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"Multi-Segment" Flights That Go Overseas?  
User currently offlineHighflyer16 From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 117 posts, RR: 0
Posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 4188 times:

I have a question that I hope some of you airline insiders would be able to answer.

When an airline flies from an international destination to more than one American city on the same flight, do the passengers bound for the second city have to get off on the first stop and go through customs, or do they wait until they are at the second city?

For example, a few years back, Delta used to have an MD-11 that routed NGO-LAX-CVG.

If a passenger was bound for Cincinnati, did they have to go through customs in Los Angeles, or could they stay on the plane until it got to Cincinnati?

If all passengers have to get off, then my next question that would follow is, What advantage does the airline achieve by offering "same-plane" service to more than one city from an international destination?

If international passengers aren't required to get off, then my question would be, how can they tell which ones need to go through customs and which don't at CVG since the airline also picked up passengers from LAX to CVG on the second segment?

I have noticed that these types of flights have been severely reduced since 9/11.

Thanks for any input you have on this issue.


19 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineSHUPirate1 From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3670 posts, RR: 17
Reply 1, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 4163 times:

Passengers have to clear on their first point of contact with the United States...


Burma's constitutional referendum options: A. Yes, B. Go to Insein Prison!
User currently offlineB747-437B From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 4166 times:

Progressive clearance has been discontinued in the United States. All passengers must now clear at the first port of entry.

In the past, progressive clearance was permitted whereby passengers would be allowed to clear formalities at the final destination provided they were kept in sterile transit and not conmingled with domestic traffic.

Legacyins can undoubtedly provide more specific details.


User currently offlineHighflyer16 From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 117 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 4103 times:

Thanks for the info Sean.

Can you shed more light on what the rule was before 9-11?

You mentioned that in the past, international traffic couldn't be "co-mingled" with domestic passengers during the second segment of the flight, but I can't figure out how they would manage to do that and keep track?  Confused

Also, what about flights that have two stops outside the country, such as Air India's flights that go to New York via a European destination. Can they take passengers for only the second leg of the trip, or can they only take passengers to New York who boarded the plane in Mumbai?

If they can't fly passengers for the second segment only, then it seems that they would be required to fly around an awful lot of empty seats on that segment!


User currently offlineBH346 From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 3265 posts, RR: 14
Reply 4, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 4072 times:

When I flew on Northwest flight 96 back in 1997 or '98 KIX-SEA with continuing service to MEM (and I think it continued to LGA or BOS and actually started in TPE, KUL, or KHH), I had to clear customs and immigration in Seattle/Tacoma. There was a change of aircraft type to Memphis as well (from a DC-10 to an A320). The layout of the airport made every passenger getting off of the Osaka flight go through security...there wasn't a secure area.
In Osaka, passengers on continuing international segments or another international flight (if they are able to transfer at a transfer desk or are already checked in for their next segments) remain in the international gates area.



Northwest Airlines - Some People Just Know How to Fly
User currently offlineWilco From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 355 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 4027 times:

For the USA: You clear customs once you touch down on American soil, regardless of final domestic destination.

Other countries/intl airports vary and sometimes it just boils down to whether or not you have to change terminals to get on your next flight.

Of course it is different for a passenger in transit THROUGH a country. (i.e. flying on Air New Zealand from Auckland to London, connecting in LAX.)

-WILCO



"Ever seen a grown man naked?"
User currently offlineHighflyer16 From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 117 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days ago) and read 4010 times:

For the USA: You clear customs once you touch down on American soil, regardless of final domestic destination.

Am I correct in assuming then that it is now pointless for any airline to offer "same plane" thru service to any overseas destination since all passengers must deplane anyway?

Does this same law apply to flights from Mexico or the Carribean nations? Airlines used to fly all the time from Mexico to Los Angeles with continuing service to San Francisco or Seattle, or from Curacao to Miami with continuing service to some other destinations. Are those flights still allowed, or must all passengers get off those planes as well?



User currently offlineB747-437B From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days ago) and read 4016 times:

Can you shed more light on what the rule was before 9-11?

Prior to 9/11 the US allowed both a non-inspection ITI (international-to-international) transit at selected POEs as well as progressive clearance at all POEs subject to proper sterile segregation being maintained. Both have now been discontinued.

You mentioned that in the past, international traffic couldn't be "co-mingled" with domestic passengers during the second segment of the flight, but I can't figure out how they would manage to do that and keep track?

Many countries (eg. India, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, etc...) do permit conmingling of international and domestic traffic. The domestic traffic is subject to inspection formalities at both ends however. Even in the European Union's Schengen area, whereas passport control takes place at the first frontier of entry, customs clearance only occurs at the final destination.

Can they take passengers for only the second leg of the trip, or can they only take passengers to New York who boarded the plane in Mumbai?

It varies by specific carriers and whatever rights they have been granted. Under the 1944 Chicago Convention , there were five "freedoms" of the air explicitly defined. These were the "first freedom" of overflight, "second freedom" of technical stops, "third freedom" to transport from home country to abroad, "fourth freedom" to transport from abroad to home country and "fifth freedom" to transport beyond a stop to a third country. Countries define which freedoms are granted to other countries on a bilateral agreement basis, which then determine where each designated airline may transport passengers.

In the case of Air India, there are full fifth-freedom rights without restriction on all transatlantic sectors (LHR-JFK/LHR-ORD/CDG-EWR/Fra-ORD/Fra-LAX) just as Delta (CDG-BOM) and Northwest (AMS-BOM) enjoy on reciprocal routes. However, Ethiopian Airlines' service from the US to ADD via FCO does not have rights to local traffic between the US and Italy. Other routes may have restrictions as to the number or proportion of fifth freedom passengers. So as you can see, it varies.


User currently offlineGlobetrekker From Netherlands, joined Dec 2003, 851 posts, RR: 14
Reply 8, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days ago) and read 4001 times:

There are also some countries, like mine, that have US Customs and US Immigration and Naturalization Service at their airport. So what actually happens is that you check in your luggage at the counter of the airline. The bag goes on the belt to the back. After you clear local immigration and security, you pick up your bag of the belt again and go through US Immigration. It is manned by US citizens living for a time on the island.

After you go through what you have to, you then go through Customs. If your bags need to be searched this will be done here. Again these are all Americans.

After that you put your bag on the belt and after that you are in essence in the USA. When you arrive in the USA you just pick up your bags and leave the airport. That part is very convenient. It is also then possible to fly into US airports that do not have INS and Customs.

What I do know is that Aruba had to meet with specific requirements by Customs and INS before they provided this service. The Aruban government wanted this service to stimulate more tourism from the USA. People apparently prefer to clear everything before they depart rather than after you arrive, which makes sense to me.

Does anyone here know which other country outside the USA provides pre-clearance?

GlobeTrekker



The World Is A Book And Those Who Do Not Travel Read Only A Page
User currently offlineB747-437B From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days ago) and read 4008 times:

It is also then possible to fly into US airports that do not have INS and Customs.

No. The law requires that all flights, including "precleared" ones, must operate only to airports with a physical US Customs presence, even if the facility is not utilized.

Does anyone here know which other country outside the USA provides pre-clearance?

US PFI facilities are located at the following stations :

Canada : YYZ/YUL/YOW/YWG/YEG/YYC/YVR
Ireland : DUB/SNN (No Customs)
Bahamas : FPO/NAS
Bermuda : BDA
Aruba : AUA



User currently offlineGlobetrekker From Netherlands, joined Dec 2003, 851 posts, RR: 14
Reply 10, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days ago) and read 3972 times:

No. The law requires that all flights, including "precleared" ones, must operate only to airports with a physical US Customs presence, even if the facility is not utilized.

Sorry, I stand corrected B747-437B

GT



The World Is A Book And Those Who Do Not Travel Read Only A Page
User currently offlineIndio66 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 475 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 3 days ago) and read 3951 times:


Here is a related questions, I could use some help on. In 2001 I flew CO from Bali to Guam, arrived very early in the morning and then connected to HNL. I was half asleep but it seemed like we went through some kind of modified customs in both GUM and HNL?

Any thoughts????


User currently offlineHighflyer16 From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 117 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 3951 times:

How does it work in Europe where many of the countries are small and close together?

Could an airline fly say from London to Munich, then to Sofia Bulgaria without the Sofia-bound customers having to get off the plane and go through clearance in Munich, are do they all have to go through it on every segment of the flight?


User currently offlineKomododx From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 22 hours ago) and read 3901 times:

Globetrekker,

The same applies to Canada and the Bahamas. Probably some other countries in the Caribbean have the same service. I don't know if Mexico has the same, although I doubt it.

KdX in TLH


User currently offlineJfklganyc From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 3431 posts, RR: 5
Reply 14, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 3876 times:

Hate to question you B747-437B, but if the law does state that, how do flights from Canada and the Carr. fly into and out of LGA on a regular basis. Yes, I do believe they have some customs agents on the airport, but are not anywhere near capable of handling any kind of commercial airliner.

PJ


User currently offlineSQ452 From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 1111 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 3854 times:

customs at the FIRST POINT OF ENTRY if the flight continues on to another destination within that country, 99% of the time thats what happens.




SIN > CVG > BOS
User currently offlineCory6188 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 2686 posts, RR: 6
Reply 16, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 3844 times:

STT is another airport where you pre-clear US customs and immigration before entering the gate area. There is no way to leave the gate area except to get on a plane. All of the arriving pax have to walk around the outside of the terminal (it's only one story) to get to baggage claim and ground transportation. There is no way for arriving pax to go inside the departure area.

User currently offlineB747-437B From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 3832 times:

Hate to question you B747-437B, but if the law does state that, how do flights from Canada and the Carr. fly into and out of LGA on a regular basis. Yes, I do believe they have some customs agents on the airport, but are not anywhere near capable of handling any kind of commercial airliner.

Same way that they fly into DCA. Both are designated as Customs airports. They are not capable of handling post-cleared arrivals as they do not have a commercial Federal Inspection Facility, but as US Customs maintains a presence at those airports they are authorized to receive pre-cleared aircraft.

The regulations are not as much in place for arrivals as they are for departures actually. US Customs retains the right to inspect any aircraft/person departing the United States and towards that end all arrivals/departures of commercial flights must be at an airport with a physical US Customs presence. This is the reason why SNA has not yet received international service, even to/from YVR where large demand exists. Alaska Airlines tried to start up service on the route a few years ago, but were blocked as a result of this regulation.


User currently offlineACAfan From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 710 posts, RR: 6
Reply 18, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 3817 times:

What about flights by foreign carriers to multiple stops in a country? On these flights, there is no cabotage and therefore no mixing of passengers.

Example: Saudi flight JED-JFK-IAD
Example: British flight LHR-ORD-IAH

Dont pax who continue onwards stay on the plane and go through immigration and customs at IAD or IAH ?



Freddie Laker ... May be at peace with his maker ... But he is a persona non grata ... with IATA
User currently offlineHighflyer16 From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 117 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (10 years 2 months 2 weeks 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 3769 times:

Hello ACA.

What does the word "cabotage" mean?

Are you referring to the fact that those airlines can't pick up passengers at the first US airport, so all of the arrivals at the second would be bound for customs, there is no mixing of passengers?

Also, I guess what I am hearing in all of this thread is that it is pretty much pointless for any US Airlines to offer "same plane, one-stop" service from an overseas destination since all will have to deplane at the first port of entry anyway? That is the information I was actually after.



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