FLL to GCM Connection Time

Old Jul 17, 18, 8:29 am
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FLL to GCM Connection Time

Planning a trip to Grand Cayman, we fly from SFO. Best price & quickest trip is by taking Jet Blue nonstop redeye, arrive FLL at 8:00 a.m. Then connect to WN's 11:45 a.m. flight to GCM. To me this seems like enough time, assuming no significant SFO-FLL flight delay. I know the airlines are in different terminals. But wanted to get the opinion of those who are familiar with FLL (I am not). This would be on a Thursday in October. Trying to avoid an earlier flight, spending the night in FLL, connect the next morning.
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Old Jul 17, 18, 9:37 am
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It should be more than enough.
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Old Jul 18, 18, 9:01 am
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Thank you, I was just being too cautious I suppose. Later read this flight has something like a 48% on time rating, with 45 minute delay. Even with that, we should have plenty of time to connect. Very happy SFO to Grand Cayman via B6 nonstop and then connect to WN = $200 pp 1-way.
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Old Jul 29, 18, 8:07 pm
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Originally Posted by Steph58 View Post
Planning a trip to Grand Cayman, we fly from SFO. Best price & quickest trip is by taking Jet Blue nonstop redeye, arrive FLL at 8:00 a.m. Then connect to WN's 11:45 a.m. flight to GCM. To me this seems like enough time, assuming no significant SFO-FLL flight delay. I know the airlines are in different terminals. But wanted to get the opinion of those who are familiar with FLL (I am not). This would be on a Thursday in October. Trying to avoid an earlier flight, spending the night in FLL, connect the next morning.
Are you back from Grand Cayman, I am going in October and staying at the Holiday Inn, would like a review and if a car is needed? Thank you
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Old Jul 30, 18, 7:32 am
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Originally Posted by mrlasssen View Post


Are you back from Grand Cayman, I am going in October and staying at the Holiday Inn, would like a review and if a car is needed? Thank you
No, as I mentioned my trip is in October. I have booked the Kimpton for the first half and the HI Resort for the second half. On the fence about the HI after reading many mixed reviews. One thing I know is that there is no beach there, itís usually windy, and having a rental car is necessary. I was able to get their highest category using 25K points (ocean view suite with kitchen). Iíve also read they are refurbishing it, no idea when that will be completed. So Iím undecided if I should cancel and book something else. Kimpton is too pricey/70K points for my entire stay. Iím thinking the Marriott may have an appealing promo closer to the date, or the price of a condo for 2 will come down since itís not high season. We will be renting a car.
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Old Jul 30, 18, 10:49 am
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So long as you understand that this is not a connection because it is on separate tickets, only you can determine your risk tolerance. Given that WN's service is less than daily, if you no show, you will not only likely need to purchase new tickets, but will also have to wait for a few days or make your way to MIA and purchase new tickets on that carrier.

On separate tickets, I would, unless it simply cannot be done, fly in the night before, spend the night and then proceed in the AM.
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Old Jul 31, 18, 8:43 am
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Thank you Often1. I get what you're say and know I am taking a risk. Tickets are already purchased. What I could do is also purchase the WN FLL-GCM tickets the following day in case for whatever reason we don't make the same day connection. Luckily WN does have a next day flight, fare is low right now. Having to get ourselves from FLL to MIA and purchase same day tickets, in the event we miss the WN flight, would not be a pleasant start to a vacation! If we end up not needing the next day WN tickets, I can always cancel and get a WN credit. Or better yet purchase with WN points and get the points refunded. I believe a last minute cancel with WN allows me $ credit/refunded points. Murphy's law if I do use the safety net of an extra set of WN tickets next day, I won't need them.
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Old Aug 14, 18, 1:23 pm
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Originally Posted by mrlasssen View Post


Are you back from Grand Cayman, I am going in October and staying at the Holiday Inn, would like a review and if a car is needed? Thank you
Be careful renting a car in GC. The insurance surcharges are outrageous and we were informed that our auto policy would not cover us on GC. I never got to the bottom of that, but just a word of caution. The bus system is easy to utilize and very cheap. A $2.50 bus ride will get you where a $50 cab ride will take you. We also were able to privately hire several of our van/bus drivers for private trips to take us across the island. GCM is a beautiful island, you really do have to get out to see all of it ! Just do not plan to rely on a taxi to get you there. I stayed in a beautiful villa out at Conch Point- Villas Pappagallo found on VRBO, the HI was under renovations while we were there and we did not visit it. The scuba diving there was exceptional, if you are so inclined.
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Old Aug 14, 18, 10:09 pm
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Originally Posted by Steph58 View Post


No, as I mentioned my trip is in October. I have booked the Kimpton for the first half and the HI Resort for the second half. On the fence about the HI after reading many mixed reviews. One thing I know is that there is no beach there, itís usually windy, and having a rental car is necessary. I was able to get their highest category using 25K points (ocean view suite with kitchen). Iíve also read they are refurbishing it, no idea when that will be completed. So Iím undecided if I should cancel and book something else. Kimpton is too pricey/70K points for my entire stay. Iím thinking the Marriott may have an appealing promo closer to the date, or the price of a condo for 2 will come down since itís not high season. We will be renting a car.
We are traveling there in Oct. also, staying at Kimpton for first night then on to IHG. We are renting a car also.
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Old Oct 10, 18, 3:44 am
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Hurricane Michael

Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
So long as you understand that this is not a connection because it is on separate tickets, only you can determine your risk tolerance. Given that WN's service is less than daily, if you no show, you will not only likely need to purchase new tickets, but will also have to wait for a few days or make your way to MIA and purchase new tickets on that carrier.

On separate tickets, I would, unless it simply cannot be done, fly in the night before, spend the night and then proceed in the AM.
Risk tolerance, oh boy could I have picked a more risky date!! Leaving late tonight for FLL. I am optimistic, that's all I can say at this point. So far B6 flights to/from SFO-FLL show they have been on time. Really glad I went ahead and purchased a second set of cheap WN tickets for the following day just in case.
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Old Oct 10, 18, 3:59 am
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Looks like FLL missed the brunt so you should be fine, fingers crossed. Let us know how you make out, as I was looking at something similar for Belize.

Good luck.
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Old Oct 20, 18, 1:42 pm
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Didn't Go as Planned (Skip to Last paragraph for Tips)

Watched all flights for a few days prior--no weather issue--all on time. Arrive at SFO, we board on time, taxi out 11:30p, flight 100% full, lots of kids. I'm congratulating myself on the plan. Then the plane stops, pilot announces backup computer issues, mechanics coming to fix. Tick tock, end up sitting for 3.5 hours on tarmac & back at gate. They give up, everybody off we need to find another plane & crew. Resigned myself that the 3.75 hour layover for connection in FLL is history. I knew next SFO-FLL flight is 9:30a, I call since there's a line a mile long for the gate agent. Approaching 3 a.m. They say I can get on the 9:30a flight, again congratulate myself and also for having the foresight to have purchased the same WN FLL-GCM flight for the following day as a "just in case". Receive B6 text that original flight is rescheduled for 9:00 a.m. Phone agent tells me to go downstairs to the check-in desk and have them finalize ticket (avoid long line at gate). MrSteph58 needs to go outside for a smoke. Off we go. Another passenger with twin toddlers is told area to change diapers is outside of security downstairs. I arrive at B6 check-in and see no one, a ghost town, but a sign that says they open at 7 a.m. It's approx 3:45a.

Turn around to go back to gate and discover all TSA security is closed until 4:30 a.m. In pops new B6 text that original flight has now been rescheduled for 4:45 a.m., doors close 4:30a. Mother with toddlers begs TSA to open a little early; begs B6 on the phone to hold the plane until we can get through security. No can do. Another passenger joins us, we're first in TSA line. Arrive at the gate 4:45a, they are waiting for us. Settle in, middle seat is now empty. Off we go but announcement that we will be stopping in Long Beach for fuel and a crew change. So our 5.5 hour redeye flight to FLL now arrives 13 hours later, gray, raining, sauna-like. Cancel Kimpton 1st night, go to FLL Crowne Plaza. Next day uneventful, arrive on WN FLL-GCM in 1 hour.

I did learn a few things that could be helpful to others, had things gone as planned. WN will not issue boarding passes in advance on international flights. You must show your passport at the airport first (actually I guess this is true for any airline). Which means upon arrival at FLL you'll need to take your luggage from wherever you land, leave the secure area, and go find the WN ticketing area. WN had to input all of our return info (maybe because it was on AA not WN, I don't know). It took forever. The lines were LONG. FLL was a zoo both on Thursday and Friday. Massive number of travelers. Luckily I had A list, otherwise, the agent said there's a WN international desk "downstairs" where the line should be shorter. Then back through security (TSA Precheck thankfully) to get to your WN gate. I would say allow a minimum of 3 hours layover time.

The bright side--we received $250 flight credits from B6 for the delay (original ticket cost $145). B6 would not pay for the overnight FLL hotel; maybe I should check with my cc company. They gave us a couple bags of chips on that 11 hour saga. Our luggage, which had been gate checked SFO-FLL, thankfully arrived with us. OK, you can say it--this may have been a hair-brained idea to save some $. You see I use the word "may", can't say for sure if I'd try it again or not.
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Old Oct 21, 18, 6:33 am
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Thanks for the update and the tips!
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