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So I'm traveling to Prague and I have some very short layovers...

Currently, it's looking like I have a 96-minute layover in IAD, and then a 75-minute layover in VIE, before flying onto Prague.

On the way back, I have a 105-minute layover in Brussels, before flying back to the US.

Are these layovers doable?

  • To add, the flight is originating in Albany, New York, and will be on United Airlines and Austrian Airlines. – Sarah Dec 24 '17 at 16:42
  • It's your luggage booked all the way through? For those airports, the connection is probably doable if you don't need to pick up and check in hold luggage – Rory Alsop Dec 24 '17 at 16:43
  • It's all on one ticket, so yes, it should be booked all the way through. I'm not sure about VIE, however, as I was told that's where I'd go through passport control. I'm not sure if that's where I'd also go through customs, as well. – Sarah Dec 24 '17 at 16:46
  • In Europe you usually do not go through customs at an airport in the middle of your travel, you do so at the end of the journey, so in Prague. – Willeke Dec 24 '17 at 16:53
  • Willeke, thank you for clearing that up for me. Much appreciated! – Sarah Dec 24 '17 at 17:00
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It's all on one ticket

Yes, it is doable and highly likely because the airline/airports involved have determined that it is. Otherwise, they would not have sold this routing.

When necessary, they also account for border clearance between flights.

If you'd like to do further reading, you can search on 'minimum connection time' to find all sorts of rules and stories on the subject.

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It's not in the airline's interests to sell an impossible routing. Missed connections not only inconviniance passengers, they also cost airlines money.

OTOH if they make the minimum connections too long then airlines/airports will lose buisness to other routes.

The result is that the advertised minimum connection times are times that are possible if everything goes well but don't leave a whole lot of margin for things to go wrong (e.g. delayed flights, long queues for security or immigration, getting sent to secondary at immigration).

What I would look at is what the options look like if you do miss your connection. What do the possibilities look like for later flights? Would you rather take your chances on a short connection that will get you there quicker if it works but leave you hoping for a seat on a later flight if it doesn't or book a confirmed seat on a later flight?

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