We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Las Vegas transfer to San Francisco ?

posts: 1
reviews: 18
Las Vegas transfer to San Francisco ?

We are flying from LGW to SFO via Las Vegas in late July, to maximise the budget we have gone for indirect flights...using Virgin to Las Vegas and then US Airways to SFO, we have a 5 hour wait before internal flight.. My question is, having not flown to the US before, where do we go through immigration, Las Vegas or SFO? How does it work with luggage etc? I have checked weight allowance for Virgin as 23 kg and US seems to be one item of luggage. Are there restaurants/ coffee shop in transit lounge? Would be grateful for any advice. We are doing same in reverse SFO to Las Vegas on US Airways, Virgin Las Vegas to LGW with a 2 hour wait on return, I presume this is enough time???? Sounds like I may have booked a nightmare and saved money but bought a hassle! Also any recommendations for airport hotel at SFO so we can just sleep and it doesn't matter if we are delayed before going into SF next morning? Many thanks for any info.

San Diego
Destination Expert
for San Diego
posts: 47,344
reviews: 61
1. Re: Las Vegas transfer to San Francisco ?

In the USA you do immigration/customs at the FIRST point of entry into the USA.

It sounds like your first stop in the USA is Las Vegas so that is where you'll need the extra time.

You will land, pick up your luggage and go through immigration customs.

I don't know if you are on 1 ticket or 2 separate tickets???

Often airlines have an agreement where luggage from one is put on the next flight but I don't know if Virgan and US Airways has that sort of agreement. If they don't or if you are on 2 separate tickets then you'll have to check luggage and check in for the 2nd flight.

Since you have 5hrs. you'll have enough time.

There are not usually separate "in transit " areas in USA airports so you'll just go to the next gate to wait for your flight.

Park City, Utah
Destination Expert
for Utah, Winter Sports
posts: 11,956
reviews: 239
2. Re: Las Vegas transfer to San Francisco ?

Sounds like you've booked separate tickets. Definitely a risk. If your Virgin flight is late and you miss U.S. Airways, that ticket may be canceled including the return. Similar on your return, if you're late to the Virgin flight in Vegas the return could be canceled.

Good news, Virgin and U.S. Airways do have a baggage interline agreement. So you SHOULD be able to check your bags LGW-LAS-SFO and same on return. You will still need to get bags in LAS, clear immigration and customs, and give bags back for LAS-SFO. You'll need to back through security and there are restaurants int he airport.

Hopefully you'll be on time for the return with just two hours. You will not need to deal with bags in Vegas on the return if you can check them in all the way.

Good luck.

Bangkok, Thailand
Destination Expert
for Air Travel, Business Travel
posts: 7,189
reviews: 80
3. Re: Las Vegas transfer to San Francisco ?

"Good news, Virgin and U.S. Airways do have a baggage interline agreement."

Sorry, bad news... US no longer honors interline agreements on different tickets. The new baggage fee rules in the US has done that in for many airlines. 5 hours is plenty of time (bordering on too much time) between flights.

2 hours on the return *should* also be enough if your inbound flight isn't late, but don't doddle.

Liverpool, UK
posts: 12,019
reviews: 23
4. Re: Las Vegas transfer to San Francisco ?

Whilst the connection time on the outbound leg is fine I'd be concerned with just 2 hours on the return leg, assuming it's separate tickets, because of the financial risk involved.

There is still time for schedule changes which could reduce that 2 hour window and your SF - LV could be delayed or cancelled on the day, if any of these result in you missing the flight with Virgin from Las Vegas then you're simply a no show and will have to buy a new expensive one way ticket assuming there is even availability.

Best of luck - hope it works out.

Bingley, United...
Destination Expert
for Edinburgh
posts: 27,958
5. Re: Las Vegas transfer to San Francisco ?

< In the USA you do immigration/customs at the FIRST point of entry into the USA. >

Which is true for virtually all countries (if you consider Schengen to be one country)

6. Re: Las Vegas transfer to San Francisco ?

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 12:18 am, May 10, 2014