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Top 10 Celebs with Second Passports

The world’s wealthiest aren’t just stockpiling superyachts and rare art – they’re collecting passports, too. It seems odd initially, but the humble passport offers a surprising kind of freedom and status that money alone can’t buy.

Think about it: a second passport allows you to jet across borders without a fuss. It means opening bank accounts overseas and diversifying your holdings beyond the reach of your home country. It’s a cheaper vacation home on call, ready whenever you need an escape.

But a second passport isn’t just about convenience. It’s a failsafe, an insurance policy for those less-than-ideal times when your home nation decides to throw a tantrum. And for the ever-curious, it’s a key to experiencing a whole new culture from an insider’s perspective. No wonder places like St. Kitts and Nevis, Grenada, Malta, Portugal, and New Zealand are the destinations of choice.

So, this little booklet packs a hefty punch. And as you might expect, celebrities haven’t missed the appeal. Here’s a list of ten stars who are savvy enough to keep a second passport tucked away for a rainy day (or a spontaneous trip without visa headaches):

Why Do Celebs Go for a Second Passport?

Beyond the jet-setting perks and vacation home discounts, a second passport offers a unique kind of insurance for the wealthy. Imagine your home country facing political or economic turmoil – a second passport allows you to uproot and establish yourself elsewhere. It’s a financial safety net, allowing you to access investments and bank accounts outside your home nation, potentially shielding your wealth from unforeseen circumstances.

There’s also a touch of exclusivity attached to sure passports. Some countries have stringent requirements for citizenship, making a second passport a status symbol in certain circles. Plus, for celebrities who crave privacy, a second passport can shield them from overly-zealous paparazzi in their home country. It allows them a taste of normalcy and anonymity when traveling or seeking a quiet getaway. So, while the freedom of movement and financial benefits are undeniable, a second passport can also be a key to a more secure and private life for the rich and famous.

Top Ten 10 Famous People with Second Passports

1. Tom Hanks

John Bauld from Toronto, Canada, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Tom Hanks, America’s sweetheart and the star of classics like “Forrest Gump” and “Philadelphia,” now boasts a second passport from Greece.  His love forged this connection – his wife, Rita Wilson, has a Greek heritage.  Hanks joined the Greek Orthodox Church when they married in 1988 – a choice reflecting his tendency to dive wholeheartedly into the roles he embodies.

Greece seems to have embraced him, and their relationship deepened. His generous spirit, evident in his on-screen persona, manifested in real life when Hanks and Wilson championed relief efforts after devastating 2018 wildfires near Athens, garnering widespread support and visibility.

This genuine commitment to Greece moved the country deeply. In 2019, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis granted honorary citizenship to Hanks and his entire family.  The following year, former Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos went further, signing an honorary naturalization order that officially made Hanks a citizen of Greece.  This wasn’t just a sentimental gesture –  it means Hanks now holds a second passport, solidifying his dual-citizen status and granting him the freedom to live and travel in Greece as one of their own.

2. Eric Schmidt

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By Guillaume Paumier – Own work, CC BY 3.0.

Eric Schmidt, the tech titan who helmed Google for a decade, didn’t opt for the usual routes of marriage or ancestry when securing his second passport. Instead, the notoriously strategy-minded executive reportedly chose a more direct path: Cyprus’ now-defunct “golden passport” program. This program offered citizenship – and a coveted European Union passport – in exchange for sizable investments in the island nation. News of Schmidt and his family’s approval for Cypriot citizenship broke in October 2020 via an official publication by the Republic of Cyprus in the eastern Mediterranean Sea.

This move grants Schmidt a slew of benefits. With his EU passport, he gains unrestricted access to travel and work within the European Union. Further, the “Citizenship by Investment” program likely offered favorable tax advantages, appealing to the shrewd businessman who helped build one of the world’s most influential companies. While Schmidt’s Cypriot citizenship might seem straightforward, there’s more to the story – the golden passport program has been scrutinized for lax standards, raising questions about the process Schmidt went through.

3. Kirsten Dunst

By Georges Biard, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Kirsten Dunst, the star who captivated audiences in films like “Interview with the Vampire” and “Bring it On,” didn’t just inherit a knack for memorable performances and a route to a second passport. In 2011, Dunst acquired German citizenship thanks to her father’s German roots. This wasn’t a spur-of-the-moment decision; she had developed an affinity for the country, frequently visiting relatives in Hamburg and wanting to own an apartment in Berlin’s vibrant urban scene.

Being both an American and German citizen is undeniably a perk for Dunst. As someone whose livelihood revolves around international movie sets, the European passport allows her a seamless work experience throughout the continent. It also gives her the option to tap into Europe’s resources and the freedom to travel without the usual visa restrictions. Perhaps Dunst’s German heritage has also inspired her interest in starring in a German-language film – only time will tell if she adds that ambition to her resume.

4. Angelina Jolie

By U.S. Department of State from United States – Under Secretary Zeya Meets With UNHCR Special Envoy Jolie, Public Domain.

With a decades-long career, humanitarian, filmmaker, and Hollywood icon Angelina Jolie stands out for how she acquired her second passport. Born in Los Angeles, she’s an American by birth, but in 2005, a unique honor was bestowed upon her: Cambodian citizenship by royal decree from King Norodom Sihamoni himself. This wasn’t out of the blue; Jolie’s deep connection to Cambodia stems from her extensive involvement in environmental conservation projects. Plus, she adopted her son, Maddox, from Cambodia, forging a robust familial bond with the nation.

Citizenship wasn’t simply symbolic. Jolie followed through, committing to spend upwards of $5 million over the next 15 years to establish a wildlife sanctuary in Cambodia. For a star always known for her bold, passionate choices, this move highlights Jolie’s genuine commitment to causes close to her heart. Her Cambodian passport likely facilitates her humanitarian work in the region, providing access and ease of movement that a standard tourist visa cannot match.

5. Vince Cate

Vince Cate, a pioneer in encryption technology, holds a unique distinction: his second passport was both a business move and an act of protest. Cate, an American by birth, had expertise securing information, eventually leading him to Anguilla, a Caribbean island haven, in the 1990s. But his relocation wasn’t just about better weather – a fundamental disagreement with U.S. cryptocurrency laws fueled it. This defiance culminated in a dramatic act: Cate renounced his American citizenship.

His journey, however, didn’t end there. Despite intending to settle in Anguilla, acquiring citizenship there would take years. Enter Mozambique: Cate obtained a Mozambican passport for a relatively modest investment of $5,000. This wasn’t about forming a bond with the African nation; it was pure pragmatism. His new passport granted him a crucial loophole, allowing him to continue his work in Anguilla while side-stepping the restrictive U.S. cryptocurrency laws he so fervently opposed. Cate’s story reveals the strategic lengths people will go to when their livelihoods and convictions collide.

6. Charlize Theron

By Fuzheado – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0.

Charlize Theron, the South African-born bombshell who conquered Hollywood with her roles in “Monster” and “Mad Max: Fury Road,” boasts a dual-citizenship story filled with tenacity and a touch of lucky timing. Before becoming a Hollywood powerhouse, Theron was a young woman with big dreams and a one-way ticket to the United States in 1994. Her determination propelled her into the American film industry, where she steadily built a remarkable career over the coming decade.

It wasn’t until 2008 that Theron could officially call herself an American citizen. She passed the notoriously challenging citizenship test, gaining a coveted second passport and all the rights that come with it. Theron was refreshingly open about the process, sharing her anxieties and the amusing details leading up to the interview. For someone known for portraying strong, independent characters, Theron’s real-life story should mirror the same resilience. Her journey, from an aspiring actress hailing from South Africa to a bonafide Hollywood star holding dual passports, embodies the classic American dream – one earned with hard work and a sprinkle of luck.

7. Elon Musk

Visionary billionaire Elon Musk, who revolutionized industries from electric cars to space travel, is no stranger to going big – even when it comes to passports. Born in South Africa to a South African father and a Canadian mother, Musk started life as a dual citizen. But his ambitious nature demanded a wider reach. After co-founding an early internet company and securing substantial investments, Musk leveraged the opportunity to obtain a coveted U.S. green card through the EB-5 investor program. He had also earned a bachelor’s degree in the United States, paving the way for his eventual naturalization.

By 2002, Musk had added an American passport to his collection, solidifying his triple citizenship status. This seems only fitting for a man whose ambitions know no earthly boundaries. Multiple passports offer Musk unparalleled freedom of movement – crucial for a globetrotting entrepreneur who juggles businesses on numerous continents. It likely also streamlines complex financial holdings, providing flexibility that matches his innovative spirit.

8. Emily Blunt

By Nicole Alexander – Vimeo: Nick Sag Awards 2019 Final Sequence (view archived source), CC BY 3.0

Emily Blunt, the witty and charismatic British actress who captivated audiences in “The Devil Wears Prada” and “A Quiet Place,” added a new title to her resume: dual citizen. In 2015, she secured American citizenship, joining the ranks of those who hold passports from two of the world’s most powerful nations.

Like many savvy individuals, Blunt was refreshingly candid about the practical reasons behind her decision. In interviews, she revealed that tax advantages played a significant factor, an expected benefit for those navigating complex international income streams. Furthermore, the fiercely private actress acknowledged the added protection a second passport offers her family, mainly since her marriage to American actor John Krasinski and their growing family keep her anchored in the U.S.

Blunt’s dual citizenship reflects a trend among celebrities who live and work across continents. While there’s a certain prestige in hailing from two nations, practicality usually drives these decisions. For Blunt, it seems to blend financial benefits and the desire to secure the best future for her loved ones, wherever her work might take her.

9. Ludacris


By Eve Baker – Link, CC BY-SA 4.0.

Christopher Bridges, better known as the multi-talented rapper and actor Ludacris, expanded his global reach significantly in 2020. He enthusiastically announced on Instagram that he and his children had become citizens of Gabon, adding a second passport to their collection. This wasn’t a random choice; marrying Eudoxie Mbouguiengue, a Gabonese model and philanthropist, in 2015 planted the seed for his connection with the West African nation. Now, they truly belong; Gabon authorities welcomed Ludacris and granted him the freedom to travel without restrictions.

This addition to his life seems fitting – the star, known for his “Fast and Furious” roles and iconic music, has always embraced bold choices. Plus, Gabon’s recent economic growth, registering an impressive 3.1% in 2022, indicates a savvy business move on the part of Ludacris. Whether he uses his new passport primarily for personal connection, expanding his entrepreneurial empire, or both, Ludacris’ Gabonese citizenship adds a new dimension to his remarkable story.

10. Salma Hayek

By Harald Krichel – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0. 

Actress and producer Salma Hayek, the powerhouse actress and producer known for her captivating roles in “Frida” and “Desperado,” boasts a dual-citizenship story rooted in her journey from Mexico to Hollywood stardom. Born and raised in Veracruz, Mexico, Hayek’s ambition led her to Los Angeles in 1991, where she pursued her passion for acting. Though initially focused on establishing herself in the industry, obtaining a green card eventually became a priority, paving the way for her long-term stay in the United States.

While Hayek proudly embraces her Mexican heritage, it was in 2013 that she solidified her status in the US, becoming a naturalized citizen. That second passport has played a crucial role in her professional and personal life. As an ardent activist for various causes, the freedom of movement and access afforded by dual citizenship likely facilitates her humanitarian work across borders. It’s a testament to Hayek’s ambition that she didn’t choose one nation over another – she forged a path where her origins and chosen home empower her multifaceted career and life.

Take a Page Out of their Books

While celebrities make getting a second passport seem like a VIP perk, the truth is that it’s a smart move for anyone with the means and ambition. It’s more than a status symbol; it’s unlocking freedom, diversifying your options, and building a safety net in an increasingly unpredictable world.

Consider Tom Hanks, who embraced his Greek roots and secured a haven overseas, or Salma Hayek, who remained firmly planted in her Mexican heritage and adopted American home. They understand that a second passport is a powerful tool for personal growth. It means experiencing new cultures firsthand, expanding your horizons, and forging connections beyond your birthplace.

So, should you take a page out of the celebrity playbook? If you value flexibility, security, and the chance to broaden your world, the answer might be a resounding “yes.” A second passport isn’t just a travel document; it’s a key that unlocks a world of possibilities, waiting for you to step through the door.

Charlotte TweedDan is passionate about creating stories that help people discover and navigate unique perspectives and better understand the world around them. Aside from writing, Dan is an avid amateur marathon runner.
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