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All You Need To Know About Flight Connections

People prefer direct flights when travelling whether it is for business or a holiday. But there are plenty of places that require you to make flight connections to reach your destination. Connecting flights most often mean longer travelling time. The thought of a close transfer can make even the most experienced of traveller’s break out into a cold sweat. Lost luggage, a tense hike through kilometres of the airport, crowded monorails, lethargic shuttle buses, and the ultimate nightmare of missing a flight.

Map

Unless you travel from one big airport to another, flight connections will be a part of your journey for sure. Though eliminating the risk is not possible, you can always mitigate the risk. Read on to know more about flight connections.

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How do you make sure you get the flight connection?

Here are a few tips to make sure you get your connecting flight

  1. Know the least amount of time you need to make a flight connection time at the airport
  2. Travel on one ticket when you need to take a connecting flight
  3. Make sure you choose a single airline for both flights or an alliance of the first airline.
  4. Avoid two-ticket trips when you are taking a connecting flight
  5. Keep a buffer in your schedule.
  6. Avoid last-minute flights or flight connections.
  7. Pick the right airport hub to make your connection.
Chica con equipaje en aeropuerto
Trying to make a flight connection 

What are flight connections?

Connecting flights offer a one-stop service from nearly anywhere to anywhere else in the world. These flight connections are often required when the place you plan to reach is not close to a large airport or the town is not big enough to maintain a big airport. These connecting flights can be through the same airline or different airlines based on the routes you plan to travel. 

How do flight connections work?

Generally, if you are on an internal flight, once you land for your stopover, you will pass through the transfer area that will take you to the gate for your next flight where check-in is not required. Your bags will be passed on to the next flight without you having to pick them.

Waiting lounge where you can wait to catch your flight connections

Most often passengers either disembark from their current flight to take the flight connection or remain seated in the aircraft, while others disembark from the aeroplane. In cases where the connecting flight is one another airline or another terminal, passengers must go through a security and baggage check once again before you get on board the connecting flight to reach your destination.

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Is security check required for a flight connection?

Yes, a security check is mandatory when you take a connecting flight. This is because there is a time lag between getting off one aeroplane and getting on-board another to reach your destination. Also, called layovers, at times you have a chance to sit in the lounge, go outside and buy something before you embark on your journey again.

Security Check at the airport

How much time should you have between flight connections?

Typically, with an internal flight the time between flight connections can be half an hour to one hour, and for international flights, it may be one hour to three hours or more. Quite often, you are making a connection where the gates are next to each other or near avoid any missed flights.

However, you must make sure you have enough time to traverse from one gate to another for flights on the same airline or on different airlines. If the airport is quite big then ensure you have enough buffer time to get through security check and X-ray before you board the next flight.

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Will the connecting flight wait?

Make sure you have enough time between flight connections. However, if your first flight is delayed by a few minutes, then the airline may arrange for the connecting flight to wait a few minutes longer before closing the gates. Otherwise, passengers will be re-booked on to later flights. Help during the “layover” is ensured whatever happens.

What happens to check luggage if you miss a flight connection?

If you’ve missed a connecting flight and your luggage has been checked, it will likely go on without you — so your suitcase may be en route to the Bahamas while you’re stuck in a chilly airport in Delhi. Not just eleventh-hour travellers, but at times those waiting for 3 hours at the airport could miss their flight too. This could happen due to circumstances beyond your control, such as problems at the security check, or bad weather conditions.

Checked luggage on a flight
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Missing a Connecting flight with the same Airline:

If you miss your connecting flight that is booked with the same airline as your first flight due to a late take off or technical issues with the airline, then it is the airline’s duty to re-book you on the next available flight. If the next available flight is the next day, then the airline may book you on another flight or offer accommodations till your next flight. However, these services are voluntary and not mandated by the law.

Missing a Connecting flight with the different airline:

If you miss your connecting flight on another airline because of a delay in the first airline, then the second airline is not responsible if you miss the flight. It essentially means you are on your own, though the airline staff may help you re-book another flight.

How to select flights on Skyscanner?

Plan your trip or holiday with Skyscanner. Use everywhere search to get an idea about flights to different destinations. Choose the destination you wish to travel to and the kind of flight you want. Select Direct if you are looking for the shortest flight time. You can select or deselect the type of flights from direct, 1 flight connection or 2+ connections. 

How to select/deselect flight connections

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