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Visas and border crossings forum

Will I be turned away if i arrive with no return ticket?

Posted by siddy on 16/10/2010 at 19:02

I know my options for getting visa's from this awesome site, but i dont know (and cant find from searching) if i can turn up at BKK with NO return ticket (or other ticket proving my intension to leave before my visa is up)???

I know most countries require proof of return/further travel, what about Thailand - and while we are on the subject, other countries in the area???

#1 siddy has been a member since 16/10/2010. Posts: 21

Posted by oasisbarhatien on 17/10/2010 at 08:05

Posted from within Vietnam.

If you arrive on a tourist visa,which you have previously obtained from a Thai Embassy/Consulate,they won't ask to see proof of onward travel,since in theory you should already have shown it when you got the visa.If you simply arrive and get a 30 day permission to enter stamp,again in theory they could ask to see proof of onward travel.I have flown into Thailand many times and not once have been asked for any such proof,but that doesn't mean it won't happen,and Thai Immigration are constantly tightening the rules.What you could do to cover yourself is book but not pay for a flight out and print off the reservation, or book a very cheap flight with a carrier such as Air Asia which you aren't going to use. Similarly traveling to Cambodia or Vietnam I have never once been asked for proof of onward travel

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Posted by Captain_Bob on 23/10/2010 at 17:27

No the immigration officials don't ask to see proof of onward travel.

But your airline may very well require it before they let you board the flight to Thailand. If you have a proper Thai tourist visa in advance this usually waives the onward flight rule though. Otherwise you'd be relying on the visa-exempt 30-day entry allowed for many nationalities, and again in which case airlines want to see a ticket out within those 30 days before letting you board the flight.

Immigration = no worries, Airline = worries.

#3 Captain_Bob has been a member since 27/5/2006. Location: Thailand. Posts: 1,950

Posted by boaby on 28/2/2011 at 11:11

Hi Siddy,

What captian bob says is correct it's not the immigration but the airlines -apparently the Arab airlines do sometimes ask for proof of return or onward travel.
I myself have never had any trouble and since my company pays for flights i have been asked in BKK for proof of being a bona fida seaman and have had to produce documents (seamans book) but this is all recent - i think you would have to be very unlucky to get checked

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Posted by idreamofdurian on 28/2/2011 at 14:07 TF writer

Ditto what Captain Bob said. I've never been asked to show proof of onward travel from Thai Immigration, but have been asked by the airline I was flying to Bangkok with (Tiger Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Air Canada). Not always... but sometimes.

#5 idreamofdurian has been a member since 5/9/2008. Location: Singapore. Posts: 576
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Posted by enigmatic on 14/4/2011 at 09:11

Eva Air required an outbound ticket to allow me to fly into BKK from London expecting Visa on arrival.

They seemed to have an established process in place - sending me to the ticket desk before letting me check in, buying me the cheapest outbound international ticket available within 28 days and advising me that I could easily cancel the ticket at the other end for an approx GBP 20 administration fee. Inevitably, their ticket desk at the other end was closed and the check-in girl simply gave me a reservations number, which leaves me with a bit of a challenge cancelling an amusingly overpriced ticket to Vientiane.

Getting the visa in advance could have saved a lot of hassle.

Thai immigration, needless to say, wasn't in the slightest bit interested in whether I had an outbound ticket or not.

Also worth noting: if you're a Brit picking up a visa on arrival you can safely ignore the "Visa on Arrival" signs at the airport (which appear to be for a designated list of countries where you have to fill in extra forms) and head straight for the main immigration queues.

#6 enigmatic has been a member since 14/4/2011. Posts: 84

Posted by Thomas922 on 14/4/2011 at 13:03

Visa on arrival and the 30 day Visa waiver are not the same. The 30 day visa waiver is what most western countries get not the visa on arrival. So unless you are from a country that needs the Visa to enter, as enigmatic says go to the regular immigration queue.

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Posted by whnvaio on 14/4/2011 at 22:46

Hi Guys,
I am a UK national and in May I am flying to Bangkok, my onwards ticket is flying from Singapore. Is this a problem?

#8 whnvaio has been a member since 14/4/2011. Posts: 2

Posted by Lother on 14/4/2011 at 23:55


Technically yes, Thai immigration may refuse you entry, or, more likely, the airline may not let you board. In practice, Thai immigration will almost certainly not care, but as for the airline, it depends on the airline. I've flown Cathay, Turkish, Finnair and Air Asia to BKK at least, and never been asked for a return ticket.

Having a return/onward ticket from another country will almost certainly help with the immigration in the unlikely event they do ask for something, but may not help with the airline.

#9 Lother has been a member since 12/5/2006. Location: Earth. Posts: 214
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Posted by whnvaio on 15/4/2011 at 01:05

Thanks for the quick response Lother.

From reading around, it appears the safest option to do is to just pay for a £25ish tourist visa. As the last thing I want is for Qantas to end my holiday early at Heathrow!

#10 whnvaio has been a member since 14/4/2011. Posts: 2

Posted by slapbreeya on 25/4/2011 at 08:16

Every time i have entered into Thailand with no return ticket they haven't checked, but as with all ports it does depend on the day. If it was me, i wouldn't worry too much.

#11 slapbreeya has been a member since 22/4/2011. Location: Thailand. Posts: 50

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