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Tight Connection in Frankfort from Dubrovnik

We are connecting in Frankfurt from Dubrovnik Croatia (then heading on to the US). We have just over an hour between flights. Now that Croatia is part of the EU, will we need to clear immigration? Will this be enough time?

Posted by
3992 posts

Is this all on one ticket from Croatia to FRANKFURT to your home airport and which airline(s)?

Posted by
6 posts

Yes - we have one booking. We are flying Croatia Air to Frankfurt, Delta from Frankfurt to US.

Posted by
11477 posts

Did you buy the ticket from Delta?

Passport processing/emigration will be at FRA as it is your exit point from the Schengen zone.

Posted by
6646 posts

Mona tried to politely point it out, but the big airport in Germany is just outside Frankfurt, there is no O in the name, Also, Croatia has been an EU-member since 2013.

How did you buy the ticket? Is it really a single ticket or have you bought it from one of those sites that will combine a bunch of single tickets on one booking? Croatia Airlines is part of Star Alliance and Delta is a Skyteam-member, and they don't code share with each other.

Posted by
6 posts

Yes, thank you for pointing out my typo.-correct. We did not purchase the tickets through Delta directly. American Express arranged it for us. That being said it is still one record locator number with Delta for the FRA-JFK portion. I am also aware Croatia Air is not part of Star Alliance and there is no code share.

Posted by
6646 posts

This sounds very much like two separate tickets. In which case one hour is very optimistic.

Posted by
11477 posts

Will this be enough time?

With checked bags, having to retrieve, re-check and clear security.... Your chances of winning a billion $ lottery look better to me.

If you have only carry-on bags it is at least theoretically possible.

Is your ticket Croatia Air 418 and DL 107?

Based on quick research, it looks like the Croatia Air flight arrives at Terminal 1 and Delta departs from Terminal 2

I have never been there, so hopefully others have insight/guidance on the practicalities of getting from one to the other.

Does AMEX guarantee to cover you for a missed connection?

Any prospect of changing flights to something less risky?

Posted by
6 posts

We are looking into changing our flight but options are limited. Appreciate everyone’s insights. We have a call into Amex so will ask about guarantee.

Posted by
960 posts

It could be tight. I had a two hour layover from Zagreb at Frankfurt and I didn’t get to the gate until it was well into boarding. The airport is huge, and maybe due to the size, confused a number of my fellow passengers. There is an immigration checkpoint you’ll have to pass, but it’s a small one. Though you’ll also be subject to document certification for the flight back. Our flight had landed on time, but it’s a tarmac gate so took a long time to deplane. It’s just circumstances. Yours may be better, but it’s a big risk.

Posted by
4325 posts

Ok, this made me look at my ticket bought through AA as one ticket. It includes my last leg FRA- DBV on Croatia Airlines (opposite direction from OP). My connection is within Europe and not tight; but Croatia Air isn’t a listed partner with American. So like the OP, I want to know ahead of time how that would affect a late arrival and missed flight with a non-partner airline and what happens with my suitcase….. I didn’t know AA would sell me a connection with a non-partner.

In answer to the question, I would really hesitate about only an hour when my next flight was the long leg home. But not upon arrival if there are later options and the price was right.

Posted by
280 posts

IMHO this is very risky. As another poster noted you are likely to have to take shuttle bus from the tarmac to the terminal.
I have had too many experiences at Frankfort that stressed me out where I had much more time and barely made it given the tarmac issue, long lines at immigration, delay of my arriving flight etc.

Even if you are on 1 ticket and you miss your connection and are rebooked do you want that stress? And if you are rebooked you could easily get seats that are less than ideal since you would get them after most everyone has had seats selected or assigned. For me I would like at least 2.5 hours although others may be OK with 2.
Good Luck!

Posted by
1666 posts

I don't mean to confuse the matter even more, but why would the OP have to retrieve their luggage in Frankfurt, go through security again, and re-check it? When we went to Croatia, we flew from Boston to Zurich on Swissair, and then to Dubrovnik on Croatia airlines. This was all on one ticket and Croatia Airlines is part of Star Alliance.

Now, on a different trip when we were heading home from France, we only had one hour and 5 minutes transfer time in Frankfurt, and it was very tight. Our plane was delayed by about 30 minutes leaving Marseilles; so we had even less time when we landed in Frankfurt. And yes, in Frankfurt, we have always had to deplane on the tarmac and take a bus to the terminal. On this trip, someone, I assume the flight attendants, did notify our departing flight that we would be there but we would be late and to please wait for us. And they did wait. We practically ran through the terminal and when we reached our boarding gate, the personnel applauded us. We were the last ones to board. So it worked out for us, but I would never do it again.

To the OP, if you can't change your flight, ask the flight attendants if they can notify your departing flight that you will be there.

Posted by
11477 posts

Croatia Airlines is part of Star Alliance.

kmkwoo--- Delta is Sky Team Alliance, thus the bags do not have the auto transfer feature you had with both your airlines being in the same alliance.

That is the issue OP is dealing with. AMEX put flights together on airlines that are in different 'alliances' so has to deal with getting the bags from one plane to the next himself.

Posted by
1666 posts

Joe, thank you for the explanation. I guess I read that part too quickly and didn't realize it was a different alliance.

Seems like AMEX did a lousy job with the airline reservations. In this case, I don't see how the OP can make her flight to the US in just over an hour, knowing they have to claim their luggage, re-check it and go through security again.

Posted by
4325 posts

Not the OP - but reporting back on my conundrum.

I originally bought directly from AA, flight DFW-FRA, 1 hr 45 min connection time, flight FRA - DBV on Croatian Air. Croatian Air and AA are not in the same alliance - but AA sold me the complete ticket.

About 3 weeks before my departure, I called AA to ask about a miles upgrade on my long leg - and was informed that I couldn’t take this connection because it was less than 2 hrs. Apparently, even though not in the same alliance, the flight itself was ok - just not the length of connection.

Because I was going on to Korćula by ferry, I needed to arrive in DBV earlier than a later flight from Frankfurt could get me there. That meant I had to upend my whole set of flights and add an extra connection (it was so late that a number of options were no longer available options). So I didn’t end up going through FRA at all (Dublin instead).

So apparently a major U.S. alliance can sell legs on Croatian Air. However I have no answer as to why they would sell it to me, only to much later tell me the connection did not fall within their time limitations. I did NOT book the original flights online - I was using a trip credit so I had to do it over the phone with an agent. And none of,the flights changed times. I have more questions than answers…..

Posted by
6 posts

Well, I’m back in the states and had a wonderful time in Croatia. Here’s what happened. Croatia airline (although not a member of the Sky team Alliance as Delta) checked our baggage through to JFK so we didn’t need to retrieve/recheck them. You just have to ask them to do so. However, we did have to go through passport control and security again. That was a bit tricky because Croatia Airline did not print us a boarding pass for our flight from Frankfurt to JFK. I talked to the passport control agent and explained, and he took our passports along with our customer number and confirmation number and let us through. Otherwise we would’ve had to go back to check in and start the whole process. Then came security. Our flight started to board early but we were very very close to the gate. We told the security agents that our flight was boarding at E5, which is literally just outside security, so they let us through along with others whose flights were currently boarding (or on our flight). Once we reach the gate, the agents did our passport verification and printed our boarding passes. Bottom line: we never would’ve made it had we not received help from the great folks in Frankfurt.

Posted by
6646 posts

However, we did have to go through passport control and security
again.

Of course you had to go through passport control, as Frankfurt is where you left Schengen.

Posted by
6 posts

My point about security and passport control was with regards to not having a boarding pass for our flight to JFK (because we were on Croatia Air) and the timing of such. Just following up on my original post. Had we not had the help of the folks in Frankfurt we would not have made our flight. We did not have time to go out and check in and come back through security, which, of course we had to do.

Posted by
4645 posts

Just curious--could you have checked in online and obtained a boarding pass for the second leg that way?
Glad you made it!

Posted by
4325 posts

valadelphia, not OP again, but Aer Lingus (my new flight DUB-DVB) would not give boarding passes online or even at check in. I had to stop and get it in Dublin. Fortunately there was an easy system in place for that. lol