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Visas and border crossings forum

Visa help for a newbee traveller.

Posted by wanderingk8 on 31/8/2010 at 23:24

How do you go about backpacking without definate entrance and leaving dates - with regards to visa's. Because as far as I have understood you need to show proof of a flight leaving the country to obtain a visa at the border. But I don't want to be tied down to those sort of restrictions and obviously don't want to pay for flights I may have to cancel if plans change. HELP ME PLEASE!!!
I leave on 01 December 2010.

#1 wanderingk8 has been a member since 31/8/2010. Posts: 3

Posted by travellingsarah on 1/9/2010 at 11:22 TF writer

Posted from within Vietnam.

We travelled overland through 7 land border crossings and were never once asked for proof of exit. The only place we were asked was flying from Sabah to Singapore as Singapore like to know you're leaving! But we managed to get away with it.

#2 travellingsarah has been a member since 23/3/2010. Location: Vietnam. Posts: 681
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Posted by wanderingk8 on 1/9/2010 at 14:09

Thank you travellingsarah! I had a slight panic attack yesterday! LOL :)

#3 wanderingk8 has been a member since 31/8/2010. Posts: 3

Posted by svendj on 1/9/2010 at 14:39

totally no problems, they understand that a lot of people are backpackers and they won't ask you anything. Had a one way ticket to Thailand and it was just fine. crossed over to Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, back to Laos, China, Hong Kong, Macau, back to China and a flight back to Thailand and do it all again. no problems at all.

#4 svendj has been a member since 30/4/2010. Location: Belgium. Posts: 196
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Posted by Abskii on 15/11/2010 at 21:47

svendj, did you obtain the visas previously or was it easy to get the visas whilst in-country?

I am working my way through this forum for info, but nothingbeats word-of-mouth!!

#5 Abskii has been a member since 26/10/2010. Location: United Kingdom. Posts: 5
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Posted by wanderingk8 on 15/11/2010 at 23:32

I got my visa through the Thai embassy London. You just take all your doc's along with your passport and submit them - collecting a week later. Easy as pie! :) And it was free!!! :) Good luck!

http://www.thaiembassyuk.org.uk/newversion/visa/visa_main.html

#6 wanderingk8 has been a member since 31/8/2010. Posts: 3

Posted by smkuchta on 16/11/2010 at 02:48

If you have any skills with photoshop its not hard to mock up a "flight out of the country" for any date or destination you want.
Can give you piece of mind if you need it.

#7 smkuchta has been a member since 10/8/2007. Posts: 72
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Posted by Captain_Bob on 20/11/2010 at 15:20

Only "proof" you're likely to need is if/when flying from "home" (1st world) country into the SE Asia region. For example, one-way flight to Thailand from US/UK/EU/AU/NZ/etc. usually requires proof of onward air travel within 30 days OR a Thai visa already in your passport. It's an airline bureaucratic things I've encountered frequently, in which case you show ticket or visa or talk your way through it. Mocking-up a fake ticket is not recommended, as most modern check-in facilities can quickly verify it and getting "caught" might have dire consequences (i.e. you stay home and maybe get fined).

But on arrival and once you're in the region no one's going to be asking for proof of onward travel as you cross the borders. It's the long-haul airlines that tend to be sticklers, as they are legally liable to fly you back out if you're denied entry on arrival (even though that is very unlikely they gotta cover their arses).

#8 Captain_Bob has been a member since 27/5/2006. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,918

Posted by momof4 on 11/12/2010 at 11:46

Captain Bob - we will be flying into BKK from India - do you think we will have the same issue with the airline needing a ticket out before letting us board?

#9 momof4 has been a member since 16/3/2010. Posts: 12

Posted by Captain_Bob on 14/12/2010 at 15:50

Are you Indian? Since Indians usually enter Thailand with Visa-On-Arrival, which requires proof of onward air travel, the airline staff are well-attuned to screening for this. Ironically though, it tends to mean they just wave people on western passports through. Reverse racism on their own countrymen???

#10 Captain_Bob has been a member since 27/5/2006. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,918

Posted by momof4 on 14/12/2010 at 19:59

No, not Indian, American & Irish. We will be spending 2 or 3 months in India and then moving on to SE Asia, so I assume flying into BKK. We are a family of 6 so not such an easy matter to just buy a cheap ticket out and then cancel it. We are planning on wandering around between Thailand/Laos/Cambodia for quite a while. Would it be enough to show a ticket out from another country in say 2 moths time or do you think there won't be any issue? Thanks!

#11 momof4 has been a member since 16/3/2010. Posts: 12


Posted by Captain_Bob on 16/12/2010 at 00:48

Momof4 - Probably best to get proper tourist visas for your group. They are technically "free" until at least March 2011, but of course some bureacracy invloved. You'd have three months within which to use them from date of issue, so where will you be then, India or prior to that? Equipped with visas they will let you board the flight without proof of onward flights.

#12 Captain_Bob has been a member since 27/5/2006. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,918

Posted by momof4 on 16/12/2010 at 20:22

sorry for hijacking your post, wandering8!

Eh, that's the problem, we are not arriving in Thailand till at least five months after we've left the states so no chance of getting visas before we leave. But since India is the last point before SEAsia, I'm assuming I can get visas in Delhi (or somewhere) if you think that's best. We will be going overland from Russia to India thru China first (primarily to have all those tricky visa places sorted out ahead of time!).

#13 momof4 has been a member since 16/3/2010. Posts: 12

Posted by Captain_Bob on 16/12/2010 at 22:27

The information relevant to the Thai embassy in Delhi is here:
http://www.thaiemb.org.in/en/services/visa.php
Basically a bunch of mumbo jumbo but scroll to the bottom to cut to the chase.
Shouldn't be a problem getting your visas there (or check with the consulates in Mumbai, Kolkata, or Chennai as per your travel route).

Seems the best strategy as it would really be bad to get hit with a "gotcha" at the airport without visas. Conversely you might get the visas and then not even get asked to show them, but better to be safe than sorry, especially with kids in tow. And with visas you'll get a 60-day entry.

#14 Captain_Bob has been a member since 27/5/2006. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,918

Posted by momof4 on 16/12/2010 at 22:49

Super, will do Captain Bob. Since we'll be in India hopefully around 2 months, plenty of time to sort it out.

#15 momof4 has been a member since 16/3/2010. Posts: 12


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