I hope that someone here can enlight me with what to do:
I need to travel from Dubai to Colombo. On the day I wish to travel, prices are rather high. I found a good deal with two tickets as follows:
-Ticket 1: Srilankan DXB-CMB-MAA (8 hours layover in CMB)
-Ticket 2: Jet Airways MAA-CMB
There are approx 3 hours transit time in MAA.
The routing may sound odd, but it's only slightly more expensive than other nonstop or boring options, and from an aviation point of view exciting to me.
As a EU citizen now comes the tricky part:
I read that I can remain in Transit without visa in India, as I am coming from a third country (UAE) transiting to another (Sri Lanka). Technically I would have never entered Sri Lanka before landing in MAA if I stay in transit.
How is arrival in MAA? Can I remain airside, just go to the Jet Airways transit counter and will not even need to deal with a passport check? Or do I need to pass some kind of passport check anyway which can cause travel as they would realize I come from CMB and will fly back to CMB which could make them think I am not travelling from a country to another through india (but actually coming and flying back from the same country, thus needing a visa)?
And if a TWOV is not available, I can always get a transit visa for 12 EUR or so in advance, but there again they could consider I am not transiting from Country A to Country B through India, right?
Since I have 8 hours transit in CMB I am planning to short check my bags to CMB and pick them up there to put them in a luguage storage at/near the airport or already check in in my hotel close to the airport, which I would use the same evening after coming back. However this would lead me to officially enter (and reexit) Sri Lanka and showing passport stamps, which would make the India transit scenario even more difficult, right?
The best thing would be the possibilty to do a TWOV and just remain airside (i.e. like in FRA) without the need to pass immigration. Can someone confirm this is possible?
Because then I just wouldn't get any visa for India at all, and I guess i shoud be fine when checking in in Dubai, too, as I can show a onward ticket the same day out of india.
Thanks a lot for your opinion.