I am a first time traveler to Europe. I have booked by flight from Chennai on 27th July with two transits at Mumbai and then Abu Dhabi and reaching Frankfurt, Germany at 7 am on 28th July. My Schenghen visa validity is from 28th July to 11th August.

Departure from Chennai 1.10 pm on 27th July, reaching Mumbai, Onward flight from Mumbai at 7 pm on 27th July, reaching Abu Dhabi, onward flight at 2 am on 28th July reaching Frankfurt 7 am on 28th July.

I am being told that my immigration check would happen at Mumbai airport only and that airlines may deny boarding because the visa validity starts the next day. what should I do?


Well, you do have the Indian Immigration check in Mumbai, while the German check takes place on Arrival in Frankfurt. If someone told you no checks take place in Frankfurt, they're wrong.

So you're perfectly fine, unless the airline staff are fools.

  • it's not so simple. airline rules have no connection to government rules. – Fattie Jul 3 '16 at 16:39
  • @JoeBlow They're supposed to follow government rules, neither more nor less. That's what the Timatic database is for, so that they can look up the rules if in doubt – Crazydre Jul 3 '16 at 17:02
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    Timatic, that's it. @Crazydre, that's not how it works. The airline makes their rules so as to not violate the destination country's rules. They do often have extra rules to reduce their risk of a fine or involuntary return. If an airline denies boarding, it's for their rules, not the destination country's rules. – Johns-305 Jul 3 '16 at 18:26
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    @Johns-305 I do know of one such case: Virgin Atlantic doesn't accept French ID Cards for their London-St Lucia flights, despite them being valid for St Lucia. Otherwise, whatever Airlines I've contacted, they always say "call the consulate, we don't know anything, only the consulate can give an answer". And normally that means that whatever's on Timatic, that's what they'll go by – Crazydre Jul 3 '16 at 18:29
  • Hopefully one last thing on this. The airline actually doesn't care about visa or immigration rules, they care about the rules they have to follow on transporting inadmissible persons. All questions about Visas will be referred to an embassy/consulate since they are the ones issuing. VS probably requires a Passport for all international flights, nothing to do with St. Lucia specifically. Makes it easier on the airport staff and in case of a diversion. – Johns-305 Jul 4 '16 at 11:33

You need to call your airline to confirm. That is the only way to be sure.

Most airlines use a single publication (sorry, can't remember the name right now) that consolidates these rules. However, each airline can interpret them differently and apply their own rules on top. This is to protect them from must carry on the return if you are denied entry.

Note, if the airlines says no, they will not allow that, there is nothing you can do except reissue the ticked for the next day or change you Visa to an earlier Valid From date. They will not budge on this, no matter what you argue.

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    Can you cite any instance of an airline that requires a visa to be valid the day before the airline plans to unload the passenger in the destination country? Otherwise I think you're simply fearmongering. – hmakholm left over Monica Jul 2 '16 at 19:13
  • Airlines are not immigration. – Aganju Jul 2 '16 at 19:17
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    I'm am telling the OP that the only entity that can answer this question is the originating airline. I can tell you that many airlines require an onward or return ticket for certain destinations even though the country itself does not. – Johns-305 Jul 2 '16 at 19:17
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    It does not matter. They airline has their own rules. They will deny boarding for for not following their rules, not the destination country's rules. The only entity that can answer this question is the airline. – Johns-305 Jul 2 '16 at 19:19
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    Yes, only airline can confirm this. My personal experience is that about four times I boarded flight to Schengen, with a transfer in between, n reaching Schengen at 2-4am. Checkin desk staff refused, when I spoke to higher ones, and explained that visa will be valid before I reach Schenegen, they agreed. But four times, same origin airport, different airlines, different stopover airports, different destinations in Schengen. – DavChana Jul 3 '16 at 11:13

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