Madrid Airport Transfer Questions

Dec 3rd, 2008, 03:04 PM
  #1  
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Madrid Airport Transfer Questions

Hello,

We will be flying to Malaga via Madrid later this month; the first leg of the flight is on American Airlines, and the second is on Iberia (booked on 1 ticket). We have a 3 hour layover in Madrid.

We will be carrying on our luggage on the AA flight to Madrid. (Yes, we could check in our luggage; however, after going without my bags for 2 weeks on a previous European vacation, I am reluctant to part with my bags unless absolutely necessary!)

Iberia, however, appears to have a less generous hand luggage allowance, and we may have to check our rolling suitcases upon arrival in Madrid for our flight to Malaga. If we need to do so, can this be done at the gate? Is there a transfer desk to check luggage or must we exit the terminal and proceed to the main check-in counters? (I am sure we will have our boarding passes for both flights as the Iberia flight is a codeshare with AA.) Is anyone familiar with this airport's process?

Thanks,
Chels
Chels is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2008, 06:46 PM
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It's typical to check your larger carry-on luggage on a domestic flight depending on the type of plane. You can expect it if the flight is on a smaller Airbus or Boeing plane. We do it all the time. It's not a problem. You usually do it when boarding the flight and pick the bags up when you arrive. You may want to put a TSA lock on the bag, just to make you feel better.

You should be arriving at T4S and departing from T4.
Robert2533 is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2008, 08:36 PM
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Thank you for the response. This is what we typically do when transfering flights; however, I know some airports (such as LHR) require that you re-check in with your airiline at an internal transfer counter, where your bag is then taken. I would feel much better if my bag were gate checked.

Thanks again,
Chels
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Dec 4th, 2008, 12:19 PM
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I have never seen bags checked at the gate except for propeller planes of air nostrum flights sually beginning with a flight number 8....something.

unless your bag is REALLY past the hand luggage allowance they may not say anything.

maybe people ARE doing that, but I have been on quite a few iberia flights lately and didn't notice it, however, if robert2533 actually DOES it.. must be so.

lincasanova is offline  
Dec 4th, 2008, 01:23 PM
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lincasanova correct in that the larger bags are gate checked only on the smaller planes (mostly turboprops) because of the lack of room in the overhead storage bays. There shouldn't be any problem on most Airbus or Boeing jets.
Robert2533 is offline  
Dec 4th, 2008, 05:47 PM
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chels.. just how big IS this bag?
just curious.
lincasanova is offline  
Dec 4th, 2008, 08:39 PM
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My bag is a 20-inch rolling suitcase; total inches, including frame, is 44 inches - 1 less than allowed on AA flights. It's an average size carry-on suitcase. Although it complies with AA's carry-on policy, it does not fit in the small testing frame that many European airports utilize. I usually have to check it in from LHR and LGW; I believe that I also checked it in from AMS.

The bag will hold in an air-bus bin; but, it may be a tight fit on some of the smaller jets.

Thanks for the advice, and I welcome your thoughts/experiences.

-Chels
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Jan 8th, 2009, 06:36 PM
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Well, we just returned from the Costa del Sol (which had no Sol for the week we were there), and I thought I would answer my own question for anyone researching this in the future.

We had no problem changing planes in Madrid. We did have to pass through both passport control and security when we changed terminals; however, no one gave us a problem about our carry-on luggage. It seemed clear that those passengers who originated their Iberia flights in Madrid had much smaller carry-on pieces, and had checked their larger roll-aboards; we, however, had no problem carrying-on both pieces of our luggage. There were no questions asked, and due to the fact that most of the domestic passengers had only small carry-on pieces, there was plenty of overhead compartment space even though the flight was full.

Hope this helps some of you in the future,
Chels
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Jan 8th, 2009, 07:34 PM
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It's good to hear you didn't have any problems, especially when everyone gets down on Iberia.
Robert2533 is offline  

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