I am travelling to the US in 3 weeks (UK resident) and have been unable to get my Canadian passport renewed until now as the only guarantor I could find has been unavailable.

I have a valid UK passport, but my proof of Canadian citizenship will be with the Canadian embassy at the time of my flight (applying for a Canadian passport, already have an out of date child's passport).

I'm assuming that in order to have the 6 months of travel in the US that Canadian citizens are eligible for, I must have a current Canadian passport.

So I think my only choice is to enter on my British passport with an ESTA application, and even though this asks what other countries I'm a citizen of, I will still only be eligible for 3 months within the US.

I also have to have transport organised out of the US within 90 days of entry and a flight out of North America booked some time after that in order to convince them I do not intend to remain in the US. I do intend to visit Canada, but as a dual national I must now enter Canada with a Canadian passport. I won't have this to show the authorities when I enter the States (although I will receive it while I'm out there) as it'll still be being processed. Would they consider that an issue in entering Canada/leaving the US and therefore deny me entry to the country?

Sorry for a relatively incoherent mess, any help would be greatly appreciated.

  • If you live in Canada (or any other North American country), you do not need to have a flight booked out of North America; a flight to your country of residence will do.
    – phoog
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 16:57
  • should have added - I'm a resident of the UK
    – Liam Bligh
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 17:17
  • Another option would be to apply for a US visa, but I'm not sure whether you can get that done in three weeks.
    – phoog
    Commented Apr 24, 2018 at 17:37

2 Answers 2


I don't have an easy answer to your dilemma, except to offer these suggestions:

  • In most circumstances, Canadians can renew their passports using the "simplified renewal" process (the requirements are here but in short, the personal information must not have changed, the old passport must not have expired more than a year ago, you must be over 16 when the last passport was issued, and the passport cannot have been reported lost or stolen or have suffered damage in any way). This process gets rid of the requirement for a guarantor.
  • If you can't get a Canadian passport in time, you are forced to use your UK passport (the US won't consider you to need to use either one; you can choose, since you're not a US national). If you want a stay greater than the three months you are granted with the visa waiver program, the only option to you will be to apply for a visa instead.
  • "you are forced to use your US passport" Shouldn't that be "UK" passport?
    – user67108
    Commented Aug 13, 2018 at 4:03
  • 1
    @dda Corrected :) Commented Aug 13, 2018 at 4:04

It seems to me that you're in fine shape, as long as that Canadian passport arrives in time. You enter the US on a UK passport, with a stay of less than three months, with documentation of a return flight within 6 months (whether leaving from Canada or the US, shouldn't be an issue), and documentation of your trip to Canada within 3 months.

Then you travel to Canada on the Canadian passport (as you must).

If you reenter the US, do so on your Canadian passport.

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