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I live near Munich. A friend is travelling to Canada and has a layover at Munich Airport for 10 hrs. He holds Canadian permanent residency. Is there any way we could meet at Munich Airport? Both of his tickets are from the same airline. Would I need to buy a domestic flight (or Munich to Basel) ticket to be able to meet him?

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    What's your friends nationality ?
    – Hilmar
    Commented Jul 21, 2023 at 11:59
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    Where is your friend arriving from?
    – jcaron
    Commented Jul 21, 2023 at 13:01
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    You mention "the following question", but there's no linked question.
    – TRiG
    Commented Jul 21, 2023 at 21:39
  • @TRiG I guess that refers to the questions which are shown in the "ask question" dialog as "similar questions". (Not that it helps us, though.) Commented Jul 22, 2023 at 21:26

3 Answers 3

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There is a few different routes you can explore

1. Meet landside

This will require your friend to enter the Schengen area. There isn't enough information in your post to tell, so I suggest that your friend puts his exact details into https://www.iatatravelcentre.com/passport-visa-health-travel-document-requirements.htm pretending they only fly from India to Munich.

If your friend does have Schengen access, they can simply walk towards the exit, go through immigration and customs (without collecting their bags, which are checked through) and you can meet in the terminal or they can even take a train into town (takes about an hour). On the way back in, your friend will have to pass through security and exit immigration again, but that's about it.

Munich airport has a beer garden outside the terminal building which should be lovely this time of year (if you are so inclined).

If your friend is an Indian citizen, that's probably won't work but it all depends on the details.

2 Meet airside

That's the easiest for your friend: they just walk to their departure gate as they normally would and meet you there.

However, you would have to find a way to get into the same concourse that your friend departs in. That will depend on the exact destination and airline but it's likely going to be concourse L (if it's a single Star Alliance booking). If I remember correctly there are boarding pass checks at the entrance to every concourse, so you may not be able to freely move between them.

So you will need the right kind of boarding pass to get there. Airlines can issue so-called "gate passes" but this is completely discretionary and the chances of a check in agent having pity on you are not great (unless you have high level status with the airline in question). There is no harm in calling the airline and just ask.

The safest way to ensure that you can get there would be to buy an non-Schengen international ticket from the same airlines or alliance. You can potentially buy a fully refundable ticket, check in, get a boarding pass, meet your friend and then cancel the ticket when you are done (but BEFORE the actual departure). These tickets tend to be expensive so you should verify carefully the terms and conditions of the refund policy and make sure it does what you need. It may also tie up your money for a while: the refunds are not instantaneous.

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  • OP commented on my answer that they don't have a Schengen visa Commented Jul 21, 2023 at 17:01
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    Is the last option considered fraud? Commented Jul 22, 2023 at 7:34
  • In US law, at worst, it'd be breach of contract which is a tort not a crime as fraud is. Commented Jul 22, 2023 at 15:29
  • @user253751. No. It's not even a breach of contract. "fully refundable" means "fully refundable" and is not tied to a specific reason. These tickets are typically a lot more expensive than other tickets so a certain amount of attrition is build into the price and you are still giving them a free loan. Since the airline's are so stingy with gate passes, this has become more or less the standard way of getting in, when you don't want to fly. If you do this regularly, then airline will probably take notice, but other than that, it's fine.
    – Hilmar
    Commented Jul 23, 2023 at 11:32
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    @user253751 You would have to carefully read the fine print of the ticket contract. If the ticket is fully refundable until take off and there is no clause preventing refund after check-in or something similar, then what Hilmar suggests is totally within the possibilities of the ticket contract.
    – quarague
    Commented Jul 25, 2023 at 7:45
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Unfortunately I'm not able to comment yet. There is no need to buy a non-Schengen flight ticket, but you do need a boarding pass to get through security. Once past security, you can simply take the stairs one level up and scan your passport to get to the non-Schengen area and meet your friend there (just use the passport scanning gates). There is no boarding pass/ticket check between security and the departure gates. In order to get back out, you would have to scan your passport again.

In order to get a boarding pass, though, you would need to get any cheap ticket, or alternatively an expensive, refundable one (could cancel online the minute you are through security), or alternatively, as someone commented, a gate pass -- but that depends on some airline's willingness to issue that for you.

(This all applies to terminal 2/Star Alliance, but terminal 1 is similar, just the layout is a bit more convoluted.)

The ticket you get to pass through security will have to be valid for an airline departing from the terminal your friend arrives in.

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  • Google Flights show a one-way ticket to Paris for $97, so it's not crazy expensive.
    – JonathanReez
    Commented Jul 21, 2023 at 21:30
  • Won't it look suspicious if any form of control beyond mere passport check/scan is performed on his way in or out of the non-Schengen zone? Also, are passport machines open to non-EU nationals (OP might not be German)? Commented Jul 27, 2023 at 8:40
  • There are a number of simplifying assumptions underlying the answer. OP says he lives near Munich, so one assumption is that he is an EU citizen. Passport machines are available for EU citizens and a few others. OP doesn't have to use the machines, btw; could also just check with a regular officer. Other assumptions: No luggage which might cause customs to be suspicious on re-entry, no arrest warrant for OP :-), etc. There is normally no issue moving between Schengen and no-Schengen.
    – Matt
    Commented Jul 27, 2023 at 14:33
  • @Matt : Thanks a lot for the answer , for further information I am not an EU citizen.
    – Amor Rei
    Commented Jul 29, 2023 at 10:49
  • @AmorRei: In that case, it depends. With a German residence permit, you can also use the automatic passport gates. Have you flown out of MUC to outside of Schengen before (upper level/concourse H)? Do they stamp your passport on exit or re-entry? If not, I would assume you have no issue moving in and out without questions...
    – Matt
    Commented Jul 30, 2023 at 11:17
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The answer is invalid because of that comment

I am sure you would have thought of it already , but just in case not, I would like to inform that my friend is holds a PR of canada but not a schengen visa. Thank you

Short of getting a flight out of Schengen yourself, you won't be able to see them as your flight from Freiburg is separated from their flight from India


This is the previous answer

If they come from Basel, they will arrive in the Schengen zone of the airport (since France is in the Schengen area)

This means that they can just leave and meet you outside or even in the city (10 hours in an Airport may not be the best fun, and it's only a 40-min train ride to the central station in Munich)

When they come back, they'll pass through exit passport control to enter the non-Schengen, but make sure to plan enough time for them to come back to the airport and pass security/passport control in time if you choose to meet in the city

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  • They are landing in Munich ( from India) , I will be coming from Freiburg to Munich. 'Basel' came into picture here because I was wondering if I would need to have an air ticket to be able to meet them. So is it still possible to meet them ?
    – Amor Rei
    Commented Jul 21, 2023 at 10:45
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    I am sure you would have thought of it already , but just in case not, I would like to inform that my friend is holds a PR of canada but not a schengen visa. Thank you
    – Amor Rei
    Commented Jul 21, 2023 at 10:53
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    @AmorRei If your friend is coming from India, continuing to Canada, and does not have a Schengen visa, he will not be able to leave the transit area. Short of buying a flight out of Schengen yourself, there is no way for you to meet him. Commented Jul 21, 2023 at 11:05
  • Disregard my answer then @armorRei Commented Jul 21, 2023 at 11:10
  • @lambshaanxy : And I suppose PR of canada does not change your answer , right ?
    – Amor Rei
    Commented Jul 21, 2023 at 11:47

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