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Mileage Runs turnarounds / turnabouts / transits:- Experiences please

Mileage Runs turnarounds / turnabouts / transits:- Experiences please

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Old Feb 27, 18, 5:11 am   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
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As this thread has gotten quite big, here is an index of links to the relevant posts for quick reference, sorted by airport code. If you are unsure of the airport code please use the FT airport code lookup.

Key

e = link to post external to this thread
w = link to post within this thread
> = transit
< = turnaround
APT = airport code

e/w >/< APT airport name, country [specific airline, terminal or type of connection here]

INDEX

Code:

 A
 w < ACC Accra, Ghana
 e < ADE Aden, Yemen (warning difficult to do)
 w < AKL Auckland, New Zealand on CX
 e > AKL Auckland, New Zealand
 e < AKL Auckland, New Zealand
 w < AKL Auckland, New Zealand on TG
 e > AMM Amman, Jordan
 e > AMM Amman, Jordan
 e > AMM Amman, Jordan
 w < AMS Amsterdam, Netherlands
 e > AMS Amsterdam, Netherlands
 w < AMS Amsterdam, Netherlands on UA
 w < AMS Amsterdam, Netherlands on SQ
 e < ANC Anchorage, USA
 e < ANC Anchorage, USA
 w < APW Apia, Samoa
 e < ARN Stockholm, Sweden
 w < ARN Stockholm, Sweden on TG
 e < ATH Athens, Greece
 e > AUH Abu Dhabi, UAE on BA
 
 B
 w < BCN Barcelona, Spain on SQ
 w < BDL Hartford, USA
 e > BEG Belgrade, Serbia
 e < BEY Beirut, Lebanon
 e > BEY Beirut, Lebanon
 w < BHM Birmingham, USA on NW
 w < BIO Bilbao, Spain
 e > BKK Bangkok (Don Muang), Thailand
 w < BKK Bangkok (Don Muang), Thailand
 e < BKK Bangkok (Don Muang), Thailand
 e > BKK Bangkok (Suvarnabhumi), Thailand on SQ
 e > BKK Bangkok, Thailand TG -> TK
 e > BKK Bangkok, Thailand LH -> TG
 e > BNE Brisbane, Australia domestic to international on QF
 e > BOM Mumbai, India international -> international
 e > BOM Mumbai, India domestic -> international
 e > BOM Mumbai, India
 e > BOM Mumbai, India international -> domestic
 w < BOM Mumbai, India
 w < BOS Boston, USA
 w < BQN Aquadilla, Puerto Rico on UA
 e < BRU Brussels, Belgium
 w < BZE Belize City, Belize
 
 C
 e < CAI Cairo, Egypt
 e < CAI Cairo, Egypt
 w < CAI Cairo, Egypt on QR
 e > CCS Caracas, Venezuela international -> international
 w < CCU Kolkata, India
 w > CDG Paris Charles de Gaulle, France
 e < CDG Paris Charles de Gaulle, France
 w < CGK Jakarta, Indonesia
 e < CGK Jakarta, Indonesia
 e < CGK Jakarta, Indonesia on SQ
 w < CGK Jakarta, Indonesia
 e < CGK Jakarta, Indonesia on SQ
 w < CGK Jakarta, Indonesia on SQ
 w > CGK Jakarta, Indonesia
 e < CGK Jakarta, Indonesia on JO/JL
 w > CGK Jakarta, Indonesia on TG
 w < CGK Jakarta, Indonesia
 e > CHC Christchurch, New Zealand international -> international on NZ
 w > CLT Charlotte, USA
 w < CMB Colombo, Sri Lanka
 e < CMB Colombo, Sri Lanka on SQ
 e < CMB Colombo, Sri Lanka
 e < CMB Colombo, Sri Lanka
 e < CMB Colombo, Sri Lanka
 e < CMB Colombo, Sri Lanka
 w < CMB Colombo, Sri Lanka on SQ
 e < CMN Casablanca, Morocco on LH
 w > CNS Cairns, Australia
 e < CNS Cairns, Australia international -> international
 e > CNS Cairns, Australia domestic -> domestic
 e < CNS Cairns, Australia international -> international
 e > CPH Copenhagen, Denmark
 w < CPH Copenhagen, Denmark
 e < CPH Copenhagen, Denmark on BA
 e > CPH Copenhagen, Denmark
 w > CRK Clark, Philippines on OZ
 
 D
 e < DAC Dhaka, Bangladesh on TG
 w > DCA Washington National, USA
 e < DEL Delhi, India
 e < DEL Delhi, India
 e > DEL Delhi, India
 e > DEL Delhi, India domestic -> international
 e < DEL Delhi, India
 w < DEL Delhi, India
 e > DEL Delhi, India international 9W -> AA
 w < DEL Delhi, India
 w > DFW Dallas Fort Worth, USA
 w > DFW Dallas Fort Worth, USA
 w < DME Moscow, Russa
 e < DOH Doha, Qatar on BA
 e < DUB Dublin, Ireland on AA
 e > DUB Dublin, Ireland
 e < DUS Dusseldorf, Germany
 w > DXB Dubai, UAE
 w < DXB Dubai, UAE
 e < DXB Dubai, UAE on BA
 e > DXB Dubai, UAE with children during Ramadan
 
 E
 e < EBL Erbil, Iraq / Kurdistan
 w < EWR Newark, USA
 e > EWR Newark, USA
 e > EZE Buenos Aires, Argentina
 e < EZE Buenos Aires, Argentina
 e > EZE Buenos Aires, Argentina
 
 F
 e < FAT Fresno, USA
 e > FCO Rome, Italy on BA LGW-FCO-LHR
 e < FCO Rome, Italy on BA
 w < FCO Rome, Italy
 w < FCO Rome, Italy
 w < FPO Freeport, Bahamas
 w < FRA Frankfurt, Germany on NW
 e > FRA Frankfurt, Germany
 w < FRA Frankfurt, Germany
 e < FRA Frankfurt, Germany
 e < FRA Frankfurt, Germany
 e < FRA Frankfurt, Germany on AA
 e > FRA Frankfurt, Germany nonschengen on LH
 e > FRA Frankfurt, Germany nonschengen on LH
 e > FRA Frankfurt, Germany nonschengen on LH
 e > FRA Frankfurt, Germany nonschengen on LH
 e > FRA Frankfurt, Germany nonschengen on LH
 w < FUK Fukuoka, Japan on SQ
 
 G
 e > GOT Gothenburg, Sweden
 e > GRU Sao Paulo, Brazil
 e > GRU Sao Paulo, Brazil Delta to Gol
 e > GRU Sao Paulo, Brazil BA to JJ (Tam)
 w < GUM Guam, Guam on NW
 e < GUM Guam, Guam on JL
 
 H
 e > HAN Hanoi, Vietnam
 w < HAN Hanoi, Vietnam
 e > HEL Helsinki, Finland
 e < HKG Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR
 e < HKG Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR
 e < HKG Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR
 e > HKG Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR CX -> 5J
 e > HKG Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR QF -> OZ
 e > HKG Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR LX -> OZ
 e > HKG Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR OZ -> QF
 w > HKG Hong Kong, Hong Kong SAR
 e < HKT, Phuket, Thailand
 w < HYD Hyderabad, India
 
 I
 e > IAD Washington Dulles, USA
 e < ICN Seoul Incheon, South Korea
 e < ICN Seoul Incheon, South Korea
 e < ICN Seoul Incheon, South Korea
 e < ICN Seoul Incheon, South Korea
 e > ICN Seoul Incheon, South Korea
 e > ICN Seoul Incheon, South Korea
 w < ICN Seoul Incheon, South Korea
 e < IKA Tehran, Iran
 e > IQQ Iqique, Chile
 e > IQQ Iqique, Chile int->dom
 w < IST Istanbul, Turkey
 e < IST Istanbul, Turkey
 w < IST Istanbul, Turkey on BA
 e > IST Istanbul, Turkey international -> international on TK
 e > IST Istanbul, Turkey international -> international on TK
 e < IUE Niue, Niue
 
 J
 w < JAX Jacksonville FL, USA
 w < JAX Jacksonville FL, USA
 e < JFK JFK New York, USA on CX
 w < JFK JFK New York, USA on UA
 w > JFK JFK New York, USA
 w > JFK JFK New York, USA
 e < JFK JFK New York, USA international -> international
 e > JNB Johannesburg, South Africa int->int
 e > JNB Johannesburg, South Africa international -> international
 
 K
 e < KIX Osaka Kansai, Japan on SQ
 e < KTM Kathmandu, Nepal
 e < KUL Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
 e > KUL Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
 e < KWI Kuwait City, Kuwait on BA
 
 L
 e > LAX Los Angeles, USA
 w > LAX Los Angeles, USA
 w > LAX Los Angeles, USA
 w < LAX Los Angeles, USA
 e > LAX Los Angeles, USA NZ -> LH
 w < LAX Los Angeles, USA on TG
 e < LDH Lord Howe Island, Australia
 w < LED St Petersburg, Russia on LH
 w < LGW London Gatwick, UK
 w < LGW London Gatwick, UK
 w < LGW London Gatwick, UK
 w < LGW London Gatwick, UK
 w < LGW London Gatwick, UK
 w < LGW London Gatwick, UK (September 2006)
 e < LGW London Gatwick, UK
 w < LHR London Heathrow, UK
 w < LHR London Heathrow, UK
 w < LHR London Heathrow, UK
 w < LHR London Heathrow, UK on UA
 w < LHR London Heathrow, UK (October 2006)
 w < LHR London Heathrow, UK on AA
 w > LHR London Heathrow, UK
 e > LHR London Heathrow, UK international -> domestic
 w < LHR London Heathrow, UK CO turnaround beware
 w < LHR London Heathrow, UK
 w < LHR London Heathrow, UK
 e > LHR London Heathrow, UK T5->T3
 e > LHR London Heathrow, UK T3->T5
 e > LIM Lima, Peru
 e > LIM Lima, Peru AA->LA
 w > LIM Lima, Peru
 e < LIR Liberia, Costa Rica AA
 e > LIS Lisbon, Portugal
 e > LIS Lisbon, Portugal BA->TP
 w < LON London, UK
 e < LPB La Paz, Bolivia
 
 M
 e > MAA Chennai, India 9W -> LH
 w < MAA Chennai, India
 w < MAD Madrid, Spain
 w > MAD Madrid, Spain RJ->BA
 w < MAD Madrid, Spain
 e > MAD Madrid, Spain nonschengen IB -> BA
 e < MAN Manchester, UK on SQ
 e < MAN Manchester, UK on SQ
 e < MAN Manchester, UK
 e < MAN Manchester, UK
 e > MAN Manchester, UK international -> international
 e < MCO Orlando, USA
 e < MCT Muscat, Oman on BA
 e < MCT Muscat, Oman
 e < MCT Muscat, Oman on BA
 w < MEL Melbourne, Australia
 e < MEL Melbourne, Australia
 e > MEL Melbourne, Australia NZ -> SQ
 e > MEL Melbourne, Australia SQ -> NZ
 e > MEX Mexico City, Mexico
 e < MLA Malta, Malta
 w < MLA Malta, Malta
 e < MLE Male, Maldives
 w < MNL Manila, Philippines
 w < MNL Manila, Philippines
 e < MNL Manila, Philippines on SQ
 e < MNL Manila, Philippines on TG
 w < MNL Manila, Philippines on UA
 
 N
 e < NCE Nice, France
 e < NGO Nagoya, Japan
 w > NGO Nagoya, Japan - international to international
 e < NLK Norfolk Island, Norfolk Island
 w < NRT Tokyo Narita, Japan
 w < NRT Tokyo Narita, Japan
 w < NRT Tokyo Narita, Japan
 e < NRT Tokyo Narita, Japan
 e < NRT Tokyo Narita, Japan
 e > NRT Tokyo Narita, Japan
 e > NRT Tokyo Narita, Japan AA to other oneworld airlines
 e > NRT Tokyo Narita, Japan, international -> domestic
 e > NRT Tokyo Narita, Japan OZ -> NZ
 e > NRT Tokyo Narita, Japan international -> international on JL
 
 O
 w < OAK Oakland, USA
 e < OOL Coolangatta Gold Coast, Australia int->int
 w > ORD Chicago, USA
 w > ORD Chicago, USA
 e < OSL Oslo, Norway
 w > OSL Oslo, Norway on TG
 w < OTP Bucharest, Romania
 e < OTP Bucharest, Romania
 e > OTP Bucharest, Romaia TK -> LH
 
 P
 w > PEK Beijing, China
 w < PEN Penang, Malaysia
 w > PER Perth, Australia
 w > PER Perth, Australia
 e < PER Perth, Australia domestic
 w < PNH Phnom Penh, Cambodia
 e < POM Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea international
 e > POS Port-of-Spain, Trinidad
 e < PPT Papeete, Tahiti on NZ
 e > PRG Prague, Czech Republic
 w > PUJ Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
 w > PVG Shanghai, China
 e < PVG Shanghai, China on NZ
 e < PVG Shanghai, China
 
 R
 e > RAR Rarotonga, Cook Islands
 w > RDU Raleigh-Durham, USA
 w > RDU Raleigh-Durham, USA
 e > RUH Riyadh, Saudi Arabia tricky
 w < RUH Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
 
 S
 w < SAN San Diego, USA
 w < SAN San Diego, USA
 w > SBP San Luis Obispo, USA
 e > SCL Santiago, Chile
 e > SCL Santiago, Chile int->int
 e > SCL Santiago, Chile int->int
 e > SCL Santiago, Chile dom->int
 w < SEA Seattle, USA
 w < SFO San Francisco, USA
 w < SFO San Francisco, USA
 w > SFO San Francisco, USA
 w < SFO San Francisco, USA on SQ
 e < SGN Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam on SQ
 w < SGN Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
 w < SIN Singapore, Singapore
 e > SIN Singapore, Singapore
 w < SIN Singapore, Singapore
 w < SIN Singapore, Singapore
 w < SIN Singapore, Singapore
 e > SIN Singapore, Singapore SQ -> UA
 w < SIN Singapore, Singapore
 e > SIN Singapore, Singapore SQ -> LH
 w < SIN Singapore, Singapore on UA
 w < SJU San Juan, Puerto Rico
 e < SJU San Juan, Puerto Rico
 w < SJU San Juan, Puerto Rico
 w < SJU San Juan, Puerto Rico
 e < SKG Thessaloniki, Greece
 w < SMF Sacramento, USA
 e < SOF Sophia, Bulgaria
 e < STN London Stansted, United Kingdom on AA
 e < STN London Stansted, United Kingdom
 e < STN London Stansted, United Kingdom
 e < STR Stuttgart, Germany
 w > STL St Louis, USA
 e > SYD Sydney, Australia int->dom
 e > SYD Sydney, Australia dom->int
 e > SYD Sydney, Australia
 e > SYD Sydney, Australia international -> international on QF
 e < SYD Sydney, Australia on NZ
 e > SYD Sydney, Australia NZ -> TG
 e > SYD Sydney, Australia TG -> NZ
 e > SYD Sydney, Australia NZ -> NZ
 
 T
 e < TBU Nuku'alofa, Tonga
 w < TGU Tegucigalpa, Honduras on UA
 e < THR Tehran, Iran
 e > TIP Tripoli, Libya
 e < TLV Tel Aviv, Israel
 e > TLV Tel Aviv, Israel
 w < TPE Taipei, Taiwan
 e > TPE Taipei, Taiwan CX->UA
 w < TPE Taipei, Taiwan on MH
 e < TUN Tunis, Tunisia
 e < TUN Tunis, Tunisia
 
 U
 e < UIO Quito, Ecuador
 w < USM Koh Samui, Thailand
 
 V
 e < VCE Venice, Italy on BA
 w < VCT Victoria, USA on CO
 e < VIE Vienna, Austria
 w > VNS Varanasi, India
 
 W
 e < WAW Warsaw, Poland
 e < WDH Windhoek, Namibia
 
 Y
 w < YEG Edmonton, Canada
 e > YHZ Halifax, Canada
 w > YUL Montreal, Canada
 e > YUL Montreal, Canada
 w > YVR Vancouver, Canada
 w < YVR Vancouver, Canada
 w < YVR Vancouver, Canada
 w < YVR Vancouver, Canada
 e > YVR Vancouver, Canada
 w < YVR Vancouver, Canada
 w > YVR Vancouver, Canada
 w < YYC Calgary, Canada
 w > YYC Calgary, Canada
 w < YYC Calgary, Canada
 w < YYZ Toronto, Canada
 e > YYZ Toronto, Canada
 w < YYZ, Toronto, Canada
 w > YYZ Toronto, Canada
 w < YYZ Toronto, Canada
 w < YYZ Toronto, Canada
 
 Z
 e > ZRH Zurich, Switzerland
 
 Misc no problems at these airports posts 
 Misc cautionary tales in these countries posts
 e < Canada customs problems
 e < Middle East turnarounds
 
 
updated to post #565
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Old Apr 25, 03, 10:14 pm
  #1  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: MEL CHC
Posts: 14,902
Mileage Runs turnarounds / turnabouts / transits:- Experiences please

Update Nov 11 2009
As this thread in now large Kiwiflyer has made an index in post 257 up to post 361 of links to the relevant posts for quick reference, sorted by airport code. As the forum software has changed some old links no longer work.

This summary will be updated from time to time.

If you are unsure of the airport code please use the FT airport code lookup.


============
What experience have mileage runners had in turning around at an airport, both on domestic flights and internationally (any in any country in the world, not just the USA) given that may people can not understand why someone would fly somewhere, and then return immediately to the same place whence they come or then go somewhere when they have taken a direct flight.

More interested in airport’s that were in a different country from the departure airport, but all experiences are welcome

Information that would be useful
(a) Airports / countries the flight was
(b) Dates
(c) Airline
(d) How much time was there between your flights
(e) If a change of air line was needed
(f) If you had checked baggage or carry on baggage
(g) If you went through customs and immigration or an internal airport transit,
(h) If you had a boarding pass for the next leg or if you had to get it an transit point
(i) If you stayed more than 24 hrs (i.e more than what the air line considered a transit
(j) Any experience’s if staying at the airport overnight in the bar, lounge, sleeping on the floor or what ever.
(k) Any costs of visa & air port taxes you had to pay at the airport
(l) Any hassles with airline staff or the bureaucracy,
(m) Any good or bad stories on turn-a-rounds / transits

Some cities seem popular with mileage runners, like Dubai from London (LHR-DXB), and Singapore

I remember one post that said in Singapore the airline staff got the next boarding pass for the pax, without them requiring to go through customs and immigration.

There will be stories in trip reports, so any I find will cut and paste to this post

Last edited by Mwenenzi; Jul 17, 10 at 10:41 pm Reason: up dates links
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Old Apr 25, 03, 10:16 pm
  #2  
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Location: MEL CHC
Posts: 14,902
Calgary, Canada

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/Forum81/HTML/003688.html (link dead)
new link to this old post

Originally posted by timid_trnchcoat:
MR TPA-DFW-YYC-ORD-MIA-TPA in F on AA..

....Upon arriving in Calgary, I was beat. I proceeded to immigration and pulled an immigration form from the counter. While the directions were in English, the fields of the form were in French. I pulled out a few forms and they were all the same.

Stupidly, I started to fill it out not knowing exactly what was what. When I inevitably got stuck, I search for the English form and filled it out quickly and proceeded to the immigration screening counters. They asked why I was coming to Canada and I said I was meeting a friend I had met online. When I got to the actual immigration counter, they asked pretty much asked the same questions and I showed them my US passport and return ticket. Then the immigration agent asked how long I would be staying, I said about 12 hours. Things went downhill from there. They asked me all about my friend in Calgary - how we met, how long I'd known her, her name, address, phone number, profession, living situation, if she was meeting me at the airport, etc. Since I had met her online and she was really a friend of a friend, we just exchanged phone numbers so that I could contact her when I arrived. When I was questioned, I realized how little I had known my friend, despite having talked for about a year! Of course, it didn't stop there. I had to fess up and say that I was flying for miles also. He
was convinced I was travelling on a business trip, which I denied. I don't remember the exact words but I believe he concluded that my reason for "visiting" Canada was a biggest pile of cockamamie b/s he'd ever heard and took me to customs.

The lady asked me some questions, some of the same, some different. They wanted to search my luggage, and of course, being on an MR, I had none, just my carefully packed backpack. The words 'thorough search' do not do justice to the way they searched my bag. They found things (old receipts, ticket stubs) in my bag that I didn't even know were there. After she was done searching that and my wallet, I was told to go back to immigration and sit in the waiting room. Three other pax were here, all with dejected looks on their faces. I didn't want to be here. One of the pax left her passport wallet on the plane, and of course was stuck when going through immigration. I think she was a UK citizen. A nice agent handed her the passport wallet and said he had them re-search the aircraft and they found it between the seats, all in a reassuring and sympathetic voice. When couldn't I get this guy? Another gent had arrived from MXP via ORD and I later found out he would be flown back to ORD because he came for a work-related reason. Then my guy came in and said that until he could contact my friend (who wasn't answering her phone), that I was staying there. I buried my head in my hands and rubbed my forehead.

This is was turning into a nightmare. After about twenty minutes, he told me to come around to his counter. He told me he had spoke with my friend and she had said that she thought that I was on sort of business trip. My heart sunk. I had never told her my reasons for coming to Calgary, but what woman would want to play second fiddle to an MR! He asked me a lot of questions - an obscene amount really. I have been to job interviews where less questions were asked. The bottom line was he wasn't buying any of MR reasons, claiming no one comes to Calgary 12 hours after having travelled 12 already. I asked if there was an internet kiosk available, and suprisingly, he seemed willing to entertain my plea. I told him about FT. The PC he was using at the immigration counter had Internet access so I fed him the URL. I then cited the Mileage Run, saying many people take circuitous routes to a farwaway destination only to turn around and do it all over again. I didn't have an angle on the monitor, but knowing the site design by heart, I talked him exactly to the thread which I found the fare. I told him I would be completing an AA challenge on this trip. He said it was a waste of money and he surmised that if I wanted to do this again that I should do it in my own country. It was about 12:30am when he was done questioning me and reluctantly let me go, concluding that what I was doing was throwing up a lot of red flags. All pax had long gone. I started to head out, when a customs officer came running from the customs area. She only wanted the form I forgot to give her because no one was there when I passed by. Whew. I did manage to get to my hotel via one of the lone taxis circling the airport at this hour. Was in my room shortly before 1 am.
[This message has been edited by Mwenenzi (edited 04-26-2003).]

Last edited by Mwenenzi; Dec 18, 07 at 2:30 am Reason: fixed font problem & found link
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Old Apr 25, 03, 10:42 pm
  #3  
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: SJC
Programs: AA EXP
Posts: 3,686
I did an MR to SIN earlier in the year. Hung around and posted on FT without ever leaving the terminal area -- just went to the transit desk to get my boarding passes for the return flight.

The security and transit desk agents didn't seem too out of sorts with my answer that I was flying for the miles. (and given that I was returning on the first available flight, what were they going to do, toss me out of the country? That's where I was headed in any case! )

Steve
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Old Apr 25, 03, 11:11 pm
  #4  
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Did you get your passport stamped?

If not, did INS/customs give you any problems?

<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by sllevin:
I did an MR to SIN earlier in the year. Hung around and posted on FT without ever leaving the terminal area -- just went to the transit desk to get my boarding passes for the return flight.

The security and transit desk agents didn't seem too out of sorts with my answer that I was flying for the miles. (and given that I was returning on the first available flight, what were they going to do, toss me out of the country? That's where I was headed in any case! )

Steve
</font>
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Old Apr 25, 03, 11:46 pm
  #5  
Moderator: Coupon Connection & S.P.A.M
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Louisville, KY
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Posts: 57,293
I've done a fair number of domestic MRs with pretty much 1-4 hours turn around. I love the expression on the agent's face when I check in at the gate or club - "How did you get past security?" I have had all my boarding passes (like 4 or 5) pop out when checking in since it's a non-overnight turn. One agent tried to keep the return passes - nope, hand those over please. I don't do true international MRs; if I leave the country, I stay at least one day.

Checked baggage? Are you kidding me? I never check bags, even when going to HNL for 2 weeks. "Why are you doing this?" is a question I have heard a couple of times. I respond "I have a meeting in XXX (and YYY, if necessary)" and that's enough.
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Old Apr 26, 03, 6:32 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: SYD
Posts: 1,361
<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by Mwenenzi:
Calgary, Canada

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/Forum81/HTML/003688.html

</font>
I sympathise with this poster. I am also from Australia and was hassled to high-hell and back when I went to Canada.

This was back in 2000, and I was traveling from DC to Quebec City (via Montreal) for about 2 days. Upon arriving in Montreal I was asked what the purpose of my visit to Canada was. I just said I wanted to see Quebec City. They then asked me why I was only in Canada for 2 days etc...

It went down hil pretty quickly from there as I was hoarded off into an interview room. The lady there started asking me all sorts of personal questions like whether I had a criminal record, whether I used drugs, whether I was a drug trafficker. They then asked me whether I intended to ever leave Canada to which I replied with "I am from Australia why would I want to stay in Canada". They didn't like that one bit, but all I meant was that I am not from a poor country (ie, Afghanistan) so why would I not want to return home.

Then they asked me what hotel I was staying at (the Hilton) and they called the hotel to check my reservation. Next up they went over my ticket (a RTW) and asked me what I had done in every city I had visited. Next up, they went right through my bags, the pockets in my clothes, and even took drug residue samples from my clothes and bags.

They counted my money, asked me what my limit was on my credit cards.

About 2.5hrs later I was finally let out of the airport.

I was disgusted at how rude the airport staff were to me, and I know this is going to sound terrible, but it left me with no desire to go back to Canada, ever. I know this was a very small sample of the Canadian population, but the experience was so awful, I never want to (and prob never will) set foot in Canada again.

Maybe someone should send Canadian customs some advice on how to be friendly with travelers. I was not rude to them in the slighest (except for my Australia reference which they mis-took), had done absolutely nothing wrong, yet was treated like a criminal for 2.5 hours for no reason at all. Not even a "thank you, sorry for delaying you" at the end.

I have had one other "thorough" experience with customs officers and that was in the USA (same trip actually, must have been that black overcoat). They searched my bags (presumably for drugs) but all the officers were extremely friendly, explained why they wanted to look in my bags, and were altogether quite pleasant to be around.

I have no problem with customs searching people who they suspect may have drugs, but I have a big problem with people who do not show others basic courtesy and respect.

Rant over.

As for other cities, I have transited Singapore about 30 times and have always gone through immigration and customs, even on just a 2 hour connect. Never, not once, have customs hassled me in the slightest. As a matter of fact, in recent years I have gone on many 2-3 day trips to Asian countries like Taiwan, China, Vietnam, Korea, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia and India and have never had any troubles with customs at all.

London ask a lot of questions, but are friendly enough if you are honest.

The USA can be quite thorough, but again, in my experiences, the customs officers are friendly enough.

MD

[This message has been edited by MilesDependent (edited 04-26-2003).]
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Old Apr 26, 03, 8:12 am
  #7  
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Posts: 8,216
<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by Mwenenzi:
What experience have mileage runners had in turning around at an airport, both on domestic flights and internationally (any in any country in the world, not just the USA) given that may people can not understand why someone would fly somewhere, and then return immediately to the same place whence they come or then go somewhere when they have taken a direct flight.

More interested in airport’s that were in a different country from the departure airport, but all experiences are welcome

Please advise
(a) Airports / countries the flight was
(b) Dates
(c) Airline
(d) How much time was there between your flights
(e) If a change of air line was needed
(f) If you had checked baggage or carry on baggage
(g) If you went through customs and immigration or an internal airport transit,
(h) If you had a boarding pass for the next leg or if you had to get it an transit point
(i) If you stayed more than 24 hrs (i.e more than what the air line considered a transit
(j) Any experience’s if staying at the airport overnight in the bar, lounge, sleeping on the floor or what ever.
(k) Any costs of visa & air port taxes you had to pay at the airport
(l) Any hassles with airline staff or the bureaucracy,
(m) Any good or bad stories on turn-a-rounds / transits

Some cities seem popular with mileage runners, like Dubai from London (LHR-DXB), and Singapore

I remember one post that said in Singapore the airline staff got the next boarding pass for the pax, without them requiring to go through customs and immigration.

Their will be stories in this in trip reports, so any I find I will cut and paste to this post


[This message has been edited by Mwenenzi (edited 04-25-2003).]
</font>
I took a mr to AMS. No problems in AMS at all. Imigration and Customs at EWR were not so great. When talking to the imigration officer I flet as though he didn't even want to admit me and was questioning why I would fly to AMS and than turnaround and come back. The Customs guy went through the whole drug spiel and had to search my bag. My worst experience was coming home from Italy on a vacation. The Customs guy had the balls to ask me how long I planned on staying in America while he was holding my US Passport. Since I was coming from Amsterdam he also did the whole drug search. Before 911 the most customs ever asked was where I came from and than where do you work answer those and I was out of there. Happy Flying!!!
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Old Apr 26, 03, 10:24 am
  #8  
 
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<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by Spiff:
Did you get your passport stamped?

If not, did INS/customs give you any problems?
</font>
Didn't get it stamped, no.

Didn't have any issues upon return. Admittedly, the immigration area for IAH was crowded since a couple of different flights had arrived at the same time, but they didn't seem to be rushing through anyone.

Steve
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Old Apr 26, 03, 12:02 pm
  #9  
 
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MilesDependent, I think you are not alone, sadly.

I, too, had more than a few very negative experiences (not at YUL but at YVR and YYZ).

I wonder if Canada is going to do some tourism promotion for Toronto after the Sars thing. Remove those immgiration and customs officials, and I will go even if Sars is there!

Pity, I like YVR a lot but I just can't stand those immgiration officers and reduced trips there.

I think one of the CX forum regulars, Commuter, wrote to YVR airport about the immigration nightmare and got some feedback. I couldn't find that thread.
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Old Apr 26, 03, 12:05 pm
  #10  
 
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Forgot to add that AKL is very turnaround-able. I did a CX to CX transfer. The arriving aircraft leaves the airport in one hour. No check-in counter for CX but go to the gate direct. They'll check you in there. No questions asked. I had no baggage.
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Old Apr 26, 03, 12:26 pm
  #11  
 
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I agree that YVR is the worst. When I was working for an airline I flew into YVR, and didn't have a return ticket. Which is no big deal because I could just get passes from the ticket counter. Well that wasn't good enough for this guy. I showed him my work id, my passport, and he still asked me 1000's of questions. Then he asked me why I had passed through Canadian immigration 3 times in the previous week. He just couldn't catch on that I was an airline employee and I was flying for work those other times.
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Old Apr 26, 03, 3:47 pm
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YYC - Calgary: agree wholeheartedly with the comments about the customs officers at this airport. I wasn't on a mileage run (was there and YEG for 3 days) but I got the full grill down by a customs officer upon arrival at the airport, why are you here, what are you doing, who are you visiting, where are you going after this, why are you going there? where do you work? what do you do there? (among 20 other questions). Canadian customs officers could be a little more friendly! Like miles dependent, we are from Australia, why would we want to stay in Canada!!

CGK - Jakarta - I did this MR with another FTer, and it was great (with the help of the other FTer of course), we took LH from SIN on the 55,555 promo and wanted to make the round trip immediately, didn't want to stay in CGK for the night. Only problem the LH aircraft was leaving around 30-60 mins after arrival. The other FTer was aware that CGK customs can be very slow, particularly with foreigners, so we found a nice airport officer and the other FTer had a nice chat to them in Indonesian, and what do you know it, he got us to change some $ for payment of taxes and whisked our passports through immigration and about 10 minutes later we had our passports back, stamped and back on the LH flight to SIN. The only pain was flying on LH Y.

SIN - Singapore - gone on a number of MR's from SIN and never had any questions from checkin agents or staff whatsoever.

At one place I did a MR, it was quite embarassing, as I kept on arriving back a few times a day, and the staff would say, Oh kawoh, have you missed your connection?? I would reply - no, i've been there already, i'm earning more frequent flyer miles... they just shook their heads! On some trips i've left myself a 10-25 minute turnaround. Granted there was a bit of running around but it's possible (never again though!)

[This message has been edited by kawoh (edited 04-26-2003).]
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Old Apr 26, 03, 5:10 pm
  #13  
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Done NRT multiple times, where you simply pass through the transit security checkpoint. They don't even check for an ongoing ticket 90% of the time. No immigration or customs stamp, but usually a raised eyebrow or two when I return to the US.
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Old Apr 26, 03, 10:10 pm
  #14  
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<font face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif" size="2">Originally posted by Spiff:
I don't do true international MRs; if I leave the country, I stay at least one day.</font>
Same here. I tend to jump on sale fares for domestic itineraries. Last year I did 10 JFK runs, and this year I've already completed 9 of 10 DCA/IAD runs, and also booked two of the IND $99RT fares. When I was a heavy UA flyer, my runs were to Florida (MCO,TPA,JAX), some overnight, and some right back after landing. The miles come in handy for international trips in business class. I can't ever recall being bothered by anyone on domestic routings.

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Old Apr 27, 03, 9:43 am
  #15  
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YVR - Worst experience. I said I was staying for three days and then I was onward to Hong Kong via CX. Because I had a Thailand stamp in my passport, the man asked me many questions before getting the Canadian form stamped. Obviously, this is bogus and I feel the Canadians are being trained to question single males who do not wear suits that stay for X number of days.

Thinking it was over, a female Canadian Customs officer comes over, takes my passport and says to look for her when I retrieve my checked bag. Went through the same scrutiny as listed by previous posters. Her best question was "Have you ever done any drugs in your life"! I said "No", she didn't believe me, so I responded. As President Clinton would say "I didn't inhale it and I didn't like it."

Anyway, my experience last 1 hour 10 minutes. The trick was to enjoy it and keep smiling. By then, they couldn't get anything on me, inside I believe they made a phone call...it all checked out and I was on my way. Naturally, the **BIG TRICK** is I am not meeting anyone (which I wasn't). I told the officer, "You did a really good job". She started to laugh over he "acting" as being upset with the world. It could have been worse, but I just make the best of it.

YYZ - Only get scrutiny if I am coming directly to the city as a round trip. The first time they were A*hole about it, but I offered to have them look through my bag and they refused. The second time, I had a nicer man re-question me and just made a "love of life" joke about it! I told him to "check my criminal record" and he said he did. I said "Really, what's it say?" That got me a stamp on my US PASSPORT (my very first from Canada).

Other places, no problems ever.....except maybe the USA from time-to-time, but nothing I can't deal with. Just give it back to them as much as they give it to you (ONLY if you are white-on-white American....NOT recommended if you are not an American citizen or a colour that can be "profiled" on a 2 way street).

Yes, YVR was the worst and it is bogus crap they provide too. Because Seattle is so much close, but YVR is a better Asian gateway with JAL and CX. I have noticed that YVR doesn't bug you if you are doing a one day continuing layaway from Asia into North America. It will never change, but tell the truth, nevertheless, even if you are driving to Seattle.....they probably know more about you than we know about ourselves.

SHADO
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