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Seattle (Seatac) airport connection time.....

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Just looking at booking flights for this year. I'm given an option on flight waiting times. I'm flying in with Aerlingus (can't find any terminal info) and out with Air Alaska. I'm assuming I've got to clear immigration and pick up/check in luggage. Time between arrival and flight leaving is either 1hr30 or 3hrs10. One and a half hours feels on the verge of being tight, I assume gate closes 20 minutes before flight, allow 10 minutes for baggage claim, leaves an hour for clearing immigration, changing terminal(?), check in etc.

Anyone been through Seatac and have a view?
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
One of the terminals at Seatac has an unbelievably tedious system with baggage whereby you pick it up from the baggage claim. In order to exit the airport you have to take a transit monorail thing and you are encouraged not to take bags on that. Instead you put your bags on a conveyer and they are driven over to the exit area and you pick them up again from another baggage conveyer.

I once waited 2 hours for some skis to show up on this second conveyer because apparently they only drive over outsize luggage when the trolley is full and that’s how long it took for it to fill up

So... see if you’re affected by this and plan accordingly. Maybe there is something simpler for transferring passengers?

Last time I went I just brazened it out with my bags on the transit
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Take the 3hr slot.
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You need to Login to know who's really who.
Take the three hour slot and it will still be very tight. . SeaTac is a disaster zone.

I've flown through SeaTac twice this year. Both times have been a disaster. Security lines are the worst I have seen, think 45 mins to over an hour; literally unbelievable. Only way round this is to pay for some app. Then the airport is so busy that a lot of flights are delayed. First time there were two of us, my colleague flying to Seattle. He had a 6 hr delay. I had a 1 hr 40 min connection in Vancouver and I only just made it. Second time. My flight was delayed around 2 hrs because the incoming flight had arrived on time, but did not get allocated a gate and sat on tarmac waiting for over an hour. My collegue flying to Vancouver on a later flight, just had his flight cancelled. My SLC colleague had a 4 hr delay. Then the line to take off is ridiculous. I did notice that they gave Alaska priority though and none of us were flying Alaska. But that doesn't help you, your incoming could be delayed for gate allocation and your outgoing could be on time.

Honestly, I don't think 3 hrs is enough...………….and if there is a longer option, more like 4 or 5 I would go for that. In short its a S**t show. If you can avoid Seattle even bettter

I am surprised if anything gets in to seattle on time
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Though if they are code sharing and you can't get through they might put you on a later flight.
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You'll need to Register first of course.
It's a code share flight, I'm pretty sure there's a later flight out to spokane a couple of hours later. I might go with he 3hr and if there's a problem get the later one.

Thanks chaps
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Thinking about tit though, both times I flew into Seattle, we arrived on time. Suspect arriving ealry morning is less congested that the afternoon
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
This looks like my account! I've flown in and out of SEA hundreds of times, and I've found it to be pretty good with a few exceptions of course. We've all had a bad experience at some airport; its hard to draw solid conclusions from a small sample. But this much is easy: take the 3 hour slot. 1.5 hours is pushing it no matter what airport you are considering, especially for an international arrival. You'd need everything to go your way: gate availability, weather and traffic where your connection aircraft is coming from and going to, etc. You could also get unlucky and have a 747 or two arrive when you do, slowing the customs process. As for riding a subway at an airport, that's both typical and necessary at a large airport, and at SEA there is no prohibition from taking bags from international arrivals to the main terminal on it. It is not difficult at all. Some posters have complained of long wait times at security or the take-off line. This can and does happen everywhere.....
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
I was there in June and the immigration was very slow (to be fair two other planes had just landed). The worst bit however was that they took 30 minutes to find a way to open the door off the air-bridge (I kid you not)!

3hr slot and cross your fingers
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
If it's all on one ticket then they have to get you to your final destination and wouldn't let you book a connection that they didn't think makeable. So if you miss the first one, they have to put you on the next.

If it's two tickets, well then it's on your own dime if you miss the connection and 3 hours is still sounding a little tight. Depends on how much a flight to Spokane will cost you I guess.
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Sea Tac isn't that big but yeah the baggage system inbound seemed pretty stupid. Fun fact - stood next to William Hague & Ffffion at the carousel last time I was there about 10 years ago.

Oh for those simpler days when you could be in the vicinity of a Tory politician without the violent urge to decapitate them...... and what a political giant he was relative to the current shower...
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Only been through Seattle once, on that basis I'd say take the 3hr slot, took nearly 2 hrs to clear immigration, as they had 2 flights from Asia in as well, with only one lady trying to make them understand what they had to do. This seemed common place as no one was fazed by it. Baggage wise wasn't a problem, collect and drop off again in the same terminal.

One airport you can routinely get through quickly is Portland, usually around 30 mins max to clear and get to your gate Madeye-Smiley The place is great for clearing immigration and onward flights.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Well, I have been flying in and out of Seattle for over 35 years. I used to fly almost weekly, and have flown in and out of the int'l terminal quite a bit. I've had all sorts of experiences. The best was a flight from Shanghai to SEA on Delta. I was in business class, so was one of the first off. No checked bags. In and out in less than 30 minutes. On ski trips though, with the checked bags, you are going to wait. Especially if there are multiple flights arriving at the same time. Late morning can be bad, so can early evenings. They have done some automation of the passport screening process that has helped to speed up the process somewhat. Of course as a US citizen, you get a bit faster service with the passport control. You will have to pick up your bags after they go through customs, and then put them bag on the conveyor belt to be picked up after you hop on the monorail. Sadly SEA TSA aren't so great for screening and long lines are common. Good luck. It will be what it is, and you just have to have some patience when flying international. Heck, I've flown in and out of LHR quite often and have missed connecting international flights and have had ski bags miss connections going to mainland Europe multiple times, but I attribute some of that to BA bufoonery! But they always paid up when I submitted receipts for ski rentals and the bags always arrived the next day.
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