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In January, I will fly from Germany to the US, and will change from an international flight to a US domestic flight. On the way to the US, I have 3:20 hours at Newark (with change of terminal), and on the way back, I have 1:10 hours at Chicago ORD.

Are those times sufficient assuming that the flights are on time (United + Lufthansa)?

Further, is it correct that I have to retrieve and re-check my bag upon entering the US at Newark? Does the same apply for my change from domestic to international flight on my way back at ORD, or will the bag be checked through automatically?

  • Hi new user. Chicago is one of the "nightmare connections" in the USA, which is the land of "nightmare connections". There are many specific questions on here about it. You need to give the exact times of day, flights, terminals and so on. – Fattie Nov 22 '18 at 15:36
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Assuming your flights are on time, you should be fine. (If they're late and you miss the connection, you'll be put on the next available flight, so you'll still be fine, just delayed )

Immigration into the US can be slow, although if you're a German national you should be able to use the automated gates, which speed up things considerably. And yes, you will have to collect and recheck your bags.

On the way back, though, there are no immigration or Customs checks when leaving the US, so your bag will be transferred automatically and you can just walk directly from gate to gate. 1:10 should be sufficient for this, although ORD is a large airport and going between terminals will require a bus ride. (Be sure to take the one that stays inside security, so you avoid another round of TSA security checks!)

  • Their return connects at ORD, and will certainly require going between terminals. They should use the airside transfer bus to avoid having to clear security again. flychicago.com/ohare/myflight/connecting/pages/default.aspx – MJeffryes Nov 22 '18 at 12:38
  • @MJeffryes Oops, missed that part, thanks for catching! I'm not personally familiar with ORD, but good to hear the advice still applies. – jpatokal Nov 22 '18 at 12:56
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    For incoming int'l flights, baggage collection and recheck usually happens right inside the Customs area. – Giorgio Nov 22 '18 at 13:07
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    Does "United + Lufthansa" mean a single reservation? If so, then the answer is correct that OP must be put on the next available flight. But if the ticketing is separate...the answer is incorrect and the OP will be on his or her own if the connection fails. – David Nov 22 '18 at 16:21
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    To report back on my experiences: There was plenty of time at Newark, as my connecting flight was delayed by 12 hours.... However, there would have been enough time even without delays. Changing at ORD also was not a problem, I did not have to change terminals. – user3825755 Jan 21 at 14:23

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