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Short layover at JNB

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Mar 24th, 2015, 06:25 PM
  #1
P_M
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Short layover at JNB

I hope to hear from someone who is very familiar with this airport and/or one who has made a short connection after an international flight.

I will be coming into JNB from the US. I will have only a 1 hour layover before my flight to CPT. I was quite shocked they gave me such a short layover when I must clear customs. I assume I have to get my luggage. Do I just hand it off to someone like we do here in the US or must I re-check it? Do you think there is a good chance I can make my connection?

I will be in business class so will there be speedy lines at customs and security for business class passengers?

Thanks in advance.
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Mar 24th, 2015, 06:51 PM
  #2
P_M
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FWIW, I just called to ask if this is a legal connection and they said it was. It still seems very short to me but I hope it's doable.
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Mar 25th, 2015, 02:59 AM
  #3
 
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I've travelled thru JNB on the way to CPT several times. However mine have been separate tickets therefore I have left much more time between flights. If your tickets are legal connections, then there is nothing to worry about. If the incoming flight is late, there are several flights a day from JNB to CPT and the airline will rebook on the next available one.
You might be thru checked, luggage and all - not 100% sure but if you are then even less to be concerned about. The international area to the domestic area of JNB airport is only a short walk and its clearly signposted.
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Mar 25th, 2015, 03:11 AM
  #4
 
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I had a 90 minute layover coming from Australia. My luggage was booked through to Cape Town but I had to collect it to go through Immigration/ Customs and then place it back into a chute just after the exit. I was a bit worried beforehand, but the process was quite quick and easy.

I don't know if the lines are always speedy but I had plenty of time to spare.
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Mar 25th, 2015, 06:13 AM
  #5
 
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Howzit PM,

Odin and Ozian have explained it very well, and I'll just add my two bob's worth in point form:
1. Check-in your luggage the whole way through to Cape Town, or at the very least get a boarding pass for the JNB-CPT flight (this will then bypass the need to 'properly' check-in at the domestic departure check-in counter in Joburg)
2. Disembark upon arrival at Johannesburg
3. Join immigration queue...one queue for South Africans, one queue for everyone else. No arrival form required, just show your passport (and visa, if applicable)
4. Collect luggage from carousel
5. Walk through customs (usually very speedy)
5. Continue to "Transfers" check-in, and re-check in your luggage.
7. Walk out into the international arrivals area
8. Make your way upstairs to the domestic departures area
9. Go through security check
10. Enter domestic departure lounge and head for your gate...fast!

Happy travels,
Darren Humphrys
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Mar 25th, 2015, 01:42 PM
  #6
 
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The usual advice is to leave about 2 hrs for the connection. After landing, it takes some time to get you over to Immigrations and then you have to get through it. If you're the only plane arriving you may get through quickly. If you're late or if several planes arrive at the same time you'll very likely miss the connection. But you'll be moved to the next available flight. Of course, your plane could arrive early, increasing the time for your connection.
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Mar 25th, 2015, 06:13 PM
  #7
P_M
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Thank you for all of your replies and your detailed information!!

UPDATE: I mentioned in my second post that I had called and I was told it was a legal connection. Unfortunately the call I made was to United as that's with whom I booked the ticket. Today I kept thinking about it (before I saw your replies) so I called South African Airways. The SAA rep looked at my schedule and she told me this is NOT a legal connection and United made an error in booking such a short layover. I called United back and told them of this error so they have rebooked me and my layover is now 2 hours and 15 minutes.

Nevertheless I am very glad I posted because you all gave me a lot of great info about JNB so thank you very much.
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Mar 25th, 2015, 06:50 PM
  #8
 
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That's actually THE perfect amount of time. Glad it worked out for you. It's also a reminder that SAA has a good reputation for helping us out with potential scheduling snags/issues.
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Mar 26th, 2015, 12:04 AM
  #9
 
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Agreed sdb2, that's a much better, and far less stressful, outcome P_M. Happy travels.
Darren
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Mar 26th, 2015, 02:27 AM
  #10
 
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That's much better. The last time I went through JNB on the way to Zambia the immigration queues were pretty long- took about 45 mins in one direction. It's all down to how many flights arrive at once- I was on an Airbus A380 from London, and another big flight from Hong Kong had just arrived, so there were a lot of people trying to get through at once. Coming back was better, as I arrived on a much smaller plane from Zambia. I partly blame these huge new planes- it's just so many people arriving at once.
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