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Which connecting airport (SFO, DEN or ORD) in December?

Which connecting airport (SFO, DEN or ORD) in December?

Old Apr 22, 20, 9:28 pm
  #1  
sfo
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Which connecting airport (SFO, DEN or ORD) in December?

Am thinking of flying from YVR to FRA Christmas day if things are better by then. I know December can be a bad month as far as weather is concerned
I have three choices for my connection from YVR to SFO, DEN or ORD, which one would be the best choice? The ORD and DEN flights arrive in the morning and the SFO flight arrives in mid afternoon, I am considering SFO as I prefer the afternoon arrival. Thanks
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Old Apr 22, 20, 10:03 pm
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Originally Posted by sfo View Post
Am thinking of flying from YVR to FRA Christmas day if things are better by then. I know December can be a bad month as far as weather is concerned
I have three choices for my connection from YVR to SFO, DEN or ORD, which one would be the best choice? The ORD and DEN flights arrive in the morning and the SFO flight arrives in mid afternoon, I am considering SFO as I prefer the afternoon arrival. Thanks
I would personally choose YYZ, because I don't see the point in going through US border formalities just to fly back out.

Out of the choices you presented, DEN and SFO are your best bets. DEN handles snow really well (and doesn't get as much as its reputation suggests). SFO can be nasty in the morning but is usually OK in the afternoon. ORD -- its weather issues are legendary, especially in the winter. And the summer. And the spring. But fall's not too bad.
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Old Apr 22, 20, 10:14 pm
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I wouldn't normally say this - but since flying is likely to be a fraction even in that timeframe - I'd pick SFO. Zero chance of a blizzard - and even if rain or fog, the lack of flights will mitigate any weather at SFO
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Old Apr 22, 20, 10:22 pm
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SFO because it is a safer bet weather-wise and because it will buy you an extra hour or two of sleep. While i agree with the YYZ point for immigration, east coast flights to europe are just too short
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Old Apr 22, 20, 10:32 pm
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Nonstop on LH.
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Old Apr 22, 20, 11:29 pm
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Originally Posted by boolean64 View Post
While i agree with the YYZ point for immigration, east coast flights to europe are just too short
Good point.

Personally, I would rank 'em in the same order that the appear in the thread title: 1) SFO, 2) DEN and 3) ORD. Well, at least as far as weather goes; I could see how the type of aircraft and potential for upgrades might put DEN ahead of SFO for me.
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Old Apr 23, 20, 9:21 am
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I was thinking of starting a topic with a similar question: it fits with the title, but I don't know if it will be in December.

When times are right, we're looking to use our UA ETC to go BOS-SMF. I don't know if we'd do the round trip on UA or look at other airlines for the other direction. I'd rather like having a long and a short segment, so the SFO connection looks good, but is that short segment on smaller planes more subject to cancellation? For the eastbound trip, we'd rather not take a red-eye, so is an early morning SMF-SFO flight somewhat risky with fog?
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Old Apr 23, 20, 9:29 am
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Originally Posted by rove312 View Post
I was thinking of starting a topic with a similar question: it fits with the title, but I don't know if it will be in December.

When times are right, we're looking to use our UA ETC to go BOS-SMF. I don't know if we'd do the round trip on UA or look at other airlines for the other direction. I'd rather like having a long and a short segment, so the SFO connection looks good, but is that short segment on smaller planes more subject to cancellation? For the eastbound trip, we'd rather not take a red-eye, so is an early morning SMF-SFO flight somewhat risky with fog?
The first flight of the day is generally safest. The fog tends to kick in right after that.

Yes, SFO-SMF is more subject to cancellation than DEN-SMF or ORD-SMF, but that's still the choice I'd make personally. SFO-SMF is an easy drive if you run into a cancellation.
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Old Apr 23, 20, 10:00 am
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Originally Posted by HNLbasedFlyer View Post
I wouldn't normally say this - but since flying is likely to be a fraction even in that timeframe - I'd pick SFO. Zero chance of a blizzard - and even if rain or fog, the lack of flights will mitigate any weather at SFO
I was about to write "avoid SFO because there are always delays" but you're right, Covid-19 has fixed SFO! Yay?
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Old Apr 23, 20, 10:08 am
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Thanks to all that responded.

I should have stated that this is award travel. via YYZ is not available. AC to LHR and then LH to FRA is, don't want to go through LHR. The LH nonstop is available, but would not be able to choose seats as I will be flying coach this trip and I don't mind a break in the trip. There are two connection times offered through SFO, the longest one is two hours +, naturally I would take the longest connection time, two connection times through DEN, one on UA and the other on AC, which are just over two hours also, don't really like the connection time at ORD. I want to make a decision prior to the end of April so that I would get the free redeposit of the award if things are still upside down by December.

Last edited by sfo; Apr 23, 20 at 10:20 am
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Old Apr 23, 20, 10:20 am
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Originally Posted by sfo View Post
I want to make a decision prior to the end of April so that I would get the free redeposit of the award if things are still upside down by December.
UA has announced that redeposit fees are waived throughout 2020 for changes made 30 days in advance. You needn't rush -- although there's also little risk to booking something now and looking to improve it later if something else comes along.
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Old Apr 23, 20, 10:53 am
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Originally Posted by jsloan View Post
The first flight of the day is generally safest. The fog tends to kick in right after that.

Yes, SFO-SMF is more subject to cancellation than DEN-SMF or ORD-SMF, but that's still the choice I'd make personally. SFO-SMF is an easy drive if you run into a cancellation.
I'd be happy to fly XXX-SFO-SMF because a train or a drive (UA buys you cab fare to Sacramento/San Francisco if they cancel, which they do fairly frequently), but SMF-SFO-XXX if not my preferred flight because if they cancel, you miss your connection, and it feels like they cancel that flight more often than normal.
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Old Apr 23, 20, 11:00 am
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I would also look at this more closely in the late fall, when schedules become clear. Not only is it totally unknown what frequencies will look like on routes which have always had multiple frequencies, but Christmas Day is often a service which is cancelled anyway.

Depending on what the schedule looks like -- probably won't be known until late October / early November at the earliest, a consideration may be the connection length. I would pick one over the other for an hour or two, but 9-10 hours might make a difference.
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Old Apr 23, 20, 12:05 pm
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Originally Posted by sfo View Post
... The LH nonstop is available, but would not be able to choose seats as I will be flying coach this trip and I don't mind a break in the trip. ....
UA X/XN awards can do advance seat assignment on LH
United Mileage Award on Lufthansa - Picking Seats / Bag Allowance
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Old Apr 23, 20, 12:10 pm
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If you must connect in the US then I would choose SFO; if there is a problem it is in the morning and most problems impact domestic and California flights more than international ones (somebody correct me if I am mistaken).
DEN does handle snow well but there are tons of "bad days". EWR fogettaboutit.......
Is LAX an option? or Las Vegas?
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