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I'm a dual citizen (US/EU) so I have two passports but first name and middle name flipped:

Passport 1

Given Name: Name1 Name2

Surname: Surname

Passport 2

Given Name: Name2 Name1

Surname: Surname

All the spellings are the same, it's simply the order of the given names. I'm legally known by those two names in both countries and in the EU country there's no such thing as "middle name". I'm wondering how much of an issue it will be with airline agents when I need to show I can enter EU without the upcoming ETIAS (before it would not be an issue since I can enter EU with US passport without any preapproval so I just showed US passport but entered/exited EU with EU passport).

Thank you in advance.

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    Why wouldn't you just tell the airline only about your EU passport? Why would they need to know about your US passport (unless I'm missing something).
    – MJeffryes
    Feb 6, 2023 at 14:41
  • Well two reasons: 1) I have a frequent flyer code and so want to use my US passport name order on my ticket 2) if I buy the ticket with my EU passport details and name order, I will need to do the same thing on the way back to the US so that they don't require me to have ESTA for entering the US.
    – silverSnow
    Feb 6, 2023 at 14:48
  • @silverSnow you are a US citizen, thus you are not eligible for an ESTA
    – async
    Feb 6, 2023 at 15:39

1 Answer 1

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You might have problems, but you shouldn't. The fact that your name appears differently on your different documents does not imply that you are a different person. Even if you have a ticket to the EU with your US name order, your EU passport still shows that you are an EU citizen. Legally speaking, this is clear.

It is somewhat less clear whether airlines will be able to handle this. I'm personally anticipating a large number of questions relating to advance passenger information systems that haven't been programmed to take into account legitimate situations such as the one you're asking about. For example, some people flying to the US with VWP-eligible passports who don't have ESTA (because they have a visa) have reported difficulties. But it's impossible to predict this sort of thing, and different airlines will implement the new requirement differently, so it may depend on your choice of carrier.

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  • yeah it's just unfortunate if with ETIAS I will need to do manual check in each time. If the airline check in systems could support multiple passports, it would really make things much easier. It should be a no brainer esp because a good amount of travelers can be dual citizens. As for verifying I'm the same person, I never had an issue, the EU country recognizes I'm the same person when I show them US docs, it's really being at the whim of an airline agent and that makes me nervous. Since from American perspective that name order may be more strictly set.
    – silverSnow
    Feb 6, 2023 at 16:53

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