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Traveling EU to EU with transit in UK

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Apr 1st, 2014, 05:47 PM
  #1
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Traveling EU to EU with transit in UK

Hello,

This is my first ever question here. I am Pakistani passport holder and living in Italy. I am a traveler and recently finished my Euro trip. Turin (Italy)>Barcelona (Spain)>Brussels(Belgium)>Budapest(Hungary)>Paris(France)>Gothenburg(Sweden)>London(UK)>Turin(Italy) and I arrived Italy just today. Here I have a confusion which I would like to get cleared.

While I was traveling in EU, ofcourse my passport was not being stamped, but when I left Sweden for UK, I got an exit stamp on my passport (So far so good).
As I arrived in UK, I asked for transit without visa at the border control which I was allowed. The lady at the immigration counter after some verifications put two stamps on my passport page. One writes: "NVD 40310, Leave to enter for 24 hours" while the other is the UK border control stamp "Immigration Officer, #, date and STANSTED" [It does not says entery or Exit] and when I asked the officer if it is an entry to UK, she said no, we have just allowed you to leave the border control in order to take your connecting flight and its a transit and that you did not enter UK. (Even now, so far, so good)

So when I left the check in counter for Turin at Stansted, confusion begins, I am leaving UK and going EU. I was expecting to meet the passport control officer before I board on the aircraft but I didn't. My passport was not stamped while leaving UK. Quite confused, I arrived the immigration officer at Turin, they confused guy, checked my residence card and passport, discussed with his colleague and handed it over to me. I was once again confused, No stamp again? I walked on but no, something is wring, I walked back and on looking at me coming back, he said.."Oh, yes..give me your passport", and stamped my entry and hence I was legally in EU again.

Since then, I am confused, why they don't stamp the passport while leaving for EU (Stansted) but they do while leaving for UK (Sweden) ? And I have doubts if everything went alright? Did I miss the border control at Stansted? Its not possible i know, then what happened? Is it a normal procedure? But it looks strange.!
bukhari917 is offline  
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Apr 1st, 2014, 09:29 PM
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Someone else can probably give you a better technical answer than me, but you didn't miss Passport Control when you left Stansted - there isn't one. The UK Border Agency's physical presence at airports is focused on immigration checks not emigration. The airlines check and collect passenger's passport data and provide to the authorities but (apart from some very rare occasional exceptions) you won't see a border agency check when leave the country.
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Apr 1st, 2014, 11:48 PM
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yes, only stamp on way into UK
bilboburgler is online now  
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 12:41 AM
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All Schengen countries are supposed to put a Schengen exit stamp on passport of non-EEA citizens leaving for a non-Schengen country, so you were correctly stamped on leaving Sweden (stamp with an arrow pointing outwards).
As stated, there is no exit control when leaving UK so you didn't get any stamp. You are allowed 24 hours in which to catch a connecting flight from UK, so you don't need to get a transit visa in advance under the 'travel without visa' concession. You were (eventually) correctly stamped in at Turin, as you re-entered Schengen from UK.
So what you experienced was perfectly normal, though no doubt confusing for the uninitiated!
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 12:49 AM
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BTW, the two stamps you got in UK were:
Limited leave to enter for 24 hours, with your landing card reference;
Open date stamp.
The two stamps are placed close together to be seen together.
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 02:28 AM
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Italian immigration officers are often lax about passport stamps, and some people have had some trouble when leaving the EU from another country, because there was no entry stamp. You should always insist on getting both entry and exit stamps if you're not a Schengen citizen.
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 04:12 AM
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Thank you guys. Looks everything went alright. But one last question, how does the UK Border control then realizes that I have left the UK? Is it the airlines which intimate them?
But yes, the Italian Immigration Officers are kind of less careful. On my very first ever entry to EU about a year back,I was expecting some questions but no, not a single one, he took my passport, scanned, stamped and handed over back to me in less than 30sec. I was surprised (and actually pleased) to see his confidence on me.
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 05:14 AM
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"But one last question, how does the UK Border control then realizes that I have left the UK? Is it the airlines which intimate them?"

Yes, there is advance passenger information linked to eBorders, (see https://contact-ukba.homeoffice.gov....nfopassengers/) but UK Border Force generally expect overstayers to be picked up next time they try to enter UK or apply for a visa.
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 05:39 AM
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Ah I see. We are supposed to scan our boarding cards at the exit gates. Got it!
Thanks Alec. but the link does not work. thnx anyways, confusion is over. And thnx everyone else.
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 08:28 AM
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Alec's link didn't work because he added a ) at the end. Delete the ) and it works fine.
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 01:00 PM
  #11
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yeah I realized it later.
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 01:06 PM
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First of all, you are confusing the EU and the Schengen zone. The UK is part of the EU but not part of the Schengen zone.
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 01:22 PM
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[[ but UK Border Force generally expect overstayers to be picked up next time they try to enter UK or apply for a visa. ]]

If they don't stamp your passport on exit, how do they know whether you left last week or a year ago?
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 01:24 PM
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I think they are tougher on entry. The US and Canada don't stamp passports on the way out...I had never experienced that until I came to Europe.
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 02:00 PM
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the wonders of electronically collected data means that the stamp is only one clue
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 02:30 PM
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Electronic data, stamps from other countries, self-declaration with penalty of being blacklisted for up to 10 years for lying.
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 02:53 PM
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I don't know about Canada, but the US doesn't have any specific limit on the number of days you can stay in a year, just the number of days you can stay on one visit (90).
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Apr 2nd, 2014, 10:36 PM
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"If they don't stamp your passport on exit, how do they know whether you left last week or a year ago?"

The e-borders system requires carriers to submit passenger manifests (incl passport numbers) to the Border Agency.

The system isn't foolproof (self-evidently, it doesn't find overstayers who just go to ground here, for example). But it's proof against more fools than exit stamps on passports used to be.
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