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Connection at jfk - how long will it take?

(16 Posts)
Itscurtainsforyou Sun 18-Sep-16 20:35:12

I've booked a holiday with BA, flying to New York, then a connecting flight onwards.
The connection time is 2 hours which seemed plenty, but then I realised we'll need to get through customs/immigration won't we?

I'm hoping that as its all one journey there should be enough time or they might fast track (!) us through (that'll be a first if they do!) - or worst case put us on the next flight.

Anyone have experienced of a short connection like this?

AttilaTheMeerkat Mon 19-Sep-16 08:20:06

Yes and we had a longer connection time than you have.

When do you travel, if it is say in a few months time then I would change the connecting flight to a later departing one.

Too short connection times are precisely why I would never do a same day internal transfer from the UK through a US airport ever again. Its hard enough doing a US domestic to another domestic flight in two hours particularly if you have to change terminal buildings. We did make the flight some years back but we had to run to the gate in another terminal (so going through security again).

The chances of you actually making this connection flight is very small, its simply not enough time. Also that clock will start as soon as the plane lands. BA tend to arrive into Terminal 7 at JFK. Which airline are you using with regards to the onward connection?.

What will happen is one of two things; you miss the connecting flight and will be put on the next one. This happens all the time so it is very routine. However, if the last flight of the day to your destination has already left you will be put on a flight the following day and they may give you a hotel voucher.

NicknameUsed Mon 19-Sep-16 08:25:01

"What will happen is one of two things; you miss the connecting flight and will be put on the next one. This happens all the time so it is very routine. However, if the last flight of the day to your destination has already left you will be put on a flight the following day and they may give you a hotel voucher."

This is what happened to us when we had flights via NY to Boston. In our case the flight was delayed by several hours due to technical problems, and we missed the last flight to Boston. They just gave us hotel vouchers and put us on the first flight the next morning.

I would say it took us at least 2 hours to clear immigration and customs at Orlando this year, so I would rebook your connecting flight if you can.

CMOTDibbler Mon 19-Sep-16 08:31:51

2 hours isn't enough. I only book connections with 4 hours - 1 1/2 for immigration, 45 for customs, 45 to check luggage back in, go through security again.

If there is another flight, they'll transfer you to that, but there is absolutely nothing they can do about the immigration and customs times

NicknameUsed Mon 19-Sep-16 08:39:15

If you fly with Aer Lingus via Dublin or Shannon you can clear US customs there instead of NY. Is that an option?

Whynotnowbaby Mon 19-Sep-16 09:06:38

We just made it on a connecting flight with that sort of timescale (which was a good thing as we were connecting again from the next flight) but it was very stressful and our luggage hadn't been put on the first plane but we didn't have time to make claim at jfk and ended up having a to make the decision to leave it and try to catch up by phone which was a nightmare

Itscurtainsforyou Mon 19-Sep-16 10:53:38

Thanks all. We're flying in and out of the same terminal do won't need to go from one to the other, but I'll phone BA today and ask them

Itscurtainsforyou Mon 19-Sep-16 11:31:02

That was frustrating. The BA chap I spoke to on the phone tried to tell me we wouldn't need to clear immigration/customs until our final destination! I told him this was the complete opposite of all I'd been told elsewhere. He then went to check and said I was right angry

He then said if we wanted to change it would be £150 each (so £900shock).

So it looks like we'll be taking our chances... As long as we get on a connecting flight somehow I guess it will be ok, I just don't want to end up being charged for it...

AttilaTheMeerkat Mon 19-Sep-16 12:02:56

I would put it to BA that a two hour connection time should never have been offered to you.

May I ask which airline you are connecting to. What time are you supposed to be arriving into JFK?. I would again check with BA about which terminal you will be departing from because you may have again been given duff info there too.

You are more likely to be put on a connecting flight the next day so you may well lose a day through such travelling. You may well have to pay out for extra meals because the airline will only give you a hotel voucher which will not cover these.

Have you also got this same two hour connection window on your departure?

MakeItStopNeville Mon 19-Sep-16 12:13:07

It normally takes around an hour from landing to clearing customs at JFK if you're a non US citizen.

3Eggses Mon 19-Sep-16 12:25:35

I'd be stressed with that connection. When I transited in Philadelphia, passport control was fine but we had to wait an age for our luggage to appear. Nobody then seemed to have a clue what we should do with our luggage as "there's nobody at the BA desk - shrug" and after that was worked out the queue for security was long and slow. I refuse to transit in the USA unless absolutely necessary.

If you can change your connection, do. Such a shit system they have in place there.

Itscurtainsforyou Mon 19-Sep-16 13:31:36

Both flights, although BA, are operated by American Airlines. I've checked with AA and they both arrive/leave at the same terminal.

Once they'd acknowledged that we would need to go through customs & immigration, they assured me that 2 hours was enough. We get in at 1pm and fly out again at 3pm, so there should be opportunity to catch another flight that day (as long as there's room on the flights obviously).

Just stress/hassle I don't need on the first day of the holiday - especially with going with small children too...

AttilaTheMeerkat Mon 19-Sep-16 14:52:04

"Once they'd acknowledged that we would need to go through customs & immigration, they assured me that 2 hours was enough".

They always say that and have heard them say that before now as well. Its wrong. Its still not enough time even if you are arriving into and departing from the same terminal building. Two hours is pushing it even for a domestic flight to domestic flight transfer.

I would consider discussing further with them the £150 per person charge to change the connection bearing in mind you have young children as well. At the very least they should now offer you a later connection for a nominal fee because you have every chance of missing it.

If you land at 1.00pm the clock will start ticking on you as soon as your plane lands on the ground at JFK. They will not hold this next plane for you. There are too many variables and any one delay here will have a domino effect.

galaxygirl45 Mon 19-Sep-16 14:58:28

We flew American Airlines on a BA flight code, and landed at JFK at 1.15pm and got through security at 4pm. Several international flights all came in at the same time and I've never seen a queue like didn't help that there were about 20 booths but only 3 people working. I'd really lost my sense of humour as it was so hot too..............!! And JFK is pretty big if you need to transfer terminals.

lovelyupnorth Mon 19-Sep-16 15:43:23

have you booked through tickets?

if you have and are above the Minimum Connecting time it's the airlines problem to get you there, if not you could be buggered.

worth asking the airline what the MCT's are they will have a database with all the options.

also remember you baggage minimum connecting time is often longer so can miss the transfer - though at JFK you'll need to clear customs so should be an issues

ExpatTrailingSpouse Mon 19-Sep-16 16:05:52

it is possible, but depends on luck. if you arrive at the same time as a large number of international flights, that's where you'll run into problems. you'll need to not only get through customs/immigration, but most likely also re-clear security even if it's same terminal (3oz liquids, x-ray bags, body scanner etc so keep in mind if you buy any duty free it needs to get repacked into your luggage). i do believe you've got the minimum connection time, so if you do miss second flight, i can't see why AA wouldn't rebook you on next available flight.

i've personally made it through in 2 hours through various major US airports, but i also tend not to travel at busy times. When are you travelling?

Best of luck!

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