JFK - Changing planes on AA

Jul 16th, 2008, 09:31 AM
  #1  
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JFK - Changing planes on AA

At JFK how much time does one need to allow when connecting from a domestic AA flight to an international AA flight. I can choose among 2, 3 or 4 hours for connecting time. Thanks!
yestravel is offline  
Jul 16th, 2008, 09:55 AM
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You need next to no time at all...domestic and international flights all leave from the same terminal...basically provided your boarding passes were issued at departure and your passport checked and your luggage checked through (all of which should happen) you simply get off the domestic flight, look on the monitor for the departure gate of the international flight and meander over...it can take as little as 20 minutes (alhtough I don't know waht the official connection time is to sort the baggage but it shouldn't be long at all...2 hours is certainly more than enough time (although, of course, that depends on how accurate the schedule is and whether or not the plane encounters ATC delays or weather delays on the way in.

Now coming back the other way is a horse of a different color...because US government regulations require you clear immigration and customs at your first stop in the USA. So on arrival on the AA international flight, you will walk a long walk to the immigration hall. As a US citizen, that queue moves pretty quickly as they don't do a retina scan and fingerprint you and take a picture of you (absolutely disgusting I know but the paranoids in our government insist on that garbage)...you then proceed into the customs hall and will have to wait for your luggage which may take some time to come down (they are notorious for their incompetence...two weeks ago I had to wait an hour for luggage from my London flight even though there were no other flights in the customs hall), when your baggage comes down you go through the customs agent (usually this is routine, he looks at your declaration and usually waives you right through), as you leave the area, yuo have to re-check your luggage (which will have been tagged), go upstairs, go through security again and go to your gate. This is where you probably need some extra time.
xyz123 is offline  
Jul 16th, 2008, 10:09 AM
  #3  
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Thanks so much -- very helpful. On the return we don't have any options and have about 2.5 hours between flights. Hopefully that will be enough despite what sounds like a horrendous process.
yestravel is offline  
Jul 16th, 2008, 10:30 AM
  #4  
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Fortunately the new AA terminal 8 seems to operate more efficiently than the old terminal it replaced. I've had good luck each of the several times I've arrived AA JFK from overseas (Europe, Asia). Quick passport line for US citizens and baggage claim, then no wait at customs.

I've heard the system can be stressed when there is a large # of flights arriving from the Caribbean. I think 2.5hrs for Int'l to Domestic is enough time.
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Jul 16th, 2008, 10:31 AM
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Good to know -- thanks. I'm going to book those FF tickets for Spring.
yestravel is offline  
Jul 16th, 2008, 12:46 PM
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I kinda have the same question.But at DFW - Sept arriving at DFW back from LHR. Do I need to go thru immigrations/customs as well? We have 2 hrs to catch the connecting flight home to SAN.

Thanks
SD
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Jul 16th, 2008, 01:32 PM
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SD,
You go through immigration and customs at your first point of entry into the US.
Patty is offline  
Jul 16th, 2008, 02:55 PM
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I just did it last week. Returning was quick. Customs was very friendly and quick, too. He told me about his one year teaching experience. I smiled and nodded. AA has a nice Terminal 8. You will go through security, so if you bring back alcohol from your international destination you will need to put it in your checked bag, which I don't recommend.

Just a hint: If AA turns on the Fasten Seatbelt sign, wait until you see a flight attendant walking around, and if you need to go, get up and go. They probably will never turn the sign off.
wally34949 is offline  
Jul 16th, 2008, 03:01 PM
  #9  
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wally34949 -- Geez, I hate when they leave the seat belt sign on all the time. Seems like US airlines do that more than the non-US flights...or maybe it's just my imagination
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Jul 17th, 2008, 02:34 AM
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On my flight last week from Milan to JFK, it was on for 7 of the 8 hours. On BA, they can't serve coffee or tea if the sign is on. And on Qantas, if the sign comes on, all flight attendants are required to sit down and strap up. Needless to say, it doesn't come on very often, and I've seen it go off three minutes after take-off.
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Aug 20th, 2008, 08:58 AM
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We will be arriving in LAX from LHR via AA - we have 2hrs to catch our flight to SAN. Is that enough time? We have never returned to LAX from an international location.

SD
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Aug 20th, 2008, 09:44 AM
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We will be arriving in LAX from LHR via AA - we have 2hrs to catch our flight to SAN. Is that enough time? We have never returned to LAX from an international location.

If it's all on one ticket you'd be "protected" (i.e. put on the next flight) if you missed your connection.

AA London arrivals at LAX can be hit or miss - sometimes easy, other times you get there at the same time as a couple of 747s from Australia and the immigration and bag retrieval waits can be dreadful. You'll probably make it, but you won't have a lot of spare time.
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Aug 20th, 2008, 12:01 PM
  #13  
 
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Thanks Gardyloo - Yes we are on one ticket. How far is customs from our arrival term T4, our connecting flight to SAN is at T4 as well. Just so I understand upon our arrival we need to get our luggage go to customs and then check in again to go to SAN?

SD
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