Which airport for connection to/from Europe?

Jul 14th, 2016, 12:39 PM
  #1  
TAW
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Which airport for connection to/from Europe?

Hi, Will be taking flight from SFO to LIS, then MAD to SFO. It looks like my choices for connecting are IAD or EWR. Is there a significant difference or a reason to avoid one vs the other? Or are there better choices?

Thanks in advance for your input!
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Jul 14th, 2016, 01:44 PM
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Depending on time of day EWR can suffer from "air traffic" delays that may impact your connection time. Same holds true for other NYC area airports (JFK and LGA). Other than that not much difference between EWR and IAD.
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Jul 14th, 2016, 01:50 PM
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I'd personally want to connect in Europe -- and get an unbroken long, overnight leg. Connecting in Amsterdam, Frankfurt - or even CDG or LHR would be better IMO..
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Jul 14th, 2016, 09:05 PM
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I would pick IAD over EWR as I would expect it to be a bit less hectic. I can't sleep in cattle class, so given a choice I would connect on the US side if I were flying from the west coast. Try to avoid connecting in LHR, it's a pain and expensive, and from what I hear CDG is a pain, too. I found Copenhagen a remarkably civilized place to connect.
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Jul 14th, 2016, 09:33 PM
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All of my international flights originate on the west coast and I've tried every permutation . . . for me, even if I don't sleep, having a 10+ hour uninterrupted leg is better for me. Plus one less chance for an equipment or weather delay on the east coast.
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Jul 16th, 2016, 10:31 AM
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The choices being EWR and IAD, I would say no significant difference. Not sure what time of year you're flying, but SFO can have fog delays...so I'd choose the connection that gives you the most padding.
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Jul 17th, 2016, 10:24 PM
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If I had to choose one airport for this connection I would choose Heathrow as there's no need to go through immigration to get to your onward flight.

If you flew via IAD or EWR then you'd have immigration there on your return which requires a longer connection time.

If you flew via AMS or CDG then you'd have immigration there on your outward flight which requires a longer connection time.
dotheboyshall is offline  
Jul 21st, 2016, 09:33 AM
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I'd try to connect in Europe on the way out and in the US on the way back. Make sure you have 4 hours, minimum
BigRuss is offline  
Jul 21st, 2016, 10:36 PM
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I'd try to connect in Europe on the way out and in the US on the way back. Make sure you have 4 hours, minimum

I'd do the exact opposite as it avoids the need for immigration checks until your final destination. You can then have a short connection time of an hour or two.
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Sep 25th, 2016, 07:18 AM
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agree w/ dotheboyshall on the connecting eu on outbound but i prefer eu both ways as janisj reco's. it's easier after that 10 hour flight to just get off the plane and go home.
greenie is offline  
Sep 25th, 2016, 07:46 AM
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>>it's easier after that 10 hour flight to just get off the plane and go home<<

In a perfect world - definitely.

But the vast majority of Americans are not in/near cities w/ major airports w/ nonstop flights to Europe.

I live in a pretty major west coast city -- and there are no non-stops to any foreign country except Mexico and (soon) Canada.

So I fly a hop to LAX or LAS or DFW then non-stop to Europe. I try to do the same on the return flight but often that doesn't get me home until 11PM or midnight -- so for the (daytime) return flight I'll connect just about anywhere that gets me a decent schedule.
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Sep 25th, 2016, 09:15 AM
  #12  
TAW
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Thanks all for the replies...we ended up with a connection in PHL going and JFK returning.
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Sep 25th, 2016, 10:15 AM
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I'm also in the Europe connection camp. I just booked ORD-ZRH (via FRA on the way over and LHR on the way back). I have had problems at both Newark and Dulles, especially on the return trip.

I much prefer clearing immigration/customs at Ohare on my return, and not have to try to make a connection. I have missed connections at both EWR and IAD because of long lines at immigration, baggage and security.
simpsonc510 is offline  
Sep 29th, 2016, 07:13 AM
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Well sounds like it's already decided, but I also much prefer a connection in Europe, not still in the US, when flying from west coast USA (Seattle).

For the original question, as long as the time is sufficient, I rarely have a strong preference for one over another. I pick more by flight times, number of connections, and ticket price.
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