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First trip to Europe passport control question

I’d appreciate it if some of you can confirm my understanding of customs/passport control.

Flying to London for a week – customs and passport control required.

Eurostar to Paris – customs and passport control required.

Rail from Paris to Amsterdam – nothing

Fly Amsterdam to Frankfort – nothing

Fly Frankfort to London – We should be staying within the international area of the airport, customs and passport?

Same day flight from London to US – customs and passport required at US entry.


Posted by
1099 posts
  1. Customs checks and passport checks are not the same thing.

  2. Your assumptions are correct for immigration (passport checks), but you will go through passport check when you leave Frankfurt for London.

  3. The German Financial centre is called Frankfurt am Main, usually just Frankfurt.

Posted by
7169 posts

And what will you do if your Frankfurt to London flight is delayed or cancelled??

Posted by
8573 posts

In Frankfurt you will go through exit immigration. You will be leaving Schengen and will get your passport stamped showing that you are leaving.

In London on your flight from Frankfurt you follow flight connections signs to your next flight. There shouldn't be any immigration or customs but you will go through security again.

For Eurostar, you will go through Schengen immigration in London. Not on your arrival in Paris.

In most cases in Europe you will not be stopped going through customs. It's immigration where you need to get your passport stamped.

Frankfurt is in Germany. Frankfort is in Kentucky.

Posted by
11704 posts

Often when you have an international connection, they'll shuttle you off into a "holding" area so they don't have to re-screen everyone. If yours is just getting off one flight then catching a different flight (rather than a connection), you'll probably have to do passport stops. For the most part, it's not difficult. Have your passport handy and follow the signs. I try to note who's carrying a U.S. passport and stick close to that group.

Coming into England, you will see a Customs choice for having something to declare and having nothing to declare. More than likely you will have nothing to declare (large cash, items for sale, food items, etc.) as will most of the people on your flight. When you have nothing to declare, you only need your passport stamped.

Posted by
4684 posts

In general, Eurostar requires arrival for security and Immigration control one hour before your scheduled train departure. Be sure to check the actual time interval they give you, and obey it. Both lines and rule enforcement can be severe.

Frankfurt airport has Shengen concourses and non-Schengen concourses. So at some point you will line up for a passport check and departure stamp, to get to the London flight's gate. Once you go past that check, you can't go back. But there's plenty of food and shopping on both sides.

Next time you go to Europe, check whether an Open-Jaw flight (home-London, Frankfurt-home) might cost almost the same as going back to London.

Posted by
10909 posts

London is interesting. A few months ago when I went through security they were making everyone take their liquids out of the plastic bags and put them into plastic bags provided by security. Guess they got tired of people using the wrong size bag or something.

Posted by
120 posts

Interesting about having to put liquids into bags provided by security in London.

We went through London on January 4. We flew British Airways/American Airlines from Barcelona to London to Chicago. After getting off the flight from Barcelona, we went through security and it went smoothly. No one in my family had to take liquids out of the Ziplock brand quart bags we use.

After going through security, we found a bathroom and went straight to the gate. Upon entering the gate area, we had passport/ticket check and some of us were directed to speak with an agent. I'm assuming my son (age 14) and I were directed to talk to an agent based on his age. the Agent asked questions of my son about school and activities. I'm guessing it was to make sure it wasn't child trafficking? Not sure, but the agent was kind and professional.

Hope our recent experience helps.

Posted by
4468 posts

London City airport has some procedures I haven't encountered elsewhere, such as requiring asthma inhalers to be in a separate plastic bag.