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Old 09-09-2006, 08:42 AM   #1
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Is it possible to get a transit visa for a particular country, then enter and leave that country from the same land border crossing? Would this cause any problems? Or spend the full length of time the transit visa allows and then go to a very close neighbouring country?
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Old 09-09-2006, 12:41 PM   #2
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I'm afraid that they won't let you buy a transit visa for tourist purpose... Read this example from Russia :

(from waytorussia.net)

Quote:
Transit Visas:
This type of visa is usually given for maximum 72 hours if you're crossing the country or need to change the airports. The requirement and the prices depend on the country you're in, so the best thing to do is to contact the Russian consulate and they'll explain everything.
The most common requirements are
1) a valid travel document (passport);
2) onward airline or train tickets (proving you're crossing Russia and will not stay for longer than 72 hours).
3) a visa to the country you are traveling from Russia (if you need one)
4) completed visa application form
5) one passport-size photograph
The price of the transit visa is usually lower than a normal tourist visa, for example, in France it costs 28 Euro. Note, that you don't need to obtain an invitation or visa support to get this type of visa.[/b]
I just assume this applies to everywhere, but better call the Embassy you're thinking of.
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Old 09-09-2006, 01:02 PM   #3
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That's annoying, I don't think an Iranian tourist visa would be particularly easy to come by.
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Old 09-09-2006, 08:53 PM   #4
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I know, we can't trick them ! What's your plan ? Where would you be coming from into Iran ?
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Old 09-10-2006, 08:00 AM   #5
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I'm not sure I totally understand your question, but I'll try to give a reply.

I think you'd probably have to leave from another border crossing, but if you have 24 or 72 hours or whatever, I would guess you can actually stay in the country for that length of time...provided you have onward tickets indicating you will be leaving for another country in that time. If that's the case, I'd plan on taking the longest possible "layovers" between connecting trains, in order to have a chance to pop out and see a bit of whatever city the layover is in.

Obviously once in, say, Iran, you'd be able to go to a neighbouring country (I've heard Iraq is lovely this time of year...), provided you had the appropriate visas for that, too - generally speaking, it's hard to skip over an entire country if you're traveling by rail!

But as atchoum points out, you can't get a transit visa for tourist purposes, just to get you in the country and then hang around as long as you want. Usually, as I understand (Belarus is my example here), they give you a time long enough to spend a night at a hotel before a connection next morning, but not enough to have a pleasant weekend getaway in Minsk.

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Old 09-10-2006, 08:09 AM   #6
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I haven't worked out a specific itiniary yet, but I'm looking at all possible routes in and around the middle east and central asia. I'm trying to route it around cheap flights, so my starting point is likely to be Istanbul, then I can either fly home from Israel, the UAE or Hong Kong. Problem is I'll only have maximum 9 weeks, so a full Silk Road trip would be very rushed.
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Old 09-10-2006, 08:13 AM   #7
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Quote:
(I've heard Iraq is lovely this time of year...) [/b]
hahahha

You could have a meetup with Almostdone and Legitkick, first ever TPunk meetup with a war going on!
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Old 09-10-2006, 08:18 AM   #8
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<div class='quotetop'>QUOTE(raoulduke @ Sep 10 2006, 03:13 PM) [snapback]139232[/snapback]</div>
Quote:
hahahha

You could have a meetup with Almostdone and Legitkick, first ever TPunk meetup with a war going on!
[/b]
Don't tempt me!
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Old 09-11-2006, 12:55 PM   #9
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AJ, sorry, here's the sad confirmation that you can't use a transit visa and return to the country you entered from.

Quote:
Transit Visa

A transit visa is issued for a limited period of time for foreigners who intend to pass through Iran to a third country.[/b]
Read the whole procedures and rules, out of the Iran Embassy in UK's website. http://www.iran-embassy.org.uk/

Hey, you could cross the northern region of Iran to Armenia or further to Turkmenistan !

Northern Iran (Hejazi)

Armenia

Turkmenistan... now that's different !

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Old 09-11-2006, 05:39 PM   #10
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I've been doing extensive research (in fact I've done nothing but research on the internet for the past few days), and I've decided I really really want to go to Turkmenistan, but unless I can somehow get someone who lives there to invite me, I'd have to go on a very expensive and restrictive organised tour, which is not really practical, and to make matters worse the Turkmen Embassy in the UK is currently not issuing tourist visas at all. The place sounds like something completely out of this world though and it could just be my new holy grail.

As to Iran, the visa application process, even for a transit visa is very expensive and I've read hundreds of stories of people being denied a visa and not being given any reason whatsoever, and for the amount of time I'd get in the country I don't think it's worth it at present. Iran is a country I want to really explore.

So now I think I'm going to do Georgia, Armenia, Nagorno-Karabakh and Azerbaijan, then either go east to Kazakhstan, Mongolia and China, or head south to Syria, Lebanon, Jordan and Israel.

Oh, and I promise to get the photos up from my last trip soon .
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Old 09-11-2006, 09:20 PM   #11
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AJB - what country are you a citizen of? It's usually not that difficult to get a tourist visa for Iran... Except for US citizens - but that's generally only because of the increased bureaucracy. What with Iran not having an official consul in the US, you have to go through the Iranian Interests Section of the Pakistani Embassy in Washington. They get it done, but they're sloooooooow.

Oh, it's easiest to get the visa approval if you're a student and say you want to go check out another culture and it's related to your studies...
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Old 09-12-2006, 06:52 AM   #12
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I'm British. Problem is, all my travels are done on a very tight budget and a tourist visa for Iran costs £70, and that's on top of the cost of an invitation from a travel agency and even then many people are denied it for no reason (with no refund).
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Old 09-12-2006, 10:48 AM   #13
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Ahhh, ok. Yeah, Iran's as bad at playing nice with the Brits as it is with us Yanks

If you're that set on it, you should see if there's some sort of British-Iranian cultural exchange program/organization that would expedite or even sponsor your Visa. You might have to write a paper for them or something, but I'd say it's worth it. Same goes for other countries for which you might have trouble obtaining a visa...
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