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What To Do With Checked Bags On Intl Flights?

Wed May 29, 2002 11:35 am

The topic sound strange because obviously you check them, but I couldn't fit what I was trying to say up in the topic box, so I'll say it here. When you come into the US from another country by air, when you go through customs, you must claim your bag before you declare things and when you are done with customs, you put it back onto a conveyor. In both of my experiences entering the US from another country by air, I have been leaving the airport at my entry point (it was ATL both times and I live in Atlanta), so when you put the bags on a conveyor, you go to the normal baggage claim (the one where you first claim your bags in customs is a different area) and get your bag there. If you are connecting to another flight, must you go out to the baggage claim, claim your bag, and recheck it, or when you put it back on the conveyor in customs, does it get to your next plane without you having to recheck it? For instance, if I were to fly ATL-IAH-LAX, I would not have to get my bag and recheck it in IAH. It just goes onto LAX. Obviously those would not be international flights, but I was just trying to show what I meant by the bags just going to the plane. Back to the point. Does it matter if your connecting flight is domestic or international as to what you must do? What about if you are flying a different airline? Thank you all very much!
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RE: What To Do With Checked Bags On Intl Flights?

Wed May 29, 2002 3:35 pm

No, you do not have to recheck bags once they are put on the conveyor in customs. They are transferred from there directly to your connecting flight.
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RE: What To Do With Checked Bags On Intl Flights?

Wed May 29, 2002 11:01 pm

Well you have doubly make sure that your bags are tagged all the way to your final destination. Double check with the gate agent who is tagging your bags.

In United's case, let's say I fly HKG-SFO-ORD with my final destination being ORD, my bags would be tagged only to SFO, since my point of entry to the U.S. will be SFO. I would then have to retreive my bags from the conveyor belt at SFO, go through Immigrations and Customs and then recheck them in for my domestic flight to ORD. But there are United employees in the International terminal to assist me in this process who will take me and my bags to the domestic terminal for the domestic check-in for the flight to ORD. Baggage allowance for the domestic flight will still follow international rules since the domestic leg is only the connecting flight.

Its better to be on the ground wishing you were in the air than be in the air wishing you were on the ground. Fly safe!
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RE: What To Do With Checked Bags On Intl Flights?

Thu May 30, 2002 12:24 pm

Here's a variation with a question.

Last year I flew LAX-CDG on United, and then on a separate ticket on AF CDG-DKR. The United ticket agent checked my bags all the way through to Dakar, never mind the separate ticket and different airline, which made my transit all the simpler in Paris.

Here's my question. Next month my wife and I are flying LAX-LHR on United, and then on a separate ticket and airline (Lufthansa) LHR to Venice. Because of the customs unification in Europe, does LHR constitute my port of entry into Europe, and will we therefore have to go through the song and dance that Airplanetire is describing for the US, or will we transit in LHR (assuming the United agent is so nice again), and pick up our checked through bags and go through customs in Venice?

Any info would be appreciated!
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RE: What To Do With Checked Bags On Intl Flights?

Mon Jun 03, 2002 6:58 am

When I flew ATL-ZRH-ATH and back last summer on Swissair, my family's and my bags were checked all the way through. We didn't see them again until we reached ATH. Switzerland is not in the EU though, so I don't know for sure how it will work for you.

I have another question. On Tuesday this week, I'll be flying BA from ATL to LGW and then catching another flight on BA from LGW to BCN. It'll be Wednesday by then, but that doesn't matter. Anyway, will I have to clear customs in LGW? Will I have to clear them again in BCN? Will my bags be checked all the way to BCN? Do you have to claim and recheck bags when you go into the EU if you are continuing on to another country (EU or not EU, doesn't matter)? I'm still confused about how it works in the US if you are connecting to another flight, international or domestic. Can anyone clear it up for me some more. Thank you very much OA412 and Trickijedi. Your input did help me a good deal! Thank you everyone who responds!

RE: What To Do With Checked Bags On Intl Flights?

Mon Jun 03, 2002 7:28 am

You are all missing the point. He is asking whether you need to claim and recheck flying domestically. No, you do not need to do this. The bags are transfered automatically for you so you do not need to do it yourself. If your on 2 different airlines, then have your origin airline check your bags through to your final destination with the other airlines flight number. Most airlines can do this.
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RE: Travellin'man

Mon Jun 03, 2002 7:33 am

Since when do Lufthansa fly LHR-VCE? That makes NO sense! Well, I guess it could! Do they fly LHR-VCE?

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RE: What To Do With Checked Bags On Intl Flights?

Mon Jun 03, 2002 7:37 am

I would imagine that it would be LH from LHR to VCE via FRA. There is probably one flight from LHR to FRA and then another from FRA to VCE. I could be wrong though. That is just a guess.
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RE: What To Do With Checked Bags On Intl Flights?

Mon Jun 03, 2002 8:39 am

LH owns a few regional carriers in Italy, they might fly LHR-VCE directly.


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