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Mr Magic Man
New member
Username: Mrmagicman

Post Number: 1
Registered: 12-2007
Posted on Tuesday, December 11, 2007 - 10:23 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

So I'd like to use frequent flyer miles with Continental Airlines. I'm flying on New Years Eve and returning May 1st, for a total of four months.

The women with whom I'm making the reservation for the plane tells me that I need a visa to stay over three months. I tell her no problem, after two months I'll take a bus to Santiago, Chile, for a short weekend stay and then come back.

She says that I need proof of this: either I have to bring the bus ticket with me when I fly in, or I have to get a Visa.

Is this true? It sounds like a total pain in the ass. In the past I've done the opposite (flown into Santiago for four months and stopped in Argentina so I was only in Santiago for two months at a time.)

I'm tempted to just get the plane tickets and go. Will they really turn me away?

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Intermediate Member
Username: Arial

Post Number: 115
Registered: 10-2006

Posted on Wednesday, December 12, 2007 - 3:41 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Two years ago this was a scam. I don't know if anything has changed but Argentina had no such requirement at that time.

Elsewhere on this forum I gave an account of Avianca forcing me at the counter to give up my flight that night or buy a return ticket. I gave them my credit card for it but put it into dispute with the verbal support of Argentina immigrations who assured me some airlines are doing that to force you to buy your return ticket with them. Scam, scam, scam. In the end, my credit card company refused to pay Avianca. Arial
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Username: Welcometomendoza

Post Number: 74
Registered: 7-2007

Posted on Wednesday, December 12, 2007 - 6:27 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

It is true that the tourist visa that Argentina issues most tourists, is good for 90 days (renwable of course) ..and has been like tha for many years. In mnay cases thse airline employees are followinbg rules and guidelines given to them by the Argentine government (fines are a beeeach!) Often times you can say you have an onward ticket to Uruguay, etc...even just having the unpaid reservation and giving them the confirmation number will suffice.
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Adam Walker
Username: Adam_walker

Post Number: 56
Registered: 4-2007
Posted on Wednesday, December 12, 2007 - 8:12 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

I have never come into the country without a return ticket, but I have had plenty of friends who have.

I think it is rare they stop you , but not impossible. As WTMendoza says, u could make a reservation to be safe, but I think if you explain/lie and say you are travelling all overm and will hea to Uruguay, Chile etc. I doubt they will stop you.

I am touching wood, but I have been in Argentina on/off for a year now and continued to just cross various boarders, either to head back to the UK for work/meetings or over to Uruguay/Brazil... they always have a really good look at my passport (I have been in and out several times in that 1 year) and I always think "o-oh" but they never stop me, and rarely ask any questions.

It's really not like the USA, who pulled me into a quiet room with armed guards when I went to NY for 3 days on business!... I think they thought I was smuggling drugs or something!
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Simon Fawkes
Junior Member
Username: Expatba

Post Number: 50
Registered: 1-2007

Posted on Wednesday, December 12, 2007 - 11:00 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

It's a con operated by the airlines, although they will claim to be following Argentinean immigration rules.

I usually buy a single ticket, and have never had any problems.

Last time I came was with Aerolineus, and the girl on their check in desk in London told me I needed a return so she couldn't check me in. I argued with her, and pointed out I had done this many times. In the end she called her supervisor. The supervisor said that technically I needed a return according to the rules. She said I could board as long as I was aware that there was a slim chance that Argentinean immigration might not let me in once I arrived in BA unless I bought a return ticket at Ezeiza. She asked if I had funds to do so should the need arise, and I showed her a credit card which she said was fine.

In point of fact I have never been asked to show a return ticket by Argentinean immigration, although technically according to the Argetinean embassy's UK website one is needed.

Hope this helps

Simon Fawkes
Author, The Complete Guide To Real Estate Investment in Argentina, ISBN 1430303980,
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Advanced Member
Username: Diverdown48

Post Number: 468
Registered: 6-2006

Posted on Wednesday, December 12, 2007 - 2:06 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Continental Airlines does not run scams. They follow the rules of the FAA and when they are flying into a foreign country they obey that nations law.
If they tell you you need a round trip ticket that has a stay of 90 days or less they are following Argentine law as they understand it.
Airlines do try to protect themselves as any good business does. Longer stays bring on issues of costs such as fuel and even labor.
I have seen one way tickets that were more expensive than the round trip ticket to the same place. It doesn't make sense to me but that was the case.
If they will not sell you the round trip ticket than you can make the ticket for 90 days or less and then pay $100 to extend your stay which they will do. I've done that also.
But be sure to change your departure date before the origional date comes and gos or they may not and probably will not allow you to change it.
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Advanced Member
Username: Diverdown48

Post Number: 469
Registered: 6-2006

Posted on Wednesday, December 12, 2007 - 2:13 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

WTMendoza is right about the visa extensions that you can get from Argentine immigration.
The origional stay can be up to 90 days but can for a nominal fee be extened an additional 90 days or by simply leaving the country and getting a new visa stamp when you return. It can be as little as a day trip across the Rio de La Plata to Uruguay where you will get your passport stamped and then return to Argentina and get a new 90 days.
You can pay for the first 90 day extension at immigration but after that time has gone by you must leave the country.

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