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  #21  
Old 25.04.2014, 19:26
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

Stick with the major European carriers!
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  #22  
Old 25.04.2014, 19:30
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

I have a question about connection via London - I get lots of options that have you arrive in Heathrow and connect out of Gatwick. Is this doable? It seems like a major PITA so I haven't gone near a flight like that. Anyone know how to get around this? (apart from paying a bunch more, I assume?)
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  #23  
Old 25.04.2014, 19:49
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

It's certainly doable, but you'll need to take your luggage with you and go through passport control. If you're EU then it's less of a pain obviously.

There are coaches every 20 min to Gatwick and it takes just over an hour for £25 so looks doable to me.
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  #24  
Old 25.04.2014, 19:52
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

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I have a question about connection via London - I get lots of options that have you arrive in Heathrow and connect out of Gatwick. Is this doable? It seems like a major PITA so I haven't gone near a flight like that. Anyone know how to get around this? (apart from paying a bunch more, I assume?)
Not a great idea, imho. Especially when you consider you have to haul all your luggage (and kids, and their stuff) between the airports, and pay for the fun on top of your airfare. Same as the JFK-LGA setup. Wouldn't touch it.
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Old 25.04.2014, 19:53
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

check out the seat review websites, you can look at specific flights and see if it is a new plane/layout and figure out how nice it is.

i try never to fly on any american airlines, but I admit I like American Airlines on their upgraded planes (when work pays for business class).
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Old 25.04.2014, 19:54
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

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I have a question about connection via London - I get lots of options that have you arrive in Heathrow and connect out of Gatwick. Is this doable? It seems like a major PITA so I haven't gone near a flight like that. Anyone know how to get around this? (apart from paying a bunch more, I assume?)
never ever change airports in london!

moving between terminals at heathrow is OK (in fact, when connecting, i prefer to change from t5 to t3 as the security is much faster).
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  #27  
Old 25.04.2014, 19:58
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

I figured it was a no go-i seem unable to find connecting flights from the same airport....will keep searching
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Old 25.04.2014, 20:21
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

i'd avoid american-they are a nightmare all around. from my own experience i just buy the tix from the company- not from expedia or something like that because it's pretty much the same price and you've less proctection...

we've flown swiss, air france and british and all were fine. changing in london is a pain so i'd avoid it if you can. sometimes swiss has direct flights and the price is fine. iceland air has interesting prices and layovers in iceland can be worth it (we'll probably do that this year) flying to nyc will be cheapest, but it may be even cheaper to newark but amen to whoever said only as a destination- it's true! if you have to connect, connect in europe- i'd chose connecting in heathrow over jfk any day!
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Old 25.04.2014, 20:26
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

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I figured it was a no go-i seem unable to find connecting flights from the same airport....will keep searching
Where do you need to connect to? Do you have to go through LHR?

Last edited by 3Wishes; 25.04.2014 at 21:11. Reason: think I had the wrong airport
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  #30  
Old 25.04.2014, 20:37
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

Swiss, even if the flight is always late taking off.
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  #31  
Old 25.04.2014, 20:57
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

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check out the seat review websites, you can look at specific flights and see if it is a new plane/layout and figure out how nice it is.

i try never to fly on any american airlines, but I admit I like American Airlines on their upgraded planes (when work pays for business class).
Fly American airlines at your own risk if something goes wrong like a missed connection expect to be stranded and told that its your problem!

Speaking from experience
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  #32  
Old 25.04.2014, 21:29
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

I fly United to IAD or EWR on my way to RIC about once or twice a year... And I choose United because a) they fly direct to the States from CH, no paying extra for using a European hub, and b) more importantly in IAD you get to go through the United terminal for Immigration, which goes a lot faster than the International arrivals terminal (the one they ship you to in those articulated lifting buses that take forever to unload you from the plane). You just walk to the beginning of the Immigration queue in their terminal... so much easier! And with that you can make the transit time in less than 2 hours, no such luck I've found depending on how many European carriers arrive at the same time as your flight. You need at least 3 hours if coming in with a European carrier.

As for Newark... If the queue seems long for the non-US, just go to the US queue, I've never had any problems (Terminal C, United's hub). I've never tried this with another airline. The catch is getting through the horrendous TSA check in the tunnel that leads to Terminal A. It can take ages!
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  #33  
Old 25.04.2014, 21:44
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

Firstly, jumping out at T5 with a Swiss passport in transit is possible. With non-EU/Swiss, I would not chance it.

I last flew American (AA) many years ago out of Zurich heading to Chicago. I think we were on a route Zurich-Dulles-Chicago.

Side-by-side at the airport were two AA flights and the dispatching staff were having an issue with the Dulles flight being overbooked and lucky old me overheard. I did offer to be bumped to the JFK flight next door if they bumped us to C class and got us to La Guardia for a Chicago flight.

The chap first turned me down so I said no problem (after all, it was his problem not mine!!). 20 minutes later, he has me sorted into business with a cab transfer and some flight vouchers

But American I found to be ageing fleetwise, ageing staffwise and quite unmemorable - even in business. But I've been spoiled transatlantic on Swiss too many times....50/50 on whether it was paid by me or work.

So it pays to listen at the gates and be flexible if you can......I got to Chicago earlier than I'd been due and got a class bump
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  #34  
Old 26.04.2014, 09:49
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

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I personally avoid American.

I'd go Swiss or Lufthansa. Swiss will give you non-stop from Zurich to JFK and Newark IIRC.
Concur, truth is I would avoid any US based airline - for me, there are a variety of reasons why they are among the worst options flying to the US

We, exclusively, fly only BA or Swiss back to the states
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Old 26.04.2014, 10:08
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

All you people flying Swiss, am I missing something? Looking at going to NY in Sep/Oct for a couple of weeks and tickets are almost CHF1,200 pp.

BA/Iberia on the other hand are 720 CHF which to me is a massive difference.

Is there a knack to booking with Swiss that I'm not aware of?
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  #36  
Old 26.04.2014, 10:16
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

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All you people flying Swiss, am I missing something? Looking at going to NY in Sep/Oct for a couple of weeks and tickets are almost CHF1,200 pp.

BA/Iberia on the other hand are 720 CHF which to me is a massive difference.

Is there a knack to booking with Swiss that I'm not aware of?
Probably because the cheaper tickets have been sold.
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  #37  
Old 26.04.2014, 10:53
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

I've had good experiences with Air Berlin, flying Zürich to JFK and vice versa. It's a huge step above the US carriers in comfort, services,etc.. It usually involves a short layover in Dusseldorf but it isn't so bad. Prices were cheap - IIRC 650 to 750 chf R/T the last two times i've gone.


Good luck
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  #38  
Old 26.04.2014, 12:14
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

A direct flight is the most important thing for me, and since I fly almost exclusively to Chicago that leaves Swiss as the only option.

More expensive, certainly. Sometimes almost twice the price of other flights. But when you absolutely positively have to get there (more or less close to) on time...

So it's Swiss, with carry-on luggage only. Avoid the hassle and delay of checked luggage. And then pray that the flight arrives a few minutes early to avoid the crush at immigration control.

Quality of service is irrelevant, as I go to sleep the minute the plane takes off, waking up just before landing.
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  #39  
Old 26.04.2014, 12:54
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

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Rule #2 - avoid Air France, Iberia, Alitalia.
Actually, Swiss and Alitalia are my preferred airlines to the US, Swiss from Lugano (via Zurich), Alitalia from MXP.

Tom
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Old 26.04.2014, 13:49
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Re: Flights to the US - which airlines (not) to choose?

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A direct flight is the most important thing for me, and since I fly almost exclusively to Chicago that leaves Swiss as the only option.
Do you book on SWISS or United? Sometimes it is cheaper to book with the codeshare airline for the same flight. Plus the Mileage Plus program is superior to the SWISS program, and you generally earn full miles on UMP even if you fly SWISS.
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