I just arrived Tashkent tonight and the experience at the airport was better than I thought.
Even though the airport is not a busy one, passengers from my flight still need to take a bus to the terminal building. Once the bus stopped, everyone just jumped out and ran to the immigration like in a sprinting race! I thought perhaps it’s very slow, and so they rushed to the immigration hall.
I thought I would need more than an hour to complete immigration, and the running of the people had further reinforce this thinking, which turned out to be wrong.
I told the staff that I needed a visa on arrival , so he just pointed me to an immigration counter by the side. I waited till my turn, but the officer at the counter told me that it’s a wrong line for visa. He made a phone call and pointed me to an office just across the booth.
I waited and then 5-6 minutes later someone who’s not wearing an uniform came and processed my visa on arrival. I produced the letter of invitation and told him I needed a double entry visa. He double checked my departure date and then issued a visa to me with 3 more days of extra at the end. Visa fee was collected on the spot in US dollars ($70 for double entry) and I went back to the immigration counters again, which was now only 3 people waiting.
After the immigration officer said “Welcome to Uzbekistan” to me , I picked up my checked bag , perhaps just within 1-2 minutes of waiting after immigration.
I walked to the Red Customs Channel as I had something to declare. The custom officer just stamped on my customs forms after one to two questions.
I went out from the building and went up to the second floor. There is an exchange office there operated by the National Bank of Uzbekistan. The staff there refused to take two of my bank notes - one of them, there was a minor stamp on the side, which was really discreet, but the staff at the exchange office rejected. While I understand the logic very well, the other bank note was rejected is even more ridiculous- just a fold!
From the moment I arrived inside the terminal building, to the moment I went out from the building , it was all less than 50 minutes. And I paid 30,000 som for the taxi, and I finally checked-in to my room. By that time, it’s exactlh one hour!
Conclusion: my first impression and my experience at the Tashkent Airport is actually not bad.