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Connecting Flights (MAN - IAD - MCO) with United question.

Birmingham, United...
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Connecting Flights (MAN - IAD - MCO) with United question.

Hey guys,

So I have booked a holiday to Florida, and this is the first time (been 3 times previously) that I haven't used a chartered flight. We are flying with Delta, and on both legs of the journey, we are having to stop off. Manchester - Washington Dulles - Orlando International on the way there, and Orlando International - Newark - Manchester on the way back.

This is also the first time I will have done a connecting flight, and my questions are:

- Do I have to pass through customs and/or security at Washington Dulles/Newark Airports, even though I'm in transit and not stopping? Will I have to collect my bags at the transit airports and recheck them?

- We have been given 1h 40 minutes between arriving and departing at the two transit airports, is this enough time? We are travelling on a Friday, and in the past, have hit massive immigration queues at Sanford. Will it be similar at IAD/EWR?

- Should there be a delay and I miss my connecting flight, what will happen? (I have done a search and a post from August 2013 said that United will put us on the next available flight at no cost to us (if it is down to a delay) and put us in a hotel if it's an overnight wait (if it's their fault.) Is this still true?)

Thanks guys!

Park City, Utah
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1. Re: Connecting Flights (MAN - IAD - MCO) with United question.

Just to confirm, you're doing this on United not Delta? You mentioned both. On the way over here, you will need to clear immigration and customs in Dulles. You will claim your bags, take them through customs, then put them on a conveyor belt to go to MCO. You will go through security again.

On the way home, you DO NOT claim your bags in EWR nor do you go through immigration or customs. That will be on your arrival home. Your connecting time is legal or they couldn't sell you the ticket. It's sufficient time at EWR as you have no formalities. It will be tight at IAD, especially as a non-U.S. passport holder (assuming). But it will be United's responsibility to get you there assuming it's all on the same ticket.

Have fun.

Liverpool, UK
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2. Re: Connecting Flights (MAN - IAD - MCO) with United question.

The 1 hour 40 minutes on the return is fine but is a bit short on the outbound flight for my preference - hope your incoming flight is early, try to sit as close to the front of the plane on the transatlantic leg as possible and walk briskly to US immigration to improve your chances of making that connection.

You could make it but it all depends on the queues at US Immigration at IAD which could well be longer than those you experienced at Sanford.

Birmingham, United...
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3. Re: Connecting Flights (MAN - IAD - MCO) with United question.

Apologies, it is United. I think me saying Delta was because I was searching other topics whilst typing, I try to only post if I don't find the information elsewhere.

I hope it isn't too tight at IAD, but then all I care about is making the connecting flight. I have searched the IAD website and it doesn't give much information regarding connecting flight time recommendations. We are non-US passport holders.

Liverpool, UK
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4. Re: Connecting Flights (MAN - IAD - MCO) with United question.

Here is the IAD Terminal Map from the UA website - in all probability you'll arrive and depart from one of the C Gates although it could be D.

You can use the Flight Status facility on the UA website to see if there is any normal pattern of gates for you flights.

united.com/web/…iad.aspx

Portland, Oregon
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5. Re: Connecting Flights (MAN - IAD - MCO) with United question.

radiocaf,

Could you please check (and post) all your flight details (dates, flight numbers, departure and arrival times) especially the outbound? The reason is that I'm not seeing a 1hr40 connection at IAD between the arriving United flight from MAN and an onward flight to MCO. Of course I may be wrong, and flight schedules may change, but I'm wondering if (hopefully) the connection at IAD is longer.

If it is indeed a 1hr40 connection on the outbound at IAD, that is VERY TIGHT. You have to clear US immigration, collect your luggage, clear customs, hand back your luggage (itself easy) and then clear security. You'll have an advantage in that you will use the mid field transit CBP facility to do this so it's quicker than at other airports, but 1hr40 is still very risky. As a non US citizen I would have allowed three hours for that connection. There are later flights to MCO so if you missed the connection hopefully you'll get rebooked onto one of those, but there must be available seats on those flights as they won't bump any confirmed pax off the flight to make way for you.

On the return, 1hr40 should be fine as you won't have to clear any exit formalities nor security at EWR. You will probably arrive and depart using the same terminal C (the MAN flight will leave from C), but if you did arrive at terminal A there's an airside shuttle bus to transfer you. Just do not under any circumstances go land side at EWR as security to get back in can be a real pain.

united.com/web/…ewr.aspx

If by any chance you did miss the EWR-MAN flight then United has many many flights to Europe with partner connections to MAN, and in all probability would rebook you on a London flight with a BA or Virgin Little Red connection back to MAN. But 1hr40 should be fine for the return.

Good luck.

Birmingham, United...
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6. Re: Connecting Flights (MAN - IAD - MCO) with United question.

Something tells me I've made a huge mistake... lol. But surely they can't sell tickets for connecting flights that you can't make?

The flights are:

Depart Manchester at 11am on Friday 27th March 2015, Flight UA101

Arrive Washington Dulles at 15:30.

Depart Washington Dulles at 17:10 on Flight UA419, same date.

Arrive Orlando International at 19:15

--------

Depart Orlando International at 14:50, Tuesday 7th April 2015, Flight UA194

Arrive Newark at 17:43

Depart Newark at 19:30, Same date, Flight UA81

Arrive Manchester 07:40 the next day (8th April 2015).

Liverpool, UK
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7. Re: Connecting Flights (MAN - IAD - MCO) with United question.

radiocaf

I'd forget about it for now - for flights in March 2015 I can almost guarantee you that the schedule for at least one of your flights will change.

I booked flights in May 2014 to travel from MAN to Las Vegas via EWR and to date I've had 4 schedule changes, 3 by 15 minutes or so but one of over 1 hour.

They often sell flights, as do other airlines, that meet the Minimum Connection Time that most would say carry a risk - it's a case of you might make the connection but might not but as I said I think you're worrying unnecessary in respect of flights for March 2015.

Fortaleza, CE
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8. Re: Connecting Flights (MAN - IAD - MCO) with United question.

No lol. They will sell tickets for flights that fall within the "legal" minimum connection times. I've seen many illogical connection times on airline seats. But, since you're asking these questions only after you've paid for your tickets, you have what you have. If you miss the connection at IAD, United will put you on the next flight with available seats to MCO, but that may not be the very next flight. We once missed an international-to-domestic connection at IAD, and had to wait for two full flights leave before we got one. You will get to MCO, just maybe not as soon as you hoped. Be sure to tell airline personnel about your tight connection as soon as you get to IAD.

Birmingham, United...
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9. Re: Connecting Flights (MAN - IAD - MCO) with United question.

I know I worry too much, but I hate gambles. I wouldn't mind if we were guaranteed to catch our connection, but until then, I don't know, and I hate not knowing. I hope you are right about schedules changing, I'd welcome any extra time between the connections, but I may still look into changing to a direct Thomas Cook flight tomorrow, for peace of mind.

Liverpool, UK
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10. Re: Connecting Flights (MAN - IAD - MCO) with United question.

"I hope you are right about schedules changing, I'd welcome any extra time between the connections"

I'll willingly stake all my Las Vegas gambling budget that you'll have at least 1 schedule change before travel - my personal record is 7 between booking and travel and every flight I've had with UA or any other US carrier from MAN in the last 10 years has had a schedule change.

By all means consider switching to Thomas Cook but I wouldn't do that simply because of the current schedule.