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Is 1 hour enough time for transit if arriving and departing in same Heathrow Terminal

Is 1 hour enough time for transit if arriving and departing in same Heathrow Terminal

Old Jul 10th, 2008, 09:38 AM
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Is 1 hour enough time for transit if arriving and departing in same Heathrow Terminal

My family is considering a AA flight into Heathrow which arrives in T3. Would only have 1 hour connection time for a Cathay flight leaving from same terminal. Of course our AA flight could be delayed but if on time, is that enough for baggage and getting thru security in Heathrow. Understand I dont need to go thru customs or pick up my bags.

Thanks,
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Old Jul 10th, 2008, 10:06 AM
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Cathay seem to imply 60 mins is OK(http://www.cathaypacific.com/cpa/en_...aveladvisories)

The question is, though, what'll they do if you get to their gate late. Even if AA gets to Heathrow on time, it's pretty unpredictable how long will elapse between the plane touching down and your going through T3 security. Before committing to any money, I'd ask Cathay.
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Old Jul 10th, 2008, 10:13 AM
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What are your choices if you miss the connection. Assuming it is on one booking - is there another flight out the same day?

Arrival time is when the plane touches down - it can take 15 mins or more to get parked at a gate, another 10-15 mins or more to deplane, and another 10-15 mins or more to walk from the gate to the transfer desk. That hour disappears pretty fast.

Even if the plane lands on time and even IF I made it, I sure wouldn't expect my checked luggage to make it. (I only travel w/ carry on and even so, wouldn't risk that short a connection)
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Old Jul 10th, 2008, 10:18 AM
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If it's on the same ticket, you'd be "protected" and would be put on the next CX flight if your AA flight was late. However I'm unaware of any valid AA connections onto CX that only allow an hour at Heathrow. Are the flights on separate tickets? If they are, then now way I'd allow just an hour.
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Old Jul 10th, 2008, 10:40 AM
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An hour change at Heathrow is practically impossible - and checked luggage would never make it.

If this one ticket? If so, you would have a mess, but the airline would have to get you on the next flight out.

If it's separate tickets neither airline is responsible - and you would be completely stuck - to find another flight and pay whatever the airline chooses to charge you for new tickets.

(Based on my recent Heathrow experience - 8 transits in the last 3 months - 120 minutes is very tight - and less than that just silly.)
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Old Jul 10th, 2008, 11:04 AM
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Way too short--as one person mentioned, but it tends to be overlooked, even though you don't leave the terminal and don't have to deal with Immigration and luggage yourself, you still have to go through security which can take a very long time. I have seen (and been in) lines that stretch down long corridors. They keep the lines moving fairly quickly but it can be a long process. I would err on the side of at least two hours for transfer if you can.
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Old Jul 10th, 2008, 02:21 PM
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I actually do not think you could book this connection. We had 90 minutes originally on our connection for our recent trip, and then Heathrow changed (several months ago) the legal connection time to 2 hours, which prompted AA and BA to reconfigure our trip. It went smoothly for us in the end, and I think 90 minutes would have worked, however, this option was not up to us.
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Old Jul 10th, 2008, 03:35 PM
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We wanted a BA flight to Bulgaria and we couldn't get it because there was only 2 hours between flights. BA said not enough time.

Anything can and will happen so allow yourself more time. On our last flight to London a death occurred on the plane and we were diverted to Halifax and sat there for 3+ hours while an investigation was held etc.

I thought you had to clear customs in the first airport you land at in Europe. That in itself would take time.
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Old Jul 10th, 2008, 03:40 PM
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You do have to clear customs at your first airport if you have a connecting flight to somewhere in the UK and (I think) Republic of Ireland. OP said second flight was on Cathay so guessing he or she is going a bit further than Glasgow! But, you never know!
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Old Jul 10th, 2008, 10:02 PM
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Can we get a few things straight here?

The MCT for a One World-One World connection within T3 is 60 minutes. Whatever irrelevant nonsense people might come out with about what happened when they transferred from Sri Lankan at T4 to a domestic bmi flight at T1, we're talking about an all-airside, same building, same alliance, no immigration or customs connection here. Are these people just unable to read the bloody question?

All One World means AA should give the OP his boarding pass in the US: there's no need to go to a transfer desk. And, depending on the arrival gate, it's not always necessary in practice, whatever the rules say, for someone arriving at T3 with an onward T3 boarding card to a non-US destination and reasonable knowledge of the T3 layout to go through security - though don't tell anyone else that.

So ignore the war stories. Just pick up the phone and ask Cathay what their policy is if anything goes wrong.
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Old Jul 11th, 2008, 12:32 AM
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I had an all-Star Alliance set of flights (United and Lufthansa), but I could not get my LHR-CGN boarding pass while in SEA. I had to get it at LHR, and no other method was possible. Is it different for AA and Cathay?
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Old Jul 11th, 2008, 07:08 AM
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Sorry, flanner. I really thought, admittedly from experience and not hard knowledge, that there were no exceptions to a security screening between flights, even within the same terminal. I stand corrected.
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Old Jul 11th, 2008, 07:24 AM
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Lots of factors involved, but all things being equal, I say no.

(We should all feel fortunate to have the comments of flanner, who has never misread or made a mistake.)
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Old Jul 11th, 2008, 07:30 AM
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Looking historically, I'll add that for sure I would have missed a connection like this on at least 25%, if not more, of my visits to Heathrow.
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Old Jul 11th, 2008, 07:58 AM
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I'll actually agree with flanner. Call the airline. If they will take care of you should you misconnect and should that consideration be acceptable (i.e. won't mean you spend an extra night in London), then it might be worth a shot. I know I have routinely made intra-T4 connections in the past year in less than 30 minutes, often much less than 30 minutes.

But, 60 minutes is tight, no matter what the airport, and no matter how smoothly things go. About the only airport where I would say, with near certainty, that it could be done would be AMS.
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Old Jul 11th, 2008, 08:27 AM
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Regardless of what CX says MCT at T3 might be, I could count the number of times my AA transatlantic flight has been on time at LHR on... let's see... two fingers? Maybe if the connection were going the opposite way, i.e. CX > AA, I'd feel differently.

Without knowing specific flights, I would definitely err on the side of conservatism on this.
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Old Jul 11th, 2008, 08:40 AM
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It is definitely the correct connection time, 60mins and it is bookable. The MCT varies between airlines/terminals and domestic/international flights. Whether it is achievable is another matter, but if the AA flight is late they will rebook the next available CX flight. Luggage should be checked through to the final destination.
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Old Jul 11th, 2008, 09:56 AM
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WillTravel brings up a good point - will the OP be given the CX Boarding Pass when they check-in for their AA flight to LHR?

I think 1 hour is barely enough - IF their inbound flight is on time. I don't think their checked luggage will make it though, even if it's on time.

Having said that, earlier this year we flew AA/CX from Dallas to SFO to Hong Kong. Our AA flight to SFO was delayed and we only had 40 minutes to connect to our CX flight to Hong Kong. If we missed it, the next CX flight would be 12 hours later.

Anyway, when we realized we were cutting real close, I alerted our flight attendant. He called the ground crew and asked them to alert the CX flight that we were on our way.

When we deplaned, there was a CX representative waiting for us at the end of the jetway and escorted us to our HKG-bound CX flight in the International terminal.

In the eyes of the airlines, if your inbound flight is cutting close, it's better for the airline to wait for you than leaving w/o you (if we're talking a matter of 15 minutes), as it will have to rebook you on the next flight and provide you with meal vouchers +/- hotel (depending on whether the next flight avail is the same day or next day).
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Old Jul 11th, 2008, 10:57 AM
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Heathrow is one airport that I always seem to get stuck for at least 30 mins. after we land waiting for a gate to be free so we can get the heck off the plane.
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Old Jul 11th, 2008, 02:00 PM
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While it might be a "legal" connection, I wouldn't book only 60 mminutes betweens flights at any airport, much less one of the busiest in the world.
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