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Airport Connection Times

We get many questions regarding airport connection times. Especially from people with two separate tickets.

In many cases, they want to know if they can book an earlier flight or a late flight.

I don't book separate tickets for the same day. Too many variables. But I have done the following and it has worked a few times:

Let's say I book a flight for 3 PM. But there is also a flight leaving at Noon. My arriving plane was early and I could have made the earlier flight.

My suggestion.....go to the gate of that earlier flight and ask if you can get on it. You'll either hear "yes" or "no." There are other variables such as change fees, differences in fares, and the like. But the worse they can do is say "no."

This will work only if you have carry on luggage. Checked luggage would be too difficult to find and reroute.

Remember the old saying...."If you don't ask, you don't get."

Posted by
11516 posts

."If you don't ask, you don't get."

And if you ask nicely, the odds of success improve

Posted by
15709 posts

And if you ask nicely, the odds of success improve

You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.

Posted by
4305 posts

I don't book separate tickets for the same day. Too many variables

Me too, except I broke my own rules for an upcoming trip. I fly WestJet from YYC to Barcelona and then have a connection via EasyJet 4 hours later to Lisbon. If that's not enough, our suitcases are about an inch too big for EasyJet's carryon restrictions and so we have to check the bags. I've never flown a discount airline before and all I'll I know are the horror stories I hear on social media.

It's got me a half-part anxious and a half-part curious on how it will go. I'm trying to convince myself it's all part of the adventure and I'll have another experience under my belt for future reference.

Posted by
15709 posts

I flew Easyjet n Wednesday, Berlin to Edinburgh.

The plane was 30 minutes late because the Berlin ground staff didn't have their act together.

At Edinburgh, there are three baggage claim belts at international arrivals. Five flights arrived at the same time. Only one belt was working. While I got through passport control in less than a minute there was a 45 minute wait for the bags.

Posted by
2765 posts

I do often book separate ticket for the same day but...

  1. I allow a minimum of 4 hours between flights
  2. I am willing to pay the price if it doesn't work. That's why I never do this on my flights back to the USA I always come in at least a day before. I don't want to pay the full fare to get home.

That said getting on an earlier flight is getting harder all the time simply because planes are FULL!

Posted by
284 posts

I am, for the first time, flying on two separate tickets. And, if that wasn't crazy enough, I will need to self transfer to another airport. I am trying this new route out to see if it is even viable for future trips (I wind up at an airport significantly closer to my final destination.) I have a little more than 5hrs to get from A to B, with only myself and a backpack. Hoping for the best but will deal with whatever happens.

As for EasyJet...I really like them! We've flown them a number of times inter Europe and every time they've been great. The only time they were late was due to an inflight medical emergency, which they handled so professionally and effeciently.

Posted by
2599 posts

Allen-personally I would try to carry on despite the inch too big. If you get called in it, you will, of course, have to check. But lots of things get by and having to pick up your luggage is such a hassle.

Posted by
15709 posts

Except for planes that require checking my main carry-on--like turboprops--I'm going back to carry on only.