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Transit question at LHR

Old Jul 16th, 2020, 08:28 AM
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Transit question at LHR

I will be flying from Ottawa to London next month with Air Canada. I have decided to book a separate ticket with Icelandair from London to Reykjavik. I will have 5-6 hours in between.

Normally, I would clear immigration at LHR, pick up my bag and then check in for my next flight.

My problem is that according to new entry requirements in Iceland, Canadians can only fly directly to Iceland. If I enter the UK and then fly to Iceland, I will not be let in.

Is my only hope that Air Canada lets me interline my bag in Ottawa so that it's tagged all the way to Reykjavik? This way, I can avoid clearing immigration at LHR.

My trip is 50 days away so rules might be relaxed by then but I can only prepare based on the information I have now.

Thanks!
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Old Jul 16th, 2020, 08:48 AM
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"My problem is that according to new entry requirements in Iceland, Canadians can only fly directly to Iceland. If I enter the UK and then fly to Iceland, I will not be let in."

Interlining your bags is almost certainly not going to happen. But my question is why on earth would you book an itinerary with this many potential problems in the current pandemic situation??? If one must fly somewhere - book the simplest/least connections/most direct route possible.
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Old Jul 16th, 2020, 09:14 AM
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Originally Posted by janisj View Post
"My problem is that according to new entry requirements in Iceland, Canadians can only fly directly to Iceland. If I enter the UK and then fly to Iceland, I will not be let in."

Interlining your bags is almost certainly not going to happen. But my question is why on earth would you book an itinerary with this many potential problems in the current pandemic situation??? If one must fly somewhere - book the simplest/least connections/most direct route possible.
Because this flight to London was booked pre-COVID-19 when it was easiest and cheapest way for me to get to Europe. You know airlines will not refund me or make it very difficult for me to change my flight so booking a separate flight is the easiest solution. Thanks for the judgement! Looking forward to having a relaxing holiday in Iceland.
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Old Jul 16th, 2020, 09:32 AM
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According to this, you won't be allowed to enter Iceland as only EU/EEA or UK nationals are allowed in at the moment. As you say, rules can and probably will change by the time you go.

https://www.utl.is/index.php/en/abou...ing-to-iceland
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Old Jul 16th, 2020, 10:02 AM
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Originally Posted by balthy View Post
According to this, you won't be allowed to enter Iceland as only EU/EEA or UK nationals are allowed in at the moment. As you say, rules can and probably will change by the time you go.

https://www.utl.is/index.php/en/abou...ing-to-iceland
No. As of yesterday. many other countries, including Canada are allowed. That was not my question.
https://www.utl.is/index.php/en/abou...migration/news

Anyways, the Iceland Embassy just send me another email saying I will be fine transiting through LHR, even if I have to clear immigration and then check in again. I just can't leave the airport.
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Old Jul 16th, 2020, 10:30 AM
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"You know airlines will not refund me or make it very difficult for me to change my flight so booking a separate flight is the easiest solution. "

Are you sure?? Most airlines have instituted very (VERY) liberal cancellation/refund/re-booking policies.

"the Iceland Embassy just send me another email saying I will be fine transiting through LHR, even if I have to clear immigration and then check in again. I just can't leave the airport."

I can't see where the Icelandic authorities have any say-so over UK airport procedures.
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Old Jul 16th, 2020, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by janisj View Post
"You know airlines will not refund me or make it very difficult for me to change my flight so booking a separate flight is the easiest solution. "

Are you sure?? Most airlines have instituted very (VERY) liberal cancellation/refund/re-booking policies.

"the Iceland Embassy just send me another email saying I will be fine transiting through LHR, even if I have to clear immigration and then check in again. I just can't leave the airport."

I can't see where the Icelandic authorities have any say-so over UK airport procedures.
At this point, I've researched this more than you and I think the Embassy knows better but thanks for your feedback. Thanks Karen.
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Old Jul 16th, 2020, 04:06 PM
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my bag in Ottawa so that it's tagged all the way to Reykjavik? This way, I can avoid clearing immigration at LHR.

Immigration is about your person. Customs is about your luggage.

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Old Jul 16th, 2020, 11:34 PM
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Originally Posted by suze View Post
my bag in Ottawa so that it's tagged all the way to Reykjavik? This way, I can avoid clearing immigration at LHR.

Immigration is about your person. Customs is about your luggage.
The OP was asking about tagging their luggage so they do not have to pick it up on arrival @ LHR and recheck it for the onward flight. If luggage is tagged to final destination, the traveller would just follow signs for Flight Connections and go through neither immigration or customs but they will have to go through security. Unfortunately since the airlines involved are not disclosed no one can tell if the two airlines involved have a baggage interline agreement. If BA is involved for example, they don't even interline baggage on their own connections on separate tickets. But as the OP states, they've researched their trip so are aware of everything they need to be to be aware of.
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Old Jul 17th, 2020, 03:53 AM
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Originally Posted by balthy View Post
The OP was asking about tagging their luggage so they do not have to pick it up on arrival @ LHR and recheck it for the onward flight. If luggage is tagged to final destination, the traveller would just follow signs for Flight Connections and go through neither immigration or customs but they will have to go through security. Unfortunately since the airlines involved are not disclosed no one can tell if the two airlines involved have a baggage interline agreement. If BA is involved for example, they don't even interline baggage on their own connections on separate tickets. But as the OP states, they've researched their trip so are aware of everything they need to be to be aware of.
Thank you for actually reading my posts. All I need to know at this point is whether I can interline my luggage all the way to KEF. I am flying on Air Canada and then Icelandair. I have found conflicting info online whether they have an agreement or not in place.
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Old Jul 17th, 2020, 08:29 AM
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Air Canada's website shows that Icelandair is an "Interline Partner" and that means they have some type of baggage handling agreement in place but that usually applies if you purchased your itinerary as one ticket. Since you purchased separate tickets this may not be available to you. Why don't you call Air Canada (since that's your first leg and they would be the one's originally checking your bags) and ask them if they would be able to check your bag all the way through to your final destination. It's worth the phone call.
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Old Jul 17th, 2020, 10:05 AM
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Originally Posted by RoamsAround View Post
Air Canada's website shows that Icelandair is an "Interline Partner" and that means they have some type of baggage handling agreement in place but that usually applies if you purchased your itinerary as one ticket. Since you purchased separate tickets this may not be available to you. Why don't you call Air Canada (since that's your first leg and they would be the one's originally checking your bags) and ask them if they would be able to check your bag all the way through to your final destination. It's worth the phone call.
I've sent them a message on Facebook but haven't received an answer yet. In any case the Embassy wrote me to say they had confirmation I would be fine, even if I end up having to clear immigration at LHR and then check in for my next flight. I just can't stop over for a few days before I head to Iceland, which is a bit odd since people from the UK are allowed into Iceland already and we will all get tested upon arrival anyway.
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Old Jul 17th, 2020, 01:06 PM
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Almost no airline will check bags all the way through if it's separate tickets. Period. I think you have to plan that you will clear immigration and customs in the UK, and then you take it from there and manage with whatever that means for your entry to Iceland.
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Old Jul 17th, 2020, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Jeff_Costa_Rica View Post
Almost no airline will check bags all the way through if it's separate tickets. Period. I think you have to plan that you will clear immigration and customs in the UK, and then you take it from there and manage with whatever that means for your entry to Iceland.
I'll ask about checking my bags all the way at check in but regardless, the Iceland Embassy, the Iceland Immigration Department and the Iceland Foreign Affairs all confirmed to me now in writing I am fine going through immigration at LHR and then checking in for my flight to Iceland. A high ranking official gave me their personal phone number in case I have any issues at the airport or the border. I should be OK.
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Old Jul 17th, 2020, 06:27 PM
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Sure. It never hurts to ask, but you should not plan on checking your bags all the way through. If you have these confirmations that it won't cause you problems, then that's a good sign.
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