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.

Question about choosing layovers

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
162 posts
9 reviews
Save Topic
Question about choosing layovers

Should I choose a layover in Dublin or in Iceland? I'm flying to Paris. I've looked at multiple cities including NYC, Atlantic City, Orlando, and Miami and it seems the layover points in my price range are all in either Dublin or Iceland. I don't mind a non-direct flight as it allows me to see another country.

The perks of Dublin:

I would be able to fly out of Chicago round trip for about $1200 (including taxes, fees, etc)

Seems like hotels near Dublin Airport are relatively cheap at about $60-$80 USD a night

They speak English there.

Looks like the airport is close to city center and there is a bus that would drop me off for about $30 dollars round trip from city to airport and back.

Downfalls of Dublin:

I've looked at TA and not a lot about Dublin interests me.

All of the layovers in Dublin are 17-22 hour layovers over night for example I'm seeing On my way to Europe: land: 5pm leave at 10am both coming to and from Europe. So I'd have to get a hotel room twice or sleep the airport, and not even sure if I'd ever be able to actually enjoy Dublin if I always would have to be overnight.

My other option is to fly into JFK for about ($150 round trip) and the layover would be in Iceland. The trip including the cost of flying to NYC would be about the same, but it would be a hassle to fly to NYC, then Iceland, then arrive in Paris.

Perks:

Iceland is slightly more interesting

I hear it's an extremely safe area

The airline is supposed to be excellent

Using Iceland as a layover point I would have a 1-2 hour layover point on my way to europe and a 17-22 hour layover on my way back during the day (I think it was like arrive 9am and leave 11pm) so I could perhaps do without a hotel room.

If I wanted to I could extend the layover with the airline for up to a week extra for free.

Downfalls:

I'm worried about language barriers.

I'd have to convert my money twice (once in Europe and once in Iceland)

Iceland is expensive including hotels, food, etc. I saw that airport taxis charge about $60 and the tours to the local attractions can cost upwards to $100 since a lot of it requires a taxi to be taken.

Travelling The World
Destination Expert
for Alghero, Melton Mowbray, Elora
Level Contributor
15,972 posts
71 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Question about choosing layovers

No language barriers in Iceland. Most people speak excellent English. Cost is a factor though.

An advantage for Dublin that you missed out, since you are returning to the US, is that you will pre-clear customs and immigration in Dublin.

Edited: 9:56 am, January 04, 2014
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
162 posts
9 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Question about choosing layovers

What does that mean exactly the pre-clear customs? I read about it, but didn't really understand it. This will be my first international flight. Iceland is beautiful, but I am worried about the cost for sure. I could get a lot more for my money in Dublin. I keep bouncing the two cities back and forth.

Edited: 10:15 am, January 04, 2014
Travelling The World
Destination Expert
for Alghero, Melton Mowbray, Elora
Level Contributor
15,972 posts
71 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Question about choosing layovers

It means the have US border personnel in Dublin. They check your passport and your customs declaration before you board the flight, so that when you arrive back in the US you arrive as if you were on a domestic flight.

Dublin is a beautiful city and not to be missed. I am very surprised that you can't find anything to interest you there. History, art, culture - Dublin has it all. If you like Paris I would be very surprised if you didn't like Dublin.

San Diego
Destination Expert
for San Diego
Level Contributor
65,405 posts
68 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Question about choosing layovers

I wonder when you are traveling? $1200 is not such a low price for round trip airfare to Paris unless maybe you are going in summer?

UK
Level Contributor
49,560 posts
91 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Question about choosing layovers

Iceland is very nice, and very different, whilst though Dublin is interesting to visit, end of the days its just another European city, they don't have geysers, volcanic hot baths, whale watching, Northern lights etc.

I'd suggest you tag 2 or 3 days on and visit it. There is no language barrier. I didn't find it that expensive apart from booze the price of which makes your eyes water.

Edited: 11:41 am, January 04, 2014
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
16,685 posts
117 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Question about choosing layovers

$1200 is not cheap. If you are flexible with dates I think you can get a non stop from Chicago for around that.

Oxford, United...
Destination Expert
for St. Barthelemy
Level Contributor
1,585 posts
564 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Question about choosing layovers

I would have thought Ireland was more of a language barrier than Iceland. Some of the accents there are really hard to understand !

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
162 posts
9 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Question about choosing layovers

I plan on traveling either late May to June, July, or August. I can't take off any sooner or later because of work. I planned on going for several weeks.

The preclearance could be nice. I do like arts and culture, I think I need to do further research since I'm typically more interested in nature which is why Iceland is appealing. I think maybe Dublin would be a better fit if I just spent time in Paris, Belgium, and Luxembourg. I will admit I am a little offput by how expensive people say Iceland is (I don't drink alcohol) but I read taxis can be upwards to $120 for a round trip from Airport to city center which is pretty steep for something trivial.

Why are these the other two cities I'm seeing as options for layovers? During the winter months it looks like there is a lot more choices about layovers including Moscow or Turkey including Dublin and Iceland.

Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
16,685 posts
117 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Question about choosing layovers

The reason you see those cities is Aer a Lingus and IcelandAir run a lot of cheap flights from the USA to Europe and those are their hubs. So does Turkish Air into Istanbul.

Ireland has tons of scenic beauty on the West Coast away from Dublin if you have time.

Edited: 4:36 pm, January 04, 2014
Boston
Level Contributor
926 posts
1 review
Save Reply
10. Re: Question about choosing layovers

Iceland is expensive but a great place to visit as is Dublin. Yes, a taxi from Reykjavik airport is expensive but they have an excellent airport bus which is much much cheaper as does Dublin.

But with the short time you are talking you could also stay near the airport and go to the Blue Lagoon. Either way, it is a very short visit and I would go with the better flight times since you cannot add on a few days.