Is Your Layover Long Enough?
Planning a trip involves several parts, and unless you’re staying close to home, chances are you will need a flight. I always try to book non-stop flights because they’re easier to deal with. But what if you’re flying somewhere that’s too far away for a non-stop flight? What if the non-stop flights are significantly more expensive? There are many reasons why you might end up with a two or even three leg flight, and while there are no guarantees, it’s important to determine whether your layover is long enough.
Is your layover long enough for your luggage?
As always, I would encourage you to travel carry-on only, but if you have to check luggage, this will factor into your layover. The baggage handlers need to unload the entire plane once it lands.
Some of that luggage will stay at the airport for those passengers who aren’t traveling on, but for everyone else, their luggage will be redistributed to any number of airplanes. This takes time, more so at a bigger airport.
If you have a short layover, any little delay in the process could mean your luggage won’t have time to make it from the first plane to the second. It could be hours, or even days, before your luggage catches up to you.
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Is your layover long enough to get through the airport?
During your layover, you have to be able to get from the gate where your first flight came in to the gate where your second flight leaves.
Sometimes this is as simple as walking a little ways down the hall. But other times it could mean a long walk, or even a ride on an airport tram, and switching terminals.
In bigger airports, getting from one end to the other could easily take 20 minutes or more, especially if you’re not familiar with the airport.
Worse yet, some airports have different security check points for different sections of the airport, which means you might have to go through the security line again.
Don’t forget to leave yourself time for boarding the second flight. Boarding usually starts anywhere from 20 to 45 minutes before the actual flight time, and the doors close before flight time.
>>Read: What to Pack for a Trip: Travel Packing Checklist for Carry-On Only
Is your layover long enough for an international flight?
In some places, you have to claim your luggage upon arrival even if you’re on a layover in the middle of an international flight.
For example, if you are returning from a trip to Australia, and you live in Atlanta, chances are you will fly from Sydney to Los Angeles and then continue on to Atlanta.
In the US, you are required to claim your luggage once you get through passport check. Before you can go to your second flight, you have to bring your luggage to another line to be rechecked, and then you go through security again. This can be time consuming.
Even if your connection is in a country that doesn’t require this, you will still have to go through their passport check or transit line. This will take a lot more time that getting from one gate to another on a domestic layover.
Is your layover long enough to change airports?
I highly recommend you avoid this at all costs. Having to change airports during a layover is a lot more stressful and complicated than just switching gates. But in rare cases you might not have a choice.
Some cities have two airports, one that’s predominantly for domestic flights and the other for international flights. I’ve also seen flight schedules where your first flight lands in one of London’s or New York City’s airports and the second flight takes off from the other.
If you really can’t book a flight with connection in the same airport, research how long it will take to get from one to the other. Sometimes there are airport shuttles for cases like this, but often you will need to rely on a taxi or public transportation.
Give yourself a buffer above what your research tells you. Take into account the time of day you will be switching since rush hour will most likely add to your time.
Plus don’t forget you will need an hour or two at the airport ahead of your flight. And if the first flight was international, see the previous section.
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So how long do you need?
It’s really hard to put an exact number on how long you need for your layover. At a minimum, I’d say you should plan for one hour for domestic layovers and two hours for international layovers.
But this is not a hard, fast rule!
If you have to go through security again on a domestic layover, you might need more time.
Busy airports could require more time whether it’s a domestic or an international layover.
Long lines at customs and immigration could add lots of time to your layover.
Use your best judgement. No one can predict the exact amount of time you’ll need for your layover, but hopefully the tips you’ve read here will help you plan the best layover possible.
I always recommend allowing plenty of time for your layover. Better to have more time than you need so you don’t risk missing your connection.
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No one wants to get stuck sitting in an airport for hours on a long layover, but the alternative resulting from a layover that’s too short could be much worse.
Your checked luggage might not make it to the next plane, or you might not have enough time to get through the airport. International flights have extra steps you need to get through on a layover.
The amount of time you need will vary depending on a variety of factors, including your own comfort level.
In general, I try to avoid layovers with less than an hour for domestic flights and layovers with less than two hours for international flights. But remember, even that might not be enough time.
Layovers can be complicated. Every time you book a flight with a connection, look at all the details and ask yourself, is the layover long enough?
You might also be interested in:
- Carry-On Luggage Size Chart with over 170 Airlines
- Layover Perks You Never Knew About
- 8 Things to do If You Think Your Layover is too Short
- Can I leave the airport during a layover?
April 26, 2022 @ 6:59 pm
Hello Ali! I fly from JFK-LHR-AMS with a self-transfer. Both flights are in the same terminal (terminal 5), with the same airline (British Airways), and I won’t have checked bags. Do you think 3 hours is enough time between flights? My other option is a 7 hour layover. Will I have to go through immigration?
April 28, 2022 @ 3:36 pm
Hi Sophia! I can’t make any guarantees, but I do think 3 hours should be long enough for your layover. It’s a huge help that you won’t have any checked bags, because that definitely makes self-transfers really tricky. As for going through immigration, you should be able to skip it, but I feel like you never known with London. I haven’t transferred through there in a long time, but my in-laws often do when they come to see us in Germany, and sometimes they have to go through immigration, but sometimes they don’t. When you land, look for signs that say “transit” or “transfer” or “connecting flights” and you should – in theory – be able to bypass immigration. This is how it works at most airports, not sure why London seems to be different sometimes. When in doubt, look for an employee and ask.
April 6, 2022 @ 7:00 am
Hello – I am planning a vacation to Israel and have a question on the return flight. I fly nonstop from Israel to Toronto by EL AL Airlines with a tour. But I then need to fly to the United States – looking at flying United or American Airlines – and wondering if 3 hours between flights is enough or should I look for a flight that gives me more time.
April 12, 2022 @ 11:42 am
Hi Karen! When you land in Toronto, you will have to go through customs and immigration, and you’ll have to claim and recheck your luggage. Also, at major Canadian airports like Toronto, you’ll actually go through US customs and immigration before boarding your flight to the US. This is great for when you land in the US, but it’s more things you have to do while in Toronto. Three hours sounds like long enough, but it might make me a little nervous.
Also, it sounds like you might be booking two separate itineraries, one with El Al and one with another airline. If you book them separately, and your El Al flight is delayed enough that you miss your next flight, the other airline won’t do anything to help you rebook. But if you book the flights all on one itinerary (in other words, you book all flights together on one transaction) and the El Al flight is delayed, whatever partner airline you’re connecting to for the second flight should be able to help put you on another flight.
Personally, I’d see what the other options are, and if there was a slightly longer layover, I might take that to give myself plenty of time, but if the next longest layover is many hours longer, I might take a chance on the 3 hour one. It’s a tough call.
March 8, 2022 @ 12:30 pm
I fly to Blagnac Airport (TLS) with Ryanair and from there to Porto with the same airline. I have layover 1 hour 35 minutes.
I wonder if this is enough time to catch a plane to Porto considering I will have checked baggage? Can the staff at the airport help me to drop off my checked baggage for the second flight on time?
March 9, 2022 @ 11:58 am
Having checked bags with Ryanair does make it a little more tricky since you’ll have to claim your luggage from the first flight and then check it in for the second flight. I’m not sure the staff will be able to do anything faster or differently since the airline is based on single flights, not connecting flights. Usually there’s a bag drop counter, so if you’re already checked in for the flight, that should be a little faster, but I imagine that’s what most people do so there could still be a line. Also, you’ll have to go through security again after checking your luggage.
Another issue is, where are you flying from? If your first flight leaves from within the Schengen Zone, there aren’t any extra steps. BUT if you’re flying from the UK or Ireland, for example, you will have to go through customs and immigration in TLS, which could take time depending on how long the lines are.
This is a tough one! I think it might be tight to do in that amount of time, but not impossible. I think you have to decide if you’re willing to take the risk of missing your connection. I don’t know if you have other options with a longer layover time, but if you’ve already booked your tickets, you might just have to take the chance. I have a post here with tips for short layovers that might be helpful for you. I think one of the biggest tips for your specific case is to get an aisle seat as close to the front of the plane as possible on that first flight. Even if it means paying for seat selection (I know EasyJet has that option, but I’m not positive about Ryanair, I don’t fly them much) to make sure you are one of the first people off the plane when it lands. And then no stops in the airport. Go to the bathroom on the plane if you need it, but don’t lose time in the airport when you have luggage to claim and recheck and a security line to get through.
I hope this helps! Good luck, and I hope you make it!
February 5, 2022 @ 5:04 pm
Good morning! will be travelling from Thunder Bay, Ontario, to Johannesburg, South Africa at the end of May and would like to know what to look for regarding the stops, and good amount of wait times, as well as if luggage is transfered for you, or if you have to do it yourself. Some options are to land in the US, and others are to land overseas. any possible help would be greatly appreciated. And is it better to attempt to book your own flights, or go through an agent? so far, i’ve only looked on Expedia, to get an estimate on costs…but I know there could be lots missing.
February 15, 2022 @ 12:37 pm
Hi Debora, sorry for the late reply! In general, when you land in the US, you have to go through customs and immigration, plus claim and recheck your luggage, even if you’re not staying in the US, so that can be a big pain. That said, most major Canadian airports have a US border control checkpoint, meaning you go through that while still in a Canadian airport…but since I’m guessing you’ll have to fly from Thunder Bay to another bigger airport, that’s still a hassle you might want to avoid. If you can find a flight that doesn’t go through the US, you might be better off. If, for example, you connect from Thunder Bay to Toronto to Europe before going to Johannesburg, you won’t have to deal with customs and immigration in the European airport, and your luggage will automatically be transferred. This is assuming you book all flights together on one itinerary/one transaction.
I typically start with a site like Skyscanner (similar to Expedia) to see what airlines fly the route I’m looking for and what rough prices look like. But then I book directly through the airline website (if there are multiple partner airlines, know that using one airline’s site might be cheaper than another) because if something changes, it’s easier to deal with the airline directly. I personally haven’t used a travel agent to book flights in over 20 years, but if you’re looking at something complicated, it’s still an option you could consider.
January 14, 2022 @ 3:46 am
I will be flying Delta from Rochester, NY to JFK will have a 43 minutes between flights. Flying Delta to Aruba. All carry on luggage. Should I have enough time to catch my second flight. Familiar with JFK.
January 18, 2022 @ 5:56 pm
Hi Linda! A 43 minute layover is a little tight, but not impossible. It helps that you’re leaving the US, not entering it. As long as you’re already checked in for the second flight and the airline rep has verified your passport info, you shouldn’t have anything to do at JFK besides get to your next gate. If you follow a few tips for short layovers, like not stopping in JFK for the bathroom or food or whatnot, and if possible, getting an aisle seat close to the front on the Rochester to JFK flight, you’ll have a good chance of making your connection. I can’t make guarantees, but I’d be comfortable with this one.
December 21, 2021 @ 4:12 am
In April ,I will be flying with British airways, Cairo to London Heathrow then to Los Angeles. I will be landing in landing and leaving from same terminal. Will 20 minutes be enough time to catch connecting flight.
December 21, 2021 @ 2:29 pm
Hi Scott! I’d say 20 minutes is not long enough for a layover, even in the same terminal. Several things: The terminals are huge, and even within terminal 5 (which is what I found for your flights) there are dozens of gates in several different sections. Here’s a map: https://www.heathrow.com/content/dam/heathrow/web/common/documents/at-the-airport/airport-maps/Heathrow_T5_Map.pdf. Also, the time your first flight is scheduled to land is not the time you are off the plane and into the building. It takes time for the plane to taxi to the gate and for you to deplane. I’ve timed myself a few times on short haul flights (so smaller planes with fewer rows and fewer people than a long haul international flight) and from the moment the plane reached the gate until I personally got off the plane, sitting roughly around row 15, it took about 10 minutes. On an international flight, with more people and more seats in each row, it could easily take much longer, especially if you’re sitting in economy. Also, keep in mind that the gate often closes well ahead of the departure time, further cutting into your short layover time.
October 22, 2021 @ 5:03 pm
I have a flight connecting from the Vancouver International Airport (YVR) to the Seattle Airport (SEA). I have a layover of 2 hours 40 minutes at Vancouver, in which I need to get a rapid COVID test before returning to the US. The testing centre states the results could take 30 minutes to come in, but could also come in much sooner. Is this enough time?
October 28, 2021 @ 6:07 pm
Hi Rebecca! That’s a tough one. Is the Vancouver airport your only option for getting a covid test? Could you do it before your first flight? My concern is that you will actually have to go through US customs and immigration while you’re still technically in the Vancouver airport, so that will take extra time. See here for more info about that. It also depends on how the test results are delivered to you. Are they going to email you? If so, that’s definitely a time saver, as opposed to you having to go back to the testing center for a piece of paper. And is there a way to find out how long people normally have to wait to get tested? If they have enough staff and process people in just a few minutes, it might all work fine, but if you have to wait in line for awhile just to get tested, that could really eat up your layover time. And since you need the test to enter the US, I imagine you will need the results before you can proceed to border control in the Vancouver airport. It’s a lot of factors, and unfortunately I don’t have an easy answer for you. I’d start by calling the testing center and asking a few questions to get an idea of how long that whole process will take. And if you can get a test before leaving for your first flight, that might save you some stress.
September 24, 2021 @ 2:23 am
Flying JFK to FCO arriving on a Thursday morning 8:10 am. Not ticketed through. Need to clear customers/immigration, get luggage, change terminal, check in / check baggage and clear security for new flight. Is 3-1/2 hours long enough ? Flight to Sicily is 11:45 am.
September 24, 2021 @ 2:14 pm
Hi Kate! Obviously I can’t make any guarantees, but I feel like 3 1/2 hours should be long enough for customs and immigration, claiming your bag, checking in for the next flight, and clearing security again. You can even look to see if there’s a transfer counter close to the customs area where they might be able to check you in and re-check your luggage for the next flight. They can’t always check luggage, and there might not even be one there (I’ve really only started and ended in FCO, never transferred) but it’s worth looking since it would save you a little time. But even without it, I think that should be plenty of time for you.
September 12, 2021 @ 12:47 pm
We are flying FLR-CDG-DTW it looks like 2E to 2F at CDG ( I know that can be a hike) with an hour 20 layover- I’m not so concerned with the bags making it we are coming home-they can get here a day late, since it’s Schengen to Schengen would we still need to go though passport control or would we just need to run to the next gate? It SHOWS it to be a 5 min walk. Note-its a Delta ticket flying Air France
September 13, 2021 @ 12:24 pm
Hi Terri! Since CDG is where you’re leaving the Schengen Zone, that is where you’ll go through exiting passport control, so yes, that can take some time depending on the lines. You might also have to go through security again. It feels like a crapshoot to me whether I have to go through security again when flying to the US from Europe, I can never predict when it will happen. Your layover isn’t an impossible amount of time, but it could be tight. If you’re concerned, you could see if there’s an earlier flight from FLR to CDG, or at least make sure you know what your options are from CDG to DTW if you miss that connection. I also have some other tips for short layovers here that could help you save a few minutes here and there.
August 29, 2021 @ 1:38 am
Flying next July from Vienna to Atlanta then Tri-Cities with a connection in Amsterdam. KLM / Delta flights all on one ticket. I have a 1 hour 35 minute connection in Amsterdam for international flight to Atlanta. Is that enough time in Amsterdam or should I try for another flight? I assume I will not have to get luggage and go through immigration just in Atlanta (for a trip to Tri-Cities). I just have to go through passport control in Amsterdam. Is this correct? Thank you!
August 30, 2021 @ 1:47 pm
Hi Karen! You will do exiting passport control in Amsterdam, but nothing with your checked luggage there. An hour and 35 minutes is a little tight, but I’ve always been able to get through passport control pretty fast at AMS, so if it was me, I’d probably take the chance. Obviously I can’t make you any guarantees, and if there’s a reasonable flight from Vienna that leaves a little earlier, that might be a safer choice. But also, for a flight you’ve booked almost a year in advance, there’s also a good chance one or more of your flights will change between now and then. Another thing you can do is look at where the KLM Vienna to Amsterdam flight normally lands in comparison to where the passport control and international terminal is. If they’re complete opposite ends of the airport, it will take you longer to get through. And yes, you will have to do customs and immigration in Atlanta, plus claim and recheck your luggage and go through security again. You will definitely want to have at least two hours, if not more, for your layover there.
August 5, 2021 @ 3:19 am
Hi there- I am flying from LA in California to Mnachester, then to Amsterdam. My layover is only 1.10 hours but both planes are in terminal 1. Will I have to go through customs or any added security to change planes? The first leg is Virgin Atlantic and the second is KLM.
August 10, 2021 @ 5:50 pm
Hi Leslie! I make no guarantees, but you should be able to bypass customs and immigration. Look for signs that say “transfer” or “transit” or “connecting flights” and you should be able to go through security and get to your next gate. If you don’t see it, just ask someone and they should be able to point you in the right direction. This is because the Netherlands is in the Schengen Zone but the UK is not, so since you’re not staying in the UK, you shouldn’t have to deal with customs and immigration there, only once you arrive in Amsterdam.
June 19, 2021 @ 1:08 am
I worked overseas for 10 years, 2009 to 2019, making many trips back to the U.S. during a single year and during that time read so many of Ali Garland’s answers to traveler’s questions. She is obviously an experienced traveler. I found her advice and suggestions to very helpful and accurate. She also added a personal touch to her answers which I am sure gave comfort to the many travelers who asked for her advice.
June 20, 2021 @ 6:11 pm
Thank you so much for the kind words, Richard!
June 16, 2021 @ 12:16 pm
We will be flying BOS-LHR-BCN and will have to change terminals. Would you recommend a longer layover for US citizen? We will be traveling BA in October 2021.
June 18, 2021 @ 10:11 am
Hi Jennifer! How long is the layover you have? The issue is whether you’ll have to go through immigration and customs in LHR. You’re not staying there, so theoretically you should be able to bypass it. But sometimes it’s unavoidable in London, and right now (and probably for the foreseeable future) there are extra hassles with checking for proof of vaccine or negative tests. Longer is always better than shorter because it’s better to get stuck waiting for awhile than to miss your connection.
June 18, 2021 @ 2:02 pm
Thank you Ali. We have some choices. I believe the shortest is 1hr 45min and up to 5hrs 15 min. I am thinking either the 2.5hrs or 4hrs are the other choices and probably best to go for the 4hr one?. You agree?
June 18, 2021 @ 2:43 pm
The 2.5 hour one would be the minimum I’d try, but the 4 hour layover might make me more comfortable. Travel has so many extra layers these days, and you just don’t know how many things you’re going to have to do. There’s always a chance you breeze through in no time and have to sit around waiting for a few hours, which I know isn’t fun, but it might be the better option to reduce the chance of missing your flight. Going through London is the other issue in my mind, that it never seems consistent whether you’ll have to deal with customs and immigration. My in-laws fly through there often to visit us in Berlin, and sometimes they can bypass, but sometimes they can’t, and I can never figure out why.
May 7, 2021 @ 2:23 pm
I have a 12 hour layover in Miami, going to St Thomas USVI. It will be the longest layover I’ve ever had. I’m wondering if I should check my bag, and hope it doesn’t get lost. I usually don’t worry about it, but if there aren’t many like me (waiting 12 hours), I’m afraid mine will get misplaced. Is my concern legit. Should I just do carry on. Thanks
May 12, 2021 @ 9:54 am
Hi Pam! There’s always a chance your bag could get misplaced, whether your layover is really long or normal length or really short. Sometimes airlines won’t even check your bag all the way through when you have a long layover, though usually it’s when your second flight is 24 hours after you’re checking in for your first one, not just 12 hours. If this was me, I’d probably go carry on only because that’s what I do for 99% of the flights I take, but I understand it doesn’t work for everyone. So if you can manage it, it might be a good idea, otherwise make sure everything valuable is in your carry on bag, including medications for your whole trip, a change of clothes, toiletries, anything you can’t replace. You can read more about what not to pack in your carry on and what you should pack in your carry on. And you might want to call the airline’s customer service ahead of time and ask if they will actually check your bag through to St Thomas with such a long layover.
Mary Cate Morgan
February 9, 2021 @ 3:47 am
I am going from Cincinnati, OH to Costa Rica on the 17th. It is just me and I will only have a carry-on. I am flying into Fort Lauderdale on Allegiant and I should arrive at 11:02 am. My next flight (connecting flight to Costa Rica) is on Jet Blue at 12:20pm. Leaving to me about 80 minutes… do you think that it will be possible for me to make this flight or is layover too short!!!?
February 10, 2021 @ 5:14 pm
Hi! Obviously I can’t make any guarantees, but I think that’s a manageable time for a layover. When exiting the US, you do not go through any formal exiting passport control, so there really isn’t anything different from a domestic layover. You might have to go through security depending on how the airport is set up, if you can get to your next gate without leaving the secured area or not. It’s just when you come back into the US that you’ll go through customs and immigration at the first US airport you arrive at. You’ll also need to claim and recheck any checked bags at that point, and go through security again. So you really want to make sure you have more time for the layover on your return flight.
February 3, 2021 @ 12:50 am
My family and I are planning a trip to Europe in the summer, and coming back we go from CDG-LHR-LAX. The time between our flights is 2 hours and 45 minutes at LHR, and thankfully they’re on the same airline. Perhaps this is a stupid question, but is that enough time, or should I try and find a flight with a longer layover period? I figure because the airline is the same that maybe we won’t have to go through customs, but I’m not sure and I’ve only been to LHR once many years ago.
February 6, 2021 @ 6:14 pm
Hi Cal! LHR always feels like you might have to go through immigration but you might not have to. I haven’t done it in years, but I regularly ask people so I can continue helping people like you, and it’s 50/50. That said, I might take a chance on that amount of time for a layover. When you land, look for signs that say “transfer” or “transit” or “connecting flights” and hopefully you can bypass immigration and customs since you aren’t staying in the UK. If you don’t see a way to bypass, ask an airport employee to point you in the right direction.
Also, please make sure everything you book is fully refundable. Things are still too uncertain right now, and there’s no guarantee that Europe will be open for non EU tourists by the summer. I live in Germany, and we’re off to a really, really slow start with getting vaccinated. So is France and lots of other countries. We’re still under a strict lockdown now too and probably will be for a few more months. You want to make sure the countries you’re going to are back up and running, and that the rules allow you to come.
December 20, 2020 @ 7:19 pm
I’m planning a trip BOS-NRT next summer and am probably flying Air Canada through YUL. On the way there it’s a 1hr 50min layover, which seems like enough (I’m going carry-on only) but on the way back I have a choice between 1hr15min or 3hr 15min. Which would you recommend? They’re both the same price.
December 23, 2020 @ 4:06 pm
If it was me, I’d probably choose the longer layover. When going through Canada, you usually have to go through customs and immigration plus claim and recheck your luggage (though I know the luggage part won’t apply to you) even though you’re only transiting through. This is pretty unique to the US and Canada. And you will most likely have to go through security on your layover. So the lines could be super quick or they could be really long. Also, most major Canadian airports have US border control, and it looks like YUL does too. This means you will actually clear US customs and immigration while in the YUL airport. That could mean TWO customs and immigration checks on that layover. (It also means when you land back in BOS, you don’t have to do anything because you’ll already be stamped back into the US, so that’s nice.) For me, 3 hours 15 minutes isn’t so horribly long, and I’d rather have the extra buffer in case the first flight got delayed or if the lines are long.
October 26, 2020 @ 4:20 pm
We are flying from MCI to DTW with a 1 hour layover and then to Amsterdam. Is the hour enough time for a layover?
October 27, 2020 @ 10:04 am
Hi BJ! I can’t make any guarantees, but I do think one hour should be long enough for the layover in DTW. The US doesn’t do formal exiting passport control, so you won’t really have to do anything extra compared to what you’d go through on a domestic layover. I’ve never flown through DTW, so I’m not familiar with the layout, but worst case, you might have to go through security again if you have to switch terminals. Be sure to check out my tips for short layovers to make sure you don’t lose precious minutes in transit.
October 15, 2020 @ 7:57 am
Hello! I’m flying into LAX from Australia next month with United and have a 1 hour and 50 minute layover there before catching my next domestic flight to IAH. Once I land I will need to go through immigration, pick up my checked luggage and drop it off again before boarding my next flight (which I believe will require me to get from Terminal B to 7!)
Is just under 2 hours enough time to do all of this? I’ve never been to LAX and heard it can get crazy busy… but perhaps during COVID times it isn’t as busy? Any thoughts? Thanks!
October 19, 2020 @ 9:12 am
Hi Crystal! Normally I’d say 1 hour 50 minutes is a little tight for a layover at LAX…and it might still be a bit tight, but there does seem to be a lot fewer people in the airports these days, so the lines shouldn’t be so long for customs and immigration. You could ask United if there’s a later flight from LAX to IAH and see if you could switch, or at least know that it’s an option if you miss your connection, although it’s up to them whether they will charge you for switching flights if you miss the connection. I don’t think 1 hour 50 minutes is impossible, but in normal circumstances, it’s short. Read my article about tips for short layovers for some advice that could help you make the connection.
October 19, 2020 @ 11:32 am
Thank you for your reply, Ali! I’ve decided to change the LAX to IAH leg to a later one so I have a 3.5 hour layover at LAX instead. Hope that’s enough!
October 19, 2020 @ 11:49 am
I think that sounds like a good choice!
September 28, 2020 @ 9:25 pm
Hi, i will be traveling from BOS to PUJ with a 1hour layover at JFK. I am flying jet blue and i wont change terminals, do you think that there is enough time for them to transfer my checked baggage ?
September 29, 2020 @ 3:30 pm
Hi Alex! As long as both of your flights are on the same itinerary, they should be able to transfer your checked luggage in an hour. Obviously I can’t make any guarantees, but I personally wouldn’t worry about that time frame.
September 21, 2020 @ 12:20 pm
Hi, I am flying back to Amsterdam soon. I fly from west palm beach, with a 46 minutes stop over in Newark. Even though my ticket shows the same terminal, I am worried that this will cause me trouble given the tight layover time. In addition, do I have to re-check my baggage at Newark or is this going to be forwarded unto my next flight? Thank you!
September 22, 2020 @ 12:45 pm
Hi Joji! A 46 minute layover sounds tight but if you don’t have to change terminals, that will definitely help. For flights leaving the US, you do not have to claim and recheck your luggage, as long as both flights are on the same itinerary. Always verify at check in though. And there is no exiting passport control when leaving the US.
August 4, 2020 @ 7:55 pm
I am arriving at terminal 5 New York JFK, flying JetBlue. I need to catch an international flight on Virgin Atlantic at Terminal 4, with a connection time around 1 and 1/2 hours. I’m flying on two separate tickets and I will be travelling only with a hand luggage. Do you think it’s enough time to pass through the custom at terminal 4 and pass the security at terminal 5?
August 8, 2020 @ 1:59 pm
Hi Marcela! The US doesn’t do formal exiting customs or immigration procedures. So when you get to JFK, you’ll have to check in with Virgin Atlantic to get your boarding pass, and at that time, they will also look at your passport and check that you have permission to go and all that fun stuff. You probably won’t even realize they’re doing these checks, you’re just showing your passport. If you can check in online for the Virgin Atlantic flight, just go to the gate agent first thing and let them know you checked in online and that they probably need to see your passport. Checking in online will also save you time because otherwise I think you’ll have to go out to the main check-in area of the airport, which could take some time. If you can check in online, I think 1 1/2 hours is fine for your layover, but don’t waste any time. If you can’t check in online, that might be really tight. Technically Delta is a partner airline with Virgin Atlantic, so if you see a Delta counter within the terminal after you land, you could ask if they are able to check you in, but I’m not sure if that’ll work. You could also call Virgin Atlantic’s customer service and explain the situation and see if they can tell you where you can check in for that flight without having to go to the main check-in area.
December 9, 2020 @ 4:43 pm
I’m flying Manchester to Karachi via Doha Qatar Airways. The layover is 1hr 50 minutes but with the current situation I’m super nervous. I’ve been checking the daily flights from Manchester to Doha and most of them reach on time. It usually takes 20-30 minutes for everyone to get off the plane which leaves around 1 hour to run to the next plane at which hopefully the boarding isn’t closed. The reason I’m scared is because I need a valid COVID test 96 hours prior to departing, if I miss the flight and I am boarded onto the next flight to Karachi which is 20 hours later (I’m crazy so I had to check this) what if Pakistan don’t accept my COVID test?
December 10, 2020 @ 11:57 am
Hi! Yikes, that’s a tough one! With fewer people traveling these days, you have a good chance of getting through the airports and on and off the airplanes faster than normal because there won’t be such long lines. One hour is a good amount of time to get through the airport in most cases when you don’t have to deal with customs and immigration, and you shouldn’t have to worry about that since you’re only transiting. But you will most likely have to go through security again. Are you able to choose your seat on the Manchester to Doha flight? If so, get a seat as close to the front of the plane as possible, and an aisle seat would be best. Then you can shave a few minutes off the time it takes to get off the plane. I have some other tips for short layovers here. Unfortunately I don’t know all the rules for covid test requirements or what the Pakistan authorities might do if you miss your connection and are delayed 20 hours. If you’re require to get the test 96 hours before departure, it seems like you would still fulfill that by having the test 96 hours before your flight leaves Manchester. If it’s required 96 hours before arrival in Karachi, that would be different. But again, I don’t know how they might handle things. I think the best you can do is research the rules for entering Pakistan, check with them if possible, and don’t waste any time in the Doha airport. I do think you have a good chance at making that connection, but obviously I can’t make any guarantees.
February 19, 2020 @ 3:22 pm
Hi there I am a nervous mom who is sending her 16-year-old daughter to Germany traveling all by herself. Trying to figure out how much time she’ll need in between flights. We are flying from Kansas City to possibly Detroit/Atlanta then on to Amsterdam(which I heard is way better than London) then on to Stuttgart. Do you have any suggestions on a better way to get there and Have any suggestions on a layover times if I have choices. Thank you so much I found your article extremely helpful!
February 23, 2020 @ 7:44 pm
Hi Tara! I’ve never flown through Detroit, so I can’t help you on that airport, but I used to live in Atlanta and used that airport all the time. It’s big, but all the terminals are connected beyond the security checkpoint, so she wouldn’t have to deal with security on her layover. I feel like the airport is well signposted so she really just has to follow the signs to her next gate/terminal. If she has to switch terminals, there’s a train/tram that’s really easy, she just has to make sure she gets on the right way, but again, there are signs for which gates are in which direction.
As for Amsterdam vs London, YES! Amsterdam is better. It’s actually one of my favorite airports because it’s so easy to get around, lots of signs, and tons of food options if she’s hungry when she lands. She will have to go through immigration in Amsterdam since it’s where she’s entering the Schengen Zone, which includes Germany. (I think this is another reason to choose Amsterdam instead of London because the UK is not in the Schengen Zone, and sometimes it gets confusing trying to figure out where to go to avoid having to do immigration there, and I’ve heard of people being unable to avoid it and still having to go through immigration in London despite their final destination being somewhere outside the country.) She will not have to pick up checked luggage though, as long as you book all flights on one itinerary.
For timing, she’ll need more time in Amsterdam because of having to do immigration, but since Atlanta is a big airport, you don’t want anything too short there either. I think if possible, aim for more than an hour in Atlanta (or Detroit if you go that way) and two hours minimum in Amsterdam. She might not need that much time, but better to have too much than not enough. I hope this helps!
February 18, 2020 @ 11:53 am
Hi, I’m flying from Barcelona to Cardiff with 40 minutes in Amsterdam in between. Both flights are with KLM and booked as one ticket (not separate tickets). Is this doable?
February 22, 2020 @ 11:01 pm
Hi Stephanie! That might be a little tight since you’ll have to go through exiting passport control in Amsterdam. Your checked luggage should get transferred from one flight to the next, so that’s helpful, but 40 minutes might be cutting it close for you personally to get off the first flight, through passport control, and to your next gate. Not impossible, but tight. Check out my tips for short layovers here.
February 15, 2020 @ 7:46 am
Hello! I am flying from Houston (TX) to Calgary (AB) and have a 1.45hr layover in Calgary before heading to my final destination in Vancouver (BC). There will be two of us, and we both will have checked bags. Will 1.45hrs be enough time to go through customs/get bags before our next flight to Vancouver? (For reference, our flight lands at 9pm in Calgary).
February 17, 2020 @ 3:11 pm
Hi Taylor! I can’t make any guarantees, but I think that’ll be enough time, though it might be a little tight depending on how long the lines are at immigration. Here’s some info from the Calgary airport about connecting through the airport which might be helpful: https://www.yyc.com/en-us/travellerinfo/flightinformation/connectionguide.aspx. I also feel like 9pm might be late enough to have fewer flights to compete with, so lines might be shorter. Check with your airline about whether you have to claim and recheck your luggage. I think you have to do it, but recently I heard some conflicting info about whether you have to do that at Canadian airports from an international flight. I think you should plan on having to do it, but the airline or even the immigration people in Calgary will be able to tell you. I also wouldn’t waste any time with things like going to the bathroom in Calgary until you’ve cleared customs and you’re at/near your next gate and know how much time you have to spare.
February 14, 2020 @ 5:39 am
Hi Ali – I booked 2 separate flights:
(1) Zagreb>Paris[CDG] arriving at Terminal 2F, with a 3h25m lay-over.
(2) Paris>LAX departing at Terminal 1 (Norwegian Air)
Is this enough time to:
– collect checked luggage
– transfer between T2F and T1
– check in at the counter
– go through security
Given the 60mins check-in requirement before departure, I probably have a 2h25m window.
Also, is there passport/customs control in CDG that I would have to go through at departure?
Thanks in advance!
February 17, 2020 @ 12:41 am
Hi Danny! I can’t make any guarantees, but I think that should be enough time. Croatia is currently not in the Schengen Zone, which means you’ll do exiting passport control before boarding your flight in Zagreb, and then you’ll have to do immigration and customs in Paris to get stamped into the Schengen Zone. You really only have to do that because you have separate itineraries and you have to get stamped into the Schengen Zone in order to get to baggage claim and recheck your bags. You’ll have to go through security too, though the last time I flew internationally into CDG, I had to do security first thing, before even getting to passport control. Then you’ll have to do it again after checking your luggage. As for actually checking into your flight, you can probably do that online ahead of time, even ahead of your Zagreb flight, and either print your boarding pass yourself or have an electronic copy on your phone. That way you might be able to save a little time by looking for a luggage check-in only line at CDG, if they have one. And yes, you’ll have to go through exiting passport control after dropping off your luggage in order to get stamped back out of the Schengen Zone. It’s a lot of steps, but hopefully it’ll all go smoothly. Again, no guarantees, but I think you have a good chance at making this all work.
Anna Y Tanabe-Robichaud
February 5, 2020 @ 3:06 am
Hi. I am traveling fromCancun to Boston with connection in JFK. Both flights will be on JetBlue. Will 2 hour lay over be long enough
February 5, 2020 @ 4:52 pm
Hi Anna! I can’t make any guarantees, but probably. You’ll have to go through customs and immigration, plus claim and recheck your luggage, plus go through security in JFK, so I might want a little more time for that connection, but it’s not impossible. Be sure to check out my tips for short layovers here. Not that this is terribly short, but it might help to save you even a few minutes.
February 2, 2020 @ 11:42 pm
Hi, thank you for all the valuable information you have listed on this website, I have already picked up lots of great tips but I am hoping you can help answer my question. I have already booked return flights from Manchester UK to Orlando MCO with Virgin Atlantic but have decided we would like to go to Cancun for 5 days. I have found a flight with Jet Blue that would land back at MCO at 2.30pm and our flight to Manchester UK doesn’t depart until 5.35pm. So that leaves me 3 hours between these flights. I have tried to research a little and I think if I am flying in from Cancun I would need to go through immigration then collect my luggage then go through to departures and bag drop our luggage with virgin atlantic (I have already paid to do online check in) then go through security TSA to get to my departure gate for my Virgin Atlantic flight to Manchester UK. My questions are – have I understood the process correctly? and is 3 hours enough to go through the process? Many thanks in advance. Gail
February 3, 2020 @ 4:36 pm
Hi Gail! It does sound like you’re understanding everything correctly. When you come back from Cancun and land in MCO, you will have to go through immigration and customs and claim your checked bags. Then you’ll have to go find the Virgin Atlantic counter and check your bags with them. If you have already checked in online at that point, look for a luggage check only counter, that might be faster then the normal check in lines. And then you’ll go through security to get to your flight. I can’t make any guarantees, but I think 3 hours should be enough time for everything you have to do.
February 2, 2020 @ 4:31 pm
We are traveling in July 2020 from Barcelona on Delta and have a connecting Delta flight in Atlanta. Everyone is a US citizen. We have a 2 hour layover in Atlanta. Is that enough time to clear customs, recheck bags, and clear security and make the connecting flight?
February 3, 2020 @ 4:33 pm
Hi Christina! I can’t make any guarantees, but I think 2 hours is enough time for a layover in Atlanta. Unless they’ve changed it recently, the Atlanta airport makes it pretty easy for you to recheck your luggage after customs. And since it’s such a huge airport with so many international flights, I’ve almost never waited long at the immigration lines. I’d recommend going to the bathroom on the flight to Atlanta towards the end so you don’t have to waste time doing it when you get into the airport, or at least wait until you’ve cleared customs, immigration, and security, and you’re closer to your next gate.
January 28, 2020 @ 4:46 pm
Hi. Thanks for the article. I am flying from Manila to Gunagzhou to Toronto via China Southern. I have a hour and five minute layover in Guangzhou. I was concerned enough that I called the airline (they have a local office) and was going to change to an earlier flight out of Manila that has a 4 hour layover to catch the same CAN-YYZ flight. The airline assured me that one hour was plenty of time. (There would be someone to guide us, the proximity of the gates, etc.). The question I forgot to ask was about security, as the lineups for that are always a crap-shoot no matter what airport your in. So my two questions are: IS one hour long enough? Do I have to line up for security before getting on the next plane?
January 29, 2020 @ 4:52 pm
Hi Mike! Usually when you’re connecting in a country you’re not visiting, you don’t have to deal with customs and immigration, though I have heard of people having to do it anyway for China. Hopefully you won’t have to deal with it. Assuming you can bypass immigration, your layover time should be fine. You will most likely have to go through security, but it depends on how the airport is set up, but most airports will send you through security for a layover like this. I can’t make any guarantees, but I think you’ll have enough time.
January 24, 2020 @ 6:40 am
I am traveling with my family from JFK to DEL on Etihad with a layover in AUH for 2 hours. Do you think we will have enough time to visit one of the lounges, have a shower and grab a bite before our connection?
Thank you for your help!
January 27, 2020 @ 3:07 pm
Hi Risa! That’s a tough call. As a transit passenger, you should be able to bypass customs and immigration, but you’ll probably still have to go through security, so that’s really the only thing that’s going to take up time. I haven’t flown through AUH in years, so I’m not sure where the lounges are, but if there’s a lounge close enough to where your next flight takes off from, you might have time. Good thing is what you’re interested in doing is all right there in the airport, so when you arrive, make sure you know what time boarding starts, and then just use your best judgement to decide if you have enough time for a shower and whatever else.
January 14, 2020 @ 6:45 am
How generous of you to be answering all these questions, thank you!!! I couldn’t search them so I hope you haven’t already answered.
I will be traveling from IAD to HKG via DFW on American. The layover in DFW is 1hr4m….assuming no delays out of Washington, would this be enough time to get from the domestic landing gate to the international departure gate?
January 15, 2020 @ 4:25 pm
Hi Tanya, glad to help! And no, I don’t expect anyone to sift through this many comments! I haven’t flown through DFW in years, but as long as you don’t have to go through security again, an hour should be enough time to make your connection. I did a few searches, and it seems the terminals are all connected beyond the security checkpoint, which means all you have to do is get to your next gate. I can’t make guarantees, but I think you’ll have enough time.
January 16, 2020 @ 2:41 am
Thanks Ali, super helpful!!!!!
January 16, 2020 @ 5:15 pm
Thank you for your great article. I am planning to fly from Perth to Singapore with Scoot airways arriving at terminal 1 at 11.30pm. I plan to then fly from Singapore to Venice leaving at 2.15am using Qatar from terminal 1. I plan to have checked in luggage. Is 2.45 hours cutting it too short? I guess I am just worried about plane delays. What do you think?
Thanks in advance Jon.
January 22, 2020 @ 3:10 pm
Hi Jon! I’ve never done it before, but it doesn’t sound impossible. The problem is that you’ll have to go through immigration and customs, claim your luggage, check your luggage with Qatar, and then go back through exiting passport control and security to get to your next flight. It’s a lot of steps and long lines could delay you. If you already have these flights booked, I think you just take the chance and hope it all works. If you haven’t booked the flights, you might want to look for a later flight out of Singapore or an earlier flight out of Perth. Also, read my tips for short layovers here. You don’t necessarily have a short layover, but you have a lot to accomplish in 2 hours 45 minutes, so some of the times might help.
January 30, 2020 @ 2:22 pm
Thanks so much! Really helpful!
January 5, 2020 @ 10:46 am
Hi … I am travelling on an Irish passport from Dublin to St. Petersburg with a transfer time of 45 mins at Helsinki airport . Our bags will be booked straight through to St. Petersburg with the same airline. Do you think this is sufficient time . Thanks in advance
January 13, 2020 @ 10:53 am
Hi Angela! It’s a little tight, but you shouldn’t have to deal with immigration at all since you’re coming from a non-Schengen country and continuing on to a non-Schengen country. You might have to go through security again, but that shouldn’t be so bad. I don’t think you’ll have time to waste, and I can’t make any guarantees, but I think you have a good chance of making that connection.
December 21, 2019 @ 6:29 am
Can you advise if the below connection is doable:
– Lufthansa flight from Gdansk (GDA) to New York (JFK) thru Frankfurt.
– 45 minutes in Frankfurt between the flights to get from Gate A40 to Z62.
– because we travel with 1 year old baby, we will have to wait for the stroller at the first plane (its sort of carry-on but the crew takes it away and returns after arrival)
– This would be travel from Schengen to non Schengen.
Not sure how long after scheduled arrival it would actually take us to get off that plane with the baby, bags, stroller…
How long would it take us to find a departure gate and go thru the check points with US passports? Is there also another security check – they always examine baby food, milk etc?
What should we prepared for?
Regarding the departure flight to JFK how many minutes before scheduled departure they close the gate?
… when I think about it all it seems a little impossible to make this connection.
I know MCT is 45 minutes, but is it possible with the baby?
Too bad we didnt find this website with all the great information before accepting this fights configuration!
December 23, 2019 @ 1:26 pm
Hi! Yikes, I feel like 45 minutes is not long enough to make that connection. You’ll have to go through exiting passport control, and the lines could be rather long. And I feel like it’ll take even longer to have to wait for the stroller. In general, flights from within Schengen land and take off from one terminal, and international flights land and take off from the other, which means having to take the little airport train from one to the other, before going through passport control to get stamped out of the Schengen zone. All of that takes time. I’m not sure when they close the gate, but international flights normally start boarding quite early since they’re bigger planes. Is it possible to get an earlier flight to Frankfurt? You might want to talk to the airline and see if there are other options or at least find out what happens if you can’t make the connection. I’m sorry I can’t be more optimistic about this one. I think you have a small chance to make it, but it would make me very nervous.
December 17, 2019 @ 3:16 am
Hi, I’m a NZ citizen catching a flight from USA to Monterrey, Mexico. I arrive at 16.40, just wondering if it’s possible to make the 18.30 flight to Mexico City. I think I am required to change terminals. Thank you for any help!
December 17, 2019 @ 10:26 am
Hi, so if I’m understanding correctly, you’ll be flying from NZ to the USA to Mexico, right? You’ll have to go through customs and immigration in the US, even though you’re only transiting (so make sure you have a US visa if NZ citizens are required to get one), so that’ll take time. You will most likely have to claim and recheck your luggage too, but depending on the airport, sometimes there’s a conveyor belt to recheck your bags right after customs, so it only takes an extra minute or two. You have just under 2 hours, which isn’t so bag, but it all depends on the lines. I wouldn’t worry too much about this one, but I can’t make you any guarantees.
December 16, 2019 @ 12:12 am
Hi, Im a British citizen flying to Nassau from London Heathrow via Miami international. My first flight has a 3 1\2 hour layover so that’s ok, but my return flight was changed and I only have a 1 hour layover in Miami to catch my flight back to London. Will I make it?
December 16, 2019 @ 12:16 pm
Hi Michael! One hour is a bit tight, and you will have to go through immigration even though you’re not staying in the US. I wouldn’t say it’s impossible, but an hour could really be cutting it close. Are there any flights from Nassau to Miami that leave earlier in the day? My concern would be if you don’t make it through in an hour, if there isn’t another flight to London until the next day, that would really suck. I have a few tips for short layover here, some of those might be helpful to you, and you should also check with your airline to find out what their policy is if you miss your connection due to long lines at immigration.
December 8, 2019 @ 1:00 am
I am flying from hartford ct to ft lauderdale on a Saturday morning arriving at ft lauderdale for 9:35 and departing for Cancun at 10:35 for our wedding a few days later! Do you think this is enough time? Both flights are on the same itinerary with southwest and we did early bird check in so we should be off the plane rather quickly once we land in ft lauderdale.. regarding early bird check in… not sure if we will make it to the 2nd flight in time to be one of the first ones on the plane but as long as we make it (and I find space in an overhead bin for my wedding dress) is all that matters
December 9, 2019 @ 2:52 pm
Hi Alysha, congrats on the wedding! An hour is kind of short but not at all impossible. There aren’t any formal exiting border control procedures when leaving the US, so it won’t be any different than a domestic layover. It looks like the terminals aren’t all connected passed security, so that would be the only issue, that if you have to switch terminals, you might have to go through security again, which could take some time. With the earlybird thing, even if they’ve started boarding the flight to Cancun once you get to the gate, I assume you can jump ahead? Might want to check with Southwest about how that works, I haven’t flown with them in awhile. I can’t make you any guarantees about the time, but I think you have a pretty good chance of making the second flight without a problem. Enjoy!
December 7, 2019 @ 1:32 am
I will coming from the US. I have a connecting flight from Melbourne to Cairns. My layover is 2 hours exactly from when I touch down in Melbourne to departure in Cairns. Will this give me time to make it through customs and get through the airport?
December 9, 2019 @ 2:36 pm
Hi Niki! I can’t make any guarantees, but I think 2 hours should be enough time for your layover. If you’re worried, I have some tips for short layovers here, and some of them would help you reduce the amount of time it takes for all the steps of your layover.
December 15, 2019 @ 2:49 pm
I have travelled a bit to Australia from the US. One thing I will say is that they are VERY tight on customs, especially when it comes to food products (nuts, seeds, fruit, etc). I have never had issues, but you definitely should know exactly what you have in your bags and claim it all. We even go as far as claiming granola bars we get on the flight. They usually just wave us through. Just know what you got and be confident! They can smell fear.
December 16, 2019 @ 12:12 pm
Thanks Tim! I have lots of info to know before traveling to Australia here.
November 30, 2019 @ 8:41 pm
I am travelling from ORD to MSP and then from MSP to AMS. The layover time at MSP is 2 hours, on a Saturday. Would be it sufficient for catching the next flight? (I am a resident of Germany.)
December 2, 2019 @ 3:59 pm
Hi Rudra! I think 2 hours should be enough time. The US doesn’t do any formal exiting passport control, so when you land in MSP, you just have to find your next gate and maybe go through security again depending on if the terminals are connected beyond the security checkpoint or not. I think you’ll have enough time.
November 29, 2019 @ 7:55 pm
We are arriving LAX at 3:00 PM from AUCKLAND on Air New Zealand. I think Air New Zealand operates out of TBIT or Terminal B and I have a on going flight on Delta to ATL and that flight leaves at 3:45 from either Terminal 2,3 or possibly TBIT, but I think this flight will be out of terminal 3.
Air NZ changed the AKL to LAX flight so now I have to reschedule my LAX to ATL as 45 minutes is not a long enough layover. Delta has two later non-stop flights, 5:10 pm and 11:30 pm. Obviously we would like to take the 5:10 flight but will that be enough time. We do have Global Entry and know we will have to go through immigration and customs and claim our luggage and recheck on Delta probably at a different terminal. Your thoughts are much appreciated.
December 2, 2019 @ 3:53 pm
Hi Robert! Sorry they changed your flight to such a short layover! So if you take the 5:10 flight, that gives you 1 hour 25 minutes for your layover…which might still be a little tight, but it does help that you have Global Entry, that should get you through faster. This is a tough call because I completely understand not wanting to wait around until the 11:30 flight. It’s totally a judgement call for you, I can’t make you any guarantees, but I personally might take a chance on the 5:10 flight simply because an almost 8 hour layover sounds painful. You might want to call Delta’s customer service and ask them what their policy is if you miss your connection because of immigration delays, not a flight delay. But yeah, I’d probably chance that one, it just depends on if you’re willing to take the risk of missing the connection.
December 2, 2019 @ 4:02 pm
Thanks, we are still debating this one.
November 24, 2019 @ 9:06 pm
Hi, thanks for your informative article! Looking for some quick insight like the rest of the commenters.
Flying from Amsterdam to Washington, D.C. (I am American) and have a 1 hour layover in Lisbon (flying TAP Air Portugal).
Is this enough time? Do I need to do any U.S.-specific customs or security before boarding my flight in Lisbon to D.C.? Super cheap flight so tempted to take it.
November 25, 2019 @ 4:12 pm
Hi Oliver! You’ll have to go through exiting passport control in Lisbon since that’s the flight that takes you out of the Schengen Zone. You will probably have to go through security as well. An hour is a little tight when you have to deal with passport control and security, but it’s not impossible, just depends what the lines are like that day, so it’s really a judgement call. I can’t make you any guarantees, but I’d probably take the chance on that one.
November 16, 2019 @ 3:36 pm
Im flying from Edinburgh to St Louis via Newark on a through ticket with united airlines. I have a 2 hour gap between flights at Newark. Is this long enough?
November 16, 2019 @ 6:53 pm
Hi Caroline! That’s probably long enough. If the lines at immigration are really long or slow, it could be a bit tight, but if it were me, I’d take the chance on that one.
November 16, 2019 @ 7:13 pm
Thanks very much ?
November 12, 2019 @ 1:01 am
I really need your thoughts about this, here’s my airline trip with 1.5 layover each
Manila – Hongkong [Cathay Pacific]
Hongkong – Zurich [Swiss Airlines]
Zurich – Marrakesh [Swiss Airlines]
Do you think i can make through? I am so skeptical about this but i really need this flight. Is it too risky? Thank you so much
November 12, 2019 @ 10:06 am
Your layovers are a little short but not impossible if you’ve booked all the flights on one itinerary. Cathay Pacific and Swiss Airlines are codeshare partners, so Cathay should be able to tag your checked luggage to your final destination (always verify this when checking in and dropping off your luggage), which means you won’t have to do anything with it on any of your layovers. You’re not staying in Hong Kong or Switzerland/Schengen Zone, only transiting through, so when you land in Hong Kong and Zurich, look for signs that say “transit” or “transfer” or “connecting flights” and you should be able to bypass immigration and customs. You might have to go through security again, but hopefully that won’t take too long. And if any of your flights is delayed, causing you to miss the next flight, the airline should be able to rebook you on another flight. I can’t make you any guarantees, but I think you have a good chance at this working out. I hope this helps!
November 12, 2019 @ 12:41 pm
Thank you so much Ali! Your response is an heaven sent. I was thinking to get the 10 hrs layover over 1.5 hours at Hongkong to fly at Zurich just to be really safe, since that is the pricey flight one. But your response give me hope that i can bypass immigration which i actually worried about the most. God bless. Love your website ?
November 11, 2019 @ 12:21 pm
I am an American traveling from Dublin to Vienna with a 55 minute layover in Amsterdam. Will this be enough time? I will only be traveling with carryon, but will I have to go through security again or passport control because I am not apart of the EU?
November 11, 2019 @ 2:22 pm
Hi Emily! You will have to go through immigration in Amsterdam since that’s where you’re entering the Schengen Zone, but that has nothing to do with your citizenship. Normally I’d say 55 minutes is a bit tight, but I’ve never had to go through security again when transiting through the Amsterdam airport, so I doubt you’ll have to either. That makes things a lot faster. I’d say you just don’t have any time to waste once you land, but it’s not an impossible amount of time. Check out my tips for short layovers, and hopefully you can zip through the airport with no problems.
November 9, 2019 @ 9:37 pm
Departing DXB to MCO via AAM and ORD. Will we have to pickup our luggage at AAM and check them back in for the next flight? Flying Royal Jordian Air using AAL points. Will have about 1 hr and 45 minutes between flights.
November 11, 2019 @ 11:12 am
Hi George! If you have booked all of your flights on one itinerary, they should be able to tag your checked luggage to your final destination, so it’ll be transferred from one flight to the next. The exception to this is for the ORD to MCO flight. Since ORD is your first airport in the US, that’s where you’ll go through US customs and immigration, and you’ll have to claim and recheck your luggage. But you shouldn’t have to do this in AMM. (I think you mean AMM? AMM is Amman, Jordan.) So your checked bag will automatically go from DXB to AMM to ORD, and then you’ll have to claim and recheck it in ORD for the ORD to MCO flight. Always verify with the airline employee when you’re checking in for your first flight, but this is how it works most of the time.
October 30, 2019 @ 2:50 pm
Hi there! I am flying from MIA to Toronto, but I have an 1 hour connection in Atlanta, will that be enough? I’m not taking any luggage with me. Thank you!
October 31, 2019 @ 12:30 pm
Hi Yohana! I think that’ll be long enough. I know Atlanta is a big airport, but it’s well sign-posted. So when you land, find out what gate you need to go to, and if it’s on a different concourse, follow the signs towards the other concourses, and get on the train in the appropriate direction. You might want to get to your gate before doing anything else, in case you don’t have an extra time to play with. And then if you get to your gate and you do still have time before they start boarding you can go find a bathroom or get a snack or whatever. Read my post about tips for short layovers here. But I think you’ll be ok with an hour.
October 28, 2019 @ 9:39 pm
Hello, I am flying out of Minneapolis and have a 3-hour layover in Portland and then another layover in San Francisco that lasts 1 hour and 26 minutes that will later depart to Auckland, New Zealand. Will this be enough time for a layover and my checked luggage to make it to the plane that leaves for Auckland? Will I have to grab that luggage from the baggage claim in San Francisco or will it be shuttled immediately after landing in San Francisco?
I also have another layover in Auckland to Dunedin, New Zealand which is 1 hour and 50 minutes. Will I have to grab this luggage from the baggage claim or will it be put on the plane for me?
October 30, 2019 @ 11:50 am
Hi Cole! Wow, that’s a lot of layovers! In general, your luggage should be tagged to go to your final destination. BUT are all your flights booked on one itinerary? If yes, then they really should be able to transfer your luggage from one flight to the next – and the airline employee who takes your checked bags should be able to confirm this. But if you’ve booked separate itineraries in there at all, you’ll have to claim and recheck your luggage between any flights that are not on the same itinerary.
The US and Canada are pretty much the only countries that make you claim your luggage at the first airport in the country, so you shouldn’t even have to claim your luggage in Auckland if your flights are all on one itinerary. Again, it’s worth confirming this with the airline. And when I went to New Zealand, I didn’t have a connecting flight or checked luggage, so I’m not 100% certain of this, but when you land in Auckland, you’ll have to go through immigration and customs, so you can confirm with someone there whether you’ll need to claim and recheck luggage for a connecting flight.
Sorry I can’t give you a completely definite answer, but I’m 99% sure you won’t have to claim and recheck luggage at any point, as long as your flights are all on one itinerary.
Also, in Dunedin, check out Velvet Burger, so delicious!
October 23, 2019 @ 8:50 am
Hi, Iam from Manila flying from Manila to Newyork to Tampa Florida do i need to go through US customs and immigration,claim and recheck the luggage, and go through security and get stamped into the NewYork or look for the next gate going Tampa and get my passport stamp there final destination i have a 4-hour layover in NY.
October 24, 2019 @ 2:24 pm
Hello! You’ll go through customs and immigration in New York since that’s your point of entry into the US. You’ll also have to claim and recheck your luggage and go through security again. I think 4 hours sounds like plenty of time for all of that though, so I wouldn’t worry about the timing there.
October 22, 2019 @ 5:27 am
Hi, I am flying from Edmonton, Canada to Denver with a 56 min layover, then onto Tampa – I’m nervous I’m definitely not going to make the connection… what are your thoughts?
October 22, 2019 @ 9:59 am
Hi Steph! Many Canadian airports actually have US border procedures, so you would go through US customs and immigration and get stamped into the US before you even leave the Edmonton airport. Check our more info on the airport’s website: https://flyeia.com/flights/travelling-to-us/. So that means you will arrive in Denver as if you were coming from another US city. I can’t tell if you’ll have to go through security again, but I don’t think you’ll have to, I think the terminals are all connected beyond the security checkpoint, which means you’d only have to find your next gate. So I think you’ll be fine with 56 minutes for your layover. If you’re worried, I have a list of tips for short layovers here.
October 19, 2019 @ 5:46 pm
Hi I have a United airlines 1hr 25 min layover arriving from SJD LOS Cabos to the IAH Houston airport and flying out on United airlines to Minneapolis . Arrive at 6:15 pm and fly out at 7:40. Is this doable and any suggestions. Trip is booked. Thank you for any advise!
October 21, 2019 @ 11:07 am
Hi Jewel! That might be a little tight since you’ll be arriving from outside of the US and you’ll have to go through customs and immigration, claim and recheck your luggage, and go through security. That said, it’s not impossible, it just depends on the lines and how quickly things are moving when you arrive. For your flight to Houston, make sure your carry on bag is packed up before the plane lands so you’re not scrambling to put stuff away after the plane gets to the gate, that way you can get out faster. If possible, see if you can get an aisle seat as close to the front as possible so you can get out faster. Check out my other tips for short layovers here.