Utah - Delhi

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Jul 20th, 2009, 08:56 AM
  #1
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Utah - Delhi

Utah to Delhi Posted by: jules39 on Jul 19, 2009 at 08:44 PM
Posted in: Air Travel
I have cross posted this on the Airline site also.

Our nearest hub is SLC. We are planning on traveling to Delhi in Feb. In looking at things I think I am coming up with AA as being the fastest & currently a good price. Their flight goes via Chicago.
Couple of questions.
1 Have never flown AA before so any pros/cons?
2 Am I silly to be worried about going via Chicago in Jan/Feweather?Not being a native of a country where it snows I still have these trepidations about getting where I want to go mid winter here!!) On our past Asia trips at the same time of year it has acually been easier & better to go via the west coast .
3.Am I not seeing another great option??

Any input greatly appreciated. J
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Jul 20th, 2009, 02:25 PM
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I think it's pretty much equidistant to go East or West from where you are.

Don't know much about flying AA to India (other than horrific experiences domestically), but almost all US domestic carriers (on international service) are substandard in comparison to *most* international carriers.

I would think Continental would be a better option (as far as US carriers) vs American. Look at int'l carriers as well (Virgin, Lufthansa, etc.) -- just avoid Air India...it's supposedly horrific.

One last curious question. When you say "not being a native of a country where it snows"...what country do you live in?
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Jul 20th, 2009, 03:01 PM
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I live here but I am Australian so I still think twice when I am booking travel for the Nth American winter as to whether there is a better route with "less"!!!! chance of winter weather!!!! All a dice roll I guess really!

I have looked at some or the int carriers it is just at the moment the AA trip is coming out good for times of arrival & departure & cost so it is hovering at the top.
Thanks J
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Jul 20th, 2009, 03:14 PM
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Yes, you are rolling the dice with ORD in Jan/Feb as are we in February for our next trip to SE Asia. We will have an alternate plan in place with flights, phone numbers, etc. to call should things get derailed. Do not rely on AA at the airport should things go wrong and if you are aware of flight cancellations before you leave home, insist on rerouting on ANY airline, not just AA.
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Jul 20th, 2009, 03:53 PM
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Note that depending on the fare class of your ticket, AA may not re-route you on "ANY airline." Like other factors, routing only on the issuing airline is often tied into the discounted fares. Read your Fare Rules.
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Jul 20th, 2009, 04:29 PM
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I have been successful on rerouting on "any airline" with the lowest fare (on UAL, not AA) and it's always worth a try. Do get all reservations numbers on the alternative flight however, otherwise the "any airline" might refuse to acknowledge the reservation.
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Jul 20th, 2009, 07:59 PM
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I agree with filmwill that almost any international airline other than US ones are preferable. If I had to go with a US flier I'd possibly choose Delta out of SLC since they have a hub there (I believe) and merged with Northwest recently, so you have 2 options should things go wrong. My experience with AA (and I have FF miles with them) has been bad domestically and interenationally. Delta is marginally better in my experience.
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Jul 20th, 2009, 08:11 PM
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i try to avoid chicago any time of year....try looking at delta through atlanta or something through newark....

there should be dallas options too and certainly LA

look at some foreign carriers too like eva air, ANA, Singapore, Cathy pacific, japan, korean--a good one to look at, and many more...
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Jul 20th, 2009, 09:29 PM
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I assume you are considering AA’s non-stop flight from ORD to Delhi. (This may be a code share with Jet Airways but is on AA aircraft.) According to AA’s website, this departs at 7:15 pm. It is not this flight, IMO you need to worry about. It is the flight you have to take to get to ORD that may be the issue if there is weather.

The Delhi flight will be on an aircraft which is dedicated to that flight, and therefore will be sitting at ORD waiting to depart (it will have arrived from Delhi at 5:30 am that morning, so there is lots of leeway should this flight be late in arriving from Delhi). There is of course a chance that there will be delays in take-off from ORD, but if you have made it to that flight, at least you are on the plane, or in the same airport as the plane, and you know that you will eventually take off.

I would be more concerned about the flight from SLC being delayed if there is bad weather. This is esp the case of the SLC-ORD flight is a shuttle flight in which the same plane goes back and for the several times a day; and one delay has a knock-on effect leading to further delays all day. So my advice would be to take the first flight out of SLC that you can, so that you have the best chance of being on time arriving into ORD. You may have a few hours to lay over in Chicago, but that would beat missing the Delhi flight. (If you really wanted to be sure to make the Delhi flight, you could of course fly in the previous evening, but that may be pushing it, although a day in Chicago might be fun.)

The suggestion above to go from Newark could also result in similar problems, as Newark in Feb can also have bad weather, and in my experience they do not handle winter weather that well. So bear that in mind, and again take the first SLC-EWR flight you can that day.

You might also consider Jet Airways which goes to Delhi from EWR, JFK and Toronto (all via Brussels), or non-stop from London. Not sure if the extra flight change(s) would be attractive to you, and Toronto (and on rare occasions London) can certainly have weather issues in Feb too, but the price and service levels on Jet may be attractive to you.

From what I see, going via SFO or LAX the shortest flight routings will actually route you back via ORD or EWR or even Europe as there don’t seem to be any non-stops to India from the West coast. You could of course fly non-stop from the West coast (including Vancouver) to Tokyo, Hong Kong or Singapore and then get a non-stop to Delhi from there, but that may really only make sense if you want to spend time in one of those places either on the way out or back, as overall flight time will be a bit longer. But look at schedules and see what works.
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Jul 21st, 2009, 09:39 AM
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Cicerone you have pretty much hit the nail on the head with what I have been coming up with. The appeal of AA is the direct flight & although we would love to have a day or so in HK or BKK on the way there or back we just don't have the time. I too am finding the shortest routes from the west coast go back across to Europe for Delhi. If we decide on the AA option we will definately take a flight out of SLC with lotttsss of time in Chicago. If we go with Cathay via HGK then that means leaving here the evening before but could still be an option. Thanks J
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Jul 21st, 2009, 03:48 PM
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As a midwesterner, I would warn you that O'Hare is the worst airport in the US in terms of delays and lost luggage. Even the building itself is most unpleasant, terrazo floors from which canned music reverberates. We try to use Midway when possible, although I doubt there are many international flights departing from there. I did take a flight from O'Hare to HK last spring, over the pole, on United and it was okay. No delays, no unpleasantness.
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Jul 21st, 2009, 03:59 PM
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I would submit that AA is somewhat akin to a crack den with wings. But if you don't care about the onboard experience that much and saving money and time is worth the experience, then you should be fine.
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Jul 21st, 2009, 04:09 PM
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"I would submit that AA is somewhat akin to a crack den with wings."
LOL, yes, and take it via Miami and you are in the crack distribution center.
Jules, I would submit the Cathay via Hong Kong is by far the most pleasant bet. I flew Cathay recently was most impressed. I'll amend my broad international airlines statement to not include British Air, tho. Ick.
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Jul 28th, 2009, 07:48 PM
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As I continue to look for the "perfect" flight I am going off the AA "crack den" idea although it did give me a good laugh! I always like the idea of going via Hong Kong & that could very well end up the way we go. But......I we have never flown via Detroit. Any thoughts on that in Jan if we had a 3 hour connection time?

Thanks to you all. J
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Jul 29th, 2009, 10:19 AM
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Well, having looked at ice floes on the Detroit River from a tall building in downtown Detroit in January, I'd say that's as bad or worse than Chicago.
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