I was in Ireland from 2014-2016 with a student visa. But I was refused entry to Ireland at the immigration after traveling. The reason was that my attendance was lower than 80%, and I didn't have return ticket to my country. They only allowed me to stay in Dublin for 2 weeks in Ireland. So I had to leave there.

Now I've got a job as a cabin crew. Can I enter Ireland and UK as a cabin crew?


2 Answers 2


Yes you can, says the cabin crewmember who was "removed" from the UK back in 1998 due to attendance issues (and other stuff), and then got back to the UK in 2004 or 2005 as a cabin crew with no issues.

I wasn't "refused entry", I was asked to leave the country by the immigration (the school reported me), I changed the ticket date and left from the airport by myself.

Being in the aviation business for years, I can also tell you that the UK has one of the most complicated crew entry processes, even though they require no visa and you will not pass actual immigration desk (an officer will board the bus that picks up the crew after arrival, and do a quick check, randomly).

Usually, they do not refuse crew, but issue a notice to the airline to not bring the cabin crewmember they do not like again to the UK.

One thing to remember, which I am sure your airline knows about, only operating crew with actual duties on-board are allowed entry without a visa, if you are deadheading or being re-positioned for whatever reason, then you must have a valid visa.

  • Just for clarity, "bus" here is slang for the plane? Nov 30, 2019 at 6:05
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    No, 'bus' is not slang for aircraft. The crew are very often collected from the aircraft in a bus/coach and taken to a "crew clearance" building if they don't disembark and then follow the passengers to Immigration and Customs in the public terminal building. This varies by airport and country.
    – canonacer
    Nov 30, 2019 at 7:43
  • @AzorAhai the comment by canonacer is correct. However, I edit the answer to make it clearer. Nov 30, 2019 at 9:37
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    fascinating post !
    – Fattie
    Nov 30, 2019 at 15:10
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    @Nean Der Thal - I have worked at several UK airports since 1988 and what you say is incorrect. The crew have to clear Immigration and Customs before leaving the airport. These checks may not be rigorous in all cases, but they do exist.
    – canonacer
    Nov 30, 2019 at 16:32

Most likely the reason they were concerned with your attendance was concern that you were seeking illegal employment. It is a very common scam for foreigners to enroll in college merely as a pretense to obtain a student visa, then skip out on classes while working: either more hours than allowed for a student, or in jobs not allowed for a student. Your poor attendance made them assume this was the case.

For your next visit, they presumed that your purpose was to seek employ again. You wanted an extended stay (a bit of a surprise for a recent graduate of little means), so again this much more strongly resembled seeking illegal employ than any genuine tourism.

The fact that you are employed as cabin crew arrests this assumption since you are, indeed, gainfully employed. Their only concern would be if your salary was so low as to tempt you to seek employ locally.

Generally the jobs you can get illegally are entry level and minimum wage or lower. So if you're doing better than that, it takes away the concern.

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