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Overnight connection at ORD (Chicago) advice?

We land at Chicago airport around 3pm after an 11 hour flight from Europe. Our connecting leg to the west coast is the following morning at 6am. We currently have a room reserved at the airport Hilton for the night, but are open to suggestions.

We were wondering if it is worth venturing into town for dinner (we've never been to Chicago), or if it would make more sense to just stay put near the airport. And if we stay put, any recommendations on where to have dinner?

Posted by
129 posts

Calvados, thanks for the reply. I thought that might be the case. Glad to hear the Hilton is good for an overnight. I do need to get to Chicago for an actual stay sometime.

Posted by
1806 posts

If you do not want to stay couped up on a plane for 11 hours and then just hang around your hotel room, (that Hilton is a good choice) you can take a 10-15 minute taxi ride to the Rivers Casino. There are several restaurants there such as Hugo's Chop House (Expensive), Flipt, which specializes in Burgers and I think has the best onion rings anywhere, an Asian restaurant and a taqueria. Plus a couple of bars.

Who knows, one slot machine hit and you could pay for your whole European vacation! LOL

Posted by
959 posts

Post-Covid, we had trouble getting transport from home to ORD for early morning flights. Uber and taxis and even car services were not yet in full swing. We stayed at the O'Hare Hilton a couple times to take the worry away! The last time was probably a year ago, but we had good meals at the Sports Bar, burgers and such, mentioned on this website. There is a more formal restaurant option as well.

I know there are some restaurants in the broader ORD area, but I wouldn't know about them. If the Hillton options don't appeal, you might contact the hotel for ideas - or post the question on TripAdvisor. Edit: I see Threader already beat me to a recommendation!

I also suspect that some would say you have plenty of time to go into the city, but I agree with Calvado's post. For me, it wouldn't be the best experience after an overseas flight. That's another question you might ask on TA - several regular posters are quite friendly and knowledgable. (Personally - and you may get arguments - if you do go into Chicago - I would take a taxi back to the O'Hare Hilton in the evening rather than the Blue Line. Public transport should be OK earlier.)

Posted by
8234 posts

You should just stay in the hotel for the night and rest up for the next flight. Or eat in the airport before going to the hotel.

When we purchase airline tickets, we're very careful. Many European airports will have a 6:00 am flights out, but they take you to a big gateway airport where you'll sit a few hours until noon or shortly thereafter before taking off for North America. The cheapest airfares often book you on those flights. There's often another flight out at 8:30 or shortly thereafter which takes you to the same airport. That's the flight we take.

We also are very picky on the airports that we fly into--avoiding places like ORD and JFK. We prefer to get back closer to home--like to ATL or Charlotte. A year ago, I flew in from Tel Aviv and United Airlines caused us to miss our connecting flight in Dulles. We had to fly 200 miles from home and rent a car to save 2 days because all flights home were booked solid for 2 days.

Posted by
4293 posts

I've stayed at the Hilton numerous times and recommend it for the convenience as well as the quality. I've also buzzed into town a couple of times while staying there. If you do, my favourite restaurant in downtown is Joe's.

Posted by
129 posts

Thank you all for giving me options to ponder. We've never made such a long trip of coming home, but the ticket is with flyer miles in business so ..... there we go. We will be on a direct flight from Athens to ORD, so that it nice, no European connections.

Threadwear, the "best onion rings anywhere", a slot machine with probability of trip reimbursement, and a bar. I mean what more could I ask for? It's like you know me. lol I can use up my extra euro coins there right?

Posted by
1 posts

While the casino sounds nice (still never been and I work 5 minutes away), it is easy to get to the Rosemont entertainment district from ORD, with restaurants, a theater, convention center and shopping near River Road (
There is also another group of restaurants on the west side of the Tollway (294) including Truly to and Carmines.

Posted by
337 posts

The Hilton is ideal--it's right there and you can take advantage of all airport transportation.

If you have the energy and the desire-- run into Chicago on the train. You would get there probably 5-6 pm. I wonder what would be open at that time that would make it worth your while. If you go into town, I would check out Pizzeria Due. ( A native Chicagoan turned me onto this place). Garrett's popcorn is the best. You can also buy it at O'Hare. (Which is what I would do if you like popcorn and their Chicago mix is wonderful). I wouldn't want to be on the train very late going back to the airport--that's just me.

There is a Harry Caray's that you can take a free shuttle to from the terminal. Harry Caray was a famous Chicago sports announcer.

It's very Chicago sports themed and I've always enjoyed it. I've killed a few hours there with total strangers as well as colleagues.,621256976622,sonesta%20chicago%20o%27hare%20airport%20rosemont,e&gad_source=1&gclid=CjwKCAjw57exBhAsEiwAaIxaZpuiqfb58rx271K5friE8-6pC1Cu-QicZr_nwWyhNoSW_toG-Sdg-xoC8x0QAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

I haven't been to Chicago since the Pandemic, so alot has changed. If you were arriving earlier I would've suggested renting a bike and going up and down the bike path past Soldier Field, the Field museum, and Navy Pier. I don't think shopping or sightseeing along Michigan Ave is what it used to be. There is some wonderful architecture along Michigan Ave such as the Tribune Tower, Chicago Athletic club and Wrigley building.

Frankly, if it was me, I'd just hang out at the local Harry Caray's and take advantage of the free shuttle back and forth to the airport and get a good night's rest for the early flight out in the morning. Other's that know this area better may have better solutions to your question and interests.

Posted by
461 posts

Getting from ORD to downtown is a gigantic hassle. Depending on the time of day (rush hour) your only option is a 45 min train ride.

You're gonna be gassed and jet lagged. You're not gonna want to do much except get dinner and fall asleep.

PS: after experiencing polite and efficient Customs & Immigration people in Europe, you may be in for a surprise when you hit ORD.

Posted by
129 posts

After reading your comments, I think our best bet is to skip heading to downtown. And, after reading your comments, I think it’s time we plan an actual trip to Chicago. Mo, I do plan on trying some of that popcorn. :) Thank you all for your advice and different options.