I am travelling from New York City to Paris, with a seven-hour layover at Heathrow Airport. I would like to meet up with one of my close friends during the layover, but we will not be leaving the airport; we just want to grab a bite together in the terminal (pre-security). I have a few questions about this and would appreciate it if you could leave me some advice.
Flight information: JFK to LHR (seven-hour layover in LHR) LHR to CDG. All flights are under British Airways.
As I am a U.S. citizen, is it possible for me to meet my friend without buying a visa?
When I get off my flight and arrive at Heathrow, do I have to go through the "connections route" or just the "arrivals route"?
If I do meet my friend, do I have to go through security again?
How long does it usually take to pass through security, customs, etc. before arriving at my gate for the second flight (LHR to CDG)?
Do I have to pick up my luggage from the carousel or can I just leave it, since it will be going to the final destination?
Do I have to convert my money to use when I am outside of security (pre-security) if I want to buy a meal? Or do they accept USD?