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A connection switch at Houston. CO gave me 30 minutes to clear customs!

A connection switch at Houston. CO gave me 30 minutes to clear customs!

Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 12:46 AM
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A connection switch at Houston. CO gave me 30 minutes to clear customs!

I will be flying Narita - Houston - San Francisco - Honolulu in about 6 weeks. It is all on one CO ticket.

Originally I had two hours between arrival in Houston and departure for SFO. Now they have moved up the SFO flight so I have 30 minutes to clear US customs and get on my flight! If I miss that flight, there are no more flights that can get me to SFO in time to catch my Hawaii flight.

I only noticed this while checking my seats on the CO website. I haven't "acknowledged" it yet. I will be flying home, so arriving a day late won't be too big an issue, although I'm wondering if CO will put me up in a hotel since it was their change?

Does anyone know if the flights from Asia typically arrive earlier than scheduled?

Should I just take a chance and play surprised at the time or would I be better off negotiating now for a flight that I can actually catch? i know they usually waive the change fees in cases like this. Tokyo-Guam-Honolulu looks attractive, but tickets are a LOT more expensive.
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 04:49 AM
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A 30 minute window to clear customs and to make your connecting flight is nuts, and I don't even think it is a legal connection. I would call CO and get better flights. I highly doubt they would give you a hotel voucher because if you agree to this flight change, it will not be their fault that you missed the next flight. Other people on this forum would probably know the legalities involved.
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 06:40 AM
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Just call to have it changed.
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 07:13 AM
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Agree, with only 30 minutes between flights no matter how "on time" you incoming flight is you'll never have enough time to clear immigration/customs/re-check your bags/clear security and get to the gate for your connecting flight.
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 07:22 AM
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BTW, are you doing this for miles? If not, and you just want to get home, see if they'll just put you on UA non-stop NRT-HNL, or UA via SFO, or CO via GUM.
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 07:39 AM
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lcuy! A schedule change such as this can be like hitting the lottery. Well, maybe not, but it is good news. Probably.

First and most important thing: don't call them yet, and don't agree to anything yet.

As was previously mentioned, your connection at IAH is no longer valid. So, it's up to CO to find new flights that are acceptable to you. If they don't, you can cancel the ticket and get a full refund. You don't want to do that, of course, but it's a good incentive for them to help you out.

So, my very 1st suggestion to you is that you ask them to change you to CO flight 6020, which a non-stop from NRT to HNL. It's operated by United, so it's a code-share. If the agent says no, gently remind the agent that they're the one who made the schedule change, not you. But you still might get nowhere (CO might insist that you fly on their metal).

2nd choice is definitely the flight through Guam. Push hard for that one. Good luck!!
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 11:53 AM
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Thanks, ya'll. (If I'll be spending time in Houston, gotta practice the language...)


I accepted this routing, partially because the ticket- essentially RTW with stops in Boston, Bangkok, Singapore was dirt cheap, and I'm happy to get the miles. I think I'll retain my Platinum without that last leg, but I'd better check. I do like flying CO; as a Platinum this year nearly every flight has been upgraded to First.

If I do end up in Houston for the night, are there reasonable hotel at the airport?

In all the times I've transited through, I've usually been half asleep or 100% jetlagged and never really looked around. I can't pull up any image of it in my mind toher that the door to the Presidents club. (Where half the time they take pity on me and let me in!
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 12:01 PM
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There is a Marriott between Terminals B and C, and you only need to ride the underground train to get from Terminal E to it.

Outside the airport perimeter, there are all the standard airport hotels you may find - nicer ones are the Sheraton and Doubletree which are across from each other.

Anyways, what time is your flight from SFO to HNL anyways? There are several IAH-SFO flights after yours. You might as well get to SFO first.
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 01:08 PM
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Oops, when I say I accepted this routing, I mean I accepted the original ticket, not the new 30 minute sop in Houston.

I'm looking at other flight options. One thing I hadn't thought of is to add an extra day or two in Bangkok onto my trip, that was the one thing that I wished I'd done after I paid for it. If They will give me that, I can take whatever flights they want.
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Old Sep 2nd, 2010, 01:12 PM
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Thats a good idea Ray! I'm now on the 2:25 flight to SFO. It is the only one that could connect with the 7:14 to HNL flight, now that the 3:40 one is gone. I have friends in SF even!
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Old Sep 3rd, 2010, 04:30 AM
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Well, it took a while, but I now will be flying home via Guam. AND I get one extra day in Asia!!

I realized I need to re-work this now when I received both an email and text message this evening, so I was glad I had done some research in advance.

I talked with one agent, and she said "Unless you really need the miles, I can find a much simpler route" She suggested the Guam route. There are two flights to Guam each day. One from Narita at 3:50 pm and another at 8:50 PM. Both connect with a 6:40 flight the next morning. I wanted the 3;50 flight because instead of two five hour layovers, I"d have 10 hours, overnight in Guam.

Unfortunately, that flight was sold out, so I asked her to leave my itineray alone so I could think it over. A bit later, I called back and asked if I left Bangkok a day later, could I get on the 3:50 GUM flight. No problem!

Apparently the first agent had done something with my file and this new agent had to spend over an hour correcting it. She said she could have just shoved it through, but on the off chance I might have to make changes later, it would have really been difficult.

So, while on hold, I balanced my checking account, paid bills, and researched hotels in Guam. The agent was very apologetic, but in the end I got the flight and my work done!

Oddly enough, I hadn't yet purchase my SIN to BKK ticket. I wasn't sure if I wanted to sacrifice a day in Singapore for a day in Bangkok. Now I've got both!

so as you mentioned Rizzuto, I feel like I hit the (little) lottery!
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Old Sep 3rd, 2010, 06:48 AM
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CO flies NRT-GUM four times a day, at 9:25a, 11:05a, 3:50p and 8:50p. You can get there even earlier if you want.

It's not a long flight, but if you are flying in the front, or if you have elite status that qualifies for upgrade, you may want to be on the 11:05a or the 8:50p flights, as those are on 767-400s with international business class seats. The other 2 uses 737-800s that has domestic first class seats.
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Old Sep 5th, 2010, 05:20 AM
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Hi there,

I posted back in April that connection times in Houston are TIGHT. http://www.fodors.com/community/air-...intl-tight.cfm. We barely made a connection with a 55-minutes - without carryon luggage.

Don't expect anyone from Continental to be around to help you.

Two years ago, I was travelling with a Spaniard friend form Costa Rica thru Houston - she got held up in customs for an hour. Continental put us up in an airport hotel and gave us $20 for dinner.
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Old Sep 5th, 2010, 09:52 AM
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Thanks!

i actulally won't be going through Houston after all. I'm catching my same flight from Bangkok to Tokyo, flying to Guam for 10 hours, then straight home to Honolulu. They gave me an extra day in Bangkok and time to sleep in Guam. I've always wanted to peek at Guam!
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Old Sep 5th, 2010, 11:49 AM
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sounds like it worked out great for you, lcuy.

I think if you had stuck with the original change and missed your flight which was likely, CO would have to put you up in a hotel. It is their routing and not your fault if you miss it.
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