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Consolidated Connection time/logistics-Domestic & International at IAH [ARCHIVE]

Consolidated Connection time/logistics-Domestic & International at IAH [ARCHIVE]

Old Mar 15, 11, 10:22 pm
  #1  
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Consolidated Connection time/logistics-Domestic & International at IAH [ARCHIVE]

I have the following itinerary coming up this coming saturday:

United 3405 Operated by: Continental Airlines
Depart MEX 5:50AM Arrive IAH 9:08AM

United 7240 Operated by: United Express/mesa Airlines
Depart IAH 10:10AM Arrive IAD 2:07PM

However, here are my concerns:
1. I have to clear immigration in IAH
2. I have to pick up my 1 check in bag, clear customs and check in the bag
3. I don't know which terminal United 3405 will arrive in and which terminal United 7240 will depart from. May be IAH hubbies can help me out here.

Given the itinerary and the constraints above, my question is - Is 1 hour enough time to make the connection (keep in mind i have a check in bag)?

If not, I have the option to change my flight to a direct flight from MEX to IAD which arrive at 3:20PM.
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Old Mar 15, 11, 11:12 pm
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Originally Posted by gates1580 View Post

I have the following itinerary coming up this coming saturday:

United 3405 Operated by: Continental Airlines
Depart MEX 5:50AM Arrive IAH 9:08AM

United 7240 Operated by: United Express/mesa Airlines
Depart IAH 10:10AM Arrive IAD 2:07PM

However, here are my concerns:
1. I have to clear immigration in IAH
2. I have to pick up my 1 check in bag, clear customs and check in the bag
3. I don't know which terminal United 3405 will arrive in and which terminal United 7240 will depart from. May be IAH hubbies can help me out here.

Given the itinerary and the constraints above, my question is - Is 1 hour enough time to make the connection (keep in mind i have a check in bag)?

If not, I have the option to change my flight to a direct flight from MEX to IAD which arrive at 3:20PM.
You don't really have one hour between flights. Remember that you must be on board your connecting flight at least 10 minutes before it is scheduled to leave. Therefore, shave 10 minutes off your connection time. Another thing, are you a U.S. citizen or resident? If so, the immigration and customs lines are generally short. If you are a non resident, you don't have a chance of making your connection.

If you are a resident and have Global Entry, for sure you would make your connection. If you travel internationally a fair amount of times, you might want to look into the requirements and benefits of Global Entry.

Since you have the option of changing your flight, I recommend that you opt for the non stop to IAD and avoid the hassles and worry about making a connection.

You still have to go through immigration at IAD but that location is not bad despite what many others have written about IAD and immigration.

Good luck.
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Old Mar 15, 11, 11:21 pm
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You'll come in Terminal E (Inter'l) and likely depart from Terminal C.

That's really cutting it close and doesn't leave you any time if your flight from MEX is delayed. I just did CUN-IAH-MKE last Sunday afternoon. Didn't check a bag so I breezed through immigration in about 10 minutes and could've been at my connecting gate (B88) in 20min total, but my companion who had checked a bag took an extra 20+ minutes. I wouldn't risk it if I were you.

Last edited by XLR26; Mar 15, 11 at 11:23 pm Reason: ....
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Old Mar 16, 11, 8:22 am
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Depending on delays, at 9 AM you'll have arrivals from most of South America. If you miss the flight you'll have multiple rebooking opportunities on CO/UA flights to the WAS area. You can walk between C/D/E but you'll need to use the train to get to A/B. The UAEX flights have been departing from a combination of B/C recently but I'd take the train even if it departs from C.
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Old Mar 16, 11, 5:01 pm
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Originally Posted by gates1580 View Post
2. I have to pick up my 1 check in bag, clear customs and check in the bag
You do not have to check the bag in, it's already checked all the way through.

You have to pick it up and take through customs/immigration, then just pub back on the belt, which takes no time at all - of course this could just be terminology

Waiting for the bag will take time.

You WILL arrive at E, as ALL CO mainline flights arrive there. C is the largest terminal, so if mainline, you will most likely fly from there, perhaps E.

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Old Mar 16, 11, 5:09 pm
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Looks very tight to me, and dont forget its a fair trek from e to c.
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Old Mar 16, 11, 7:43 pm
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Originally Posted by gates1580 View Post

Given the itinerary and the constraints above, my question is - Is 1 hour enough time to make the connection (keep in mind i have a check in bag)?

If not, I have the option to change my flight to a direct flight from MEX to IAD which arrive at 3:20PM.
It's technically doable, but a VERY strong possibility of failure.

I would take the nonstop. It's not worth the stress.
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Old Mar 16, 11, 7:49 pm
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You'll also have a bigger plane on the direct flight, vs a United Express on the IAH-IAD
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Old Mar 20, 11, 8:49 pm
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Trip Report

Since I posted the question, here is my trip report:
I am a hardworking 1K (The segment guy).So, decided to keep the existing reservation with 2 segments instead of going for the direct from MEX to IAD.
The challenge was to make my connection in 50 mins and finishing my immigration, customs and bag drop.

Scheduled Departure: 03/19/2011 5:50 AM MEX
Actual Departure: 03/19/2011 6:08 AM MEX
Actual Arrival at IAH: 03/19/2011 9:11 AM IAH

I got seat 1B on MEX -IAH segment. That helped me get off the flight first and sprint to immigration.

Finished Immigration: 03/19/2011 9:17 AM IAH
Bag pickup: 03/19/2011 9:31 AM IAH
Finished Customs: 03/19/2011 9:37 AM IAH
Bag Dropoff: 03/19/2011 9:40 AM IAH
Finished Security Check: 03/19/2011 9:47 AM IAH
At the boarding gate for IAD: 03/19/2011 9:51 AM IAH

I was the last one to board although I was there 19 minutes before the departure time for the United Express flight from IAH-IAD.

Successfully made it to IAD with my bag intact and got my 3 segments (Y fare).
Thanks to all for your insights.
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Old Mar 20, 11, 9:09 pm
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Originally Posted by gates1580 View Post
Bag Dropoff: 03/19/2011 9:40 AM IAH
Finished Security Check: 03/19/2011 9:47 AM IAH
At the boarding gate for IAD: 03/19/2011 9:51 AM IAH
You had to clear security to get to your domestic gate?

Thanks for the report! We have a 57 min connection (thanks to a schedule change) CUN-IAH-ORD on CO metal in a couple of weeks, and I don't feel good about it given that we're traveling with kids.
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Old Mar 20, 11, 11:22 pm
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Originally Posted by legalalien View Post
You had to clear security to get to your domestic gate?
When leaving customs, you are no longer in the secure area.
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Old Mar 21, 11, 1:18 am
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What zrs70 said.

Since you are ORD based: It is essentially the same set up as ORD minus the train.
As a 1K you are entitled to cut the security line, which will help, but with kids (and I assume checked luggage) it will be tight, but it IS doable. But you should definitely study up on your later IAH-ORD options in case of misconnect.
Not trying to scare you - it is doable, but you need to understand that there is risk. Don't dilly dally.
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Old Mar 21, 11, 9:43 am
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Originally Posted by g_leyser View Post
What zrs70 said.

As a 1K you are entitled to cut the security line, which will help, but with kids (and I assume checked luggage) it will be tight, but it IS doable. But you should definitely study up on your later IAH-ORD options in case of misconnect.
Not trying to scare you - it is doable, but you need to understand that there is risk. Don't dilly dally.
There is no 1K -Premium line for security check for the domestic connection. I looked for one but couldn't find any. May I didn't spend more than 2 seconds searching for a premium security line.

Yes, with kids, your maximum time consuming points are:
1. Getting off the flight and getting to immigration
2. Going through security check.

I checked and I did have a second connection flight 2 hours later in case I missed my original connection. So, do the initial prep.

Also, I am not a US-Resident. So, if you are a US-Resident, it might help you as the lines at immigration were close to 1 person per counter, if that helps you.

Last edited by iluv2fly; Mar 21, 11 at 9:56 am Reason: merge
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Old Mar 21, 11, 10:01 am
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Originally Posted by legalalien View Post
You had to clear security to get to your domestic gate?

Thanks for the report! We have a 57 min connection (thanks to a schedule change) CUN-IAH-ORD on CO metal in a couple of weeks, and I don't feel good about it given that we're traveling with kids.
If you haven't accepted the schedule change yet, this might be a case where I'd ask nicely if they'd confirm the family on a later flight.
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Old Mar 21, 11, 10:24 am
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We had a MID(Merida)-IAH-ORD connection on a Sunday morning a few months ago, with no checked luggage. First, it took some time just to get to the gate (E8) because of traffic on the taxiway, then the US citizens/residents immigration line took just under 30 minutes. We had a two-hour connection and were fine, but some others in our traveling party had shorter connections and missed them.

That was the last straw for us, by the way--now registered for Global Entry.
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