Air China PEK International-International Transfer

Old Jun 27, 13, 12:07 pm
  #1  
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Air China PEK International-International Transfer

I'm wondering how rushed I'll be with a 1 hour 40 min connection in PEK between two international Air China flights (YVR - PEK - BKK).

SEA - YVR - PEK - BKK - CNX

I've read some horror stories in my search that the connection in PEK requires two stops with customs - one coming in, and another one to get out. Is this true for international to international transfers where both legs are on Air China?

http://www.airchina.com/pk/en/travel...r_guides.shtml

According to the transfer guide, Air China says 60 minutes is the minimum, and some of my searches show that there's some Air China folks that'll help me get onto the next flight without much fuss since I'm flying Air China both legs.

Also - I assume I will need to collect my bags in YVR and BKK as I'll be jumping on other star alliance carriers. The connection times there are 3 hours plus so I'm not too worried. But will Air China route my bags through PEK onto BKK without me needing to collect them?

I would appreciate you sharing your personal experiences.
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Old Jun 27, 13, 6:16 pm
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For PEK, INT-INT in T3, 60 minutes is plenty. PEK has baggage transfer for through checked luggage, so you don't need to clear regular immigration and recheck bags as you would at many other China airports. You'll go through a special transfer immigration, get a special stamp (only 1, no exit stamp with that one) and go directly to security. Recently the transfer security has been closed and you have to go around to regular security with everyone else, but still not bad. The whole process usually takes me less than 15 minutes.

BTW, ignore what Air China says about assistance in making tight connections. They have promised me this before when a delay pushed us under MCT. All they did was put a special sticker on our sleeve upon landing, but there was no one to make sure we got through immigration or security ahead of the queue and when I inquired about using one of the golf carts after security, the Air China lady on the cart straight out declined it. There are typically carts going around that will take you for tips, be prepared with 10-20 RMB handy if you want to use them.
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Old Jun 28, 13, 1:14 pm
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dvs7310, thanks for the response. Sucks the transfer security has been closed, but good to hear that at least theres a special transfer immigration.
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Old Jul 4, 13, 9:51 am
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The answer really depends on when you're landing at PEK. Sometimes it could be forever before clearing security and other times you can just breeze through. My suggestion is that once on the ground, don't delay! Walk as quickly as you can to clear passport control and get to the security checkpoint. It's doable with 100 minutes, but be quick.

PEK is gigantic and very crowded at times.
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Old Jul 4, 13, 1:00 pm
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Depends on the gate of your arrival flight. Make sure you have the onward boarding pass, if not, you need to ask for one at the transfer desk, and in my experience, they will always write you one, instead of print one out for you.
The transfer immigration check usually open on the side of the immigration hall. If you are in luck, you can spot it right-away, or you need to climb or crawl between the crowd and get to the other side of the hall. So, check the two edges of the immigration hall, and the overhead display will show it is for transfer passenger only.
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Old Jul 4, 13, 5:54 pm
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This shouldn't be a problem. I presume you are scheduled on CA 998 YVR-PEK connecting to CA959 PEK-BKK. At YVR check-in, you should be able to get boarding passes for both flights and have your bags checked all the way through to BKK.

For this sort of transfer, Customs will be irrelevant for you. Immigration will not be done at the regular desks but at a special "international transit" desk which you should easily spot. You'll show passport and onward boarding pass then be directed to security screen then back airside. That's pretty much it. For an on-time arrival, you should be able to complete all this, include the necessary walking, in 30-40 minutes. Do try to get a seat reasonably forward in the cabin on the TPAC flight so you can deplane and get to the immigration area fairly quickly.

Plan B in case of trouble: If for any reason you are really late in (such as late departure from YVR), putting your BKK connection out of reach, then immediately go to the transfer desk at PEK, just before Immigration area, and see if they can reissue boarding pass for the later PEK-BKK flight CA 979. If they can't do it there, they'll likely tell you to go to Departures on the nonsecure side to Air China for them to reissue you on next flight. In this case, you need to look for the TWOV (Transit Without Visa) Immigration queue which will get you stamped out to go landside. No visa needed for this sort of thing.
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Old Aug 7, 13, 10:04 pm
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Originally Posted by collegeidol View Post
Depends on the gate of your arrival flight. Make sure you have the onward boarding pass, if not, you need to ask for one at the transfer desk, and in my experience, they will always write you one, instead of print one out for you.
The transfer immigration check usually open on the side of the immigration hall. If you are in luck, you can spot it right-away, or you need to climb or crawl between the crowd and get to the other side of the hall. So, check the two edges of the immigration hall, and the overhead display will show it is for transfer passenger only.
I've had major problems with this, but always (just) made my flight.

The real issue is how many people are in the queue at the transit desk: sometimes the queue can be 20 deep, and it just takes one hicup, and the person in front of you will take 15 minutes to get their boarding card, and your plans are scuppered.

Picture of the transit queue here:
http://loungeindex.com/Asia/China/PEK/index.htm#Transit

There can also be long queues for the stairs to go downstairs and be x-rayed.

Having said that, and hour and you'll probably do it.
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Old Feb 2, 14, 2:52 pm
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My flight (LAX-PEK, PEK-BKK) have 80 mins to connect, CA to TG. Assuming they are both in T3 and arriving in the morning, will I have enough time to connect?
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Old Feb 3, 14, 11:56 am
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Originally Posted by anchor79 View Post
My flight (LAX-PEK, PEK-BKK) have 80 mins to connect, CA to TG. Assuming they are both in T3 and arriving in the morning, will I have enough time to connect?
Without a delay, 20 minutes shall be totally enough
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Old Feb 21, 14, 11:37 am
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I disagree, everytime i am am connecting in PEK there is a long line because they .... up!!! Checking the passports of transfer passengers takes longer then immigration! It really drives me crazy ever time is stand there in front of the only open counter and they take their sweet time.
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Old Feb 21, 14, 1:11 pm
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Understand conditions and experience vary at PEK. Made two international-international PEK T3 connections this month. First connection: arrived early evening, CA-CA, boarding pass in hand, through transit/security to CA lounge in 20 minutes. Second: arrived just before noon, CA-UA, no boarding pass - picked-up the famous hand written pass, through transit/security to CA lounge in 35 minutes.
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Old Jun 24, 14, 9:30 am
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I've transited at PEK for 4 times so far. all booked with CA
HKG-PEK-FRA; FRA-PEK-HKG
HKG-PEK: Dragonair flight arranged by Air China, as the delay of the Air China flight was anticipated.

HKG-PEK-VIE-BCN; MAD-PEK-HKG
Again, I took a Dragonair flight for the segment HKG-PEK, as the Air China flight I booked was cancelled. The cancellation notification was made 4 days before my flight. Fought pretty hard for the Dragonair flight, citing my HKG-PEK-FRA experience.

Dragonair and Air China do have interline agreement, so my luggages were checked through.
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Old Jun 24, 14, 11:53 pm
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I truly hope your flight inbound doesn't get delayed.

I had an hour and 45 minutes for transfer, I ended up only with 20 minutes to spare after leaving customs.

Flight took of HK with a 30 minute delay, than had delays at PEK with parking the aircraft. That stuck us at the Tarmac for another 15 minutes. Than I literally got off the gate that was 2 gates from my international outbound gate.

Not sure if you've been to PEK but you will go all the way to one end of the airport (Left) go through customs, go down the stairs to another security check point, than back around to your gate. It's the dumbest design I've ever seen.

Luckily Air China accomodated 3 of us with their "transfer service" and it got us to our locations, through customs, and 2nd security gates faster.

You can only use the Air China Cart Ladys if you are flying J or F. It's really helpful if you end up with a far gate like mine, the farthest gate #36. The cart can be a life saver in terms of walking. W/ the carts assistance, I was able to use the lounge for 15 minutes instead of walking gate to gate.
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Old Jul 9, 14, 1:22 am
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Originally Posted by ycjeffrey View Post
I've transited at PEK for 4 times so far. all booked with CA
HKG-PEK-FRA; FRA-PEK-HKG
HKG-PEK: Dragonair flight arranged by Air China, as the delay of the Air China flight was anticipated.

HKG-PEK-VIE-BCN; MAD-PEK-HKG
Again, I took a Dragonair flight for the segment HKG-PEK, as the Air China flight I booked was cancelled. The cancellation notification was made 4 days before my flight. Fought pretty hard for the Dragonair flight, citing my HKG-PEK-FRA experience.

Dragonair and Air China do have interline agreement, so my luggages were checked through.
HKG-PEK-LHR/FRA all on CA - is 45min enough?
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Old Jul 9, 14, 1:28 am
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Originally Posted by Madone59 View Post
HKG-PEK-LHR/FRA all on CA - is 45min enough?
Enough as long as your flight takes off HKG on time and lands in PEK on time.

GL though
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