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Must fly from San Diego to Frankfurt in June. What airlines will be really flying?

Must fly from San Diego to Frankfurt in June. What airlines will be really flying?

Old May 22, 20, 2:22 pm
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Must fly from San Diego to Frankfurt in June. What airlines will be really flying?

I'm a long time flyertalk reader and have always found the posts here helpful. But I finally registered today as I have a more specific question. Thank you!

I have to get from San Diego, California USA to Frankfurt Germany in June. I have a US passport and the reason is a medical issue, and I have medical clearance to enter Germany.

I did have direct flights on Lufthansa from San Diego (SAN) to Frankfurt (FRA)... but these have been cancelled.
I'm looking and I do see flights listed, with one stop through other cities on American and United.
HOWEVER, when I checked the flight history, I see the legs to FRA are not currently being flown! So I would be buying a ticket hoping the airline restarts flights...

Does anyone have any information on what airlines will start flying from the USA to Frankfurt first? And when?
I searched for news on the carriers, but nothing solid on what specific flights are starting.
I do have to go, and I'd really rather avoid a multistop flight.
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Old May 22, 20, 3:53 pm
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vintageprop Welcome to FT
Originally Posted by vintageprop View Post
I'm a long time flyertalk reader and have always found the posts here helpful. But I finally registered today as I have a more specific question. Thank you!

I have to get from San Diego, California USA to Frankfurt Germany in June. I have a US passport and the reason is a medical issue, and I have medical clearance to enter Germany.

I did have direct flights on Lufthansa from San Diego (SAN) to Frankfurt (FRA)... but these have been cancelled.
I'm looking and I do see flights listed, with one stop through other cities on American and United.
HOWEVER, when I checked the flight history, I see the legs to FRA are not currently being flown! So I would be buying a ticket hoping the airline restarts flights...

Does anyone have any information on what airlines will start flying from the USA to Frankfurt first? And when?
I searched for news on the carriers, but nothing solid on what specific flights are starting.
I do have to go, and I'd really rather avoid a multistop flight.
June is only a week and a bit away. Do you want to be in Germany early or late June? That could make a difference
Realistically anywhere from USA to Germany (or EU) with local transport as needed may the best you will get. A non stop SAN-FRA flight is being optimistic.
Routes - Great Circle Mapper
EU a train ride away from FRA, but may have transit issues Great Circle Mapper
All the best for your medical treatment

Edit
FRA arrivals give an indication of who is flying where. May/will change day to day
ORD (LH) and IAD (UA) are options to FRA
https://www.airport-fra.com/frankfurt-arrivals
https://www.flightstats.com/v2/fligh...r/arrivals/FRA

Last edited by Mwenenzi; May 22, 20 at 4:14 pm
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Old May 22, 20, 4:26 pm
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Welcome to FlyerTalk, vintageprop!

Lufthansa's ORD-FRA service has been operating regularly and will almost certainly continue during June.

LH431

16:00 Chicago - O'Hare International, IL (ORD) , Terminal 1
07:20 +1 day Frankfurt/Main International Airport (FRA) , Terminal 1

Operated by: "Lufthansa"
Boeing 747-8I

Duration: 08 h 20 min
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Old May 22, 20, 4:47 pm
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Thanks guys, good info.
As I am dealing with a health issue that makes travel a bit troublesome, and the "virus in the air", I'm really looking for an "easy" trip with no more than 1 connection and a total flight time that doesn't take too long.

On the flight out of ORD, Lufthansa didn't offer me a reasonable connection to get there. (It might exist, but...)
I also found UA is flying regularly out of EWR, but again, I couldn't find a reasonable connection way to get there.

I ended up booking on American and I'll be hoping they really start flying the route. If not, I'll have to try and scramble.

My chosen flights leave on June 14.
AA2219 SAN to DFW (This appears to actually fly on some days in the last week, and there are alternates)
AA70 DFW to FRA (This appears to be a "new" flight and hasn't currently been flying. I'm just going to hope.)

The return is the reverse with AA71 and AA2758.

Frankly, the record is NOT good, but at least it was buyable.

Last edited by vintageprop; May 22, 20 at 4:55 pm
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Old May 22, 20, 5:04 pm
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I believe that chances for a direct nonstop flight on SAN-FRA route on any airline in June is next to nil, but certainly it should be possible to travel that route with one stop. And I think it is way safer when the routing is with a stop in USA rather than Europe since despite how tall pile of documents verifying that you are allowed to enter Germany you can provide, elsewhere in Europe you may still have trouble to prove that this is essential travel and you are going to get allowed to entry despite that generally foreign (and especially non-EU) citizens are not allowed to enter.

Assuming you have not yet requested refund from your ticket on the cancelled nonstop route, I believe you could contact Lufthansa and ask for a reroute via airport they actually fly (at least ORD) with a connecting flight on their US partner UA.
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Old May 22, 20, 5:12 pm
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I just rechecked, and there is no way I could find to get through ORD without multiple stops or a overnight layover. So that's out.
I have already requested my refund from Lufthansa... supposedly that will happen.
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Old May 22, 20, 5:26 pm
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Another possibility. Lufthansa is starting LAX-MUC in June.

LH453
13:30 Los Angeles International, CA (LAX) , Terminal B
09:45 +1 day Munich - Franz Josef Strauss (MUC) , Terminal 2
Operated by: "Lufthansa"
Airbus Industrie A350-900
Duration: 11 h 15 min
Layover: Munich - Franz Josef Strauss (MUC), 00 h 45 min

LH103
10:30 +1 day Munich - Franz Josef Strauss (MUC) , Terminal 2
11:30 +1 day Frankfurt/Main International Airport (FRA) , Terminal 1
Operated by: "Lufthansa"
Airbus A320neo
Duration: 01 h 00 min
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Old May 22, 20, 5:29 pm
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Another option with flights that appear to be operating today.

Only downside is the relatively short connection time. (one would have missed their connection if they were flying that itinerary today, in fact )

San Diego (SAN) to Washington (IAD) Sun, Jun 14
United 546
Dep: 8:45 am
Arr: 4:39 pm
4h 54m

Layover in IAD
0h 56m

Washington (IAD) to Frankfurt (FRA) Sun, Jun 14
United 989
Dep: 5:35 pm
Arr: 7:20 am
7h 45m
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Old May 23, 20, 3:53 am
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Your best choice is to go to LAX from where you can fly on LH or AF (via CDG). As said before, there is 0 chance to have a non-stop SAN-Germany in June (and even later, chances are slim IMO).
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Old May 23, 20, 10:34 am
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Originally Posted by Goldorak View Post
Your best choice is to go to LAX from where you can fly on LH or AF (via CDG). As said before, there is 0 chance to have a non-stop SAN-Germany in June (and even later, chances are slim IMO).
I'd also avoid AF as you don't want to risk routing through a third country if this can by avoided.

Beyond this, my instinct would be to book through UA (ticket stock---absolutely do not use an OLTA for this) using UA marketed and operated flights so that a single airline is responsible for any required rebooking. Given that FRA is a big *A hub, you want to use *A flights and the only question in my mind is whether my instinct is right about relying on UA versus whether LH would be better for schedule changes and cancellations plus IROPs. With LH, you have both DOT and EC261 regulations to "protect" you, but EU carriers had been giving those two year certs rather than genuine refunds, although AFAICT the EU regulations have said that this isn't acceptable. [Who knows whether Germany will enforce it and how easy or hard LH will be on this.]
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Old May 23, 20, 2:10 pm
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Originally Posted by econ View Post
Another option with flights that appear to be operating today.

Only downside is the relatively short connection time. (one would have missed their connection if they were flying that itinerary today, in fact )

San Diego (SAN) to Washington (IAD) Sun, Jun 14
United 546
Dep: 8:45 am
Arr: 4:39 pm
4h 54m

Layover in IAD
0h 56m

Washington (IAD) to Frankfurt (FRA) Sun, Jun 14
United 989
Dep: 5:35 pm
Arr: 7:20 am
7h 45m
Yeah, an hour for that transfer would be a foolish choice for me, IMO.

Originally Posted by MSPeconomist View Post
I'd also avoid AF as you don't want to risk routing through a third country if this can by avoided.

Beyond this, my instinct would be to book through UA (ticket stock---absolutely do not use an OLTA for this) using UA marketed and operated flights so that a single airline is responsible for any required rebooking. Given that FRA is a big *A hub, you want to use *A flights and the only question in my mind is whether my instinct is right about relying on UA versus whether LH would be better for schedule changes and cancellations plus IROPs. With LH, you have both DOT and EC261 regulations to "protect" you, but EU carriers had been giving those two year certs rather than genuine refunds, although AFAICT the EU regulations have said that this isn't acceptable. [Who knows whether Germany will enforce it and how easy or hard LH will be on this.]
Yup, I'm not willing to connect outside the USA. And I don't want to take trains or planes around Germany... While I am a somewhat experienced traveler, I will be under enough stress already negotiating any connection difficulties (remember I'm traveling under a medical exemption to get into Germany).
To me it looks like the best option are the flights I ended up picking on AA, mentioned a couple posts up... IF they actually fly. If they don't, I'll scramble and perhaps delay my trip a week to make that happen.
The alternatives I'm seeing involve multiple airlines to make the connections work (for me that means at least a 2.0 hour and less than 5 hour connection). Multiple airlines will mean I have to present my medical clearance at the connecting airport, which is a bit risky as sometimes they attempt to call Germany for approval.
But If I can't get there with those flights, I'll refund those tickets and book somehow, tolerating a longer layover if required.

No OLTA?... does that mean online ticket agent or something? I'm guessing you mean not to use a 3rd parting booking website and to book directly with the airline. Absolutely! (always do.)
IROPs? I don't know that one... is there a flyertalk acronym page? ;-)

On refunds: Lufthansa has claimed they will refund my cancelled direct flights, no problem, except it will take a while (weeks they said). If it is a problem, I trust American Express to fix it. ;-)

Last edited by NewbieRunner; May 24, 20 at 6:35 am Reason: Merge consecutive posts by same poster
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Old May 23, 20, 8:43 pm
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is there a flyertalk acronym page? ;-)
The Glossary link at the bottom of forum pages.
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Old May 24, 20, 2:55 am
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Not to add to your stress, but I assume your medical clearance was issued by a German authority, correct? If you are permitted to board the flight to Germany, you will still need to present yourself to the Bundespolizei to clear immigration formalities. If you have been issued with a clearance to enter Germany from a competent German authority (for example the embassy, your German doctor stressing the importance of the procedure which was booked before Covid-19, etc) then you will be ok. I think a note from your US doctor, on the other hand, would not be sufficient reason to let you enter. I would call the Bundespolizei and inform myself how this is likely to play out. Good luck!
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Old May 24, 20, 5:09 am
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Unless you are a German resident or citizen, or have some sort of waiver, not sure your plans are going to work out.
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Old May 24, 20, 5:59 am
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And a note to the OP: you are initially limited to five posts a day so you may be able to answer by editing a previous post.
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