Customs in Miami

Sep 9th, 2007, 05:23 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 477
Customs in Miami

Ok this is sorta a Carribean question and sorta a Airlines question.

We are flying American Airlines to Grand Cayman from Orlando via Miami. I was told by a friend that in Miami we would have to get our luggage from the orlando flight and go through customs in Miami and recheck the bags.

Does anyone have first hand experience? I was hoping to go through customs in MCO but not sure it's an option.

I need to call the airline up but I dread calling them.
alliegator is offline  
Sep 9th, 2007, 06:01 PM
  #2  
 
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Posts: 264
You do not go through customs leaving the country. You go through customs ENTERING a country. You will go through Cayman customs in Grand Cayman. Your luggage will be checked straight through from Orlando. You go through U.S. customs at your first port of return to the U.S. which in your case is Miami. You will claim your baggage, go through customs and then the airline will recheck your baggage for you outside of the customs area and recheck it to Orlando (where you will not have to go through customs again). If you do not want to speak to an American agent you can find all this info on www.aa.com I don't know why you'd be afraid of speaking with an airline agent: their job is to answer questions like this.
Nevisian is offline  
Sep 10th, 2007, 02:38 AM
  #3  
 
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Your bags will be checked all the way through to GC.
It's on the way back, in Miami, that you'll have to pick up your bags/go through customs/drop them off in the chaotic drop off area... assuming you're doing GC>Miami>Orlando? If so, make sure your layover on the way back is long enough.
caribtraveler is offline  
Sep 10th, 2007, 07:55 AM
  #4  
KVR
 
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And, if you have purchased any liquids ie; liquor, perfume, sauces at the airport in Grand Cayman, when you retrieve your bags off the carousel in Miami place then in your checked suitcase before you have them re-check it to Orlando. You will go through security again and if you have liquids they will throw them away. I lost a very nice expensive bottle or Jamaica jerk sauce because I forgot.
KVR is offline  
Sep 12th, 2007, 05:07 PM
  #5  
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Thanks..it's been a long time since I had to go through customs and I forgot you go through when you get there. Duhh!

I know this question is relative because at any given day it can be different...but how are the wait times in Miami and is it fairly orderly? I remember LAX and JFK being somewhat fast but this was years ago.

I will make sure to bring bubble wrap and a large ziploc for any liquids i may need to check.

Nevisian, the reason I dread calling the airlines is because the last 5-6 times I have called, I can't understand the agent because of the heavy accents (which is not their fault). Maybe I'm the lucky one to get the foreigner but it's very frustrating..therefore I dread it. If that makes me a bad person..so be it. I do understand I can search through aa.com but this forum is almost easier, thus why I ask questions on it.

I do appreciate everyone's input!
alliegator is offline  
Sep 13th, 2007, 03:38 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 1,360
Customs in MIA is about as chaotic and disorganized as it gets. Make sure your layover is a couple of hours. I think Saturdays and Sundays are the worst. On my last pass through MIA (which, coincidentally, was returning from GCM), there seemed to be an under-allocation of immigration agents for returning citizens (like 4 lines) vs. non-residents (a dozen or more), resulting in a pile-up at the lines for citizens. Then the mess at baggage claim. Then, re-checking those bags (which must be re-screened), which was a huge jumble of pushing and shoving humanity and mountains of luggage. Finally, re-clearing through security, where they had no less than 4 agents checking IDs in line, but only two x-ray machines open. Grrrrrr! The only consolation for me was that it consumed a couple hours of our long (4+ hour) layover.

I'm surprised you had trouble understanding the phone agents for AA. As far as I know, they have not outsourced their call center abroad, so at worse, you might get a heavy Texas accent. ;-)
Callaloo is offline  
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