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CMB transit on UL to TK (separate tickets) during Covid

CMB transit on UL to TK (separate tickets) during Covid

Old Jan 19, 21, 7:59 pm
  #1  
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CMB transit on UL to TK (separate tickets) during Covid

I'm wondering if its feasible to transit CMB on separate tickets (with different carriers) right now in light of the Covid entry restrictions into Sri Lanka. We would be arriving from MLE to CMB and transiting to a TK flight (which ironically stops over MLE, the joy of an award ticket booked when we thought we'd spend time in Sri Lanka). I assume there is no interline agreement between UL & TK so I'd need to re-check my bags in CMB. The hypothetical transit would happen in July of this year.

Is it possible to collect your luggage and re-check it without clearing Sri Lankan immigration? I know there is a UL staffed transfer desk but I doubt they would assist going to another airline?

There is also the probability that Sri Lanka will allow entry with a negative PCR test in hand which just makes for a longer transit time, is 3 hours enough time to clear immigration and re-check in to the TK flight?

Any feedback would be greatly appreciated!
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Old Jan 20, 21, 4:33 am
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let's face it. right now, transiting these days on separate tickets on different airlines is stupied. I don't know what you are trying todo or to save but this is the perfect receipe to loose all the money or get stranded somewhere
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Old Jan 20, 21, 11:08 am
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I realize transiting ain't ideal...

Originally Posted by blandy62 View Post
let's face it. right now, transiting these days on separate tickets on different airlines is stupied. I don't know what you are trying todo or to save but this is the perfect receipe to loose all the money or get stranded somewhere
I appreciate your sentiment and agree, its not ideal to put it mildly. As previously mentioned I am working with award tickets and I don't have much choice being at the mercy of award seat availability. If I can swing changing the departure to MLE directly, or onto 1 ticket I'd be jumping on it in a heartbeat.

With that said, does anyone know if transiting CMB without clearing immigration is possible on separate tickets?
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Old Jan 20, 21, 7:00 pm
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Originally Posted by bubu-SNA View Post
I appreciate your sentiment and agree, its not ideal to put it mildly. As previously mentioned I am working with award tickets and I don't have much choice being at the mercy of award seat availability. If I can swing changing the departure to MLE directly, or onto 1 ticket I'd be jumping on it in a heartbeat.

With that said, does anyone know if transiting CMB without clearing immigration is possible on separate tickets?
But purely about your question, I did it once between UL and CX. Took a bit of convincing with the staff at the UL desk. Eventually, they took my passport and came back after a while with a boarding pass. So it is not very clear if it can officially be done or more on a case to case basis.

you might find some info there too

Important notice for passengers travelling to and from Sri Lanka (srilankan.com)
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Old Jan 23, 21, 12:07 pm
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CMB is a unique airport. There is a "transit desk" in the area before you go to immigration, they take your passports and retrieve boarding passes from your connecting airline (this assumes no checked luggage, but oddly enough I seem to recall that I've done it before with checked luggage and they handled it, though that was CA to KE <yes, KE had rights from CMB-MLE as 5th freedom>).

Like a few other airports in SEA, CMB puts all incoming and outgoing passengers into the same transit hall. Outbound passengers do security at the gate, same as SIN and KUL. Inbound passengers either go to their next gate (if in transit) or to immigration to stay in Sri Lanka. There's even a transit hotel inside the "transit" area.
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Old Jan 24, 21, 9:14 pm
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Originally Posted by bubu-SNA View Post
I appreciate your sentiment and agree, its not ideal to put it mildly. As previously mentioned I am working with award tickets and I don't have much choice being at the mercy of award seat availability. If I can swing changing the departure to MLE directly, or onto 1 ticket I'd be jumping on it in a heartbeat.

With that said, does anyone know if transiting CMB without clearing immigration is possible on separate tickets?
You have two hurdles here, first is finding out if it is permitted, best to call UL and try to get confirmation. The second hurdle will be at the airport at the time of travel. Just getting someone to say yes over the phone does not mean a check in agent will give you the same response. Regardless, at 5-6 months out the situation could evolve (hopefully for the better) so whatever they say now could change.

I transited once years ago on the same ticket (EK to UL I think) and for whatever reason EK did not want to check my luggage through. Took a half hour convincing them in SIN but I was successful in the end. Would not count on the same result in the current environment. If you can get fully refundable tickets and reservations and are willing to take the chance, you could book and it watch. But it is really too early to know if it will be workable or not. Good luck.
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Old Jan 25, 21, 10:19 am
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...where things fall apart is the luggage, with no interline agreement between UL & TK there is no way to re-check your baggage in CMB without clearing immigration.
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Old Jan 28, 21, 6:33 pm
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UL and TK have an interline agreement. Not sure it is going to help you however.
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Old Apr 13, 21, 12:23 pm
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Reviving the thread with new developments...

It is now possible to enter Sri Lanka on a tourist visa but everything I read online ties into a hotel stay, etc. What does the process on arrival actually look like at the airport? Do you clear immigration and are released onward to meet your transportation to the hotel, or is there some sort of escort involved? What I'm getting at is whether its possible to just head over to the check-in area for the onward flight skipping the entire hotel experience?
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