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Transfer time in Athens

We are flying into Athens on Delta and onto Heraklion on Aegean Air. I purchased two separate tickets. We have 3 hours between arrival on Delta and departure on Aegean. I have not been to Athens airport in several years and was wondering if anyone who has been there recently can give me an idea of how long it took to get luggage, check through Customs & Immigration and recheck bags on the domestic side?

Posted by
975 posts

You didn't say when you would be going. If soon then the Covid situation could caused some delays at the Athens airport but from what I've heard shouldn't be that bad.

Normally 3 hours should be enough time as long as your Delta flight is on time. I've flown numerous times with Delta and have always been on time or close to it (no guarantees however). Even if the flight is delayed at departure there is more than enough time to make up the difference as it's a long flight from the US.

Normally it takes around 1 hour (maybe less) to deplane, walk to customs, go through customs, and get your bag.

You then go out the arrivals area, walk upstairs and have to check in again. I assume you'll have to go through security(?) but with three hours I think it's more than enough time.

Posted by
2898 posts

Buda, what Tommy K says is correct --- however when he said "customs" he really was referring to Passport Control. Customs is nothing... you walk thru an area where they say "do you have anything to declare?" the only persons that stop are business-people with goods to check, the rest it's walk on through.

Passport Control has 2 lines, for EU citizens & one for all others. it would help if you said WHEN you plan to travel... by mid-september you are off-season, and the tourist flow is much less. Even from May - Sept It used to be very fast in the AM because only the big transatlantic nonstops (AA, Delta, Canada Air, UAE, now united) -- one each, 440 psgrs -- arrived between 9 & 10:30 AM, so the P-C lines moved very fast... maybe 20 minutes. All the European lines came in from about 11:30 on. But last 3 years, I noticed Jumbo Jets from Far East arriving in AM, so add another 800 people lining up in "all others." Even so, in June 2019, i got thru in about 30 minutes. These days, I think they also use this line-up for COVID-19 paperwork, so you may have to add another 20 minutes, max.

Nevertheless, this still gives you plenty of time to get thru lines, fatch bags & check in at Aegean an hour before departure (they say hour, but 45 will make it).