I am a dual British and Australian citizen. I am British by descent and I have applied for my passport but it hasn't arrived yet and am worried it won't in time. I'm going to be staying in England for 6 months so I'd need a visa if I wasn't a British citizen. As I said though, I don't have my British passport. Does anyone know what to do in this situation? Could I enter with my Australian passport?

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    Have you looked into options for expedited passport processing? Commented Nov 11, 2015 at 5:11
  • Do you have proof of British Citizenship? I guess you did for the passport but may not have it anymore? This question is related but for the US/UK case: travel.stackexchange.com/questions/55860/…
    – SpaceDog
    Commented Nov 11, 2015 at 5:45
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    Bring in some proof of your British citizenship. The border officials if not convinced, will do their checks on their side and if convinced will let you in. There was a border officials tv series where they allowed a British citizen, totally drunk, travelling from Bangladesh allowed in, without a passport which was lost somewhere during travel, after they checked and convinced themselves that he was indeed a citizen. But he was living here, so your case might take a bit more time.
    – DumbCoder
    Commented Nov 11, 2015 at 9:27
  • 6 months is the limit on Aussie passport and you'd be there as a tourist. Unable to work etc. Most of your documentation will be with your British passport application - they may return it once they are done with in before finishing your application.
    – user73619
    Commented Feb 12, 2018 at 3:53
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    @user73619 "you'd be there as a tourist. Unable to work etc.": that is incorrect. A British citizen who enters the UK with a foreign passport is still a British citizen and is therefore entitled to work.
    – phoog
    Commented Feb 12, 2018 at 12:02

1 Answer 1


Have you already received some official confirmation of your British citizenship? If so, you can probably enter with that, possibly in combination with your Australian passport.

If you do not yet have official confirmation of your British citizenship, you have two options:

  1. Enter on your Australian passport and hope that the official determination on your British citizenship comes through before you leave, or before you have some other need to prove your right of abode. This will invalidate the 6-month limit placed on your visit.

  2. Travel to the UK using your Australian passport, but at the border present your evidence of British citizenship. The border official should let you in without any time limit.

The basic principle is that as a British citizen with right of abode, you can stay as long as you want. The only reason you'd need a visa would be if there is some question about whether you in fact have right of abode in the UK.

  • I believe that immigration officers are required to admit people who can present proof of being a British citizen.
    – gparyani
    Commented Feb 12, 2018 at 6:49
  • @gparyani I believe you are correct, but I'm not sure why you are making this comment. Are you reacting to something specific in the answer?
    – phoog
    Commented Feb 12, 2018 at 12:00
  • Just wanted to make that comment as a reassurance that it will work!
    – gparyani
    Commented Feb 12, 2018 at 12:47

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