I'm Polish-Canadian, living in Canada. I'm planning to travel to Australia for 6 weeks and I'm about to apply for a visitor visa. I found out holders of Polish passports are not required to pay the visa fee. Here is my question: I need to enter the US using my Canadian passport, as I don't have a visa on the Polish one. Then I'm planning to use my Polish passport to enter Australia. I have no idea which passport to show when leaving the USA.

If I show the Canadian one, they will ask for the Australian visa. If I show my Polish one they will ask me how I got in, since there is no record of me arriving into the USA. Do you have any clues what I should do?

  • I've never had a passport inspector at exit express any interest in how I was planning to enter the country to which I was traveling, or even (as far as I could tell) pay any attention to which country I was traveling to. I suppose it happens in some countries, but it seems rather the exception than the rule in Europe and in the few African countries I've visited. They generally leave that question to the entry passport inspectors in the destination country. – phoog Apr 16 '18 at 15:39

No one will ask you for a passport when leaving the USA, as there are no immigration exit formalities at US airports*.

Your arrival is and departure is recorded electronically.

The airline on which you will travel will want to know if you are eligible to enter Australia. At the check in counter you can show your Polish passport with the visa. This will allow you to get your boarding pass.

Throughout the journey you will use your Canadian passport; except when you land in Australia where you will show your Polish passport with the visa in order to clear immigration.

On your way back, you will show your Canadian passport at the checkin counter in Australia, and then show your Polish passport at the Australian immigration counter.

Once you clear immigration, you will only need your Canadian passport for the remainder of your journey.

* There are random checks at the boarding gates. If you encounter these, just present your Canadian passport.

  • Wouldn't the OP have to present his Canadian passport when he both checks in (and pass through US immigration when he goes to board his initial flight) to prove that he has permission to enter the US, but then also at the same time have to show his Polish passport to the airline to prove he has permission to enter Australia (Assuming the entire trip is on 1 ticket)? – Peter M Apr 16 '18 at 11:02
  • That's another problem. I have one ticket and I'm staying in LA for couple of days before leaving for Australia... Can I actually show the airline and immigrarion officer 2 passports at the same time? – Majakka Apr 16 '18 at 15:10
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    @Majakka in that case, you should not need to show anyone your Polish passport until you check in at Los Angeles for the flight to Australia. When you do that, you can either show just your Polish passport, or show both passports, explaining that you'll use the Polish one to enter Australia but you would like the Canadian passport details to be passed to the US so they can match your exit record to your entry record. If they insist on just one passport, use the Polish one, because an unmatched exit record is a relatively unimportant problem. – phoog Apr 16 '18 at 15:44

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