I have a residence permit for Sweden that starts from 1/1/19. I have an Indian passport. I'm planning to travel from Chennai to Copenhagen by flight. The flight takes off at 3.30 AM from Chennai and reaches Copenhagen on 12.20 PM on 31st. Will there be any problems with the airline (Emirates) and transit layover at Dubai? I'm travelling abroad for the first time for study. I'm willing to spend 12 hours at Copenhagen midnight and 1/1/19. What will you suggest as an experienced traveler?

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    I would suggest arriving in the Schengen area no earlier than the visa's effective date. In your case, you should arrive on January 1, 2019, or thereafter. The airline (which would have to return you to India if you're refused entry in the Schengen area, is unlikely to allow you to even board the Copenhagen flight. Dec 14, 2018 at 16:33
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    At the risk of pointing out the obvious, if they had wanted you to be able to arrive on 31st December they would have issued you with a visa that started 31st December. Dec 14, 2018 at 18:35
  • Even if you were allowed to travel to Copenhagen, there could be further obstacles: The immigration counters might not be staffed at midnight on the 1st, forcing you to stay airside overnight which might not be allowed...
    – Sabine
    Dec 14, 2018 at 21:31
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    Please also realize that the night of the 31st of December on the 1st of January is a special night, in that a lot of services are closed which usually stay open overnight. And the first of January is a national holiday in (almost) all of Europe, so do not expect normal services to start at the usual time or even at all.
    – Willeke
    Dec 23, 2018 at 12:51

1 Answer 1


The airline will not let you board. The airline risks a fine of several thousand euros if you approach the passport desk before midnight, so your assurance that you will wait is probably not going to be very persuasive.

You should postpone your flight. Because you will enter the Schengen area in Copenhagen, you must arrive there after midnight, that is, actually on or after the first of January, local time.

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