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WhatsInaName
11-05-2012, 11:36 AM
Hello,

I have seen innumerable posts on this topic (some very old and some new - in 2012). SO, just wanted to share my experience about this:

My family travelled to India in October 2012 with a 2 hr layover in Frankfurt. They had an EAD/AP combo card and did not have a current US visa in the passport. Similar to everyone else, I wasn't sure if they needed a transit visa (from the german mission's website, it sounded like they do). Anyways, contacted the german mission and here's their reponse:

My message:
"I am an Indian national living and working in the US. I have a valid US Employment Authorization and Advance Parole combo Card. I am traveling to India and have a layover in Frankfurt airport for 2 hours. Can you please advise me if I need a transit visa for my layover in Frankfurt?"

Response:
"You will need an airport transit visa."

So, we ended up going to Houston 1 day before the flight and luckily got the transit visa the same day (the lady wanted us to come back the next day or offered to mail it to us - but gave it to us a few hours later. Wanted to mention this because it seemed that from others' experiences in older posts, getting a visa on the same day was the norm, but its not that simple anymore). Also, it was clear to us from our interaction with them that we do indeed need a transit visa based on the current rules.

Having said all that, it turned out that no one really checked the transit visa at Frankfurt (which is what I anticipated, but did not want to risk the chance). And that would also explain why many of our fellow Indians were able to travel through Frankfurt without any visa (but if checked, I guess there might be an issue).

Bottomline: I, personally would avoid Lufthansa and transit through Frankfurt simply because of the hassle they put us through for a 2-3 hr layover in a secured area of the airport (totally unwarranted in my opinion - but, its their country and so its their rules).

On another note, related to transit through Europe, my friend had two stopovers in europe (hamburg and zurich) and he had an expired H1 visa in his passport. He was not allowed to board the flight in the US since he needed a transit visa (it turns out that 2 stops in europe requires a visa). So, he was put on another flight directly to zurich and then to mumbai.

Hope this helps!

Good luck and hope some day "developed" nations start treating Indians with a little less suspicion and contempt. I don't think we're that bad.:)

kumarus
11-06-2012, 08:45 AM
i am planning for an india trip around Jan'13 , i have EAD/AP combo card and my visa stamping expired ... please let me know which airlines/route is safe (without taking any additional transit visa)

WhatsInaName
11-06-2012, 12:30 PM
Hello,

I believe many of the airlines going through the middle east do not require a transit visa. I know for sure that Emirates with layover in dubai does not need one. Etihad, Qatar, Kuwait airways are also OK.

Good luck.

injrav
11-06-2012, 10:35 PM
Thank you very much my friend for in detailed explanation.

Currently I am in Boston,, but if I planned to travel India,, then I will take flight from JFK New york which has so many airlines which will go via Arab instead of Europe


Hello,

I have seen innumerable posts on this topic (some very old and some new - in 2012). SO, just wanted to share my experience about this:

My family travelled to India in October 2012 with a 2 hr layover in Frankfurt. They had an EAD/AP combo card and did not have a current US visa in the passport. Similar to everyone else, I wasn't sure if they needed a transit visa (from the german mission's website, it sounded like they do). Anyways, contacted the german mission and here's their reponse:

My message:
"I am an Indian national living and working in the US. I have a valid US Employment Authorization and Advance Parole combo Card. I am traveling to India and have a layover in Frankfurt airport for 2 hours. Can you please advise me if I need a transit visa for my layover in Frankfurt?"

Response:
"You will need an airport transit visa."

So, we ended up going to Houston 1 day before the flight and luckily got the transit visa the same day (the lady wanted us to come back the next day or offered to mail it to us - but gave it to us a few hours later. Wanted to mention this because it seemed that from others' experiences in older posts, getting a visa on the same day was the norm, but its not that simple anymore). Also, it was clear to us from our interaction with them that we do indeed need a transit visa based on the current rules.

Having said all that, it turned out that no one really checked the transit visa at Frankfurt (which is what I anticipated, but did not want to risk the chance). And that would also explain why many of our fellow Indians were able to travel through Frankfurt without any visa (but if checked, I guess there might be an issue).

Bottomline: I, personally would avoid Lufthansa and transit through Frankfurt simply because of the hassle they put us through for a 2-3 hr layover in a secured area of the airport (totally unwarranted in my opinion - but, its their country and so its their rules).

On another note, related to transit through Europe, my friend had two stopovers in europe (hamburg and zurich) and he had an expired H1 visa in his passport. He was not allowed to board the flight in the US since he needed a transit visa (it turns out that 2 stops in europe requires a visa). So, he was put on another flight directly to zurich and then to mumbai.

Hope this helps!

Good luck and hope some day "developed" nations start treating Indians with a little less suspicion and contempt. I don't think we're that bad.:)