you're leaving or going to? Or just pick one and hope they like your explanation on the other end? It has always worked out, just made me nervous for a minute!

Last edited by Ives; Jul 24th 2016 at 10:07 pm.
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Old Jul 24th 2016, 10:02 pm
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Leave US on US passport. Enter UK on UK passport. Leave UK on US passport. Enter US on US passport. This is what I've always done, and I haven't been asked any questions about it. If I'm asked next time, like happened to you, I'll explain as you did that I checked in in the US with my US passport, shouldn't be a problem I would have thought. I'm more comfortable doing this than leaving the US on a UK passport when I'm a resident of the US. But I don't know what the regulations are with respect to this.
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Old Jul 24th 2016, 10:04 pm
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Originally Posted by Ives View Post
I've been doing this for years but I'm never sure what to do. When giving my passport info to the airline, online, and I'm going from the US to the UK for a visit, do I give the UK passport info? But then I'm leaving the US on a UK passport, which you're not supposed to do? Enter and leave on US passport always?

I used to give the passport of the country I was entering and leaving from. One time, I gave my US passport info to the lady at check-in in the US, when flying to the UK. When I arrived in the UK, I gave the immigration guy my UK passport. He was confused because he had a list of passengers for my plane, and there was no one with my name and a UK passport, because I had given the US one.

So confusing. So do you give the passport for the country you're leaving or going to? Or just pick one and hope they like your explanation on the other end? It has always worked out, just made me nervous for a minute!
Why mess around with different passports? I just take a US passport when traveling and leave the UK at home, no complications no worries. In fact I haven't renewed my UK passport, why pay for something I never use.
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Old Jul 24th 2016, 10:18 pm
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Ok, I've looked around online a bit more, and it's really important to leave and enter the US on the US passport. So I'll enter the US passports on the airline's website and just might have to explain on the other end if I have to.
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Old Jul 24th 2016, 10:26 pm
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Originally Posted by Ives View Post
Ok, I've looked around online a bit more, and it's really important to leave and enter the US on the US passport. So I'll enter the US passports on the airline's website and just might have to explain on the other end if I have to.
There's nothing to explain. If you want to enter the UK on that passport, just do it. No explanation required.
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Old Jul 24th 2016, 10:30 pm
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Originally Posted by Ives View Post
Ok, I've looked around online a bit more, and it's really important to leave and enter the US on the US passport. So I'll enter the US passports on the airline's website and just might have to explain on the other end if I have to.
It is legally required that US citizens leave and enter the US with a US passport.
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Old Jul 24th 2016, 11:44 pm
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Originally Posted by Asg123 View Post
Leave US on US passport. Enter UK on UK passport. Leave UK on US passport. Enter US on US passport. This is what I've always done, and I haven't been asked any questions about it. If I'm asked next time, like happened to you, I'll explain as you did that I checked in in the US with my US passport, shouldn't be a problem I would have thought. I'm more comfortable doing this than leaving the US on a UK passport when I'm a resident of the US. But I don't know what the regulations are with respect to this.
This is it in a nutshell.
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Old Jul 24th 2016, 11:53 pm
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Originally Posted by BritInParis View Post
This is it in a nutshell.
Leave US on US passport. Enter UK on UK passport. Leave UK on US passport. Enter US on US passport.


But if you're entering the UK on UK passport, shouldn't you leave the UK on the UK passport? I've always wondered, are they keeping track of who came in on what passport, and if you leave on a different one than you entered on, what does that do??

Or, like a previous poster, just use the US one and don't mess with it all! But I just feel like since we're British citizens we should enter the UK with that passport!
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Old Jul 25th 2016, 12:05 am
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Originally Posted by Ives View Post
But if you're entering the UK on UK passport, shouldn't you leave the UK on the UK passport? I've always wondered, are they keeping track of who came in on what passport, and if you leave on a different one than you entered on, what does that do??
Who cares? You are a UK citizen, with a UK passport and entitled to stay in the UK for as long as you want to. Unlike the US there is no legal requirement for a UK citizen to use a UK passport when leaving the UK so why worry about it?
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Old Jul 25th 2016, 1:38 am
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Originally Posted by Ives View Post
Leave US on US passport. Enter UK on UK passport. Leave UK on US passport. Enter US on US passport.

But if you're entering the UK on UK passport, shouldn't you leave the UK on the UK passport? I've always wondered, are they keeping track of who came in on what passport, and if you leave on a different one than you entered on, what does that do??
That would be the ideal scenario but since the US requires a British citizen to hold a visa or applied for an ESTA before they board a flight to the US then the airline will want to see one of these before they let you board and as a US citizen you are ineligible for an ESTA as it a US legal requirement for US citizens to travel in and out of the US on a US passport.

Or, like a previous poster, just use the US one and don't mess with it all! But I just feel like since we're British citizens we should enter the UK with that passport!
That is also a possible solution and many British citizens do visit the UK on their foreign passports however you should expect to be treated as a US citizen at the UK border. Personally I would carry both and use them as Asg123 suggested.
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Old Jul 25th 2016, 1:44 am
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Originally Posted by Ives View Post
..... But if you're entering the UK on UK passport, shouldn't you leave the UK on the UK passport? I've always wondered, are they keeping track of who came in on what passport, and if you leave on a different one than you entered on, what does that do? ....
I suspect that they keep the records but don't actually do much with them until your name is flagged as a criminal, terrorist, fugitive, or other "person of interest", then they will search their database to see who came and went.

Assuming that they can tie you to the airline ticketing records they will see that Simon B Smith arrived in the UK on a British passport and left 12 days later on a US passport, and they can probably also deduce that Miss Jane K Harrison arrived in the UK on a British passport and left 10 days later on a US passport under the name Mrs Jane K Knopski. .... Of course she couldn't be leaving on the return leg of a return ticket because the passport name has to match the ticket name.

So long as all passports were issued legally there is absolutely no problem, and it would be a waste of time matching and reconciling all the arrival and departure names unless/until the person is linked to an actual or potential problem.

Last edited by Pulaski; Jul 25th 2016 at 2:13 am.
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Old Jul 25th 2016, 2:12 am
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Originally Posted by Asg123 View Post
Leave US on US passport. Enter UK on UK passport. Leave UK on US passport. Enter US on US passport. This is what I've always done, and I haven't been asked any questions about it.
This. I travel to the UK around once per month with work, and have done it this way every time since becoming a USC a few years ago. Plus at the UK end nowadays you can just use the eGates, so there's no-one to interact with at all.
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Old Jul 25th 2016, 3:16 am
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Originally Posted by tonrob View Post
This. I travel to the UK around once per month with work, and have done it this way every time since becoming a USC a few years ago. Plus at the UK end nowadays you can just use the eGates, so there's no-one to interact with at all.
I've always done this as well.
Exit checks are provided by the airlines to the Home Office and will, by necessity, be your US passport information. That information enters a database and is only used if needed. As Pulaski said, I'm sure that if they needed to they wouldn't be hard pressed to connect the dots and figure out that the Jane Doe who keeps entering on a UK passport but never leaves is the same person as the Jane Doe who keeps leaving on a US passport but never enters.
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Old Jul 25th 2016, 5:25 am
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Originally Posted by Ives View Post
Leave US on US passport. Enter UK on UK passport. Leave UK on US passport. Enter US on US passport.


But if you're entering the UK on UK passport, shouldn't you leave the UK on the UK passport? I've always wondered, are they keeping track of who came in on what passport, and if you leave on a different one than you entered on, what does that do??

Or, like a previous poster, just use the US one and don't mess with it all! But I just feel like since we're British citizens we should enter the UK with that passport!
You musr check in with, and show the airline, the US passport.
But when going through the actual exit process with the UK immigration authorities you can show the UK one.

Two separate processes.
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Old Jul 25th 2016, 5:41 am
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Default Re: Which passport do you use with the airline?

Originally Posted by Pollyana View Post
You musr check in with, and show the airline, the US passport.
But when going through the actual exit process with the UK immigration authorities you can show the UK one.

Two separate processes.
I believe that the official exit record is provided by the airline, not by the border agents, so regardless which passport you show as you go through security, all they're doing is checking that you are the person listed on your boarding pass: you'll still be in the records as having left on your US passport.
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