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  • Travel with certificate of naturalization, without passport?

    Would there be any issue to re-enter the U.S. with just a certificate of naturalization, without a U.S. passport?
    Thanks a lot.

  • #2
    No

    Originally posted by ds135 View Post
    Would there be any issue to re-enter the U.S. with just a certificate of naturalization, without a U.S. passport?
    Thanks a lot.
    Sorry, you can't do that. You have to have a valid passport to travel.
    Atlanta DO
    Sent N-400 to Dallas, TX Lockbox USPS certified mail): 07-25-2011
    N-400 delivered: 07-28-2011
    Check cashed: 08-01-2011
    NOA Received: 08-04-2011
    FP Notice Received: 08-13-2011
    FP Scheduled: 09-02-2011
    FP (Early Walk-in): 08-19-2011
    Status Changed (In Que for Interview): 08-23-2011
    Interview Letter Rcvd: 10-06-2011
    Yellow Letter Rcvd: 10-08-2011
    Interview Date: 11-08-2011 @ 10:30am (Interview passed)
    Oath Date: 12-5-2011

    Comment


    • #3
      I believe I asked a similar question around the time I did my oath. I believe air travel is out of the question, all U.S. citizens need a passport. Driving to Canada or Mexico, the certificate might work, the same way a birth certificate and driver's license will work, but it might need a trip to secondary inspection to verify that the certificate is legitimate. However, I don't have proof of this. The rules about land crossings are changing as we speak. Make sure you check the travel.state.gov website or any other reliable source of information about land crossing. My best advice is to get a passport.

      N-400 timeline
      DO : San Jose
      11/28/2006 : Mailed
      12/04/2006 : PD (and Receive Date)
      12/05/2006 : Check cashed
      12/11/2006 : Notice Date (Received on the 14th)
      12/22/2006 : FP ND
      01/09/2007 : FP Appt
      12/29/2006 : FP Done. Walk-In
      07/17/2007 : Interview (ND May 17)
      08/22/2007 : Oath (Received Jul 26, issued on the 23d, mailed on 24th)
      08/23/2007 : Applied N-600 and Expedited Passport
      09/06/2007 : Passport received
      08/20/2008 : Sent N-565 (Approved Feb 17, 2009)

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by ds135 View Post
        Would there be any issue to re-enter the U.S. with just a certificate of naturalization, without a U.S. passport?
        Thanks a lot.
        I would advise against doing it.
        10/28/2007 : N-400 mailed to TSC (DO:Jacksonville)
        12/26/2007 : Check got cashed
        12/27/2007 : Notice Date
        01/04/2008 : FP ND
        01/29/2008 : FP Appt
        01/14/2008 : FP Done
        08/25/2008 : Interview ND
        09/22/2008 : Interview DATE
        11/13/2008 : Oath Scheduled
        11/17/2008 : Passport received

        Comment


        • #5
          Where do you intend to travel to?

          Originally posted by ds135 View Post
          Would there be any issue to re-enter the U.S. with just a certificate of naturalization, without a U.S. passport?
          Thanks a lot.
          Regards,
          S K Ghori
          skg@vex.net
          http://www.vex.net/~skg/

          **NOTE**
          I underwent the immigration process in both Canada and the US. I hold Pakistani, Canadian and US citizenship.

          **DISCLAIMER**
          I am neither a lawyer nor an immigration consultant. My comments should NEVER be considered as legal or professional advice as they are not meant to be such.

          Comment


          • #6
            Passport is a must

            Originally posted by Huracan View Post
            I believe I asked a similar question around the time I did my oath. I believe air travel is out of the question, all U.S. citizens need a passport. Driving to Canada or Mexico, the certificate might work, the same way a birth certificate and driver's license will work, but it might need a trip to secondary inspection to verify that the certificate is legitimate. However, I don't have proof of this. The rules about land crossings are changing as we speak. Make sure you check the travel.state.gov website or any other reliable source of information about land crossing. My best advice is to get a passport.
            Nowadays you need a passport to enter Canada. I don't know about Mexico, but a valid passport is a requirement to legally enter Canada. Please make a note of it.
            Atlanta DO
            Sent N-400 to Dallas, TX Lockbox USPS certified mail): 07-25-2011
            N-400 delivered: 07-28-2011
            Check cashed: 08-01-2011
            NOA Received: 08-04-2011
            FP Notice Received: 08-13-2011
            FP Scheduled: 09-02-2011
            FP (Early Walk-in): 08-19-2011
            Status Changed (In Que for Interview): 08-23-2011
            Interview Letter Rcvd: 10-06-2011
            Yellow Letter Rcvd: 10-08-2011
            Interview Date: 11-08-2011 @ 10:30am (Interview passed)
            Oath Date: 12-5-2011

            Comment


            • #7
              ds135, it would have been nice of you to come back and answer the questions people asked you Anyway, no obligation, but it is a nice gesture to volunteers here who bust their neurons to try to provide you a complete and accurate answer.

              However, regardless of your reply and for completeness of this thread, as I guessed it seems that certificate of naturalization and driver's license is going to be enough for a while to do a land cross back to the U.S. from Canada or Mexico. Atlanta Brother pointed out that Canada asks for a passport, so perhaps your choices are limited to travel to Mexico.

              Scroll down to the two document option

              http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/travel/va..._in_proced.xml


              My 2 cents.

              N-400 timeline
              DO : San Jose
              11/28/2006 : Mailed
              12/04/2006 : PD (and Receive Date)
              12/05/2006 : Check cashed
              12/11/2006 : Notice Date (Received on the 14th)
              12/22/2006 : FP ND
              01/09/2007 : FP Appt
              12/29/2006 : FP Done. Walk-In
              07/17/2007 : Interview (ND May 17)
              08/22/2007 : Oath (Received Jul 26, issued on the 23d, mailed on 24th)
              08/23/2007 : Applied N-600 and Expedited Passport
              09/06/2007 : Passport received
              08/20/2008 : Sent N-565 (Approved Feb 17, 2009)

              Comment


              • #8
                Here's variation of that question that might apply to me:

                My old country allows dual citizenship, so I'll be keeping my nonUS passport. Suppose I go to my oath ceremony, get my natz certificate and hand in my GC. If my elderly mother requires an emergency visit before I get my US passport, will they let me in with my nonUS passport (which requires a visa) and the natz certificate?

                Thanks in advance!
                TSC/Durham

                Me and good wife:
                07/24/07: N400 sent
                07/27/07: RD & PD
                11/19/07: CC
                11/21/07: NOA
                11/30/07: FP ND
                12/22/07: FPs taken (Charlotte)
                06/12/08: IL received
                08/27/08: ID (11 AM) Descheduled
                08/21/08: Descheduling letter rec'd
                09/25/08: Rescheduling letter rec'd
                11/19/08: ID (12:40 PM) PASSED!
                11/21/08: OD (1:30 PM) Now USC!
                11/22/08: PP applied for
                12/04/08 to 12/08/08: PPs, Nat certs arrived!

                Comment


                • #9
                  This question has been debated on different forms. It seems the consensus is that even if you still hold a passport from another country you are expected to leave the U.S. and come back with the U.S. passport. You might use your former country's passport to get into that country, or for subsequent travel outside the U.S.

                  Now, for your specific question. It's tough to say what CBP would do. My guess is that it is not allowed, but they might let you in. I don't know what the airline would do if you try to leave the country with your old passport and the naturalization certificate. They might not even let you board. This leads to the following contrived scenario if you leave the U.S. by land, but come back by air. In that case you might try to get in with your old passport and the naturalization certificate. There is no saying what CBP could do. They might turn you back and you would need to try to get a passport through an embassy, or they might let you in after secondary inspetion. According to the cbp site if you are a U.S. citizen coming back by air travel you need a passport (it is implicit that it is a U.S. passport

                  Here is the quote:
                  U.S. Citizens
                  Air Travel

                  All U.S. citizens including children must present a passport or secure travel document when entering the United States by air.

                  N-400 timeline
                  DO : San Jose
                  11/28/2006 : Mailed
                  12/04/2006 : PD (and Receive Date)
                  12/05/2006 : Check cashed
                  12/11/2006 : Notice Date (Received on the 14th)
                  12/22/2006 : FP ND
                  01/09/2007 : FP Appt
                  12/29/2006 : FP Done. Walk-In
                  07/17/2007 : Interview (ND May 17)
                  08/22/2007 : Oath (Received Jul 26, issued on the 23d, mailed on 24th)
                  08/23/2007 : Applied N-600 and Expedited Passport
                  09/06/2007 : Passport received
                  08/20/2008 : Sent N-565 (Approved Feb 17, 2009)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by ds135 View Post
                    Would there be any issue to re-enter the U.S. with just a certificate of naturalization, without a U.S. passport?
                    Thanks a lot.
                    By air it is NOT acceptable.

                    By land you can get away with that for the time being (they will prohibit it in the near future).
                    US Citizen Since December 2007-
                    Nothing I say on this board is intended to provide legal advice. Any and all comments made by me are general in nature. Nothing I say on this board may be construed to suggest the existence of an attorney-client relationship. I do not in any way seek to solicit clients here.
                    Everyone is strongly urged to retain legal counsel. Reliance on comments posted herein is at your own risk.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Atlanta_Brother View Post
                      Nowadays you need a passport to enter Canada. I don't know about Mexico, but a valid passport is a requirement to legally enter Canada. Please make a note of it.
                      Citizens still do not need passports to enter Canada but if you travel by air this is an academic question because you need a passport to return to the U.S.
                      US Citizen Since December 2007-
                      Nothing I say on this board is intended to provide legal advice. Any and all comments made by me are general in nature. Nothing I say on this board may be construed to suggest the existence of an attorney-client relationship. I do not in any way seek to solicit clients here.
                      Everyone is strongly urged to retain legal counsel. Reliance on comments posted herein is at your own risk.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        US passport only weighs a little bit more than the naturalization certificate so if it was me I would carry my US passport.
                        DanDan123

                        N400 Timeline (For me/wife)

                        2/24/2007 : Apps sent by certified post
                        3/02/2007 : Cheques posted (cashed)
                        3/15/2007 : NOA rcvd, priority date 2/27/2007
                        3/16/2007 : FP notice rcvd.
                        3/27/2007 : FP appointment/FP done
                        5/04/2007 : IL rcvd.
                        7/31/2007 : Interview scheduled/Completed sucessfully/Oath cermony
                        8/01/2007 : PPs applied (for wife/myself)
                        8/19/2007 : Status shows passports mailed.
                        8/21/2007 : Received wife's pp and natz cert.
                        8/22/2007 : Received my pp and natz cert.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by thankful View Post
                          Citizens still do not need passports to enter Canada but if you travel by air this is an academic question because you need a passport to return to the U.S.
                          This is correct, you have never needed a passport to travel by land into Canada and back. This may be something comming this year, but present time you do not.

                          I heard that some people have been able to come back in with their Naturalization cert, but it can cause problems though. Not sure if they encountered secondary inspections because of it or not. Why not just expediate your passport or have you already submitted it and suddenly there's an emergency to attend in the other country?
                          I'm just a wanderer in the desert winds

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Good advice

                            Originally posted by warlord View Post
                            This is correct, you have never needed a passport to travel by land into Canada and back. This may be something comming this year, but present time you do not.

                            I heard that some people have been able to come back in with their Naturalization cert, but it can cause problems though. Not sure if they encountered secondary inspections because of it or not. Why not just expediate your passport or have you already submitted it and suddenly there's an emergency to attend in the other country?
                            Very good advice. I agree with warlord.
                            Atlanta DO
                            Sent N-400 to Dallas, TX Lockbox USPS certified mail): 07-25-2011
                            N-400 delivered: 07-28-2011
                            Check cashed: 08-01-2011
                            NOA Received: 08-04-2011
                            FP Notice Received: 08-13-2011
                            FP Scheduled: 09-02-2011
                            FP (Early Walk-in): 08-19-2011
                            Status Changed (In Que for Interview): 08-23-2011
                            Interview Letter Rcvd: 10-06-2011
                            Yellow Letter Rcvd: 10-08-2011
                            Interview Date: 11-08-2011 @ 10:30am (Interview passed)
                            Oath Date: 12-5-2011

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Thanks everyone for advise!

                              Triple_Citizen, to answer your question, I intend to go to Russia for a 1-month business trip.

                              As far as I know, even with in-person expedited passport application, it's up to a 2 week wait, which I may not be able to afford.

                              An option I am considering is to travel to Russia with my Russian passport, and then get a U.S. passport via the U.S. embassy in Moscow, according to them it only takes 5-8 business days.

                              I believe it should not be a problem to leave the U.S. without a U.S. passport, just with the nat cert?

                              Thanks.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by ds135 View Post
                                Thanks everyone for advise!
                                As far as I know, even with in-person expedited passport application, it's up to a 2 week wait, which I may not be able to afford.

                                An option I am considering is to travel to Russia with my Russian passport, and then get a U.S. passport via the U.S. embassy in Moscow, according to them it only takes 5-8 business days.

                                I believe it should not be a problem to leave the U.S. without a U.S. passport, just with the nat cert?

                                Thanks.
                                We had an emergency in our home country and we went to the passport office in person. We had our application in the system as "normal processing" and we wanted to expedited for same day. We explained the situation and we wait most of the day but we got the passport. The caveat is the passport is valid only for one year. Yes, you can get a passport same day but it will cost you waiting time. We were not the only ones getting passport the same day (Houston, office).

                                This is from the Homeland security website, concerning entering with your certificate.

                                "Presenting Insufficient Documentation

                                Travelers who do not have the appropriate documents may be delayed while Customs and Border Protection officers attempt to verify their citizenship and identity. They will also be given an informational sheet explaining the new procedures. The intent of this transition is to raise awareness of the change, educate travelers, and allow ample time for travelers to obtain the necessary documents."

                                The airline at moment of leaving USA will check your passport (any nationality) and the ticket. They concern is to verify you have legal means to get into the other country. They don't need to know you are US citizen or not. In other words you can leave with your Russian passport.

                                Caveat: I am not a lawyer or Immigration officer so my comments are only mine. Please verify this.

                                Comment

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