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CDG1 departures to US on UA no fun at all

CDG1 departures to US on UA no fun at all

Old Apr 15, 09, 11:03 am
  #1  
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CDG1 departures to US on UA no fun at all

Word to the wise if you haven't been through lately...

1) Line to check-in. I felt truly blessed to be a 1K. For others, it looked like 30 minutes, at least.
2) 20 Questions.
3) Ticket/passport checked at ski -jump people mover crossing to satellite.
4) 20 minute line for everyone for passport control.
[OK, time-out in the RCC]
5) 45 minute wait at boarding security for a US Airways 767 and our full UA 777 to go through one baggage and human x-ray machine, laptops out, shoes off, coat off or sweater off if that's what your outer garment is, plus language problems, inexpert flyers and the machines hitting on every several passengers. One (1) eye of the needle. A USAir flight attendant came out from her plane, and was yelling because of the delay that it was causing her flight.
6) 20 minute line at US Immigration on arrival at IAD. (Last month it was an hour for a morning arrival, so this stage was a blessing, relatively.) Questions. "Welcome home."
7) Retrieve bag if it had been checked in at CDG.
8) Resubmit bag if connecting.
9) 2 minute line at Customs. "Nothing." Cool.
10) 15 minutes in line at TSA. Laptops out, shoes and jackets etc. off, two tracks this time. No dance.
11) Bag was searched, shuffled, stickered "Inspected".
(Did I forget a step?)

It's really about the boarding security for UA flights at CDG, and the redundancy.


Last edited by Firewind; Apr 15, 09 at 11:10 am
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Old Apr 15, 09, 11:07 am
  #2  
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I doubt many will disagree... worst major airport in Europe.
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Old Apr 15, 09, 11:20 am
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I fly in/out of CDG a lot. Almost every single time I look over to those American departures with real pity. Flying intra-Europe as an EU citizen is a completely different experience.

T1 isn't my favourite experience, but there are worse in the world.

Now if I were an American flying to the US from CDG, I think that my experience and opinion would differ completely. I recently experienced UA FRA to USA and that too was very different than my usual FRA long haul experiences.

Sorry for all of you - it really does seem to suck, and I do send you a sympathetic glance when I do pass your long lines!
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Old Apr 15, 09, 11:26 am
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I will be flying out of CDG for my first time in June. Flying into LHR and then flying out of CDG-ORD. I'm guessing the RCC is before security, is there a better club post-security that a 1P would be able to get access to? It seems like I should budget some time to get through security and boarding.
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Old Apr 15, 09, 11:41 am
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Worst airport ever. It should be demolished and rebuilt. Needs to enter the 21st century.

On the other hand, i've had luck with the RCC. As a 1P connecting flights to non *alliance flights they've given me access. They are very friendly and cordial, IAD RCC and LH Lounge staff could learn a thing or two from the pleasant CDG RCC staff.

In fact, i've had luck at other star alliance lounge's at CDG that i've had no business being in... :-)
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Old Apr 15, 09, 12:52 pm
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I like the CDG RCC, though it gets a little cozy. I hesitated a step in approaching it as there's the nearby "Star Alliance" lounge. But since they're so close, I didn't want to face an attitude if I tried to go outside the box. My favorite Star Alliance one at CDG is Air Canada's. In fact, for a variety of reasons now, I believe my next freebie to CDG will be on AC.
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Old Apr 15, 09, 1:00 pm
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Slight OT, but which is better for a departure back to the states on UA... LHR or CDG?
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Old Apr 15, 09, 1:04 pm
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Originally Posted by mlx52 View Post
I will be flying out of CDG for my first time in June. Flying into LHR and then flying out of CDG-ORD.
I'm doing the same thing except doing CDG-IAD-connection on the return.

Just the scenario as in the OP. I had no idea it would be so lousy.
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Old Apr 15, 09, 1:47 pm
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Originally Posted by 100% Green View Post
Worst airport ever. It should be demolished and rebuilt. Needs to enter the 21st century.
The AF terminal (T3) is AOK, but you're 100% on in terms of T1.

Will
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Old Apr 15, 09, 1:58 pm
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Originally Posted by warreng24 View Post
Slight OT, but which is better for a departure back to the states on UA... LHR or CDG?
My vote would be LHR, esp at the profiling stage (and esp if you aren't a white US Citizen.) Britain, being the most diverse country in Europe, tends to frown on racial/ethnic/national-origin/citizenship profiling at airports that countries like France and Italy accept (and embrace?).

One of the primary reasons I refuse to fly a US airline from Europe is because of the profiling part of the check-in process. When you fly an EU airline, there is absolutely none of that crap. It is like flying domestic, except you show your passport a couple of times. (Sometimes it is almost easier than flying domestic) It is sort of ironic (given our focus on equality in the US) that all are passengers not equal for the purposes of US airline check-in in Europe, but are for the purposes of EU airline check-in.

I once flew another (not UA) US airline from CDG to JFK after getting bumped from an AF flight. As a non-white US Citizen, I was given the third degree. "Why are you in France? Why are you going to the US? What do you do in the US? How long have you lived in New York? What do you do at work? Who bought your ticket?" I answered their questions, needing to get home, but in my mind I was thinking "It's none of your business, and next time I'm flying Swiss, LH or BA." I had to produce all sorts of identification (credit cards, checkbook, etc., and they even wanted to look at my ID card from work). All of these materials were taken to some back room, and I was kept waiting for a full 20 minutes before they let me check-in.

Last edited by AGSF; Apr 15, 09 at 2:05 pm
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Old Apr 15, 09, 2:16 pm
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One of the primary reasons I refuse to fly a US airline from Europe is because of the profiling part of the check-in process.

Ever flew from TLV?
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Old Apr 15, 09, 2:16 pm
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Originally Posted by mlx52 View Post
I will be flying out of CDG for my first time in June. Flying into LHR and then flying out of CDG-ORD. I'm guessing the RCC is before security, is there a better club post-security that a 1P would be able to get access to? It seems like I should budget some time to get through security and boarding.
I believe post security there is nothing but chairs and a bathroom. There may be a small food kiosk and I think a Play Station game terminal but that is about it.

Last time I flew through that terminal, I was on BE to MAN and happened to be there at the tail end of delayed US Airways flight to PHL. Even though most of the boarding had finished for US they were still waiting for people to finish the x-ray process and kept paging them! It was a very slow go.
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Old Apr 15, 09, 2:50 pm
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Nobody understands. This is all a scheme in order to screw over the Americans. Once you realize that and everyone stops going there, they will be happy. Until then, we need to put up with their rudeness, slow moving lines, 400 questions and walking around in circles trying to figure out what the correct exit is.
Only when US based airlines stop flying there will T1 be demolished, the lines will get shorter and they will all have a smile on there faces.

PS - no one mentioned the forty five minute long bus ride to go from T1 to a conneting flight at another terminal. Total distance - less than a mile.
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Old Apr 15, 09, 2:50 pm
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Originally Posted by tgsh2006 View Post
One of the primary reasons I refuse to fly a US airline from Europe is because of the profiling part of the check-in process.

Ever flew from TLV?
No, and if I do, I will fly a European airline. I expect there would be some profiling, but not nearly as much as on El Al, or a US carrier.

I don't like to be profiled -- it is humiliating, stressful, and time-consuming -- and I am not profiled when I fly EU airlines from Europe. Therefore given the choice, I go with no profiling.
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Old Apr 15, 09, 2:57 pm
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So it's only UA and US that share some wretched little corner of T1?
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