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GUIDE: LHR / London Heathrow Connection, MCT inc. AA T3 <--> BA/IB T5

GUIDE: LHR / London Heathrow Connection, MCT inc. AA T3 <--> BA/IB T5

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Old Jul 15, 19, 12:32 am   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
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Please edit or add information to this wiki as necessary.

Link to LHR page on aa.com

Link to London-Heathrow web pages

Link to Wikipedia page on LHR

Link to FT - AA thread London Heathrow (LHR) <-> Gatwick (LGW) Transport / Transfer (master thread)

The vast majority of arriving passengers with a passport from the European Union, Switzerland or, effective 20 May 2019, Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea or USA can now use arrival immigration eGates without any fee or pre-registration requirement. But for those transiting LHR with a non-UK/non-Ireland destination and no luggage to claim during transit at LHR, the eGates are generally irrelevant since most such passengers donít enter the UK-Ireland Common Travel Area.
NOTE: Connecting flights between Terminal 5 and Terminal 3 - please allow a minimum 1 hour 30 minutes between flights.


NOTE: Some BA flights have moved. E.g.: On 30 June 2015 all British Airways flights that previously operated out of Terminal 1 switched to either Terminal 3 or Terminal 5. Others have changed to or from T-3 as well. See:

Link to LHR "Which terminal does my flight depart from / arrive?"

For gate to gate connection assistance in T-3, AA Five Star Service can be used (fee, must be in AA Business or First on incoming or outbound flight). For interterminal assistance, see https://www.heathrow.com/airport-gui...cierge-service for Heathrow Meet and Assist.

LHR is comprised of four terminals (Terminal 1 is now permanently closed). American Airlines and many oneworld airlines (e.g. AY, BA, CX, JJ, JL, QF, RJ, UL) use Terminal 3. MH and QR use terminal 4. BA and IB use Terminal 5. These terminals are not connected - you can not walk from one to the other. Use this tool to see where your next flight departs / arrives.


Transferring/ Connections at LHR interterminal can be done three ways:

Link to interactive custom Heathrow Flight Connections Guide

1) Landside: exit your terminal and process HM immigration and customs as if you were arriving in the UK, then take the free train or busses connecting to other terminals (or with most hotels, if you are staying overnight you will most likely utilise the "Heathrow Hoppa" busses costing £4.50 per person one way, £8 return). You must proceed landside if planning to use the AA (or BA) Arrivals Lounge, which close at 1400 hrs / 2 PM as these are landside. (See post no. 627, here, for local land & hotel transport options.)

Inter-terminal landside connections can be via rail (free) or walking, depending on the terminals. See the diagram for Heathrow Express terminal connections, free when you are traveling within the airport's cconfines. See here

2) Airside:

Follow the signage to Flight Connections, where you will proceed a bus waiting area at airport ground level and take a bus to your next terminal, where you will proceed through boarding pass, carryon check a standard airport security check. Now you are ready to catch your next flight. Flight connections Minimum Connect Times are ordinarily 75 - 90 minutes (the latter for connections between T3 and T5).

NOTE: You must be at your connecting gate 20 minutes prior to departure. If you must recover bags and re-check (e.g. oneworld to non-oneworld or LCC) you must check your baggage in at least 45 minutes prior to departure.

Use this tool available from this page on LHR's website that include a step by step guide through Flight Connections. The page also offers videos. Use this tool to see where your next flight departs / arrives.

Typical Terminal 3 to Terminal 5 Flight Connections path:

T3Ė>T5 see posts 674, 675.
1. Welcome to Heathrow!: On leaving the aircraft, please follow the purple signs for Flight Connections.

2. Flight Connections bus: A dedicated bus will transfer you between terminals. Buses are free and depart every six to ten minutes.

3. Airline desks: Need to visit your airline's ticket desk? You'll find it here.

4. Ready to fly: Staff will check that you're in the right place, your hand baggage meets airline regulations, and you have time to catch your onward flight.

5. Hand baggage check: At this point your hand baggage will be checked to ensure it conforms to UK and EU regulations. Please be aware that liquids in containers over 100ml are not allowed through security.

6. Security screening: You will pass through security screening at this point. If you are a non-UK resident and have goods to declare to HM Customs, please use the Customs telephone before security control.

7. Departure lounge: Check the screens in the departure lounge, which will be updated when your gate opens and again when your flight is ready for boarding.
NOTE: Flight departure gates are listed in only sufficient time to get to the gate, not hours (or often an hour) prior to departure.


Typical Terminal 5 to Terminal 3 Flight Connections path:
1. Welcome to Heathrow!: On leaving the aircraft, please follow the purple signs for Flight Connections.

2. Flight Connections bus: A dedicated bus will transfer you between terminals. Buses are free and depart every six to ten minutes.

NOTE: As there is a new AA desk at the bus boarding point, you can get your AA boarding pass and pass the AA oral security questioning while you await the bus.

3. Hand baggage check: At this point your hand baggage will be checked to ensure it conforms to UK and EU regulations. Please be aware that liquids in containers over 100ml are not allowed through security.

4. Security screening: You will pass through security screening at this point. If you are a non-UK resident and have goods to declare to HM Customs, please use the Customs telephone before security control.

5. Airline desks: Need to visit your airline's ticket desk? You'll find it here. But see 2A if flying AA.

6. Departure lounge: Check the screens in the departure lounge, which will be updated when your gate opens and again when your flight is ready for boarding.
[quote]Lounges: [Airside lounges at LHR are designated departure lounges, so itíd be unusual to be allowed to return to use them if youíre connecting to a flight departing from Terminal 5.

[B]Terminal 3 lounges include:

Airside, departure lounges:
American Airlines Flagship / First Class Lounge - Lounge Zone H
American Airlines Admirals Club - Lounge Zone H
British Airways First and Club / Business lounges - Lounge Zone F
Cathay Pacific First and Business lounges near Gate 11
Qantas Airways London Lounge - Lounge B / Gate
Landside, for arriving premium passengers and Emeralds (no guests)
American Airlines Arrivals Lounge (recently renovated)
Terminal 5 lounges:

Airside lounges:
British Airways Concorde Lounge (longhaul BA First)
British Airways Galleries First Class Lounge - South Concourse
British Airways Galleries Club / Business lounges both North & South Concourses
British Airways Galleries Club / Business lounge T5B Satellite
Landside, for arriving premium passengers and Emeralds (no guests)
British Airways Arrivals Lounge (recently renovated)
For hours, access, amenities, etc. consult the oneworld lounge access tool here./quote]

Link to the most useful London Heathrow International Airport website. Click on "Connections" for a connection assistance tool.

For long connections where you might wish to go to London, you can use "the tube" (Underground, ~50 minutes, cheapest), busses to various locations, taxis (the most expensive, about 45 minutes) or "minicabs" and other hired cars, the Heathrow Express (15 minutes to Paddington station) or Heathrow Connect (30 minutes to Paddington). You can also Uber or bus to nearby Windsor town, and with sufficient time even tour Windsor Castle.

For links to local and local hotels, other airports (such as Gatwick, ~1:30), railroad stations (Feltham, Watford, Woking and Reading), intercity coaches (such as Oxford) start at this page.

The Tube takes 50 minutes from the Central / Terminals 2/3, T-4 or T-5 stations using the Piccadilly Line. Link to LHR tube page; link to London Toolkit page on LHR and Piccadilly line; link to Transport for London page.

The Heathrow Express / HEX departs T-5 and takes 21 minutes (it stops at Central / T2/3, six minutes) and onward to Paddington (15 minutes, about 1/3 of the time a taxi would take, though a taxi or bus can tale longer in some traffic). The trains have 15 minute headway (depart every 15 minutes) and have baggage racks.

(If you stay at Hilton T-4, board HEX at T-5, go to Central / T-2/3, get off, take the connecting train to T-4 (4 minutes), all free. From T-4 follow the signs to the hotel, perhaps 10 minute walk by covered board walk).

The Heathrow Connect costs less, takes 30 minutes to Paddington from Central T-2/3 station (which you get to via free HEX).
This London Heathrow International Airport connection / transfer thread has been split off from the original thread, which can be read here: BA T5 <-> AA T3 transfer /connection at LHR / Heathrow (obsolete, trailing thread).

For other terminals please see ARCHIVE: BA T5 <-> AA T3 transfer /connection at LHR / Heathrow

Also see this page for MCT information.

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Old Dec 4, 18, 10:06 am
  #706  
 
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Originally Posted by wakesetter93 View Post
I'm assuming that this is airline related and not gate related? For instance if I'm flying in on AA and out on BA it'll just give me the directions from T3 to T5, or by inputting the flight numbers and dates will it provide gate to gate information closer to the day of travel?
You will input actual airlines, flight numbers and dates. Tool will give you terminal-level connecting detail, as specific gate assignments aren't made until about 1 hour (I think) prior to scheduled departure.
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Old Dec 4, 18, 10:34 am
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Originally Posted by pmblinn View Post
You will input actual airlines, flight numbers and dates. Tool will give you terminal-level connecting detail, as specific gate assignments aren't made until about 1 hour (I think) prior to scheduled departure.
Understood.

I tried out the tool but didn't know if it provided updated information on the day of travel. Thanks!
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Old Dec 4, 18, 10:50 am
  #708  
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I'm connecting T3 (AA) to T5 (BA) on December 25; I assume that the connection bus system will operate on 12/25, even though nearly all mass transit in London shuts down.
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Old Dec 4, 18, 10:53 am
  #709  
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Originally Posted by nrr View Post
I'm connecting T3 (AA) to T5 (BA) on December 25; I assume that the connection bus system will operate on 12/25, even though nearly all mass transit in London shuts down.
Yes the airside connection buses will operate on Christmas Day. Also if you do need to go landside I believe there will be inter-terminal HEX trains.
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Old Dec 4, 18, 11:14 am
  #710  
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Originally Posted by KARFA View Post
Yes the airside connection buses will operate on Christmas Day. Also if you do need to go landside I believe there will be inter-terminal HEX trains.
Thanks! I've done this connection too often. I won't have to go landside; isn't that a double whammy: LHR immig. plus LHR security.
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Old Dec 21, 18, 12:09 pm
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The advice to aj411 upthread will help me as well: DFW-LHR-BRU, arriving in PE, departing in Y, morning connection of 2h 15m next Fri.

Only concern for me is at T5 security screening and not getting Fast Track (me PLT, wife & daughter are GLD). Would pre-booking the Fast Track Security Pass benefit us at this point?
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Old Dec 21, 18, 12:53 pm
  #712  
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Originally Posted by ntamayo View Post
The advice to aj411 upthread will help me as well: DFW-LHR-BRU, arriving in PE, departing in Y, morning connection of 2h 15m next Fri.

Only concern for me is at T5 security screening and not getting Fast Track (me PLT, wife & daughter are GLD). Would pre-booking the Fast Track Security Pass benefit us at this point?
You should be able to make it in 2:15, but it could get pear shaped if security is backed up. If you are wanting to use the lounge facilities at all, paying for it would help give you some extra time.

I think as a PLT / OW Saph - you are entitled to Fast Track Security (others can confirm?). Seems AA site says you are, but I have not been through there on a PY or Y ticket before to test the theory. I don't know if that also applies to Fast Track at immigration.

A side bar thought - You could politely ask the AA crew in J if you (a PLT) could snag a few of the fast track invitations for your connection as it is a little tight. They do hand them out occasionally and if you smile really big

EDIT TO ADD:
https://www.britishairways.com/en-gb...rt/heathrow-t5

See the security drop down menu and the passport control drop down menu. They both list that OWS are entitled to benefits. If your party is all on one ticket, I think they will get the OWS treatment. Especially if you say, "My wife and daughter are traveling with me."

You should be good from what I can read, but that can be confirmed by other FT members with hands on experience.

Last edited by jtav559; Dec 21, 18 at 1:55 pm
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Old Dec 21, 18, 1:40 pm
  #713  
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Hi all,

I scheduled to fly from PHX-MIA-LHR on AA and then British Airways from LHR-BSL. I knows how to get there. I can change from T3 to T5. So I will take inter terminal shuttle bus. It is very near security checkpoints where the terminals shuttle bus is.
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Old Dec 22, 18, 4:15 am
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Originally Posted by jtav559 View Post
EDIT TO ADD:
https://www.britishairways.com/en-gb...rt/heathrow-t5

See the security drop down menu and the passport control drop down menu. They both list that OWS are entitled to benefits. If your party is all on one ticket, I think they will get the OWS treatment. Especially if you say, "My wife and daughter are traveling with me."

You should be good from what I can read, but that can be confirmed by other FT members with hands on experience.
The rule with fast track security is it normally the card holder plus a guest, they will probably let a family though together but this would be bending the rules a bit.
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Old Dec 22, 18, 5:20 am
  #715  
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Originally Posted by N830MH View Post
Hi all,

I scheduled to fly from PHX-MIA-LHR on AA and then British Airways from LHR-BSL. I knows how to get there. I can change from T3 to T5. So I will take inter terminal shuttle bus. It is very near security checkpoints where the terminals shuttle bus is.
Getting from your plane in T3 to the connection bus can involve lots of walking (even with moving conveyors); at times the queue for the bus is long and the busses aren't always running "on schedule". After debussing in T5 there is lots of walking to get to T5 security. The Fast Track lines for T5 security can be long(er) than regular at times. But with all of the above, I've gotten out of T5 security in less than 1 hour and had time to visit a BA Lounge for 30+ minutes, before doing lots of walking (sometimes having to take a train within T5) to my gate.
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Old Dec 23, 18, 9:51 pm
  #716  
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Originally Posted by nrr View Post
Getting from your plane in T3 to the connection bus can involve lots of walking (even with moving conveyors); at times the queue for the bus is long and the busses aren't always running "on schedule". After debussing in T5 there is lots of walking to get to T5 security. The Fast Track lines for T5 security can be long(er) than regular at times. But with all of the above, I've gotten out of T5 security in less than 1 hour and had time to visit a BA Lounge for 30+ minutes, before doing lots of walking (sometimes having to take a train within T5) to my gate.
Actually, I have 3 hours layover. So I can barely makes it. I am connecting the flight to Basel. I know the flight is departed at T5a.
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Old Dec 23, 18, 10:23 pm
  #717  
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Originally Posted by N830MH View Post
Actually, I have 3 hours layover. So I can barely makes it. I am connecting the flight to Basel. I know the flight is departed at T5a.
I've connected for flts. from LHR to ZRH (flying on BA). The gates are not always the same, they post dep. gates 40 minutes before t/o time. Once after arriving at my dep. gate they made a change, hence lots more walking and instead of boarding at the gate the were bussed to the plane.
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Old Dec 24, 18, 12:48 am
  #718  
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Originally Posted by N830MH View Post
Actually, I have 3 hours layover. So I can barely makes it. I am connecting the flight to Basel. I know the flight is departed at T5a.
Short haul can go from any of t5a/b/c. It is probably more likely to go from A but it can go from B or C as well - so you would need a little extra time to go to B/c gates using the transit. Gates are usually posted around an hour before the flight, although if you ask a BA agents when they are checking your bp they should be able to tell you before that what the indicated gate is - albeit there is a small chance it may change prior to it being displayed.
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Old Dec 25, 18, 12:09 pm
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Originally Posted by KARFA View Post
Gates are usually posted around an hour before the flight, although if you ask a BA agents when they are checking your bp they should be able to tell you before that what the indicated gate is - albeit there is a small chance it may change prior to it being displayed.
Long-haul flights do generally get their gates posted about an hour before takeoff, since extra time is needed for document checks, extra screening for flights to the U.S., and for boarding in general. Short-haul flights usually don't get their gates posted until much closer, typically 30-40 minutes before departure. One reason is that LHR makes a lot of profit off shopping, and they figure if people know they won't have a gate for another 45 minutes or so, they will shop.
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Old Dec 25, 18, 2:45 pm
  #720  
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Or spend lots of time in a lounge!
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