Get to the
At the airport you have to be at least one hour before your time for flight. It is
recomended that passengers check in at least 60-90 minutes prior to their scheduled
Get a Good Start
The physical and/or emotional stress on the human body experienced by many air
travelers (whether it be excitement, fear, fatigue, nervousness or nausea) need
not be heightened because of missing or nearly missing a flight. Give yourself
peace of mind by preparing luggage and transportation logistics the night before.
Also, be sure an alarm is set, even if you are already wide awake. The alarm isn't
so much a reminder as it is a mental note to keep you focused on arriving on
time at the airport.
Calculating a time frame of how early to arrive for a flight is fairly straight
forward, yet highly variable. Quite simply, always allow more time than necessary.
If unsure, contact the airline directly via phone for first-hand information. Online
weather and map websites also provide good information for real-time updates of
variables that could affect your airport arrival time.
Distance from and type of transport to the airport, airport size, expected traffic
delays, the number and age of travelers; the quantity, size and type of checked
bags; physical condition; time and the day of the week; the destination; booking
method; security alert level and holidays should be universal considerations.
However, a common, generic time-frame is virtually impossible to predict.
Determining how early to arrive for a flight is less a matter of formulaic
consistency, than a matter of common sense.
Obviously, if the reservation is made by e-ticket, the traveler has no checked
bags and departs from Chicago to New York on a red-eye flight, he will normally
need far less time than a family of six with three checked bags, heading from
Chicago to Tokyo, on a Saturday during Christmas week.
All Things Considered
Logistics and other mainly avoidable variables aside, once entering the
airport doors, it's a good idea to allow 1 1/2 hours for domestic flights
and upwards of three hours for international departures. In most cases,
there will be time to spare, but arriving a little early assures that the
view will ultimately be downward from 15,000 feet instead of from the boarding
area, watching your plane take off.
Only Yourself to Blame (Usually)
According to Bureau of Transportation statistics gathered at the Research
and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA), in Washington D.C., airlines
have exhibited an approximate reliability rate of 75 percent in on-time departures,
between 1995 and 2009. In other words, if you do not allow enough time to arrive,
check in and clear security, three out of four passengers could realistically miss
their flights if arriving late to the airport.
for a Flight
Knowing how early to arrive for a flight comes down to a bit of research and
organization. Planning ahead is important, as is understanding that although
some things are nearly impossible to predict, most are avoidable. People
Answers to Other Common Questions
before a flight?
I would say 60-90 minutes.
before an internationa flight.
Answer 1 hour because they have to do lots of checks on your passport to make
sure that you are not a terrorist Answer Two hours before your flight leaves
is the recommended minimum. I fly International about 3 times a year so Yes
it is a chore.
for an international flight.
You should be there at least two hours before departure, incase you have any problems.
I usually arrive (pre-checked in, with carry on luggage only) 60
minutes before departure for U.S. flights and have never missed a
flight. Even with that timeline, I usually have 10 minutes to fritter
in the lounge.
Why did my wife
Your wife may have arrived at the airport early in order to avoid delays.