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Consolidated "Customs and Immigration at LAX" thread

Consolidated "Customs and Immigration at LAX" thread

Old Nov 22, 2007, 12:19 pm
  #16  
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Any time you set foot in the US you must clear immigration. UA has a station on the lower level of the terminal, so you will clear immigration, exit, and have to re-enter security. But if everything is on time it should take no more than 30 minutes or so.
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Old Nov 22, 2007, 12:23 pm
  #17  
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You're doing a less than 2-hour turn & it's not a MR? What type of meeting can you have that quickly? But to your question...

You will have to clear immigration on UA935 inbound as you're entering the US. UA has its own immigration, so it doesn't take as long as TBIB would. If you're in C or F you should get through pretty quickly. Even if in E you would still be ok. Figure within 15minutes of exiting the plane (assuming C or F) you'd be clearing immigration. Perhaps 30 min if in E.

Once you exit immigration take the escalator upstairs & check-in for your UA934. You won't have to clear immigration but you will have to go through TSA. Figure anywhere from 5-20minutes after you've checked in for your return flight.

Cheers.
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Old Nov 22, 2007, 1:08 pm
  #18  
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Originally Posted by SkiAdcock
You're doing a less than 2-hour turn & it's not a MR? What type of meeting can you have that quickly? But to your question...
The first segment UA 935 is a part of an ongoing trip with numerous stops in the US. It would be too costly for me to change the whole itinerary.

I need to make a quick return to the LHR the very same day because I have a meeting the next day.

You will have to clear immigration on UA935 inbound as you're entering the US. UA has its own immigration, so it doesn't take as long as TBIB would.
Cheers.
I remember going through TBIT last year for LAX-LHR, but when I look at LAX info and UA is not listed in TBIT. Is this a recent change?
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Old Nov 23, 2007, 12:14 pm
  #19  
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If you went through TBIT last year you weren't on UA, unless the flight was really delayed & UA immigration already went home (that happened to me once on UA935). UA has its own immigration.

See my post #17 for timeframes & directions for UA934 after you've cleared. Cheers.

Last edited by SkiAdcock; Nov 23, 2007 at 4:34 pm
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Old Nov 24, 2007, 5:56 pm
  #20  
 
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Originally Posted by dcstudent
Hi all,
I was having trouble deciding to post in the Security thread or this one and went with this one since the Security page is now mostly about bashing the TSA now (not that I mind I don't like them either!)

Anywho, I will be arriving on the late flight from HKG (Cathay) that gets in after 9pm, and am connecting to a domestic AA flight that leaves after 11pm. Should I have cause to be concerned with getting through immigration/customs, then to another terminal and through security?

If it helps I am flying business so I'd get to use any express lines. Thanks!
That CX flight comes in during the last big trans-Pacific push of the night...don't be surprised if there are three other 747s from Asia and an assortment of Mexico flights milling about. The comment about sprinting to immigration is not far off.

FYI, the airlines have gone into their "winter" schedule so the international terminals have changed their open hours accordingly. Some flights may have cleared at satellite terminals during the summer, but the international services may be closed now and the flights diverted to TBIT.
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Old Dec 19, 2007, 8:01 am
  #21  
 
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How long for customs at LAX?

I'm picking someone up at LAX who is coming in from the Netherlands (KLM). Flight arrives mid-afternoon on a weekday. Any idea how long I should allow for them to get through customs?
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Old May 27, 2008, 2:05 am
  #22  
 
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The International Arrivals at LAX Thread

It is 18:30 on Memorial Day, 26 May 2008. My flight, VS 23, arrives from LHR at LAX about 30 min. late. VS 8 departs LAX to LHR also 30 min. late while my ac was slowing down and turning out to a taxiway.

Then within the next 10 minutes, a whole rash of overseas flights suddenly decends upon LAX for arrival. My ac, an A340-600 was on the taxiway when an AA 777-200 arrives, followed by a UA 777, then an LH A340-600, an Air China 747-400 and then an AF 777. These ac were landing on the same runway at a rate of about one ac every 2 minutes or less. Potentially, over 1800 pax were arriving on those ac. When we arrived at the terminal T2, Air China and AF also arrived at T2 the same time. All VS pax arrived at Customs and Immigration the same time as Air China and AF, making for a horrendous check out process of 1000 pax trying to exit T2 Customs/Immigration at the same time. What compounded everyone's misery was the lack of sufficient Customs/Immigration staff to process all the pax. The wait time, at least for me to clear Customs/Immigration was clearly over an hour, where queues were snaking all over the baggage claim area due to limited processing staff.

I am curious regarding LAX international arrivals. Outside of the usual holiday domestic arrivals, I would like to pose some questions to our FTers out there who have experienced a similar phenomena at LAX. Have you been part of a 1000 pax plus international arrival stampede to Customs/Immigration at LAX before, which may have been similar to the one above? If so, what were your experiences like? Which LAX terminals have these phenomena taken place in your experience for international arrivals only? Have you noticed it occuring frequently, and if so, is there a time or times during the day where the above scenario may be more likely than not? Just very curious. I look forward to your reply.
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Old May 27, 2008, 11:30 am
  #23  
 
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It has nothing to do with the holiday...it is always that way.

This is a piece of my http://www.yelp.com/biz/los-angeles-..._desc&start=80 review of LAX with a touch of humor (I am Cheri A).

[International Passenger] If you are arriving at LAX on a international flight and you are unlucky enough to experience immigration and customs in the Bradley Terminal (All foreign carriers arrive here). JUMP UP FROM YOUR SEAT AS SOON AS THE DOORS OPEN ON THE PLANE AND RUN....Run past everyone. Most foreign arrivals come in around the same time and you might end up with only 100 people in front of you in line and not 2,000 people or more.

Last edited by wingless; May 27, 2008 at 11:35 am
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Old May 27, 2008, 11:36 am
  #24  
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International arrivals for non-U.S. citizens/residents seem to be a miserable experience at most U.S. airports these days.

Here's my (limited) experiences this year. UA SYD-LAX clearing at LAX T6/7 - only 6 others from a previous flight in front of us. had to wait about 10 minutes.

My partner arrived at PDX from AMS on Saturday. No other flights in front but she was 3rd in line. Had to wait 20 minutes.

OTOH, HNL (from NRT) was a breeze in January. few souls coming from Asia?
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Old May 28, 2008, 12:53 am
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The OP thanks both wingless and YVR Cockroach for their posts and awaits for more. One observation of mine from Monday's phenomena was that it is one thing to be completely surprised when one walks down a blind concourse to an arrivals hall to see either tons of pax waiting in front of you or almost none at all. Then it is another thing to actually see other international flights arriving on the same runway as yours just did from the window of your aircraft cabin, especially when all those arriving flights after yours are widebodies, before you even exit your ac. In a similar manner that wingless has described, that observation will literally make one jump out of their skins to race to the exit door as soon as it opens and leave the jetway in flames as one tries to beat 2000 other pax to passport control.
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Old May 28, 2008, 1:42 am
  #26  
 
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I went through a phase of clearing into the US in Honolulu last year precisely to avoid LAX arrival. Unfortunately, this year the detour hasn't been priced feasibly.
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Old May 29, 2008, 1:15 am
  #27  
 
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Thank you for supporting the Aloha State regarding this matter. The OP kindly awaits for more posts regarding stampedes and international arrivals at LAX.
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Old May 29, 2008, 9:23 am
  #28  
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UA has its own immigration/customs so usually the waits there aren't too bad. TBIT, however, all bets are off, especially as the OP notes when all the Euro flights arrive approximately at the same time.

One thing about UA though - if a flight (from LHR for example) is really delayed, UA immigrations may have closed rather than stay open & then the UA passengers will get bussed over to TBIT.

Cheers.
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Old May 29, 2008, 9:29 am
  #29  
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Originally Posted by SkiAdcock
UA has its own immigration/customs so usually the waits there aren't too bad. TBIT, however, all bets are off, especially as the OP notes when all the Euro flights arrive approximately at the same time.
Do place a caveat that your experience is good for U.S. citizens and permanent residents only. When my partner and I arrived from SYD, the alien line went all the way tpo the back quickly as only 3 stations were open while 6+ were open for residents (who require much less processing).
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Old May 30, 2008, 8:21 pm
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On my most recent flight back from Asia (Mid-Feb 2008), we arrived around 10:30/11:00 am. I think a few other Asia flights arrived similarly so I grabbed Dad's arm and said, "Let's make a run for it!"

He went along with this and we were feeling pretty smug when we cleared passport control ahead of a huge crowd that formed behind us.

Unfortunately, there was a baggage issue that then resulted in multiple flights subsequently clearing passport control and convening in the rather tight carousel area...so much for the best laid plans...sigh...

i must say, the best immigration/customs experience in US (having cleared in LAX, HNL, ORD and IAD in recent memory) is actually in YVR
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