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Southeast Asia

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5 month trip

Posted by warren100uk on 3/9/2017 at 10:56

Hi all,

Hope everyone is well.

Next week, me and my wife are leaving for South East Asia for 5 months.

We have already booked a flight to Singapore from the UK then a flight in February from Cambodia to the UK.

I have just had a major panic as came across a site that said i could get refused check in to fly to Singapore with out proof of onward travel. We are flying with Cathy Pacific and wondered if our flight from Cambodia will will enough?

We are visiting, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia and wanted to travel over land rather than flying.

Would anyone have experience with this trip, and the proof of onwards travel, i know we could buy cheap flights and try to cancel but we have a limited budget and had not factored this in.

Am scared we may not even get out of the UK now.

Thanks in advance for any advise.


#1 warren100uk has been a member since 21/5/2017. Posts: 2

Posted by flijten on 3/9/2017 at 19:45

I've heard and read of this happening too. I'm not sure off the chance this happens to you though. I got into Sin gapore last week without questions. I had proof of onward travel since it was a visum run but nobody asked me for it.

If this happens, it is most likely the airline that asks the question. They pay for flying you back if a country refuses entry so the tend to be more rigid. Again, not sure on how much this actually happens.

If you're really worried you could rent proof of onward travel. There are a handfull of websites offering this service for exactly your stated problem. I have no experience with them but just google "rent airline ticket" and sites like flyonward.com and others are found. These sites provide you with a ticket for a small fee (10/20 euro range) that invalidates after 24 or 48 hours.

#2 flijten has been a member since 19/12/2016. Location: Netherlands. Posts: 80

Posted by Megaworldasia365 on 3/9/2017 at 23:36

I've flown into Singapore dozens of times from neighbouring S.E. Asian countries (Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Malaysia) and never been queried about an onward flight. The only place where I've had this kind of hassle with onward tickets was in Vietnam. About 3 months ago I was at Ton Son Nhat Airport (Saigon) checking in for a flight to Bangkok with VN airlines and I had to show my onward ticket from Thailand before they'd issue my boarding pass etc. I don't think there is any issue with overland travel and cross border produres in the region.

Safe travels


#3 Megaworldasia365 has been a member since 26/8/2017. Posts: 25

Posted by anjalik097 on 7/9/2017 at 04:00

Have a nice journey to both of you. All the best!!!

#4 anjalik097 has been a member since 16/8/2017. Posts: 4

Posted by amnicoll on 7/9/2017 at 05:46

The question about being denied entry is misleading as in many cases more likely is being denied boarding. I am talking here for most westerners simply because some countries do have more stringent rules for certain nationalities

having said this I would be very surprised if you would have any problem given the homebound flight and if you are flying in both directions with Cathay then even less chance of a problem

Do not even consider renting a flight

#5 amnicoll has been a member since 10/1/2005. Location: United Kingdom. Posts: 976

Posted by DLuek on 7/9/2017 at 10:07 TF writer

I think the previous posters are right in saying that you *probably* won't have a problem considering that you have that flight home booked out of Cambodia. However I would not go so far as to say "do not even consider renting a flight." If that would make you rest easier before your trip, I'd say it's worth considering.

I haven't flown to Singapore for a long time, so I'm not sure if they have the same rules as Thailand. I have flown one-way from New York to Thailand at least once a year since 2009 with various airlines, and I've been asked to show proof of onward transport or long-term visa to check-in staff in New York roughly half of those times. I flew Cathay Pacific twice, and they did ask both times.

If I were you, I'd call the airline and see what they say, though you may want to call a few times. In the past I've called to ask this very question and been told totally different things by different customer service reps working for the same airline. If they don't give you the all-clear based on your plans, if it were me, I'd buy a cheap throw-away ticket (SIN to KUL can be as cheap as US $20 w/ AirAsia) or consider that "rent a flight" thing (never tried that myself).

Remember that the airline is only responsible for making sure you don't overstay in the country you're landing at, so the long-haul airline couldn't care less about your plans so long as they're convince you'll leave Singapore before your 30 day visa exemption period is up. Explaining your plans and showing your ticket out of Cambodia may be enough to satisfy them (I'd say chances are it will be), but it may not be.

Don't panic. If it comes down to it, you could even buy a cheap throw away ticket at the check-in desk using a smartphone. And you said you "know we could buy cheap flights and try to cancel". But you pretty much definitely would not have to buy more than that one first flight out of Singapore. Once you're traveling overland within the region, it's practically unheard of for an immigration officer at a border crossing to ask regular honest travelers for proof of onward transport. So once you're on that flight out of the UK, you should be all set. (Nothing is 100% but that's pretty close to it.)

#6 DLuek has been a member since 19/6/2008. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,346

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