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How early do you really have to arrive at the airport?

How early do you really have to arrive at the airport?

Old Apr 18th, 2002, 11:24 AM
  #1  
Sandi
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How early do you really have to arrive at the airport?

Just wondering if most people here actually get there two hours early, or maybe even earlier? I realize this is the Europe forum but more people seem to post here. I'm actually wondering about the Montreal airport. Would one hour early be sufficient?

Thanks in advance for any replies.

Sandi
 
Old Apr 18th, 2002, 12:28 PM
  #2  
Joyce1
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It depends:

If you are not checking any luggage, arriving 1 hour before the flight should be okay.

If you are checking luggage but the plane is small, 2 hours should be adequate. (Fewer passengers equate to shorter lines.)

If you are checking luggage and taking a jumbo jet, then be at the airport at least 3 hours ahead of time.

If you are parking at the airport, add time to find a parking spot.
 
Old Apr 18th, 2002, 12:31 PM
  #3  
sam
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I flew Air France out of Boston Logan Airport last week. It took me 45 minutes to check my bags and 1 hour and 20 minutes to get through security. I know people disagree, but if it's an international flight - I would not arrive less than 3 hours before flight time.
 
Old Apr 18th, 2002, 12:39 PM
  #4  
Alyssa
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Hi Sandi,

I'm taking a trip in a few weeks, an international one my friends that have flown recently told me to be there 3 hours prior. On another note for Sam, how was the Air France flight out of Logan? That's who I'm flying out of Logan too.

Alyssa
 
Old Apr 18th, 2002, 12:40 PM
  #5  
mpprh
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Hi

Intercontinental was always 2 hrs from Europe because of security.
You could risk it, but I missed a flight once being 1hr 40 m before.

Inter Euro flights say 2 hrs, but I got one last week 1h 15 m before.

Of course flying business helps

Peter
 
Old Apr 18th, 2002, 12:47 PM
  #6  
Diana
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Airports vary. There is the "official" pre-arrival time which is standard, and there is the real time which varies for each airport, as well as day of week and time of time. Ask someone you know who travels or has travelled recently from your home airport. Also, beware that if it is a holiday (such as spring break) or if an event such as a large convention or sporting event has just ended the day you plan to leave that times will need to be extened. There is also a place to check on the web for waiting times by airport -- unfortunately, I'm on travel so don't have all my bookmarks. Maybe someone else will post the web site.

Sorry, but there is no single correct answer good for everywhere.
 
Old Apr 18th, 2002, 12:54 PM
  #7  
Amy
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When I left on Alitalia out of Boston, it took all of 10 minutes to check in and 5 to get through security. We then had 2 hours and 45 minutes to kill until we boarded. I think it varies from terminal to terminal (this was terminal D as opposed to terminal E where a previous poster from Logan probably left from). I would follow whatever your airline tells you.
 
Old Apr 18th, 2002, 01:10 PM
  #8  
sam
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Alyssa -

The flight itself was fine. In seat screens on my plane, which was nice. I know food is not the end-all reason to fly a certain airline, but I found both flights on Air France to have the worst meals I'd ever had anywhere. The service was fine, my bags arrived on time. So, overall, no major complaints, but I was glad I had some Carb Solution bars with me to take the edge off.

If you're driving to the airport, be aware that Air France leaves out of Terminal C and arrives in Terminal E. This can make for an interesting search for your car...
 
Old Apr 18th, 2002, 01:12 PM
  #9  
elvira
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I'm a paranoid obsessive compulsive personality, so even before new security measures were in place, I got to the airport 90 mins before a domestic flight and 2 1/2 hours before an international flight. Too many times I've arrived at check-in to find a huuuuge line, and panicky travelers who arrive 30 mins before their flight having coronary arrest. No thank you, I'll sit in the airport bar or coffee shop for over an hour rather than race for the airplane.

A friend of mine always carries a "timekiller" with her - a book, crossword puzzles, small needlecraft kit - so whenever she has to stand in line (at the grocery store, registry of motor vehicles, airport, whatever), she has something to do instead of kvetch. I'm not that smart in real life, but I always have a book when I head to the airport. Anyway, I like airports.
 
Old Apr 18th, 2002, 01:20 PM
  #10  
Howard
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I totally agree with Elvira. Who needs the stress? It's no big deal to wait. Hey, just bring a good book!
 
Old Apr 18th, 2002, 02:31 PM
  #11  
Sandi
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Thank you, everyone, for the advice. I'll tell you why I am asking about this... although most of you will probably think it is a crazy reason.

I'm going to Montreal next weekend to see the Cards play the Expos. I will make the Friday and Saturday games but the Sunday game is causing me some worry. My flight leaves Sunday at 6:00 p.m. and I'm estimating the game will end at about 4:30 that day. I will probably just go and leave early.

I won't be checking any luggage so that's not an issue for me.

Thanks again,

Sandi
 
Old Apr 18th, 2002, 02:53 PM
  #12  
Howard
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Sunday evening is a very busy time at airports. I'd give yourself lots of time!
 
Old Apr 19th, 2002, 08:11 AM
  #13  
Alyssa
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Sam-

Thanks for the response. And the tips about snacks! Thankfully we are taking in a livery service, I hate driving into Logan with the big dig going on, seems like the route continually changes!

Alyssa
 
Old Apr 19th, 2002, 08:30 AM
  #14  
AC
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Sandi:
I am also one of those paranois, obessevie complusives who have to be to the airport EARLY. I was doing this long before 9/11. I am so bad that I am usually one of the first on line when international flight counters open. The good thing is that I am usually not alone . Have fun!
 
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