Today I had a flight from New York (JFK) to Thiruvananthapuram (TRV) on Kuwait Airways, but was not allowed to board.

I reached the counter on time for check in, but they rejected me because the flight had a connection through London, for which I need a valid visa. My ticket does not say there is a stop in London, but that it goes directly to Kuwait and then from Kuwait to Trivandrum. Is it the airline's mistake in issuing the tickets incorrectly, or is there something else that I should know?

I hold a U.S. H1B work permit visa which expired Dec 2014, but I have all supporting documents (I-797) which says it is extended until December 2016. My nationality is Indian.

  • 2
    There are two flights, KU102 has a stopover in Heathrow, and KU118 is direct. They both depart from JFK. It depends which one you are booked on. Dec 9, 2015 at 12:16
  • Did you book direct with the airline, or indirectly via a travel agent? And were you always booked on the same flight at the same time, or have there been schedule/flight number/etc changes since booking?
    – Gagravarr
    Dec 9, 2015 at 23:24

1 Answer 1


Indian nationals need a visa to transit airside in the United Kingdom.

While there is a long list of exemptions that you may wish to review, nothing currently given in your question shows that you qualify for any of them.

So, the airline was correct to deny boarding.

As Burhan Khalid noted in a comment, you were most likely booked on Kuwait Airlines flight 102, which flies JFK-LHR-KWI, thus triggering the transit visa requirement. You probably want to be on flight 118, which flies nonstop JFK-KWI. This flight is only scheduled three times a week, though, which is probably how you ended up on 102.

If you're still at JFK, the next flight 118 leaves in a bit over two hours from now...

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