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On line check in - then how long before the flight to get to the airport?

(18 Posts)

If you check in on-line, how long before the flight do you aim to get to the airport? The 2 hours before for EU and 3 hours before for non EU don't apply if you've already checked in, do they?

I guess I may have to contact the airline to ask, but just trying to get to grips with how we're going to get to the airport on the return leg of our trip - I was planning to use the train, but trains won't have started running in time to get us into the airport 2 hours before...

CMOTDibbler Thu 10-Jul-14 09:25:29

Depends on the airport and the flight length, plus the hand luggage or hold luggage. I've been through teeny airports where you can get there 30 min before the flight with hand luggage, no issue; and to airports where 3 hours with hold bags still felt like a rush

Beehatch Thu 10-Jul-14 09:27:03

Think they still advise 2 hours. Especially if you have bags to check in - you'll need to queue for that, and for security, and to get on the plane. Online check in does not really speed things up!

Artandco Thu 10-Jul-14 09:31:28

2hrs if hold luggage. 45 mins if just hand luggage

Just take hand luggage if you can, much easier with train anyway

settingsitting Thu 10-Jul-14 09:35:23

This is the bit I cant stand about flying. Far too long faffing about. Who cares how long a short flight is when the getting there, parking and going from one end of a buillding to actaul take off takes that long.

shushpenfold Thu 10-Jul-14 09:40:28

Having done this last Saturday to Italy (:0)) from Gatwick North, I would not be happy with just 45 mins as I would not like to guarantee getting through the security checks in this time, even with just hand luggage. We dropped the bags in 15 mins and then took another 15 getting through security, but there we very few queues in either spot so it was far quicker than I have experienced checks at Bristol airport have taken 30 mins before so goodness knows how long the larger airport queues get it you time it incorrectly.

Oh no sad

It is a Singapore airlines flight, but we are only doing the Munich - Manchester and back to Munich part. Its getting to Manchester for the 9am return part I am concerned about - ironically getting to Munich for the 7am departure is absolutely no problem at all.

But many thanks for the answers. Guess I'll have to hire a car then, which I hate as of course I will have to hire it from and return it to the airport, so keep it the full 5 day stay, and once I've paid a ridiculous 57 pounds for a stage 1 car seat hire for the 5 days it will be over 200 pounds for the cheapest option we can actually fit into sad The train would have been 28 pounds each way.

Will have to stick to mid day departures next time, what a pain, as my kids get up early by nature so I thought we could make cheaper early flights work...

settingsitting I totally agree - we usually drive, but this time we are only going for 5 days so are flying. Its an 8 hour drive minimum, sometimes up to 12, plus ferry crossing (we take a night ferry so it adds 12 hours - but we get to sleep in a nice hotel like cabin and wander around the ferry, have a meal etc. so that part is like a holiday). Now that I start to try to book the peripheral parts of travel its looking as though the 2.5 hour flight is actually only 1/4 of an 8 hour journey, which is also going to cost more... Very off putting!

And people wonder why we don't "pop" back over for things like a retirement dinner or a birthday meal out, as we really aren't that far away, with all the cheap flights etc. - €1000 for the whole family, and 16 hours travel, would be why...

Just hand luggage is the plan (although now I may have to take car seats for my older 2 that may scupper that plan and make everything that much more awkward), but 3 kids under 10 to 1 adult, so may not be doing brisk and business like marching from A to B...

Thanks for the reality check everyone grin

fivepies Thu 10-Jul-14 10:05:17

You could travel to Manchester airport the night before and stay in an airport hotel? Would work out cheaper than the car hire? Less stress in the morning then.

I was assuming that would be equally expensive five but prompted by your post just had a look, and it seems at first glance it might be possible to get a room for 42 pounds in a "mystery" unnamed til booking hotel 10 mins from the airport - transfer not included and quoted as about 6 pounds by taxi. The first named hotel is 69 pounds for the night, also the 10 mins from airport pay for your own taxi arrangement.

I guess 56 pounds on train fares (as originally planned), plus a 6 pound taxi (and probably also similar on taxi from train to hotel the night before) and 42 pounds on the cheapest hotel is about 110 pounds or so, so still just over half the price of a hire car... so probably is a sensible option, thank you! Must get there at bed time so the kids don't need dinner at the hotel!

It all adds up so fast! Was thinking I could keep travel expenses to flight and train fare when I booked the flight...

Beehatch Thu 10-Jul-14 15:12:11

How far will you be from the airport? Can you look into taxi firms that do the airport run. We're an hour away from Gatwick and can get a large mini van one way to the airport for about �60. And they provide the car seats as long as you pre book.

Bee 2.5 hours drive according to googlemaps - I did get one airport cars quote via the Manchester airport website, and it came back as 145 pounds! So that plus trainfare one way is less than hire car plus fuel, but more than the hotel, taxi, train combo. There may be cheaper taxi firms though!

Beehatch Thu 10-Jul-14 15:55:47

I'd phone around a few taxi firms local to where you are staying, rather than airport taxis. But the hotel combo sounds like it works too, and at least you won't have worries about traffic in the morning.

LIZS Thu 10-Jul-14 15:59:35

Bag drop and security can easily take 2 hours .

HercShipwright Thu 10-Jul-14 16:00:10

I've transited through Manchester but never flied directly from there. It's not as big as heathrow or Gatwick but it is unlikely to have better staff to traveller ratios. The way things are right now, I'm allowing a full two hours before flying even though I always check in from my app. You have the combination of security changes from day to day, plus the natural July increase in traffic (which gets bigger by the week from now till September before the brief lull between schools going back and half term). If you get through security quickly (IF) then you have to hang around airside, yes, but that's better than being in a humungous security or bag drop queue and looking at the clock...

HercShipwright Thu 10-Jul-14 16:00:36

Flown. Can't believe I let that one slip!

JeanSeberg Thu 10-Jul-14 16:03:32

I travel most weeks with work from Manchester and give myself an hour at the airport.

The staff at security are very helpful when there are queues and will fast-track you to the front if you are approaching your take off time.

Have you tried the Premier Inns at the airport for cheap rooms? Also Bewleys is reasonably priced.

grin Herc

Thanks everyone - just gritted my teeth and chanced booking the "Mystery" hotel - and it turns out to be the same Premier Inn listed for 69 pounds if you book it by name. Happy enough with that, given the options smile

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