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crepes_a_go_go Feb 1st, 2011 03:36 PM

Air Canada from US to Paris via Toronto question
Looking at a flight on Air Canada from New Orleans to Paris with a connection in Toronto. Is luggage checked through to CDG or is it necessary to reclaim in Toronto and pass through customs before re-checking and continuing on to Paris?

Also, not being familiar with the Toronto airport nor with Air Canada, what is the minimum amount of time you would allow for connecting?


rkkwan Feb 1st, 2011 04:07 PM

There is airside connection now in YYZ in Terminal 1, which AC uses. So, everything is checked through and no need to go through Canadian immigration.

On the way back, you will get bags and pre-clear US immigration and customs at YYZ, but never for Canadian ones.

Outbound, you only need an hour or so. Coming back, at least 1.5.

DonTopaz Feb 1st, 2011 04:52 PM

rkkwan has it right about the procedure.

On the way back, I would allow a minimum of 2 hours, though, if you are checking baggage. I don't usually like to pad the layover times, but this is an exception.

The problem is that your luggage has to be separated by baggage handlers and then sent to a special area where you wait for it. On two occasions, this took 45-50 minutes, and that was described as "average, or maybe faster than average" by an AC rep. Then, after you collect your luggage, you move on to the back of the line waiting for US immigration/customs clearance. That line is typically 10-30 mins, depending on flight times and number of personnel working.

If you have only carry-ons, 60-90 mins is plenty.

flanneruk Feb 2nd, 2011 10:45 AM

Though this happened some time ago, I was disconcerted on a US-YYZ-Europe connection to find the flight crew on the US-YYZ leg described a quite different procedure fron the one rkkwan talks about.

They were wrong, rkkwan is right and both the AC groundcrew and the immigration officials (bizarrely you still went through Canadian immigration at YYZ) went to some pains to explain what was going on. But the moral seems: trust Fodor contributors before you trust AC aircrew.

On the westbound flight, BTW (actually on both, but it's more relevant westbound) do remember AC will sell you only a "legal" connection (one that ought to be easily manageable), and are responsible for putting you on a later flight home if for some reason you can't get through the endless US and Canadian formalities in time.

amer_can Feb 7th, 2011 06:26 PM

Why would anyone want to fly AC??? Are you getting a special deal or great price?? This airline is only one step above take a chance fly air france. Just curious!!

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