I am going to Tunisia in January, I fly with Lufthansa from Manchester airport stopping in Frankfurt for 50 minutes connecting to another Lufthansa flight and then onward to Carthage in Tunis.

My question is, what do I do in Frankfurt? Do I check in again? What happens with my luggage, is it automatically transferred to the next plane or do I have to get it? I'm concerned as I've never had a connecting flight before. I booked my flights through an agent who has issued me with a an E-Ticket and all the details of each flight (including the connecting one) are all on the same ticket.

Or would I not change planes, with only having 50 minutes, would I get back on the same plane?

  • Hi Emma, I assume you're on a British passport? It shouldn't matter, but we like to clarify all the details on here.
    – Mark Mayo
    Commented Nov 17, 2014 at 22:40
  • hi, sorry, yes british with british passport :) Commented Nov 17, 2014 at 22:45
  • 2
    Simple rule, when you get the tag for the luggage during check-in, it will show the final destination for it. Usually all flights in one ticket have the luggage handled till the last stop, unless government rules require you to pass through immigration/customs, such as USA. Commented Nov 17, 2014 at 22:47
  • ok, thank you for replying, much appreciated, i get a bit panicky when i have to do something ive never done before! ;) Commented Nov 17, 2014 at 22:49
  • hopefully!!! i'm really looking forward to this trip so i dont want any trouble if i can help it ;) Commented Nov 17, 2014 at 22:53

2 Answers 2


The key point for your question is all on one ticket. This is generally the easiest type of connection to have. What will happen is:

  1. In Manchester you check in. Unless there are special circumstances[1] your bags will be checked in for the entire trip and you will receive the entire trip’s boarding passes. (Same applies if you use online check-in and luggage drop-off.) You go through Manchester airport,[2] board your plane and fly to Frankfurt.

  2. In Frankfurt when you arrive, you need to follow the signs for flight connections (Anschlussflüge, iirc).

    1. You luggage has been checked for the entire flight. Frankfurt airport ground staff will make sure that it moves on to Carthage without you needing to do anything.

    2. You will need to make your way to your next plane’s gate. If I am informed correctly,[3] you don’t need to go through any passport controls. Your incoming flight is from outside the Schengen area and your outgoing flight will also go outside the Schengen area. Both of your flights — being Lufthansa and extra-Schengen — should arrive and leave from the B gates, making transferring slightly easier.[4]

  3. Finally, your second flight arrives in Carthage, you get off, clear immigration, collect your luggage and clear customs.

By the way: you can download an airport guide and a transfer guide from Frankfurt airport’s webpages.


[1]: ‘Special circumstances’ typically applies to long, overnight layovers for which you would want to access your checked luggage and re-check it the next day. Not applicable to your layover of one hour.

[2]: You do not need to pass exit immigration. But since Manchester is not part of this question, this is just a footnote.

[3]: Caveat: I never actually transferred from non-Schengen to non-Schengen in Frankfurt; I always had a Schengen leg. But everything I read on the airports website seems to say that my assumption is correct.

[4]: Even though there are no systematic controls, an official may (randomly) be present at the gate to perform a (somewhat less thorough) check of documents, as noted by phoog.

  • 1
    There's no exit control when leaving the UK; airlines pass information to the UKBF, but the passport is not checked by immigration officials. You are correct that there is no regular immigration control in Frankfurt for those transferring between external flights, but officials sometimes meet travelers at the gate and examine their passports (somewhat less thoroughly).
    – phoog
    Commented Sep 28, 2016 at 15:53

I tried checking the website for Frankfurt's airport but all it says is:

In most cases, your bags will be forwarded to your final destination. Please inquire when checking in to make sure this is the case, while mentioning that you are only changing planes in Frankfurt. A sufficient number of luggage carts are available in both terminals.

Generally speaking though if you fly with the same company, your connecting flights are on the same booking, and are transiting in an airport with an "international area" (i.e. airports outside the USA, for example) then the luggage should be forwarded on the connecting flight without you having to touch it.

Just to be on the safest side possible, though, you might want to call Lufthansa and ask. They will definitely know since Frankfurt is their main hub. You can also verify upon chech-in by looking at your checked-in luggage tags: they should be stamped with the final destination airport.

On a different note, and I am not saying this to scare you, consider that a 50 minutes layover might be short for handling luggage between international connecting flights. Therefore, keep in mind that your suitcase might arrive to Carthage on the following flight, and pack a change of clothes in your carry-on. ;)

  • So if my luggage ends up on the next flight that's seriously inconvenient considering were I'm staying is nearly a 4 hour drive away! I hope this doesn't happen....thanks all for your answers and advice 😊 Commented Nov 30, 2014 at 11:04
  • @emmahorkins Once again, not to scare you but to be realistic, this type of inconvenience happens very often. The fact that the same company is handling both flights should increase the chances of your luggage getting there on time. From my personal experience though I would say: be prepared. :)
    – JoErNanO
    Commented Nov 30, 2014 at 15:34

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