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Old 20.01.2018, 07:21
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Layover one the way to US

I am planing a trip to US. From your experience, how long would you recommend to have beforr boarding a plan to US?
If I go Zurich-Frankfurt-US, how long should layover in Frankfurt be?
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Old 20.01.2018, 08:17
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Re: Layover one the way to US

Normally the airline will only show you connections that are manageable.

Out of experience, it takes about 45 minutes to get your luggage from one plane to another in FRA so I personally would take a lay over of at least 1 hour. Also you need to change terminals. Not an issue but can take a bit if you are not perfectly sure where to go to
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Old 20.01.2018, 08:22
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Re: Layover one the way to US

It really depends on the airport and if your connection is ‘on-line’, between allied airlines, or inter-line’.

In my experience LH/LH (online) or LX/LH (alliance partners) connection at FRA an hour should be plenty. I wouldn’t connect at all via Heathrow, just too many things that can and do go wrong.

All airlines/airports publish minimum connecting times and these are programmed into their reservations computer. So if a connection via FRA is displayed on LH (or agency) website it is a legitimate connection. Meaning you should make the connection. And if you don’t they will get you on their next flight.
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Old 20.01.2018, 08:28
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Re: Layover one the way to US

I understand that but last time I went to US there was additional check of all travelers before boarding plane for US. And I lost time there a lot. They don‘t do that any more?
I have to have a visa to enter US. And I do have it.
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Old 20.01.2018, 08:30
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Re: Layover one the way to US

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I understand that but last time I went to US there was additional check of all travelers before boarding plane for US. And I lost time there a lot. They don‘t do that any more?
I have to have a visa to enter US. And I do have it.
Yes, they still do that. With a visa or on the vis waiver programme, for all.

Still, airlines will show only connections that they think you can make
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Old 20.01.2018, 08:47
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Re: Layover one the way to US

If you are uncomfortable with an apparently tight connection LH often gives you the choice of longer connections.

If you have a non-EU Passport an hour will be tight. You will have departing Schengen check and extra US check.
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Old 20.01.2018, 10:15
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Re: Layover one the way to US

Flew with LH once. Never again!
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Old 20.01.2018, 10:19
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Re: Layover one the way to US

Why?

I fly them all the time. I quite like them long haul, better than AC or United (in my experience)
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Old 20.01.2018, 10:40
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Re: Layover one the way to US

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Why?

I fly them all the time. I quite like them long haul, better than AC or United (in my experience)
Guess I just had a bad trip with em. Transfer was OK. Just found the personal arrogant and the service too. Maybe having been served cake with mold spores growing out of it and then not even an apology was the final straw. But it was more then a decade ago. Since then no LH and no special meal orders.
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Old 20.01.2018, 10:48
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Re: Layover one the way to US

On the off chance you'll be traveling with little ones... my sweet spot for layovers in Frankfurt is 3h. Enough time to dawdle a bit, change diapers in comfort, grab a snack then find an empty gate and let the kids tear around and decompress. All this "hurry up, stay here, don't touch, hold my hand" in the face of so much novelty and stimulation is really a lot to ask of young children. They do their best but it's hard on them - and harder as the day goes on. Any little oasis of movement and freedom I can create for them before boarding pays enormous dividends later when we're in the air.
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Old 20.01.2018, 10:53
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Re: Layover one the way to US

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I am planing a trip to US. From your experience, how long would you recommend to have beforr boarding a plan to US?
If I go Zurich-Frankfurt-US, how long should layover in Frankfurt be?
Well, it depends. If you book ZRH-USA, then you don't need to worry about layover time. However, if buy different tickets, ie, one for ZRH-FRA, another to FRA-USA, then I would say 2 hours minimum to be safe.
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Old 20.01.2018, 11:40
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Re: Layover one the way to US

If you're going via Frankfurt, I highly recommend at least 2 hours if you're a regular economy passenger. The security lines can be ridiculous.

Last time I transited through there I had only 1 hour, and by the time I got through passport control, security lines and to the gate the flight had closed. The rebooking agent was super rude, and said that according to their calculations I had enough time and it wasn't the airline's fault that the lines were long. She rebooked me "as a favor" but said I could not claim compensation under EU law for being late to my final destination and she'd note it in the computer.
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Old 20.01.2018, 12:08
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Re: Layover one the way to US

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If you're going via Frankfurt, I highly recommend at least 2 hours if you're a regular economy passenger. The security lines can be ridiculous.
Exactly.

I transited through Heathrow T5 this week, and the security lines at LHR were far worse than at ZRH on departure. Also got delayed because they confiscated my duty free (1 bottle of Swiss vodka) and I didn't have time to dispute this with them. I always seem to get stuck behind someone whose wearing half their winter wardrobe to save on paying for luggage, or someone who has metal on every item of their clothing and has to make repeated trips through the scanner. Allow for numpties.

With the main German airport transits, I find Dusseldorf to be claustrophobic and grubby but convenient short distances between gates, Hamburg can be a decent walk between gates, and Frankfurt sends my fitbit into overdrive, so I always allow a longer connection there.
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Old 20.01.2018, 13:17
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Re: Layover one the way to US

Currently because further travel in US , the best optiom is Zur-Fra.

The other option is having 13hour layover in LA and I don't like that option.
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Old 20.01.2018, 15:23
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Re: Layover one the way to US

I find the Frankfurt airport a disaster as it cannot handle the air traffic volume and is poorly designed. I fly to the US often and I have yet to arrive in Frankfurt at an actual gate; typically the plane lands on some remote airstrip and passengers are bussed to the terminal (which takes about 20 minutes in and of itself!) That said, even with just over an hour between flights, my luggage has always arrived at my destination. I have had a few close calls getting to my connecting flight but no issues with my luggage to date!

Lufthansa also flies to/from the US via Munich which I find to be a better airport/route. As an FYI, America Airlines just announced a new direct route from Zurich to Philadelphia beginning early April 2018.
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Old 20.01.2018, 19:16
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Re: Layover one the way to US

Zuzi, where in the US are you travelling to? Or is it a secret? Quite a few frequent flyers here and they might have some other ideas on how to get where you are going..
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Old 20.01.2018, 20:41
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Re: Layover one the way to US

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...As an FYI, America Airlines just announced a new direct route from Zurich to Philadelphia beginning early April 2018.
US Airways used to fly this route. AA bought US Airways and kept the route for a short time before discontinuing. I flew that route in 2015. I guess they decided it filled a need so they're going to start it again. Good for flyers to have more options.
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Old 21.01.2018, 21:42
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Re: Layover one the way to US

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Zuzi, where in the US are you travelling to? Or is it a secret? Quite a few frequent flyers here and they might have some other ideas on how to get where you are going..
I'm going to Hilo, Hawaii.
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Old 21.01.2018, 23:05
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Re: Layover one the way to US

I must have flown to or through Frankfurt 20 times last year.

If you have a Lufthansa or star alliance ticket, 1 hour is enough. Security can be long, but if your flight is soon, your flight number will appear on the screen for fast track, so you can officially jump the queue.

There is a flight ZRH-FRA almost every hour, so if you are concerned, take a slightly earlier flight.

Once someone booked a flight for me ZRH-FRA-MEX I think, and she gave me a 3 hour transit because she was concerned about me making my flight. I was very annoyed about the extra 2 hour wait!

Even if bussed from a remote parking space, I find it absolutely ok, as it saves me from the usually very long walk.
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Old 22.01.2018, 11:14
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Re: Layover one the way to US

You can avoid FRA if you take the Swiss flight to LAX and then connect (the next day) to UA's nonstop to ITO. Or fly to HNL same day and connect to ITO from there. On the way back there is a direct connection at LAX. Try the United airlines website, they sell the Swiss flight Zurich Los Angeles as their own (code share).

You might prefer an overnight at LAX on the way out, clearing US customs and immigration can be difficult.
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