I have a United Airlines domestic flight from O'Hare airport at 8pm (Thursday in September if it matters) and I want to know how early I need to arrive. I need to check luggage and also I think with Basic Economy ticket I can't check in online. Is two hours enough or should I arrive three hours before the flight?

  • 1
    What makes you think you can't check in online with Basic Economy? Online check-in saves money for the airline so I'd be really surprised if they restrict it in any way. Jul 14, 2017 at 19:09
  • @NateEldredge: thepointsguy.com/2017/06/…
    – Giorgi
    Jul 14, 2017 at 19:28
  • That says it only applies to people who are not checking luggage. You say you are checking luggage. Of course, you will need to go to the counter to drop off your checked luggage, but you can still check in online for the flight and print your boarding pass at home. Jul 14, 2017 at 19:38
  • @NateEldredge: Yes, that's right but some of us won't have any luggage to check
    – Giorgi
    Jul 14, 2017 at 19:58
  • You'll be traveling around rush hour in Chicago, so the main issue is not so much how early you need to get to the airport; it's how early you need to leave to ensure that you don't miss your flight due to traffic on the Kennedy Expressway. Jul 14, 2017 at 22:09

2 Answers 2


Two hours is sufficient. I've always done two hours for domestic and maybe two and half for international.


It's personal preference you need to think about the time of your flight, the day of your flight. It may be leaving off time so it would be busy but I recommend you at least have 1 hour and 45 mins of spare time and get to the airport 3 hours before your flight

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