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Help with USAirways/AirFrance Connection at CDG Airport

Help with USAirways/AirFrance Connection at CDG Airport

Mar 7th, 2001, 10:43 AM
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Help with USAirways/AirFrance Connection at CDG Airport

At the end of this month, I am traveling to Barcelona. I am on a US Airways flight to Paris (CDG) and then have 2 hours before my reservation on an Air France flight to Barcelona.

Is 2 hours enough time for this connection?

Will I have to go through customs at CDG before boarding my flight to Barcelona?

US Airways says that because I made the reservations for all of the segments through them, they will check my bags all the way to Barcelona. Anyone have experiences with checking bags through 2 airlines? We are planning to carry on enough to make do for a couple days if needed.

Thanks in advance for your help! I have learned a lot from reading your posts!
Mar 7th, 2001, 11:20 AM
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Hi Jane, we did something like this last fall with United and British Air; we flew from San Francisco into London/Heathrow on UA, then caught a BA connection into Paris. We booked with United, which claimed 2 hours was a legal connection time and that our bags would be checked through -- NOT. It was actually a nightmare I would not repeat. I especially disliked that neither airline would take responsibility for our lost luggage, which arrived two days later.

The trip back was even worse: because of clear traffic, we checked in quite early for the BA shuttle into London (nearly 3 hours). After checking our bags, the BA counter agent told us the flight had been delayed because of "weather." No other airline or shuttle had this problem, but because she'd already checked our bags, no other airline could sell us seats. In any case, by some miracle we actually made it into Heathrow in time to catch our UA flight to San Francisco, but they wouldn't allow us to board it because no one in Paris had given us boarding cards 45 minutes prior to departure (we had confirmed upgraded seats on all segments which we'd booked months ahead of time).

Instead, we had to wait several more hours in Heathrow to catch a flight to Dulles, followed by customs in Dulles, followed by a long layover before our connection to San Francisco.

Our tickets had been looked over at least 10 times by both United and British Airlines personel, none of whom mentioned this possibility. I found out later that the agents wearing British Airlines uniforms and nametags didn't even work for the airline -- they're just bodies they stick behind the counter and this can happen at any airline! You really have no recourse when something like this happens, you just have to go along with it, but it can really give you pause.

I realize you're asking about two different airlines and flight schedules, but I had to give you my two cents.
Mar 7th, 2001, 11:45 AM
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I tend to book all segments on the same airline, but I did once fly TWA to NYC and then Aer Lingus to Dublin. My bags were not "lost" but late one day due to TWA's fault (late arrival in NYC). However, Aer Lingus took full responsiblity for it (guess they would have to as TWA was not in Dublin), delivered my bag to my hotel the next day and reimbursed me without any problem for a pair of shoes I had to purchase due to missing my bag one day. I was prepared with a carryon for toiletries, T-shirt for sleeping and a skirt/blouse, which was enough in addition to what I was wearing; however, I had special reservations at a restaurant that first night where I did not feel comfortable wearing the casual shoes I was wearing on the plane (the skirt and blouse were fine), so I actually bought a nice pair of flats in a Dublin shoestore during my first days' shopping and Aer Lingus paid for them when I explained. Probably because I was not trying to milk them for anything, that was the only expense I claimed. Aer Lingus was great. In your case, they will check your bag through, I'm sure, but ultimately you will need to depend on Air France to get it. YOu won't go through customs at CDG, but at your final destination, as long as it's an international airport (think that's the rule).
Mar 7th, 2001, 12:14 PM
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Make sure your bags are checked all the way to Barcelona. You will pass an immigration checkpoint in Paris CDG (France and Spain are both Schengen countries) and will clear customs in Barcelona. Nothing to worry about and 2 hours is more than enough. I have made 50 minute connections at CDG without problems.
Mar 7th, 2001, 08:31 PM
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Thanks, Jan, Christina and Sjoerd!

I am crossing my fingers for good luck with the luggage transfer! I'll be sure to carry on enough to manage for a couple of days just in case!

I'll let you know how it goes! I can't wait!

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