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Air Travel to Lisbon


I am having some issues finding descent air travel to Lisbon. Is it my imagination or is finding conveneint flights more difficult than find flights to Paris, Rome or London? Either I arrive very late in the day, or have very long layovers (6+ hours), or have multiple stops that extend the trip to near 24 hours. I can leave from either Portland OR or Seattle WA.

Any thoughts?

Posted by
6215 posts

Paris, Rome, and London are larger travel markets than Lisbon, so your findings sound very intuitive. There is no generalizable answer to your question. Your connections and the convenience/lack thereof really depend on where you're starting from. Flights originating from Seattle probably have some characteristics that aren't replicated than, say, Los Angeles, or Philadelphia or where I live (Washington DC market - 3 airports). But you don't have much choice, do you? I doubt Portland would have better choices than Seattle. Obviously if there were more people flying from where you are to Lisbon, you'd have better choices of flight and connection times. Sorry...I know this doesn't make anything better. I tried to find flights to Bucharest from where I am and, like you, have to deal with unfavorable connections (I'll likely be doing the Turkish Air layover in Istanbul).

PS. As a somewhat related trivia, these states have the highest Portuguese populations in the US (I'm from Poland so Chicago ORD is a major base for us flying home to see family).

Massachusetts: 379,722.
California: 330,974.
Rhode Island: 99,445.
New Jersey: 78,196.

Posted by
6420 posts

You are in a challenged time zone.
You may have to book your flights separately to get what you want.
Try to buy Seattle to London or Paris separate
Or New York to Lisbon believe it or not they have a flight that leaves New York at 00:20 in the morning arriving Lisbon at 11;20am

Posted by
6420 posts

"These states have the highest Portuguese populations in the US. I would surmise that flights originating there may be better simply because people travel back and forth to see family. (e.g. Boston Logan, LAX, etc"

But Brazil has the largest Portuguese speaking population in the world.

Posted by
6543 posts

There are direct flights into Lisbon from North America on::
Toronto--Air Canada
Philadelphia (seasonal)--American Airlines
Washington Dulles--United

You might see if you can connect through one of those gateway U.S. cities more efficiently than changing planes in Europe. SeaTac has a bunch of flights into the larger European gateway airports, however you may be backtracking back to the west somewhat.

Posted by
6878 posts

Yes it's more difficult. If you have a six hour+ layover to wait for a direct east coast TAP flight, it sounds normal. That's what most people in the middle of the country experience when they go overseas unless they live in a hub city.

If flying to NY you lose 3 hours, so that 00:20 flight looks good.

Posted by
340 posts

We flew from Seattle to Newark and spent the night at a hotel near the airport. Then the next day we flew nonstop to Lisbon. The overnight on the east coast does not seem as taxing on our bodies.

Posted by
2235 posts

Barnstormer, you might look into:

KLM, connecting in Amsterdam
Delta, connecting at JFK
Air France, connecting in Paris

I am traveling SFO to Lisbon this May, on United Mileage, but I have a short connection time to a TAP flight in London, and might well be delayed until a later flight.

Happy hunting!

Posted by
278 posts

Thanks for the information.

It looks like I will go with Air Canada with a layover in Toronto of about 4 hours. It's a bit long, but if something delays my departure, I will be glad to have a few hours of buffer time. I get into LIsbon at 11:00 a descent time to check into the hotel, have lunch and start exploring the city.

Posted by
75 posts

Heads up on TAP air fares. Be prepared to pay $30-65 extra per ticket for an assigned seat. If you just buy ticket you are entitled to be assigned a seat anywhere when you arrive at Airport.

Posted by
16782 posts

FYI, maybe the price isn't as competitive, but I see options from SEA on Delta with a change at CDG to arrive Lisbon at 11:20 (a bit tight at 1.5 hours transfer time, but they also have an afternoon flight if you miss that one; total travel time 14 hours) or with a change at AMS (3h 45m) to arrive Lisbon at 14:35 (total travel time under 17 h).

I recall that about a month ago Delta's connections advertised for fall were completely different, as though they had not finalized agreements with their partner airlines. But now, I'm getting the same results for test dates in May, September, and October.

Posted by
6 posts

The Air Canada flight from Toronto is direct and pretty quick. It is probably on Air Canada Rouge, the lower cost, fewer frills Air Canada option.