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AA to Curacao

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Kingston, Canada
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9 posts
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AA to Curacao

We are not American, but are flying AA to the island through Miami. I have two questions:

how long before the flight at 8:15 AM back home do you need to be at the airport for the security processing?

how bad is it in Miami these days for non-US citizens when they are catching another flight to Chicago? 10 years ago when I did it we were stuck in a line so long we almost missed our flight. What's it like these days?

Looking forward to Curacao!!

Bartlett, IL
3 posts
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1. Re: AA to Curacao

I hope you've left yourself at least 2 hours in Miami. I'm a US citizen, and I find MIA one of the worst airports to fly through, especially if you have to go through customs. It can only be worse for non-US citizens.

Good luck, and whatever you do enjoy your trip and don't let the trip home cut into your enjoyment any.

We have the opposite problem. Originally we were booked on a 2:05pm flight, but I think AA has cancelled that route and we got bumped up to 8:15am, and now have an 8 hour layover in MIA. I'll ask at the hotel while we're there what time we should head to the airport, and will probably arrive 30 minutes earlier than they recommend (I like to err on the side of safety). If I had to guess I'd say 90 minutes before the flight (i.e., 6:45am) should be sufficient even for a safety-conscious guy like me.

Ottawa
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128 posts
28 reviews
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2. Re: AA to Curacao

Ron,

Are you going Ottawa > Chicago > Miami > Cuarcao?????

If som that's gonna leave a mark.

Judy and I are from Ottawa, and after looking at the alternatives for our flight in December, we are opting to drive to Toronto, the evening before the flight, do the stay, park and fly thing on the 0930 AA flight to Miami then endure the four hour lay over in Miami and catch the 1630 flight tio Curacao.

While this still leaves us the same return plan, spend the night in Toronto and drive back to Ottawa the next day, we eliminated a hop and with that reduced the potential to get hung up in transit.

BTW When are you going down?

Kingston, Canada
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9 posts
30 reviews
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3. Re: AA to Curacao

hi

We are driving down to Syracuse, staying in a hotel and catching a morning flight to Chicago-Miami-Curacao.

Flying this way costs only $441 per person! Any flights out of Canada were more than $200 more per person. Also, the hotels in Syracuse allow you free parking at their lots while you are gone.

We are going to the islands next Tuesday.

Can't wait! This is our 7th trip down there and it's been 2 years since we were in Nevis.

Willington...
Destination Expert
for Curacao
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5,145 posts
138 reviews
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4. Re: AA to Curacao

Ron, arriving two hours before your flight is plenty of time. On Sept. 7 we arrived at 6 am and breezed thru all the lines. The shops didn't open til 7 am. Then our flight was delayed til 9, I heard the AA crew needs 12 hours off. That put us in Miami at noon, by the time we went thru all the security and getting our bags, going to our connecting gate, they were boarding at 1pm for our 1:50 departure. We grabbed a sandwich quick and boarded for Boston.

Have a great trip to Curacao

Ottawa, Canada
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1,342 posts
5 reviews
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5. Re: AA to Curacao

We avoid leaving from Ottawa to simplify the routing - important as we bring the dog - we take the Montreal Miami flight then connect. That link is easy as the US pre clearance facilities are at departure - (same from TO or Ottawa) - next time we do immigration and Customs is in Curacao - friendly and fast -

Return is more complex, there are no US pre clearance available in Curacao.

Curacao departure process is quick (note departure tax is already paid by AA as part of your ticket price) security and immigration are quick and friendly. (10-15 minutes at the very most)

Clearing customs and immigration in Miami is fairly reasonable.

We normally find that we are through (long walk) immigration at about the time baggages arrive at the carousel.

As you line up for immigration in the non-US citizen line - select one near the US line (the right) and ensure your Canadian passport is visible. Often when the US line is clear they will direct non-US passengers through there. They tend to pick Canadians first. (happened twice to us)

then you pick baggage clear customs and hand baggage to AA connecting flights and go through security again to head to your gate. Do not forget that if you bought duty free alcool at Curacao to palce the bottles in your unaccompanied baggage before handing them over to connecting flight.

Budget about 90 minutes.

Arrival in Canada is again immigration and customs.

That makes for a long day.

Hollywood, Florida
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355 posts
31 reviews
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6. Re: AA to Curacao

Well, I have to say that although we live within minutes of the Ft. Lauderdale airport, we primarily fly to the Caribbean from Miami and take a shuttle down. With that said, while it's certainly got it's share of problems, I take all the things said with a grain of salt like travel reviews of hotels cause we've never had a problem with all our flights and for folks that are being held up or perhaps running late, they are constantly walking through to take them to the flight and up front for clearance. A new feature that we liked when we travelled to Aruba via AA in Miami was the kiosk check in - it was fairly fast, some folks who've never travelled had more problmes than us making our wait longer than we'd have thought but overall faster than waiting through the entire AA customs check. We were able to watch almost a half hour show of the dvd we brought, met some neat people and then boarded - although I'm sure others have experienced bad things in Miami, don't let it ruin you before you get there - it may be smooth! Christie

Bonaire
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5,944 posts
136 reviews
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7. Re: AA to Curacao

Winter, is the doggie in the cabin or in the cargo?? Flying back, two hours prior in CUR always. Miami is a gamble..make sure your connecting time is 2 hours at least. I repeat what others are sharing only to reiterate.

Sacramento...
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37 posts
7 reviews
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8. Re: AA to Curacao

Miami is the worst airport I have ever been through. I will be flying through there on my way to Curacao in early October and am already dreading it! Good luck and have fun.

Bonaire
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9. Re: AA to Curacao

Craig, if you hate it, it will be a bad experience..look for some fun out of it..go eat Cuban at that cool restaurant..see the colorful crazy looking mult nationals that flit in and out..it's all good..breathe

Sacramento...
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37 posts
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10. Re: AA to Curacao

i didn't say i hate it, i said it is the worst airport i have ever been in. that said, i want to go to curacao - so miami international it is!