I have an American and a Italian passport and I live in the Netherlands. I don't need a visa to stay in the Netherlands, because I am Italian. My Italian passport has expired and I have to take a trip to America. From what I read, the ideal would be to leave the Netherlands with the Italian passport, enter America with the American passport, leave America with the American passport and enter the Netherlands with the Italian passport.

I was wondering if it is fine if I leave and enter the Netherlands with my American passport, because my Italian passport is expired.

  • 1
    What would lead you to think that it would not be? Also, do you not have an Italian ID card? If you bring this with you, then you can reenter the Netherlands with it, and avoid having to queue for the All Passports desk.
    – MJeffryes
    Jul 13, 2018 at 14:43
  • @MJeffryes as an EU citizen entering the EU with a US passport and an expired Italian passport, Andrea should be able to use the EU passports desk.
    – phoog
    Jul 13, 2018 at 14:52
  • @phoog I had understood that Andrea would only be bringing their US passport with them. In this case, I suppose it's permissible for an EU citizen to still use the EU line, but it might annoy the officials. If they have their expired Italian passport, then the chance of annoying the officials is lower.
    – MJeffryes
    Jul 13, 2018 at 14:53
  • @Willeke I suspect that Andrea's expired passport would be sufficient evidence of EU citizenship. Andrea is typically a male name in Italian, by the way.
    – phoog
    Jul 13, 2018 at 14:53
  • @MJeffryes how would someone with a US passport with no entry stamps leave the Schengen area? He would need some evidence of EU citizenship at that point, and an expired passport is better than simply stating a claim verbally.
    – phoog
    Jul 13, 2018 at 14:56

2 Answers 2


If I were you I would bring both passports. When you leave the Schengen area with a US passport, the officer will look for an entry stamp. You will then have to claim your Italian citizenship. The expired passport should help with this.

There's no exit control on leaving the US, but with an expired Italian passport you will of course have to use your US passport to check in for the departing flight. This will be no problem, since US citizens are visa exempt in the Schengen area.

On entering the Schengen area, if I were you I would perhaps just show the US passport to keep things simple, but if the line is long at immigration I would probably reconsider that and approach the EU passports desk with my US passport and expired Italian passport.

My source for this is several years of flying between the US and the EU having a US passport and an EU passport. My general principle has been to show the US passport to US CBP and when checking in for flights to the US, and the EU passport when checking in for flights to the EU or passing EU immigration controls. I have occasionally shown the US passport to EU officers, though, either by mistake or because I didn't have my EU passport with me.

As noted in the other answer, none of this matters if you have a valid Italian ID card. You can use that both to leave and to enter the Schengen area. You would then use your US passport to check in for your flights to and from the US and for the US immigration inspection.

  • If you enter on your US passport, could that lead to a confusing situation when you have an entry stamp but no exit stamp within 90 days? It could look as though you overstayed. Jul 14, 2018 at 15:27
  • @NateEldredge yes it could, but the issue is extremely unlikely ever to arise, let alone pose an actual problem, and if it did somehow, explaining the dual citizenship would resolve the problem.
    – phoog
    Jul 14, 2018 at 17:38

Your italian ID card is sufficient for arriving in Europe, you don't need the italian passport.

Normally you only need your passport when flying out (because TIMATIC tells the airline that an italian ID card is not sufficient for your target country), but there you are using your US passport, so you are good.

I have many times arrived in Germany and used only my ID card. It even works on the electronic machines (even though the signage says 'use passport').

  • I didn't mention the ID card in my answer because it wasn't mentioned in the question and I assumed that Andrea does not have one. I suppose that assumption was probably incorrect.
    – phoog
    Jul 13, 2018 at 15:18
  • you are right, @phoog , looks like I dreamed him mentioning it...
    – Aganju
    Jul 13, 2018 at 15:41
  • Still, if I were Italian and lived in the EU, I would have an ID card. It seems more likely that the lack of mention is related to ID cards not being adequate for most destinations outside the EU.
    – phoog
    Jul 13, 2018 at 15:44

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