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First point if entry in USA

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Jun 28th, 2014, 11:34 AM
  #1
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First point if entry in USA

Hi, I'm traveling from Hong kong- Dallas- San Francisco. I am not clear about what I have to do at my first stop in the US at Dallas.Like clearing customs and such stuff. I am confused since my next flight (Dallas-SFO) is domestic.
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Jun 28th, 2014, 11:44 AM
  #2
 
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You have to clear immigration as it is the first point of entry in the US, then pick up your luggage and go through customs which can be as time consuming as immigration. Then you can go to your next flight.
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Jun 28th, 2014, 12:05 PM
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Your luggage will be checked through to SFO -- but you will still need to retrieve it at DFW, clear customs and then there is a bag drop where you leave it before proceeding on to your departure terminal.
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Jun 28th, 2014, 03:32 PM
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Then you take the escalators upstairs and go through security. You will be in Terminal D, since that's where all international arrivals disembark. The monitors will tell you where your domestic flight's gate is, likely in Terminal A or C. DFW Airport has an elevated train called Skylink with two stations in each terminal. The system is entirely inside the secure area. If you need to get to A or C, follow the signs to Skylink, take the escalators up to the station, and board the train. It's a quick, easy way to get around the airport.
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Jun 28th, 2014, 03:36 PM
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I take it this is AA's new flight to Hong Kong. I'll be interested to hear how you like it.
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Jun 28th, 2014, 04:24 PM
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Yes, I'm interested to hear about this new service also. Please come back and let us know what you think, if you get a chance. Thanks, and have a good flight!
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Jun 28th, 2014, 07:12 PM
  #7
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Okay, so in Dallas I have to get my lugguge, clear customs and re-check my luggage. Then proceed to security, then the domestic terminal.
So only when I get off at SFO, I clear immigration right?

And yes, I will surely let you know about my experience. However I am already doubting that it will be a satisfying one, as the flight from HKG to DFW is 16 hours!!
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Jun 28th, 2014, 07:32 PM
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>>So only when I get off at SFO, I clear immigration right? <<

No - you clear immigration in Dallas, and the follow the signs to Customs.

>> clear customs and re-check my luggage. << Just so you understand, it really isn't 're-checking'. You just drop your bags where they point you. You don't need to talk to anyone or get a new bag tag. I can't remember at DFW if you drop them on a carousel/conveyor belt or just on the floor in a designated area. I think it is a conveyor belt.
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Jun 28th, 2014, 08:11 PM
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Terminal D is the international terminal, and that's where you'll arrive and go through immigration and customs. Terminal D does have some departing AA domestic flights too, as do Terminals A and C. It all depends on where gates are assigned that day. You'll have to look at the monitors. Even if you go through security at D, it's easy enough to get to A and C from inside D.

When I fly to the US from Costa Rica, I usually pass through DFW. My flight arrives about the same time as the daily Qantas flight from Sydney to DFW (also about 16 hours), and those passengers are usually in the arrivals hall at the same time. They always look pretty bleary eyed.
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Jun 28th, 2014, 09:05 PM
  #10
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So I finish immigration and customs at Dallas. And there's nothing to do in SFO but collecting baggage? Ah, this is so confusing. Not to mention, this is the first time I'll be flying alone!

Switching terminals won't be a problem, i've got 4 hours there to figure it out
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Jun 28th, 2014, 10:31 PM
  #11
 
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Not really confusing. US law requires passengers to clear immigration and customs at their first port of entry, no matter what their final destination is. DFW-SFO becomes a purely domestic flight, no different than if you had started your journey that day in Dallas.
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Jun 29th, 2014, 03:35 AM
  #12
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Haha okay got it. thanks for all your help, guys!
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Jul 17th, 2014, 08:16 AM
  #13
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Question: On domestic flights in US, only one check in is allowed right? So what happens when I re-check the two suitcases I brought on the HKG-DFW flight? They'll allow to check in both right?
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Jul 17th, 2014, 08:26 AM
  #14
 
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If you are on one booking and your bags are checked through - you just drop the bags where they show you. There won't be an extra charge (assuming its all one booking you get the international allowance)

(BTW - there is often a charge for even just one checked bag on domestic flights)
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Jul 17th, 2014, 08:25 PM
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You are actually not re-checking the bags in Dallas, just dropping them off after you clear customs. The check-in will be done at your origin in HKG, and at that time the bags will be tagged all the way through to your final destination.
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Jul 19th, 2014, 12:11 AM
  #16
 
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One other caveat and it's very very important. After dropping off your bags after clearing customs, you will go through security again with its moronic rules including liquids. So if, for example, you bought duty free booze whichwas deivered to you as you got on the flight in HKG you must make sure you place it in your checked luggage between the time you pass through the customs agent and the time you srrender your bags to the airline outside the customs hall because you will go through security again and the booze will be confiscated (or any other liquid).

Be forewarned.
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