Atlanta Airport Question
We are getting ready for our return trip to CSA this weekend and read somewhere about some issues with the Atlanta airport and connecting international flights. Last time we came to Jamaica we had a direct flight..has anyone made a connection through Atlanta that can give us a run through. We are flying out of Ohio and have been told that we have to recheck our checked baggage and that it takes forever. Our layover isnt long so worried about making the flight.
I've heard bad stories, too. We connected in ATL last year, and had no problems. We landed in terminal A, had to fly out of terminal E, and only had 45 minutes between flights. We made it easliy, and still had time for a quick drink. Just as importantly, our bags made it too!
Originally Posted by tmiller45m
Hopefully we have the same luck this year. We have the same flights this Friday!
Also, you only need to claim and recheck your bags on your return flight. Because of that, and clearning customs and immigration on your return, you need to allow a much longer layover on the return.
If you are flying on code-sharing airlines, you shouldn't have to re-check luggage on the way to JA... however, on the way back, you MUST recheck after clearing Customs.
Last December we flew Delta from Dayton to Atlanta to Montego Bay (on a Saturday). Reversed the legs on the way back.
On the way down, we only had 43 minutes to make our connection in Atlanta. We were nervous. Our flight from Dayton gated at Atlanta's Concourse A; about as far from the international concourse (Concourse E) as possible. Made us more nervous. However, the train (aka APM or Automated People Mover) was very efficient and signs/directions were easy to follow. We made our connection on time but not a whole lot of time to spare. I breathed a sigh of relief as I looked out the window of the plane and saw all of our bags on the tarmac. They made it too even with only 43 minutes to get from one plane to the other. Note that on the way down, there is no "rechecking" of checked bags. Check them in Ohio and pick them up in Montego Bay.
Or return flight had a two hour layover in Atlanta (mid-afternoon). This was plenty of time to get through customs and immigration and get to our gate. You will get off your plane in Atlanta, go through immigration, then claim your bags that you checked in Montego bay, (this is where you can move any liquor purchased at MBJ from your carry-on to your checked bags...watch the weight limits). You will then proceed to customs. After being processed through customs you will be herded to an area to recheck your bags and continue on to your gate to get your connection. (At least I think immigration came first, then your bags, then customs.)
It's not that bad really. This was my first time through ATL on an international flight. My advice is to simply watch the signs and listen to directions given by the immigration/customs personnel and everything should run smoothly for you. I would feel comfortable with 2 hours for a return flight layover in Atlanta for the customs/immigration process.
thanks everyone for the replies- cant wait to get to csa this weekend.
I have been through Atlanta plenty of times and while the place is huge, the tram helps you get to your gate on time. As stated, you will have quite the distance to the International terminal but you WILL make it.
Our group of 8 arrive at 11:19 Sat the 17th, we will try to save a red stripe for ya ! see you soon
Tom and Cherrie from PA
Atlanta may be big, but is very well set up and you move fast from terminal. It is one of the best airports around. We had less than hour layover last year and everything went great. All our bags were in MBJ with us.
Tom, there better be plenty of redstrip and miller lite left..other wise looks like ill be drinking with the rastas down the road. haha