Travel with dual citizenship

In this week’s Travel SOS, Kay O’Sullivan takes the time to help Jane work out on which passport she should travel when she heads to the UK.

Q. Jane

I have dual citizenship, which means I have both an Australia and UK passport. I’m flying to the UK later, then onto Europe and need clarification on which passport I should travel.  I believe that I should leave Australia on my Australian passport, but can enter the UK and Europe on my UK passport. I would then need to exit on my Australian passport so I can re-enter Australia without any hassle. However, friends have told me that I can’t do this. Which is the correct way?

A. You are absolutely right – you have to fly in and out of Australia on your Australian passport. The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade is clear on this, but it has no issue with you using your British passport once you’re over there, adding that it’s a good idea to check the entry and exit requirements of the country you are visiting when using your other passport.

I checked for you, and the UK consular team in Canberra advise that you can enter on your UK passport but it’s better for you to leave on the Aussie one when returning.

I’d add that you will be fine using the British passport when leaving Britain to travel to and through Europe – the queues at passport control are always shorter for EU citizens than Aussies. But once you are heading home from wherever your final destination is, you need to get out that precious Australian passport.

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Kay O’Sullivan is no accidental tourist. More than a decade ago, she decided to combine two of her favourite things – journalism and travel – and become a travel writer. Since then, she has worked for numerous papers, magazines and on the internet, both here and internationally.

Written by kayo