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Work trip to Las Vegas

Old 27th Sep 2012, 12:12
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Join Date: Aug 2008
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Work trip to Las Vegas

Hi all. After my last error in judgement in booking my flight to Frankfurt Hahn, I thought i'd come and get a little advice before booking my next trip.

I am shortly due to fly to Las Vegas for a week long work trip (try telling the wife that it's all work though!!) and will soon be booking the flights. In an ideal world i'd book a non stop flight but looking at the BA and Virgin prices they are very expensive compared to some of the US carriers who stop in the U.S. on-route.

When I went last year I flew (I think) American Airlines and got a return for around 750 with an hour long stop in Chicago. Not the best legroom i've ever had on the hop over the pond but the internal flight was very comfy.

Any recommendations on carrier for people who have done this before? I don't mind a single stop but not wanting any more than that. I'll be travelling Economy so legroom, IFE and the wait for the transfer in the U.S. are all important. Looking online, KLM operate flights on the dates I want and are well priced. I've never used them before so any advice will be much appreciated.

Just had a look at KLM long haul reviews and if they're anything to go on, maybe i'll not be choosing KLM due to the hard seats and ageing IFE systems

Last edited by Pilotinmydreams; 27th Sep 2012 at 12:23.
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 12:23
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At the moment I would avoid AA as there is a dispute on that has caused problems.
Delta I think are the best of the US airlines.
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 12:23
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Work trip to Las Vegas

United via Chicago has worked for me in the past. I would still rather get a direct flight, though!
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 14:18
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KLM doesn't fly to Las Vegas. I had a quick look at their website and they offer either connections at a US gateway with Delta, or Delta operated connecting flights with the KL code on them. Neither offer non-stops AMS-LAS.

Beware if you are checking luggage, KL have had some problems recently connecting via Schiphol.
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 14:25
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A one hour stop in Chicago is way too short as you will have to clear immigration and collect your bags. personally I never accept less than 2.5hrs transit time in the US and if things go well then I have plenty of time for a cold beer or a coffee.
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 14:28
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The following airlines fly to both London and Vegas. Any other airline means more than 1 stop in each direction, whatever a booking system may claim

BA
Virgin
Air Berlin
American
Delta
United
US Airways
Air Canada

Last edited by davidjohnson6; 27th Sep 2012 at 17:16.
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 15:29
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Have a look at AC, you would connect at Toronto and clear US customs there which, reportedly can be better than clearing at a US gateway. You don't have to enter Canada either. Hopefully their prices would be competitive as well.
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 15:56
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May be to far for you to go, but Virgin fly direct from Manchester and Thomas Cook have a weekly charter.
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 16:18
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Work trip to Las Vegas... you lucky bugger! What a sexy industry we work in, eh?
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 16:21
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Yeah - kind of a hard one to sell to the wife I have to admit. I went last year and found Vegas is great if you have a stack of cash that you don't mind throwing away. For those of us on more limited means it just looks like a bloody expensive place to hang out for a week!
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 21:06
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Have done it with Virgin Premium Economy, a long flight at 10h 45min ish and at the moment Virgin are upgrading the IFE system. Our 747 hadn't been updated and it was crap!!!!
I have also done it with United, once via Newark & once via Houston.

If I was to do it again then I would do United via a USA city. I booked economy seats & then upgraded to their economy plus. Same service but extra leg room which is worth it. A small price to pay for comfort.
By stopping off then you get to have a walk around, stretch your legs etv whilst clearing US Customs. Also means that when you get to Vegas then you have no Customs as it is an internal flight.
Would agree with the 2.5hrs transfer. The time soon flies by the time you land, taxy in, get off plane, go through customs, pick up your case to transfer, find your new gate etc.

Enjoy your trip. Jealous!!!!
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 21:50
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Go non stop even if it does cost more.

1) For all their failings BA and VS are better than any US based airline unless you happen to choose AC in Business which I am assured is good.
2) Your stress level is reduced; get on at origin, get off at destination. No messing around having to rush through an intermediate airport wondering if you'll make the connection.
3) Bear in mind I like flying - I still enjoy going to the airport and getting on that big metal bird despite all the fuss. BUT. Landing and Take Off are the 2 riskiest bits of the process. Why expose yourself more than you need to?
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 23:16
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Have a look at AC, you would connect at Toronto and clear US customs there which, reportedly can be better than clearing at a US gateway. You don't have to enter Canada either. Hopefully their prices would be competitive as well.
Not exactly true. You would still have to clear Canadian immigration and customs upon landing in Toronto, then proceed to connections where you would clear US immigration and customs in Toronto. This means you will arrive in Las Vegas as a domestic passenger and so will be much quicker to get out the airport there.

However, it is an option to consider.
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Old 28th Sep 2012, 08:03
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Agree that not all connections to the US at Toronto can be made without Canadian Border Controls. But AC connections at Terminal 1 are the exception.

From the AC website:

International flight to the U.S. - connecting through Toronto

Take the escalator down one level and turn immediately left. You are not required to clear Canada Customs and Immigration formalities when connecting to the U.S. However, you must still meet all entry regulations set by Canada Customs and Immigration, including any transit visa requirements.

Take the escalator up one level to the U.S. Connection Hall and pick up your baggage (have bag tag receipts ready for presentation prior to entering the U.S. Customs Hall). To make your travel experience as seamless as possible, complimentary luggage carts are provided at the baggage claim area. Ensure all duty-free purchases containing liquids and gels are placed in checked baggage. Have all documentation in hand and ensure all applicable forms have been completed. Proceed to U.S. Customs and Immigration and drop off checked baggage. Continue through Security to your departure gate.
Most Europeans do not need a visa (or a visa waiver) to enter/transit Canada.
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Old 29th Sep 2012, 14:24
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Avoid Chicago like the plague. Not that I am told that JFK, EWR or MIA are really any better. The best one I've found for getting reasonably quickly through immigration is PHX.

Or go to Dublin, clear US customs and immigration there and then take internal flights in the US.
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Old 29th Sep 2012, 14:26
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We had a company shindig in Scottsdale (Phoenix) some years ago. When it was announced, I could see there were likely to be a lot of European managers catching the direct BA flight from LHR, so I nipped down to the travel desk and booked my seat. A few days later, an announcement came out that we'd got a bulk deal from United, so everyone was to travel with them via ORD. I waved my non-refundable BA ticket at them and said 'sorry, guys'.

Of course, on the way back there was severe weather at Chicago (what were the odds, in November?) and many of my colleagues were marooned there for 24 hours. Rule 1 - fly direct whenever possible.
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Old 1st Oct 2012, 09:43
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You might want to investigate flying non-stop to LAX, and then getting a cheap ticket on Southwest Airlines for LAX-LAS. LHR-LAX is a more competitive route, and hence airfares tend to be lower and there are more flights. LAX-LAS is also competitive, and the distance is very short.
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Old 1st Oct 2012, 13:43
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I have used US Airways LGW to Charlotte then change onto their domestic flight to Vegas, same Terminal and the immigration process was relatively efficient (at least compared to NY), couple of hours in Charlotte if I recall. It was a lot cheaper than VS direct which I have also used, however it stretches your total travel time out by 3-4 hours. The return is the killer, you have to get a very early flight out of Vegas in order to make the connection back in charlotte for the LGW flight, whereas the VS is a late afternoon departure.
Depends how much the price difference is but I know the new BA route they are pushing a lot of special offers.
Enjoy Vegas and hope you get a good Hotel. Such a great place.
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Old 25th Oct 2012, 12:22
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Managed in the end to book a United flight from Heathrow to Calgary and then on to Vegas with a lay over of about 4 hours. I understand that the flight to Calgary is operated by Air Canada who I see have mixed reviews. I'll be keeping my fingers crossed that I have a good experience - i'll report back on my return.
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Old 25th Oct 2012, 19:20
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6 Days Im going DUB-LGW-LAS with Virgin in PE. Just over a 10 hour flight and it get into Vegas at 1430 local time so at least you have a good portion of the day before you collapse.

Virgin is upgrading the LGW 747 fleet, currently having 5 out of 7 done so the chances of a refurbished aircraft are quiet good.

Stay away from US airways, crap service, crap planes, crap crap!

If you have the choice and are going business, my vote is for United, even better if you can find the old Continental routes using their aircraft. Lie flat beds, great service and I think they do LHR-SFO/LAX direct, then its an hour to LAS.


Then after all that, I saw OP's reply. AC is quite good.

Last edited by airbourne; 25th Oct 2012 at 19:20.
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