Uzbekistan Railways don`t accept valid kazakh online-tickets

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Valikhanov
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Uzbekistan Railways don`t accept valid kazakh online-tickets

Postby Valikhanov » Mon Mar 26, 2018 10:13 am

We had a bit of a bad surprise (along with many kazakh citizens on the same train) when we tried to board the train Tashkent-Almaty with our fully paid and valid kazakh online-tickets:
Usually, you can turn printouts of online-tickets into "real" tickets at a special counter in front of the uzbek stations. This isn`t a problem when booking directly via Uzbek Railways. However, we had booked the train via Kazakh-Railways, since we both are living in Almaty (actually, a kazakh friend had booked it for us).
When we showed up at the counter, they wouldn´t change the ticket, but said they`d already be valid. The crew of the train, however, wouldn`t let anyone in without a "real" uzbek ticket.
We were not the only ones caught in the trap - a lot of Kazakhs visited Usbekistan on this year´s "Nauryz" and were also not let onto the train. Since there were only 15 minutes left, some of them actually bought a new ticket for more than a hundred dollars, while others bribed the crew.
While I am sure that the tickets indeed are valid, staff obvisously had no idea of it (or they were extraordinarily brash.) Since most of the Kazakhs didn´t book directly but via a tour-agency, I just wanted to share this information, because it could be helpful for some other travellers here.

I´ll attach a pic of my ticket, so if yours look alike, there might be the same problem.

Unfortunately, our experience is the only information I have, so I can´t give you any further advice. Apart from this, our trip through uz was very rewarding. I will definitely visit again!
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Valikhanov
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Re: Uzbekistan Railways don`t accept valid kazakh online-tickets

Postby Valikhanov » Mon Mar 26, 2018 11:22 am

Maybe another thing: Bribing "Provdniki" seems to be a regular thing in Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan. A kazakh friend of mine once convinced a provodnik to let him sleep on the floor of a full night train and sometimes you see locals "relaxing" in the chamber of the provodniki, too.

I will definitely not recommend this - it is just an information, nothing more.
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plhughes
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Re: Uzbekistan Railways don`t accept valid kazakh online-tickets

Postby plhughes » Mon Apr 09, 2018 4:26 pm

Do you happen to know if this was just because of Nooruz or is this a common problem?
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Valikhanov
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Re: Uzbekistan Railways don`t accept valid kazakh online-tickets

Postby Valikhanov » Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:11 pm

I have no idea.
My theory would be, that the train agencies have some new agreement on cooperation, since the kazakh-uzbek relations are being pushed right now. In such countries, that means top-bottom-decisions. And since there usually is a lack of professional business-communications, the "news" have not reached the people who actually have to implement the agreement.
So nobody had any idea what to do, which leads to the provodniky taking advantage of the situation.

But as I said, this is only my theory.
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Lisa and Michael
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Re: Uzbekistan Railways don`t accept valid kazakh online-tickets

Postby Lisa and Michael » Mon May 07, 2018 1:16 am

Hi,
anybody knows if this is sorted now?
We already bought the ticket from Almaty to Tashkent via tickets.kz and don't know now if we should buy the Uzbekistan tickets via them. Would be so easy.
Travelling this month.
At least we see how many tickets are still left for every train...
Happy travels, Lisa
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davidalanlittle
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Re: Uzbekistan Railways don`t accept valid kazakh online-tickets

Postby davidalanlittle » Mon Jun 25, 2018 7:36 pm

Hi. Sorry if this has already been discussed,but I noticed that when trying to book a train journey originating in Uzbekistan on Kazakh rail website it says: "Attention! You can get a travel document (ticket) only at the ticket office on the territory of Kazakhstan."

Was that disclaimer there previously?

I'm looking to do something like this October, and the Kazakh website still looks the most user-friendly. Do you think it's just a case of exchanging the 'e-ticket/not e-ticket' while i'm in Kazakhstan - rather than waiting until i'm in Kazakhstan?

Thanks.
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JoMo1971
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Re: Uzbekistan Railways don`t accept valid kazakh online-tickets

Postby JoMo1971 » Tue Jun 26, 2018 3:39 pm

I have a totally different experience to this! I arrived at Samarkand station 30 mins before my train departure to Bukhara having purchased my ticket through the Kazakh tickets website (I didn't have a print out unfortunately and had the ticket PDF on my phone due to the hotel I was staying at not having printer) and was told by the station security that I had to exchange it for a ticket at the ticket office. I entered the ticket office to the usual Uzbek scrum of a queue (????) and waited my turn chatting to friendly locals, but it became apparent that father time was not going to allow this exchange to take place, so i made my goodbyes to new found friends and returned to the security entrance and explained it was not possible to exchange tickets as the ticket office was too busy. A walkie talkie call mentioning the magic word 'tourist' followed and I was immediately allowed through.I had to show my PDF and passport obviously a couple more times and I was on the train... no bribes, no requests... just polite smiley staff!
Perhaps the stars aligned and I was lucky, but thought I'd just share my experience!

By the way, I wish Uzbek railways website would allow non-UZ card transactions as they are even more cheaper than the Kazakh railways website which is in turn way cheaper than any agents who'll book the tickets for you!
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Milad
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Re: Uzbekistan Railways don`t accept valid kazakh online-tickets

Postby Milad » Tue Jun 26, 2018 4:16 pm

JoMo1971 wrote:I have a totally different experience to this! I arrived at Samarkand station 30 mins before my train departure to Bukhara having purchased my ticket through the Kazakh tickets website (I didn't have a print out unfortunately and had the ticket PDF on my phone due to the hotel I was staying at not having printer) and was told by the station security that I had to exchange it for a ticket at the ticket office. I entered the ticket office to the usual Uzbek scrum of a queue (????) and waited my turn chatting to friendly locals, but it became apparent that father time was not going to allow this exchange to take place, so i made my goodbyes to new found friends and returned to the security entrance and explained it was not possible to exchange tickets as the ticket office was too busy. A walkie talkie call mentioning the magic word 'tourist' followed and I was immediately allowed through.I had to show my PDF and passport obviously a couple more times and I was on the train... no bribes, no requests... just polite smiley staff!
Perhaps the stars aligned and I was lucky, but thought I'd just share my experience!

By the way, I wish Uzbek railways website would allow non-UZ card transactions as they are even more cheaper than the Kazakh railways website which is in turn way cheaper than any agents who'll book the tickets for you!


As a general and worldwide rule, you can exchange PDF tickets to paper train tickets only in the country where you bought the ticket. You were really lucky and benefitted from what seems to be a new Uzbek policy not to bother tourists wherever possible.
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randompunter
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Re: Uzbekistan Railways don`t accept valid kazakh online-tickets

Postby randompunter » Tue Oct 30, 2018 1:20 am

Here is a recent update - we did this trip last week on the 23/10/18 from Tashkent to Almaty with a Kazahk e-ticket that looked the same as the one the original poster tried to use. Two weeks earlier I actually tried exchanging this for a real paper ticket at Alma-Ata 2 station and was told it was not necessary and even after I insisted they still would not do it; I tried both the normal ticket window using a Russian translator app and the tourist office where a very brusque english speaking lady gave the e-ticket a cursory glance and told me it was okay.

Anyway in the end it was a very smooth trip (the process, not the train ride itself which was quite bumpy :lol: ) and we had no issues at all. At the main Tashkent station you have to enter through the "Foreigner's entry" booth on the left hand side facing the station. Two guards checked our ticket there and another inside the station after security where it was stamped. No issues with the provodnitsa when boarding the train either.

Seems like things have become much more relaxed for tourists in Uzbekistan, for instance when riding the Tashkent Metro we were always waved through both the outside guard check and the inside security check while all the locals' bags were inspected.

Only negative was I think booking the train is cheaper on the Uzbekistan Railways website but unfortunately no matter how many different email addresses I tried I could not receive the registration email :?

Cheers,
RP
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Milad
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Re: Uzbekistan Railways don`t accept valid kazakh online-tickets

Postby Milad » Tue Oct 30, 2018 8:56 am

randompunter wrote:Here is a recent update - we did this trip last week on the 23/10/18 from Tashkent to Almaty with a Kazahk e-ticket that looked the same as the one the original poster tried to use. Two weeks earlier I actually tried exchanging this for a real paper ticket at Alma-Ata 2 station and was told it was not necessary and even after I insisted they still would not do it; I tried both the normal ticket window using a Russian translator app and the tourist office where a very brusque english speaking lady gave the e-ticket a cursory glance and told me it was okay.

Anyway in the end it was a very smooth trip (the process, not the train ride itself which was quite bumpy :lol: ) and we had no issues at all. At the main Tashkent station you have to enter through the "Foreigner's entry" booth on the left hand side facing the station. Two guards checked our ticket there and another inside the station after security where it was stamped. No issues with the provodnitsa when boarding the train either.

Seems like things have become much more relaxed for tourists in Uzbekistan, for instance when riding the Tashkent Metro we were always waved through both the outside guard check and the inside security check while all the locals' bags were inspected.

Only negative was I think booking the train is cheaper on the Uzbekistan Railways website but unfortunately no matter how many different email addresses I tried I could not receive the registration email :?

Cheers,
RP


Was your train run by Kazakh or Uzbek Railways? Both exist on that route, and the OP wanted to take an Uzbek train. If your train was Kazakh, it'd be no real news that they accept their own tickets ;) but thanks for the report!
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