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International Flight transit Newark - airport security/transit query

International Flight transit Newark - airport security/transit query

Old Sep 2nd, 2005, 10:35 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 33
International Flight transit Newark - airport security/transit query

Hi everyone,

This is our first time travelling into USA post-Sep 11 and we're quite concerned about our connecting flights and time needed to make these flights.

We're travelling from Singapore to Boston for a 2 week holiday. Flight stops over at Hong Kong, Newark and then finally Boston. From HK to Boston, the airlines is Continental.

Our main concern is at Newark as we have only 1 hr 20 minutes between landing and connecting to the flight to Boston. I hope experienced international travels can help us out.

1. As Newark is our first stop in the USA, am I correct that we'll be security-screened and have our passports checked/cleared/photographed etc at this airport?
2. If this is the case, will 1hr 20mins be sufficient or will we miss our connecting flight to Boston?
3. Our other concern is that the transit time might not be sufficient for our luggage to fly with us into Boston. Any travellers that can provide any guidance/tip on this would be great.

Or is it the case that they'll keep us in a transit area, and do the security checks only when we land in Logan Airport Boston?

I'd really appreciate any information on this. If the transit time is insufficient, we'll need to ask the travel agent to see when's the next flight to Boston from Newark and get us on that instead.

Any help appreciated!

Saidean
saidean is offline  
Old Sep 2nd, 2005, 10:45 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 2,285
I don't think you will have enough time to get through customs, then back through security to catch your flight to Boston. I would check with Continental and see what other flights are available. If you miss your flight will Continental put you on another of their flights or get you on another airline's flight. Not sure there are alot of flights from Newark to Boston, they are mainly out of LaGuardia, so check with Continental to see what they can do.

Have a wonderful time in Boston.
wantsomesun is offline  
Old Sep 3rd, 2005, 12:08 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 9,180
That is cutting it a bit close but it is possible to do. The last time I cleared in EWR it went pretty fast, but a lot depends on how many other flights arrive around the same time yours does.
An important issue is whether your entire journey is issued on one ticket. If it is, and you are not able to make the connection, you will be accommodated on the next flight. If your CO segment out of EWR is on a separate ticket you may not have the same protection.
When you originate in Singapore, be sure to have your bags chcecked through to Boston. Even though you will need to retrieve them to go through customs at EWR, they will already be tagged for Boston and you will just drop them with the CO agent outside the doors of Customs then proceed to your gate. It may put your mind at ease to contact Continental to verify that your 1h20m is a "legal" connection time for international arrival at EWR.
Seamus is offline  
Old Sep 3rd, 2005, 07:43 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 23,074
Here's what going to happen at Newark (EWR):

- You get off plane, walk a long way to the immigrations. Go to the "alien" line and clear immigrations.

- You claim your bags and head to the customs officer near the exit. Most of the time, you just walk out. Other times, they'll send you to the customs area for checking. Depends on what you declare on your form, etc...

- Right outside the customs exit, you'll see the Continental baggage check area right in front of you. Drop your checked luggage back to them.

- You head up to the departure level, and have to clear security. Note your gate number for the Boston flight. It'll help if you print out the terminal map of EWR from continental.com:

www.continental.com/travel/airport/maps/ewr.asp

Note that Terminal C at EWR has 3 piers, and there are also three security checkpoints into Terminal C. When you get out of the security, you'll be close to the "left" pier for gates 120-139. But if your Boston flight leaves from the other piers, or if the security lines there are long, then continue walking and go through one of the other two checkpoints instead.

- You'll need to reclear security. TSA agents (and fellow passengers) at EWR are sometimes not very friendly. Move fast. Take off your shoes. Empty out your pockets of metal items BEFORE you enter the line.

Now, here's the bad news:

- While CO98 from Hong Kong usually arrives at EWR early, they often don't have a gate for them immediately. And many European flights are also arriving at the same time. The lines for "alien" are often long. So, your chance of making the 1hr20min connection is fairly low. I'd say about 60%.

[1hr20min is a "legal" connection, but the problem is that CO doens't make a distinction between citizens/residents and aliens. Huge difference in the time needed to clear immigration at times. If one is a citizen with no checked luggage, it's often possible to standby on an earlier flight out of EWR.]

But here's the good news:

- CO has flights to Boston basically every hour in the afternoon, sometimes every half-hour. So, if your incoming flight is late, or lines at immigration is long, CO can put you on the next flight, easy. So, no need to worry about not getting to Boston. You will get there the same day, period.

But, if you get out of the customs with <15-20 minutes before your BOS flight, don't just drop your checked bags. You should go to the CO counters next to it to reschedule and to have your bags retagged first. Otherwise, you have a good chance of losing your luggage.
rkkwan is offline  
Old Sep 3rd, 2005, 08:15 AM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 57,890
There is no chance you will make that flight to Boston - even if your flight is early.

You have to go through immigration, pick up you luggage and go through customs. At that time of day - with many european flights landing - the lines are often huge and an hour is very optimistic - leaving you no time to get to your boston flight - or any additional security measures.

I would switch now to a flight at least one hour later.

nytraveler is offline  
Old Sep 3rd, 2005, 10:54 AM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Posts: 23,074
CO98 arrives at 3:10pm. The OP probably is booked on the 4:30pm one to BOS. There are furhter flights at 5:30, 6:30/7:00 and 8:45.

If your travel agent can switch it to the 5:30 with no charge, then might as well do it. If not, then see what happens after you arrive at EWR.
rkkwan is offline  
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