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I am slated to fly on UNited from CCU-DXB-EWR-ORD-DSM. The CCU-DXB is on Emirates (EK). The connection at EWR is too tight for my taste (1:23, I am surprised UA gave me a ticket on this connection). So, I would like to consider CCU-DEL-EWR-ORD-DSM. The CCU-DEL leg would be on Air India (AI) or Vistara. All other flights are on United metal. Would a SDC (same day change) be possible here? Thanks!

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    what did the airline say when you called them and asked?
    – mlc
    Jul 8, 2023 at 2:23
  • My date of travel is not till in a few days, so I don't think I can do it. I have also read that SDC changes depend on who you get on the phone, so I thought knowing how things work before i make my call would be more useful for me. Jul 8, 2023 at 2:30
  • SDC doesn't seem to be doing anything even for me as 1k premier member. The few times I tried there was never any availability and the terms seems no different from any other change. Your best bet is to go on the website right now and price out the change. If you are lucky it's the same cost or even cheaper. If it's more expensive SDC won't help.
    – Hilmar
    Jul 8, 2023 at 11:40

2 Answers 2

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No. Same-day change is only available on United-Metal flights.

Once you are in the air on the first leg you might be able to use Same-day change change the later flights (using the United App), although given your itinerary it's unlikely that any alternatives will be available.

1 hour 23 minutes is a tight connection, but it's also very doable depending on the queues at immigration - especially if you are a US citizen, and even more so if you have no check baggage. If you do miss-connect in Newark, United will move you to a later flight to get you to your final destination.

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    I don't get the purpose of the SDC. How is this different from any other change? You are still on the hook for the fare difference and United has waived almost all change fess. They seem to imply that they wave price differences in the same fare class, but I though prices within a fare class don't move.. If they want to raise the price they close K fares and the price moves up to L fares.
    – Hilmar
    Jul 8, 2023 at 11:38
  • @Hilmar Sounds like a new question to me. However the simple answer is that there are no fare differences with SDC, as well as no advance purchase requirements/etc.
    – Doc
    Jul 9, 2023 at 14:26
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In your shoes, unless you really have to get to Des Moines on that specific day, I would do nothing and try my luck with the connection they've given you.

If you're lucky, you'll make the connection, although I agree 1:23 is awfully tight for an international to domestic transfer anywhere in the US. If you're not, United is responsible for getting you to DSM by some other route, and there should be plenty of possible connections from a major airport like EWR — although depending on time of arrival etc etc you might get delayed by up to a day.

Also bear in mind that regardless of what flights you originally book, you do have four (!) connections you need to make along the way, so it would be wise to allow some buffer in your plans in case something does go wrong along the way.

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    I've made international to domestic connections in less than 30 minutes. Of course that only works with Global Entry, no checked luggage and TSAPre Check :-)
    – Hilmar
    Jul 8, 2023 at 12:07

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