1 hour connection at LHR, is this a mistake?

Old Aug 27th, 2023, 12:22 PM
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1 hour connection at LHR, is this a mistake?

I booked a flight with connection at LHR on British Airways, JFK>LHR, 1 hour in between, then LHR>CHQ. It's all on 1 ticket and both are T5. When I booked it I just assumed if will be fine, since they offered it. But since I've heard horror stories about LHR connections and BA. We called BA and they assured us it will be fine, and their website says 1 hour is enough, but I'm skeptical.

We are in row 44 on the 1st flight, so it could take a while before we even can get off the plane. Do they typically allow quick exit for passengers with tight connections? Do they hold up the connecting flight if we're running late? They don't appear to have any other nonstop flights to CHQ later in the day. I plan on calling them again, as the trip is only a few weeks away, and will definitely talk to them when we get to JFK to find out how they can hopefully assure a successful transfer but I need some encouragement and/or advice.

Last edited by MFNYC; Aug 27th, 2023 at 12:29 PM.
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Old Aug 27th, 2023, 01:35 PM
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60 minutes is the MCT for a T-5 to T-5 connection. I personally would not be happy with that - you will have to get through security and need to be at the departure gat 20 minutes before departure. But it is doable and they sold you the ticket.

IME - no they don't make the other passengers sit tight so others can get off quicker, and they seldom hold departures. But, hey -- there is a good chance your CHQ flight will be delayed Not being cheeky, but its true. Some days it almost seems more flights are delayed than depart on time. Which brings up -- there is no way to tell if your JFK > LHR flights will be on time either.

" . . . will definitely talk to them when we get to JFK to find out how they can hopefully assure a successful transfer" = no assurances possible. What happens happens. You are protected so if you do miss your connection, they'll put you on the next available flight - but not necessarily on the same day.

What I would do is ask if they can put you on an earlier flight out of JFK (maybe even the evening before and including possibly on AA metal - though AA uses T-3 so you wouldn't want a short connection for sure) - but don't hold your breath. On the day everything may work like clockwork and you'll be fine.


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Old Aug 27th, 2023, 02:44 PM
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JanisJ, everything you say is more or less what I've read. There are other flights, but with changes and mixed airlines. As far as earlier flights from NYC on BA, not much. Just 1 from EWR 15 minutes earlier. I haven't checked AA flights.

I check the 2nd flight every so often, and it is frequently late, but not by much.
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Old Aug 27th, 2023, 03:07 PM
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If you speak to them again you might ask for your seats to be moved to a row, or rows, close to the front of the cabin. It may be worth it to you for more peace of mind to accept not sitting together if singles are what's available. Or upgrade?

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Old Aug 27th, 2023, 06:24 PM
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Are you sure your originating flight from JFK is on BA and not a codeshare operated by American? Doing a quick search on Google flights I see the shortest connection as 1 hour 30 minutes.

If it is technically a "legal" connection you could make it if your arrival is not too delayed and you have only carry on luggage, but as janisj notes even if you miss the connection since you are on a single BA ticket they will accommodate you on the next available flight to your Greek destination. Even if the transatlantic leg is operated by American, if you are on a BA ticket they are still required to take care of you in the event of disruption.

EC261 has been incorporated into UK law so if you miss the connection due to delayed arrival from the US you could be entitled to compensation as well as hotel and food allowance if you have to remain overnight.
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Old Aug 28th, 2023, 05:57 AM
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I booked it on AA website with miles, but both flights are operated by BA. The LHR website says 1 hour if in the same terminal, 1.5 hrs if changing terminals. My case is in the same terminal. I did recently read that LHR will increase MCT by 15 minutes next year. The current route still shows up if you search for flights from NYC to CHQ on Kayak.

In May my daughter did have a missed connection in LHR due to delays and other issues on both ends (EWR and LHR), I think there was a glitch with the passport system on the UK side at the time so numerous delays. She's still waiting for reimbursement for overnight in London (that was not in her plans).

I just called BA. Got the "heavy volume" message, saying they are not taking calls. Then called AA. They're supposed to call back in 30-45 min. We shall see but I'm guessing they'll tell me to call BA. Meanwhile I'm seeing there's an air traffic control technical issue in Britain, so that may explain the heavy call volume.

Last edited by MFNYC; Aug 28th, 2023 at 06:20 AM.
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Old Aug 28th, 2023, 07:19 AM
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So I spoke with AA. There was nothing she could do, other than move my seats up 7 rows (without the $35 fee noted on the BA website). We're still in bad location for quick exit (row 48>41). I even said we'd be willing to go to London a day early and spend the night just to insure we don't miss the flight to Chania. She reassured me it should be fine. Once things quiet down on the LHR side, I'll try calling them again. Last resort is trying to get seat upgrade at airport.

Last edited by MFNYC; Aug 28th, 2023 at 07:57 AM.
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Old Sep 9th, 2023, 10:57 AM
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Update: I made several calls to both AA (where I booked from) and BA (airline operating flights). I was told repeatedly that it shouldn't be a problem and I can only change the 1 leg of the flight by canceling the entire reservation (which included a return from ATH) and rebooking. That did not seem like a good idea, and there were no options that were not many, many ff miles more, with worse flights... until this morning. I put in the flight as a multi-leg instead of transfer, hoping for an early Saturday morning flight to LHR (originally booked evening flight arriving the next morning), arriving Saturday night, then catching the same Sunday morning flight the next morning, along with my non stop ATH return flight. Something miraculously popped up, only 10k more miles pp. I was afraid to do it on my own for fear that after canceling the entire reservation the new one may disappear. I called AA once again, and waited 1.5 hours for my return call. They changed it, where they can hold the new one first. She also booked it as a transfer so luggage will go through. Now we arrive the night before. Will stay at a airport hotel (booked the Moxy), and catch the CHQ flight in the morning. On top of all that I have better seats than the original arrangement!

If I couldn't pull this off, I would try to change it 24 hours before to an earlier flight (they do that if there's room and it's same arrangement), but it worked out as I hoped, so no more need to worry.
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Old Sep 9th, 2023, 11:25 AM
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👍 That is a GREAT resolution. Much better start to a holiday then fretting about delays and a mad dash through LHR
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Old Sep 9th, 2023, 01:14 PM
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Now I have flight to Palermo in May '24 with 2 hour connection time, but this one has the T3 > T5 terminal change. A little more wiggle room here, but still concerning.
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Old Sep 9th, 2023, 02:06 PM
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Originally Posted by MFNYC
Now I have flight to Palermo in May '24 with 2 hour connection time, but this one has the T3 > T5 terminal change. A little more wiggle room here, but still concerning.

I wouldn't even think about May '24 schedule issues. Odds are huge that one or both flight times will change multiple times in the next eight months. As they say -- any more then a month or two out, schedules are essentially place holders.
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Old Sep 10th, 2023, 11:43 AM
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The placeholder theory might be true for flights in the US, European flights donít change their schedules that much and are certainly much more than placeholders. US carriers can pretty much do as they please with no ramifications, they can mess around with schedules much more, things are different across the pond.

There are some good fares around currently and a few airlines with sales. Iíve booked couple of trips for much later than May 24. Iíll let you know how many times the flight sched get changed.
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Old Sep 10th, 2023, 11:48 AM
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For my flight this Saturday, I booked in early April. There were no changes to any of the 3 flights during that time.
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Old Sep 11th, 2023, 03:06 PM
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You were/are on the 7:15 AM to CHQ. There is a second flight that day at 10:45. Maybe that flight was not available on an award ticket.

For flight changes contact the ticketing carrier (or agency).
For seating changes go to the ticketing carrier website. If you can't do it there then contact the operating carrier.
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Old Sep 11th, 2023, 05:26 PM
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BA660 varies in times on different days. For this Sunday it is and always was (since I booked it in April) 7:30AM. There also are no other nonstops this Sunday for LHR>CHQ for BA or any other airline out of LHR. Believe me I looked into it with or without reward miles.

That being said, now that I changed my flight to LHR, I no longer am worried.
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