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Airport Connection time allowance

I'm trying to pick a flight route (using miles)from Paris back to Redmond, Oregon that doesn't take FOREVER. The trip choices at Delta can endure anywhere from 16hr 48 min up to 46 hr 03 min (aughgh). My question is, what would be the minimum amount of time to allow at either Atlanta, JFK, Cincinnati, or Boston. Some of the options are Atlanta: 1 hr 21 min/ Cincinnati 1hr 50 min/ JFK 1 hr 50 min/Boston 1 hr 50 min. Would these options be cutting it too close? Thanks!

Posted by
479 posts

The larger the airport the more likely that your inbound flight will have some sort of delay. Since you will most likely have to go through security again on your layover, choose the smallest airport.

Less than 2 hours is cutting it close, but not too close. Less than 1.5 hours is not advised, as there are many things that could go wrong.

I would choose Cincinnati if I had those choices since Delta is the largest player at that airport.

Posted by
43 posts

A few weeks ago I arrived from Frankfurt into Denver. I had 1 hr 50 min to get through immigration, get my baggage, go through customs, recheck my bag, and getting to my gate for the next flight. It took me 1 hr and 10 min. I was sweating it the whole time. I walked up to my departure gate just as they started boarding for Sacramento. If there were any hitches or snags in this, I might not have made it.

Posted by
423 posts

Terry, I would shoot for a two hour layover. I've made it in much less time (eg. AA from BZE through DFW then on to SFO) and I've not made my connection with a 2.5 hour layover in MIA because the plane was late, it took an hour to wait for my bag, huge lines for customs, recheck bag, get to other terminal, re-enter security etc.

So the morale of the story is, choose flights with a comfortable connection time, don't stress about it, and always have a Plan B in mind and if something happens. This helps the airline assisting to get you to your final destination by giving them your preferred alternative.

Posted by
95 posts

I fly through Atlanta a lot, and I would not reccomend a tight connection there as delays are pretty common.

Posted by
576 posts

Thank you so much everyone. I really appreciate all of your wisdom. I've decided to choose a conservative option (21 hr 08 min flight) that gives me 3 hr 31 min to get through Atlanta. I don't like to get stressed out, and besides, its only about 2 hours longer than a tight connection. Now I feel good about making this choice!

Posted by
423 posts

Terry, the layover will give you a chance to stretch a bit. The time will go by fast. If you are flying Delta, you can purchase a $25 one day pass to their Crowne Club. You can rest in comfortable chairs, have them keep track of your flight and have a bit of something to eat and drink. It's well worth the investment.

Posted by
43 posts

I had a flight last January that I wound up canceling. I realized after the fact that I never would have made my connection in Heathrow anyway. I was changing airlines and the time frame was too tight. I don't think travel agents at some of these low cost travel sites are always forthcoming with information that might wreck a trip. I am more careful now with connections like this.

Posted by
2516 posts

In case you haven't already purchased a ticket, there is now Delta service from Salem to Salt Lake City - 2 flights daily, and last I checked free parking. Might make the 2.5 hour drive worth it from Bend.

Posted by
49 posts

Wow... In that amount of time you could drive up to Seattle and take the Direct flight from Seattle to Paris (less than 10hrs) on Air France. I believe Air France is a Delta partner, so you might be able to use your Miles with them.??? No?

Posted by
576 posts

Heath, we are first flying to Athens, then from Athens to Paris, then Paris to Redmond. Seattle is about 7 hours away (depending on traffic) and would probably require staying overnight, so a long flight is about the only way we can do this. Also, except for a small amt. of taxes, this flight to Athens with a Paris stopover is free.

Posted by
3 posts

I'm not sure how far redmond is from vancouver b.c. , but it might be worth your while to check out Zoom airlines. They go vancouver-calgary-paris charles de gaulle, at a pretty good price, too.

Posted by
576 posts

Frankie, I just checked. Bend is just over 8 hours from Vancouver. We are using free tickets this time, but when we're actually paying with REAL money, I will be sure to look at this option...Zoom sounds like it has great deals! Thanks for writing. Terry