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-   -   An hour and 8 minute connection at JFK on Thanksgiving Day (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/delta-air-lines-skymiles/1994506-hour-8-minute-connection-jfk-thanksgiving-day.html)

david55 Nov 7, 19 2:20 pm

An hour and 8 minute connection at JFK on Thanksgiving Day
 
I gave my sister a gift of a trip to Milan using my miles. She will be leaving from CLE on Thanksgiving Day on Delta # 5415 at 2:51 with an arrival at JFK of 4:38. Her Delta flight #172 to Milan leaves at 5:46PM. We are now wondering about the sanity of this connection in winter on Thanksgiving. Although there are not any earlier Delta flights to JFK that day...there are to LaGuardia and she would be willing to try and change the outbound from Cleveland and then transfer over to JFK. Carry-on only.

Her trip is short.... 5 days......so a missed connection could really impact her vacation.

Any thoughts?

MSPeconomist Nov 7, 19 2:34 pm

This looks like a T2 to T4 D-I connection, so check MCT to make sure it's legal. [I suspect it is.] Check aircraft type (RJ from the flight number) and watch flight status or flight aware to see whether it tends to use a real gate or not, and also whether it tends to be on time.

My best guess is that it is legal and also perfectly fine in that airports in the USA are likely to be empty on Turkey Day itself, especially in the afternoon. I'd try to get her an aisle seat in the front of the aircraft for the domestic connecting flight and tell her what to expect at JFK regarding procedures (DL JFK jitney AIRSIDE bus from T2 to T4, check MXP gate to know which T4 stop to use), stressing that she should NOT exit the security area.

Check rebooking options and give her a Plan B list of flight numbers and times. There should be an AZ nonstop leaving later in the evening, AZ (and maybe DL) to FCO followed by an AZ connection to either Milan airport, probably DL/KLM through AMS or DL/AF through CDG, but note that AZ or AF departures from JFK would require a landside transfer to T1 using the little train. Another option might be DL or VS to LHR, then AZ to MXP but this would require changing terminals at LHR (and probably entering the UK too).

BTW, nice gift to sister!

The Situation Nov 7, 19 2:40 pm

I would say her current itinerary is the best option. Use the jitney as noted above if there is a transfer needed between T-2 and T-4. I have completed that transfer successfully with much shorter connection times. Flight schedules on Thanksgiving are very light and flights will likely arrive very early. Even with some weather, they will probably be on time. An LGA to JFK transfer is probably riskier if there is weather in NYC.

Often1 Nov 7, 19 3:03 pm

DL sells the 1:06 connection, so it is within MCT. However, I see this as a risky connection because any reasonable delay will cause her to misconnect. Practically, that turns into a significantly lengthier and less pleasant journey or a one-day delay at JFK. Thus, it is the consequences of a misconnect rather than the likelihood of a misconnect which ought to matter.

While I am no fan of 5-hour connections, if at all possible to move (or SDC) to the earlier flight, I would do that and even consider treating her to the SC (which will be close to empty on that day).

Thanksgiving won't really matter here, but the fact is that it is one of the lightest travel days of the year. The day before or Sunday after are a different story.

flyerCO Nov 7, 19 3:05 pm


Originally Posted by MSPeconomist (Post 31712517)
This looks like a T2 to T4 D-I connection, so check MCT to make sure it's legal. [I suspect it is.] Check aircraft type (RJ from the flight number) and watch flight status or flight aware to see whether it tends to use a real gate or not, and also whether it tends to be on time.

My best guess is that it is legal and also perfectly fine in that airports in the USA are likely to be empty on Turkey Day itself, especially in the afternoon. I'd try to get her an aisle seat in the front of the aircraft for the domestic connecting flight and tell her what to expect at JFK regarding procedures (DL JFK jitney AIRSIDE bus from T2 to T4, check MXP gate to know which T4 stop to use), stressing that she should NOT exit the security area.

Check rebooking options and give her a Plan B list of flight numbers and times. There should be an AZ nonstop leaving later in the evening, AZ (and maybe DL) to FCO followed by an AZ connection to either Milan airport, probably DL/KLM through AMS or DL/AF through CDG, but note that AZ or AF departures from JFK would require a landside transfer to T1 using the little train. Another option might be DL or VS to LHR, then AZ to MXP but this would require changing terminals at LHR (and probably entering the UK too).

BTW, nice gift to sister!

RJs normally land at far end of T4. They haven't normally landed at T2 since the T4 extension opened. Thus will likely be T4 to T4. AZ nonstop (if offered that day) would be best backup. After that DL/AZ to FCO and AZ onward. AF/KL would be next best and VS/LHR last. (No need to enter UK, just use connection bus between terminals)

Agree airport will be nearly empty on Thanksgiving day.

MSPeconomist Nov 7, 19 3:06 pm


Originally Posted by Often1 (Post 31712603)
DL sells the 1:06 connection, so it is within MCT. However, I see this as a risky connection because any reasonable delay will cause her to misconnect. Practically, that turns into a significantly lengthier and less pleasant journey or a one-day delay at JFK. Thus, it is the consequences of a misconnect rather than the likelihood of a misconnect which ought to matter.

While I am no fan of 5-hour connections, if at all possible to move (or SDC) to the earlier flight, I would do that and even consider treating her to the SC (which will be close to empty on that day).

Thanksgiving won't really matter here, but the fact is that it is one of the lightest travel days of the year. The day before or Sunday after are a different story.

Assuming it's one ticket/itinerary (and I certainly hope it is), you can't SDC before international flights.

david55 Nov 7, 19 3:32 pm

What is SDC?

Looking at today's flights as an example the CLE flight arrives at a B gate and the Milan flight departs at a B gate. I assume that is the same terminal?

flyerCO Nov 7, 19 3:56 pm


Originally Posted by david55 (Post 31712690)
What is SDC?

Looking at today's flights as an example the CLE flight arrives at a B gate and the Milan flight departs at a B gate. I assume that is the same terminal?

Same Day Change. Not applicable for international reservations except once all international flights have been flown.

Mr. Tickets Nov 7, 19 4:08 pm

You must also look at the constant wind/weather waivers that happen in the NY area all year long. They only get worse in the Winter. Airport congestion will not likely be a
problem, but weather is not terribly predictable.

ATOBTTR Nov 7, 19 4:39 pm


Originally Posted by david55 (Post 31712472)
I gave my sister a gift of a trip to Milan using my miles. She will be leaving from CLE on Thanksgiving Day on Delta # 5415 at 2:51 with an arrival at JFK of 4:38. Her Delta flight #172 to Milan leaves at 5:46PM. We are now wondering about the sanity of this connection in winter on Thanksgiving. Although there are not any earlier Delta flights to JFK that day...there are to LaGuardia and she would be willing to try and change the outbound from Cleveland and then transfer over to JFK. Carry-on only.

Her trip is short.... 5 days......so a missed connection could really impact her vacation.

Any thoughts?

Unless there was a schedule change, she's stuck with the connection. 1:06 will likely be fine if things run on time and of course DL pads its schedules but JFK is always a crap shoot especially if winter weather hits. In IROPS though, knowledge is power and speed is key as alternate options disappear. Either she (or you since you may be more likely to know what to look for) should have a long list of alternate options, both in CLE and once in JFK. If she is delayed even before departing for JFK, she could look to be re-routed from CLE via DTW or ATL and then AMS or CDG to Milan or at least be protected on an CLE-JFK-AMS/CDG/etc-Milan itinerary. If at JFK already, look to be rerouted through CDG, AMS, or FCO. If you have DL status (your profile doesn't say), unless she can get to an agent right away at the airport, I would recommend possibly having her let you know and have you call DL and then 3-way her into the call to get through to an agent as quickly as possible.

ETA: Also keep in mind that if weather is predicted to impact JFK the day of operations, a weather waiver may be issued a day or two before. Tell her to keep an eye out and check frequently for weather waivers and call and ask to be re-routed on one of the above options.

bennos Nov 7, 19 6:06 pm


Originally Posted by david55 (Post 31712690)
Looking at today's flights as an example the CLE flight arrives at a B gate and the Milan flight departs at a B gate. I assume that is the same terminal?

Yes, it's about a 5 minute walk from the high B gates where the RJs arrive to the mid B gates where the widebodies board. This will be an easy connection if everything is on time. Obviously if weather or mechanical issues happen then all bets are off, but that could also screw up a 5 hour connection. I would keep this as the itinerary, and follow ATOBTTR's suggestions if it looks like a misconnect might happen.



FlyDeltaConnection Nov 7, 19 6:19 pm

Unless there is a crew/mechanical problem which are always unpredictable, the connection time is fine. Only problem might be the weather which is always unpredictable in NYC, but if the inbound is late the outbound could be late as well.

xliioper Nov 7, 19 6:55 pm

While there can be "winter" weather on T'day, it's not actually winter yet and your odds of experiencing it are quite a bit lower than late December when it truly is winter. As already noted, T'day is a very light travel day which is benefit, not a detraction.

rylan Nov 8, 19 7:12 am

I wouldn't be too worried about that connection. It'll be most likely, as others mentioned, from the end of T4 (b gates) and she'll have to walk to the middle so not bad. Its a smaller plane from CLE which also means faster to get off.

Just watch weather to make sure there are no issues with that when you get close to departure day.

nystateofmind Nov 8, 19 7:23 am

You likely won’t have an issue in terms of traffic as there are fewer flights on Thanksgiving. The bigger issue is that with an RJ you will be gate checking larger roll aboard pieces. It is hit or miss the wait times for those. I would suggest avoiding carrying aboard anything larger than a laptop bag so that way you can just get off the plane and get to the next gate as expeditiously as possible.


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