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Heathrow Customs - Connection different airline

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Jun 20th, 2015, 06:49 AM
  #1
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Heathrow Customs - Connection different airline

I need advice regarding the time it takes to get through customs at Heathrow in order to make a connecting flight on a different airlines/reservation out of Heathrow on the same day.

I am attempting to merge two travel itineraries/ideas. The short of it is that I am hoping to climb Kilimanjaro this August and then fly home to the U.S. using an existing reservation that I have from London Heathrow. My dilemma is how to best match up a flight from kilimanjaro to London Heathrow so that I can make that existing flight.

It looks like I could fly via Kenya Air from Kilimanjaro through Nairobi on August 27th-28th and arrive at London Heathrow at about 6:30am on August 28th. My flight from London to the U.S. is on U.S. Airways (Amer. Airways reservation) leaving London at about 10:00am on August 28th.

Does this give me enough time to get through customs at Heathrow, check in with U.S. Airways, and make my flight back to the U.S.?

Does this cut it too close?

Is this too risky?

THANKS!!!
Cfellows0423 is offline  
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Jun 20th, 2015, 08:05 AM
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It would give you enough time barring late arrival, change of terminals, long lines at immigration, etc. etc. If this was my trip and I was not in a position to buy a new (very expensive) transatlantic ticket, should anything hold me up, I'd travel to London the day before my flight home.
MmePerdu is offline  
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Jun 20th, 2015, 09:22 AM
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Unless there are other considerations, a better choice might be the BA flight from Nairobi to Heathrow, which leaves at about the same time as the Kenya Airways (KQ) flight. BA and US/AA are part of the same alliance, so you will absolutely be able to check your luggage through from NBO to wherever you're headed in the States (PHL?). You'll have plenty of time to connect.

Even if you take the KQ flight, you'll have enough time. Certainly, you should check in Nairobi to see if KQ will interline your bags to AA/US, in which case you won't have to go through immigration (which can be a major time sink) and re-check your bags.
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Jun 20th, 2015, 07:00 PM
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AA and KQ will not interline your bags if the flights are on separate tickets. You would have to retrieve them and check in at AA at LHR. If it were a BA flight, you could. Or, as MmePerdu suggests, fly in the day before.
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Jun 20th, 2015, 09:08 PM
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For flights in from Kenya and out to the States, and on separate tickets no less, that wouldn't be long enough. Sure, you could make it, but you could also still be in immigration/arrivals when they board your outgoing flight. You need to arrive at LHR the day before.
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Jun 20th, 2015, 09:15 PM
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So often the issue is not will you make it, or not. For me, it's whether I'll worry about it until the time comes. There's so much opportunity for stress while traveling, if I've learned anything over the years and a great deal of travel, it's how to reduce the stress level where I can. This is, presumably, one of those times. I can't afford to have something this potentially expensive go wrong, so I play it safe, build in wiggle room and don't have to think about it anymore. Even then things can go south but I know I've done my best and all will likely go well. I suggest you do the same.
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