Sneaky I know - but out of sheer curiosity - can someone leave the US on the passport they entered with their visa-waiver (before 90 days), reapply immediately with their other (esta eligible) country passport, and re-enter with a new 90 days?

Or will everything be linked electronically and you get called out at the border?


  • 1
    Immigration rules generally apply to the person, not the passport. With the Americans' propensity to spend money on things, I'd bet that their computers will pick you up. Technically, though, what you suggest isn't illegal unless you overstay the initial 90 days. – user90371 May 15 '19 at 21:52
  • 2
    @ReddHerring indeed, it's technically not illegal, even if the traveler uses the same passport the second time. – phoog May 15 '19 at 22:04
  • 1
    It smells like a visa run to me, and it will to the CBP officer as well. – Michael Hampton May 16 '19 at 2:05

You scan your fingerprints at the border when you enter the US so your plan would be foiled as your identity will be instantly linked to your other passport. However luckily there's no need to resort to deception. Instead, you could:

  1. Fly outside North America and then come back for a fresh 90 days. Unlike the Schengen area there isn't a hard limit on the number of days you can spend in the US within a certain period, as long as you go outside the adjacent countries first.

  2. Apply for a regular B1/B2 visa which would allow you to spend up to 6 months in the US

| improve this answer | |
  • 2
    In fact, under the letter of the law, it's just as permissible to go to Canada or Mexico on or before the 90th day, and then re-enter after the 90th day. But whether the traveler does that or follows the recommendation in point 1, they will almost certainly be scrutinized more thoroughly on the second application for admission, and there is a serious risk of being refused entry. It's probably also worth mentioning that the ESTA application asks about other nationalities and passports, and failing to mention them could lead to being found inadmissible to the US. – phoog May 15 '19 at 22:03
  • @phoog I think it's possible to enter overland without disclosing your other citizenships, technically. But it wouldn't help OP. – JonathanReez May 15 '19 at 23:08

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.