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Dr.DTW
Topic Author
Posts: 257
Joined: Thu May 25, 2000 1:13 pm

Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Sat Apr 04, 2009 3:43 pm

I'm realizing now not to focus all my attention on the carrier when crossing the N. Atlantic. The airport from now on will be a big player when choosing an airline. I hear PHL is good, even though the service on US has been scrutinized on this website.

CO has received rave reviews for their service, so I booked them recently to Madrid, and experienced EWR for the first time. I will never change planes in Newark again when going transatlantic.

Any thoughts on the worst/best airports to leave for europe or enter back into the US???

Thanks.
Ed.
 
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LAXintl
Posts: 25344
Joined: Wed May 24, 2000 12:12 pm

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Sat Apr 04, 2009 4:05 pm

My best European:
MUC
ZRH

My Worst European:
LHR
CDG

My Best US:
SFO
IAD (if you are connecting on UA and using the midfield FIS facility)

My Worst US:
JFK
MIA
From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
 
deltairlines
Posts: 7234
Joined: Mon May 24, 1999 4:47 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Sat Apr 04, 2009 4:56 pm

MSP is pretty simple to use for clearing (I've only cleared at the Lindbergh, not at Humphrey). It's a pretty compact area, but it's not a huge problem as there aren't a ton of flights. Get off the plane, take a right down the hallway, take a left turn into the Immigration area, get your bags right after that (two belts), and then head out, from where you can go back into the Concourse after clearing security, or go down an escalator that lets you out in domestic baggage claim.
 
JRadier
Posts: 3966
Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2004 11:36 pm

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Sat Apr 04, 2009 6:01 pm

Best US:
-IAH
-EWR

Worst US:
-LAX
-ATL
 
HT
Posts: 5864
Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 6:20 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Sat Apr 04, 2009 6:02 pm

I'll stick to the positive ones:

U.S.
DTW
DEN

(LAX TBIT was hit or miss for me recently)

Europe (mostly for connecting onto onward flights)
MUC
FRA
CPH
(AMS)

-HT
Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
 
Cubsrule
Posts: 15054
Joined: Sat May 15, 2004 12:13 pm

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Sat Apr 04, 2009 9:36 pm

Best US
DTW
CLT

I don't think ATL is that bad. I'm a US citizen, but it's never taken me more than ~45 minutes to be back airside.

Worst US
ORD
EWR
I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
 
Viscount724
Posts: 19316
Joined: Thu Oct 12, 2006 7:32 pm

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Sat Apr 04, 2009 10:48 pm

My preferred connecting hubs in Europe: ZRH, MUC, AMS
The ones I do my best to avoid: LHR, CDG, FRA
 
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PITingres
Posts: 1359
Joined: Fri Dec 21, 2007 1:59 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Sun Apr 05, 2009 11:47 pm

For me, worst US entry would be PHL and ATL, with a dishonorable mention to EWR. ATL's biggest problem is the security re-check after customs, the re-check has never taken me less than 45 minutes to get through.

Not sure I have a favorite, DTW was OK but I've only used it a couple times.

Euro: I've had good luck with AMS, FRA. LGW is strangely depressing but I never had a delay or unpleasant experience. CDG is easy when it works and nightmarish when it doesn't. I had one flight depart from a remote that was a full 20 minute bus ride from the gate (we timed it), if that had been the other direction we would have missed connections. I avoid LHR.
Fly, you fools! Fly!
 
corocks
Posts: 1128
Joined: Thu Feb 01, 2001 8:57 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Mon Apr 06, 2009 8:03 pm

Best US:
IAH

Worst US:
HNL (that was a while ago though, could be different now)

Best Europe:
AMS

Worst Europe:
CDG
 
ba97
Posts: 348
Joined: Sat Apr 10, 2004 9:42 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Tue Apr 07, 2009 12:25 am

Best US: YYZ,. yes not in USA, but you can fly non stop to so many places and if you have NEXUS you zip through customs/immigration like it is not there.
Worst: ORD- it is depressing as you feel things are not going to work out as you approach. LAX - I have terrible luck with that place.

Best Europe:
AMS. Although LHR is a snap if you have the IRIS pass

Worst Europe:
LHR if you do not have the IRIS; CDG if you are not arriving AF
there is economy class, business class, first class...then Concorde..pure class
 
HT
Posts: 5864
Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 6:20 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Tue Apr 07, 2009 1:50 am



Quoting PITIngres (Reply 7):
ATL's biggest problem is the security re-check after customs,

The same procedure applies at MEM even if MEM is your final destination (as I found out last week ...).
-HT
Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
 
JRadier
Posts: 3966
Joined: Mon Sep 27, 2004 11:36 pm

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Tue Apr 07, 2009 5:51 am



Quoting Ba97 (Reply 9):

Best Europe:
AMS. Although LHR is a snap if you have the IRIS pass

So is AMS if you have the Privium pass, but does that really count unless it's your home airport?
 
b764
Posts: 742
Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2001 10:49 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Wed Apr 08, 2009 12:17 pm

I'm not a frequent traveler across the Atlantic, but:

Best
AMS
JFK
ORD

Worst
CDG
 
FlyingSicilian
Posts: 1663
Joined: Mon Mar 02, 2009 7:53 pm

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Tue Apr 14, 2009 4:09 am

Best USA

Houston IAH
Chicago ORD

Worst
Miami MIA

Best Europe
Amsterdam AMS
Brussels BRU (minus the 100 mile walk to baggage...  Wink )

Worst Europe
Paris CDG
I was told there would be cookies...
 
futurestar68
Posts: 180
Joined: Tue May 11, 2004 1:26 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Thu Apr 16, 2009 6:41 am



Quoting FlyingSicilian (Reply 13):
Worst Europe
Paris CDG



Quoting B764 (Reply 12):
Worst
CDG



Quoting Corocks (Reply 8):
Worst Europe:
CDG

 checkmark   checkmark   checkmark 
 
paneuropean
Posts: 748
Joined: Wed Sep 27, 2006 10:26 pm

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Thu Apr 16, 2009 8:29 am

I have never flown through HOU. CO told me yesterday there is no need to collect baggage when going through customs. That sounds like the best airport to fly through then. I wonder how it works !?

US

best SFO
worst JFK

EU

best AMS
worst FRA
 
paneuropean
Posts: 748
Joined: Wed Sep 27, 2006 10:26 pm

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Thu Apr 16, 2009 8:31 am

I have never flown through HOU. CO told me yesterday there is no need to collect baggage when going through customs. That sounds like the best airport to fly through then. I wonder how it works !?

US

best SFO
worst LAX

EU

best AMS
worst FRA
 
paneuropean
Posts: 748
Joined: Wed Sep 27, 2006 10:26 pm

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Thu Apr 16, 2009 8:39 am

I wanna edit the first post, but it doesn't seem to work.  Confused
 
PGNCS
Posts: 2268
Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2007 5:07 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Thu Apr 16, 2009 2:06 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 1):
My Worst US:
JFK
MIA

Amen! Those two are by far my top choices for the worst in the US. I don't know where you heard PHL is good; it's not. If you are going on US, CLT is much better. ATL is generally pretty efficient, but it depends on where you end up in the queue with so many flights arriving at the same time: it can take a while, although I don't think it's as bad as some others here do. I think MSP is generally quite good, and if you can come from CDG, LGW, or AMS, CVG is by far the best and easiest way to go.

Quoting B764 (Reply 12):
I'm not a frequent traveler across the Atlantic, but:

Best
AMS
JFK
ORD

I don't know how frequent of a traveler you are, but am stunned to see JFK listed in anyone's 'best" column!  Wink

In Europe I try to avoid CDG when possible, preferring AMS by a huge margin. I also prefer LGW to LHR, but the connection options are totally different, of course.
 
futurestar68
Posts: 180
Joined: Tue May 11, 2004 1:26 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Thu Apr 16, 2009 3:48 pm



Quoting PGNCS (Reply 18):
I don't know how frequent of a traveler you are, but am stunned to see JFK listed in anyone's 'best" column!

IF one's continuing with Jet Blue, it's definitely good, I did it a couple of times, immigration line was not long (maybe 10-15 minutes wait) and JetBlue's T5 is WiFi equipped Big grin
 
max550
Posts: 725
Joined: Tue Nov 13, 2007 9:46 pm

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Thu Apr 16, 2009 4:33 pm



Quoting PGNCS (Reply 18):
I don't know how frequent of a traveler you are, but am stunned to see JFK listed in anyone's 'best" column! Wink

JFK seems to be pretty hit and miss. For example, when I went to Ireland two weeks ago the line for security took about 45 minutes, the worst part was that there weren't that many people there, the line just wasn't moving.
Then, on the way back, everything went great (granted we were pre-cleared in DUB). The baggage claim was very close to where we got off the plane, the bags started coming out within about 10 minutes and we were out within 15 minutes of landing.
I haven't used JFK that often, probably only 4 or 5 times total, and I'd say it's generally spotty. Things can either go really well or not well at all, I guess it all depends on when you go and what kinds of connections you have to make.
 
texan
Posts: 4071
Joined: Tue Dec 23, 2003 2:23 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Thu Apr 16, 2009 5:44 pm

Personally...

Best US:
IAH

Worst US:
JFK (departure was easy; arrival was horrible)

Best EU:
MAD

Worst EU:
LHR (which I have flown through the most)

Texan
"I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library."
 
burnsie28
Posts: 5300
Joined: Mon Aug 02, 2004 1:49 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Thu Apr 16, 2009 6:00 pm

I have only flown into two airports in Europe (out of 3, and since FRA-AMS didn't require any additional security it was like a domestic US flight). Anyway.. I flew into LGW, but I was two and don't remember that, so from what I can remember FRA was just fine, great actually... seeing how it was cake.

Best US:
DTW
MSP

Worst:
ATL
 
Maverick623
Posts: 4726
Joined: Thu Nov 30, 2006 9:13 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Fri Apr 17, 2009 12:31 am



Quoting Dr.DTW (Thread starter):
I hear PHL is good

It's about the only thing I like about PHL is the CBP there. Never had a problem.

Quoting Dr.DTW (Thread starter):
I will never change planes in Newark again when going transatlantic.

Don't change in EWR, period.

Quoting Paneuropean (Reply 16):
CO told me yesterday there is no need to collect baggage when going through customs.

 redflag  I seriously doubt that. You always have to collect your bags incase Customs directs you to secondary screening.



So.. for mine (only been through a few)

Best:
MAN
PHX
SFO

Worst:
LHR


And weirdest:
BSL (pre-schengen). I gave my passport to the French officer, and as soon as he saw I was American he didn't say a single word. Just looked at it and gave it back. Probably thought I didn't speak French (which I do... at least well enough to answer any questions he might've had)
"PHX is Phoenix, PDX is the other city" -777Way
 
User avatar
seemyseems
Posts: 451
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 12:42 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Fri Apr 17, 2009 12:36 am

MAN is pretty good, they get a lot of the major US airlines flying in, and its a very simple airport.

I found AMS very good too, plus its a nice airport to be in.

In the US I have only been to IAH, that was not so good, there was no order in the queues and the people weren't so friendly.
seemyseems in ATL
 
lxa333
Posts: 278
Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2008 10:35 pm

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Fri Apr 17, 2009 4:26 pm

Best European:
ZRH
LHR(Never had a bad experience at LHR, in matter of fact it was pretty good. Luggage on time always etc.)

Worst European:
CDG

Best US: JFK

Worst US: EWR
SWISSAIR-Worlds most refreshing airline
 
chase
Posts: 658
Joined: Tue Nov 22, 2005 11:02 pm

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Fri Apr 17, 2009 5:33 pm

Airports where I've entered the US, and my opinions of them:

Great: IAH
So-so: DFW, ORD, STL, old IND
Awful: JFK
Don't remember: SFO

Old IND would have gotten a "good" except for the fact that customs was in a different building. But being a small int'l market, the line went fast. But that's a moot point now, anyway, and STL pretty much is moot also.

As far as non-US locations, on the (few) days I was there, I found the lines to be quite bad at NRT, BOM, and the ferryport in Dover. The line at SJO was long but it moved impressively fast.
 
bananaboy
Posts: 1701
Joined: Wed Oct 20, 2004 6:58 am

RE: Best/Worst US European Gateways/Point Of Entry

Fri Apr 17, 2009 5:46 pm

Best European:
BCN

Quoting LXA333 (Reply 25):
LHR(Never had a bad experience at LHR, in matter of fact it was pretty good. Luggage on time always etc.)

LHR +1
Agreed - finding LHR even better than ever now. T1 is like a ghost town at the moment. Even before that, as an O&D, never had issue with the place. The last 2 times I've arrived internationally, I've been landside with checked luggage in 35 minutes. Connecting there, as I understand it, is another matter entirely...

Worst:
CDG
ATH

US:

Best:
MCO (not much of a "gateway" I know, but have done a few London flights from there)
SFO

Worst:
LAX - Utter dump. T's 5,6 & 7 at least. Just nasty.
IAD - a mish-mash of narrow, poorly ventilated buildings. Constant state of construction - at least they're trying to improve things, unlike LAX...
MIA - Ghastly memories of 3hr waits at immigration. The airport itself is so so..

Mark
All my life, I've been kissing, your top lip 'cause your bottom one's missing

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