Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Mileage Run Deals > Mileage Run Discussion
Reload this Page >

Oops...Trigger happy--China help

Oops...Trigger happy--China help

Old Mar 2, 16, 8:32 am
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: ATL
Programs: Delta DM HH Diamond
Posts: 103
Oops...Trigger happy--China help

I think I botched this and need some input

have a quick turn in PEK originating in USA and terminating in USA

After reading the fine print, looks like I don't qualify for the transit Visa

3/4 ATL-PDX-SEA-PEK /(edit:3/5PEK-ICN-PEk) 3/6 PEK-DTW-ATL

Presuming that is correct, I see my only option as booking another ticket somewhere outside of china during my 20 hour layover to provide proof of transit

Any input or ideas?

I knew it was too good to be true when my GUC cleared on all segments immediately.....

Last edited by Rhinolicious; Mar 3, 16 at 8:27 am
Rhinolicious is offline  
Old Mar 2, 16, 8:34 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: KCMO < PHL<DEN<SCL<EZE<CHO<PHL<ABE
Programs: UA Silver / FA
Posts: 938
Originally Posted by Rhinolicious View Post
I think I botched this and need some input

have a quick turn in PEK originating in USA and terminating in USA

After reading the fine print, looks like I don't qualify for the transit Visa

3/4 ATL-PDX-SEA-PEK / 3/6 PEK-DTW-ATL

Presuming that is correct, I see my only option as booking another ticket somewhere outside of china during my 20 hour layover to provide proof of transit

Any input or ideas?

I knew it was too good to be true when my GUC cleared on all segments immediately.....
Probably just cheaper/safer/smarter to get a Chinese visa? By the sounds of your post you've never been to China. I'd pay for the visa, then enjoy 12+ hours in BJS. I can put you in contact with a friend who is the best tour guide you've ever seen if interested lol.

Also, PEK is one of the most delayed airports in the world. Booking a PEK-ICN RT with 20 hours is pretty dangerous.
Tblack15 is offline  
Old Mar 2, 16, 8:39 am
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: ATL
Programs: Delta DM HH Diamond
Posts: 103
T- Thanks for the quick reply

Itin starts at 9am THIS Friday, and I don't have a visa

Im in Atlanta, and best I can tell is $500++ for expedited visa and can only 'guarantee' it would be here Friday, which is logistically too late

If I do book the PEK-ICN itin, im trying to figure out it that would satisfy the visa issue
Rhinolicious is offline  
Old Mar 2, 16, 8:41 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: KCMO < PHL<DEN<SCL<EZE<CHO<PHL<ABE
Programs: UA Silver / FA
Posts: 938
Originally Posted by Rhinolicious View Post
T- Thanks for the quick reply

Itin starts at 9am THIS Friday, and I don't have a visa

Im in Atlanta, and best I can tell is $500++ for expedited visa and can only 'guarantee' it would be here Friday, which is logistically too late

If I do book the PEK-ICN itin, im trying to figure out it that would satisfy the visa issue
HOLY CRAP IT'S MARCH ALREADY I DIDN'T EVEN REALIZE.

Well.. I have heard about some people booking refundable tickets, then dumping them... I AM NOT SUGGESTING THIS.

http://therewardboss.com/getting-aro...vel-permitted/
Tblack15 is offline  
Old Mar 2, 16, 8:45 am
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: ATL
Programs: Delta DM HH Diamond
Posts: 103
I hear your lack of endorsement for that particular suggestion, but do appreciate your portfolio of knowledge

I don't need to cause and international incident either

Now, with ticket in hand, I need to make sure I have all the documentation so that the Delta agents allow me to begin my journey

I am open to any other input here as well,

I still can cancel the whole thing before roughly midnight with no loss
Rhinolicious is offline  
Old Mar 2, 16, 9:19 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: DTW/MBS/AZO
Programs: UA 1K,AA Plat, Marriott Platinum, HHonors Diamond, Starbucks Gold
Posts: 3,080
Well from what I see,

1) Fly to Houston asap and try to get an expedited visa
2) Buy a cheap non-refundable ticket to somewhere else (seeing $131 on AirAsiaX to HKG) and eat the cost (http://goo.gl/flights/vfPn)
3) As TBlack linked to, buying an (expensive) fully refundable ticket and then cancelling it
4)Cancel the ticket.

I don't know why I keep putting off getting a Chinese Visa, I should probably get one too to take advantage of these deals.
BThumme is offline  
Old Mar 2, 16, 9:33 am
  #7  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: ATL
Programs: Delta DM HH Diamond
Posts: 103
Thank you both!

Have a third country ticket in hand for post PEK arrival

Last edited by Rhinolicious; Mar 2, 16 at 9:46 am
Rhinolicious is offline  
Old Mar 2, 16, 11:29 am
  #8  
Moderator, Trip Reports
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: 6km East of EPAYE
Programs: UA Silver, AA Platinum, AS & DL GM Marriott TE, Hilton Gold
Posts: 9,576
For help with any of these options see this thread: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/china...er-thread.html

Do you know any doctors? A solid doctors note could push the flight a month with no or minimal fees.

Good luck. BTW..... always read the fine print first, this is a game of knowing the fine print.
Madone59 is offline  
Old Mar 2, 16, 6:29 pm
  #9  
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: #1 LGA, #2 JFK, #Never EWR
Programs: Riteaid wellness+ Gold, PlanetFitness Preferred Black, Hyatt Cubic Zirconia, Hallmark Crown Platinum
Posts: 203
If I were you, I'd definitely not gamble with the Chinese law.....
IIIIIIIIIIllllllllll is offline  
Old Mar 3, 16, 1:31 am
  #10  
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Posts: 1,989
Originally Posted by Rhinolicious View Post
I think I botched this and need some input

have a quick turn in PEK originating in USA and terminating in USA

After reading the fine print, looks like I don't qualify for the transit Visa

3/4 ATL-PDX-SEA-PEK / 3/6 PEK-DTW-ATL

Presuming that is correct, I see my only option as booking another ticket somewhere outside of china during my 20 hour layover to provide proof of transit

Any input or ideas?

I knew it was too good to be true when my GUC cleared on all segments immediately.....
You are transiting through China (PEK) in 20hours which is within the 24 hour rule. Can you not provide proof of transit with your PEK-DTW-ATL itinerary?

Foreigners who have confirmed onward tickets and seats on international flights and directly transit through China and stay for no more than 24 hours within the airport boundaries do not need to apply for a transit visa. However, anyone desiring to go beyond the airport boundaries temporarily should obtain permission from the immigration authorities at the airport.
PayItForward is offline  
Old Mar 3, 16, 2:07 am
  #11  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: The Hague, NL
Programs: GMLFL, Life 2.0 - Mucci Premiere Classe & des Chevaliers Toulousiens
Posts: 22,853
You need to travel to a 3rd country. The country of origin does not qualify.

Also, it is a 72hr period, so that was never the issue.
henkybaby is offline  
Old Mar 4, 16, 11:49 am
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Roswell, GA
Programs: AA EXP 2.8m,Lifetime PLT, Hilton Diamond, IHG PlLT, SPG Gold
Posts: 2,689
Oops...Trigger happy--China help

It's a bit late now for you
But I was able to get my visa in 4 days
Here in Atlanta
Book another short haul to Hong Kong
fotographer is offline  
Old Mar 5, 16, 8:28 pm
  #13  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: DTW
Programs: Delta PM, ICH PLAT
Posts: 1,153
I hope the OP reports back...

Several ideas were brought up, and I wonder if they would even work:

1. Ordering a refundable ticket and not using it - When you leave China within 72hr, would they not look for the 3rd country stamp? I always have a visa, and when leaving China, they always look for it. I suppose it is trivial for someone to book a ticket (award or cash ticket) and printing out the itinerary (for proof) and then cancelling the ticket for no net cost... This is of course illegal (in the eyes of China immigration law), and will probably get you banned from getting a China visa in the future.

2. I read somewhere long ago that if you are STAYING AIR-SIDE, you don't need a visa, as written a few post back. I see 2 problem: I don't think PEK have an international-air-side bypass. I think everybody must go through immigration?? I also read that you can request they escort you to the departing gate, bypassing immigration. This can theoretically work. However, without a visa or valid proof of going to a 3rd country, the airline shouldn't even let you board your China flight to begin with...
chunky649 is offline  
Old Mar 5, 16, 8:36 pm
  #14  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Minneapolis: DL DM charter 2.3MM
Programs: A3*Gold, SPG Plat, HyattDiamond, MarriottPP, LHW exAccess, ICI, Raffles Amb, NW PE MM, TWA Gold MM
Posts: 90,081
The OP's biggest problem will be convincing DL to let him/her board, regardless of whether there's a nested ticket to a third country or not. DL just hasn't been very good about recognizing the TWOV exceptions to the requirement for a visa for any USA citizen going to China. DL agents tend not to follow the rules that appear in TIMATIC in determining whether you can board or not.
MSPeconomist is offline  
Old Mar 6, 16, 4:44 am
  #15  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: ATL
Programs: Delta DM HH Diamond
Posts: 103
Follow up

All-

Well, it was an interesting trip to be sure.

Forewarn, this is long but I think it addresses a lot of different questions that have been brought up here and in PMs to me

Recap:

Delta calls my office Thursday night, 'Mr. Rhinolicious we have a change in aircraft tomorrow atl-Pdx, would you be interested in arriving in Beijing earlier via Detroit?

Sure. And they threw $100 in.

Hind sight, I should've asked to be routed through ICN or NRT and would've solved the visa issue!! Idiot.......

Changed my refundable ticket PEK-ICN to non refundable different flight times, out of pocket for the nested flight $300+/-. I did a lot of research and have a flight with my wife next month through PVG to SYD. Ultimately it just wasn't worth it for me to game the system, didn't want to run the risk of not being invited back. So I took my lumps, lesson learned, and I had never been to Seoul either, so no biggie, live and learn.

Delta agent in Atlanta issues 'docs ok' with my proof of transit. No red flag, seemed like they were used to it. I did have TWOV info printed up from multiple resources including from delta.com in case I needed it.

Hurdle one done.

Detroit gate agent , takes my printed confirmation of transit, thank you mr. Rhinolicious enjoy your trip.

On board, now just have to get into China.

Side story, FA's just weren't good. I'm a delta guy tried and true but my experience continues to be they just can't compete with foreign carriers. It's really a large void.

Ok, arrive in Beijing 3pm ish

Pleasantly surprise at how well everything is marked, amount of English, directional pictures, etc....

We are the only plane in at that time, none of the 'special' lines were open as mentioned in other threads, I just get in the 'foreigner' line with my fellow foreigners.

I did notice that there was a continuation of hall/room for 'in transit international departures', I presume this is infact airside transit at PEK

5 minutes in line, moment of truth

Show immigration agent my ticket 'this leaves tonight', 'yes, I would like to go into the city though'

She stamped me a temporary visa, good though the next day.

A few hundred yards and I'm in country and in Under 30 minutes from plane seat

Couple hundred more yards, and a taxi 'Tiananmen square' , no English but we worked it out.

Go back that night and ticket myself for ICN, go through immigration, stamp me out of country, take picture of me (just like everyone else) and I go hang out in the air China lounge for 15 minutes

Data point: I didn't see a mechanism for them to cross reference actual departure to third country. There may be one, but I didn't detect it. Possible concern checking into hotel ? (Passport is registered with police, would it be associated with info provided at entry? Not likely due to paperwork, but possible, and again a risk I wasn't willing to take this time)

Leave for Seoul.

Up all night (day at home), casino, spa, a lot to cram in actually.

Check delta.com this AM.

PEK-DTW is delayed two hours, up oh....I'm going to miss the last flight Dtw-Atl

Call delta diamond line 'so I am in Seoul this morning, have another itinerary KE flight to PEK. Any chance I can just get on the ICN-DTW flight?'

'Let me see if it will allow mr. Rhinolicious......ok, got you confirmed Icn-Dtw 747, seat pref? '

Upper deck please!

Confirmed.

And for good measure got a lie flat 757 Dtw-Atl

So I didn't get the protocol/data I was going to get flying back through PEK as I had planned.

But i did learn it's possible for delta to rebook you on another flight from another country?!?! I really expected the agent to tell me that it wasn't possible. Not only was it possible but it was seamless.

All in all, everything was more than smooth, particularly wth two itin changes.

If anyone has any questions, fire away. Land in DTW in 3 hours
Rhinolicious is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search Engine: