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Johannesburg to Orlando (MCO) via Abu Dhabi & Chicago (ORD)

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Johannesburg to Orlando (MCO) via Abu Dhabi & Chicago (ORD)

Hi there,

Hoping some travel experts can help me with some advice on my first trip to the US!

I'm flying Etihad from Johannesburg via Abu Dhabi to Chicago (ORD) and then due to catch an American Airlines flight from Chicago to Orlando. They are 2 separate tickets. My questions:

1. Can I check my baggage all the way through to Orlando from JHB?

2. If I can check it all the way through do I still have to physically collect the bag in Chicago and drop it at the AA counter in T5 before transferring to T3

3. If I can't check it all the way from JHB can I check in at the AA counter in T5 before transferring to T3?

4. On my return flight from Orlando can I check my bag all the way through to JHB - or will I have to collect and re-check at the Etihad counter at ORD?

thanks in advance for any welcomed advice!

Seattle, Washington
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1. Re: Johannesburg to Orlando (MCO) via Abu Dhabi & Chicago (ORD)

1. No, you'll have to pick up your bag, clear customs at ORD, then recheck for your AA flight. You'll have to pay a checked bag fee for that flight, unless you have status that gives you a free bag, or you are flying in F.

2. See above

3. You can check your bag at any AA counter

4. You should be able to check your bag all the way through on your return flight.

I hope you allowed plenty of time between these flights, since you are traveling on two separate tickets.

Edited: 29 July 2014, 16:56
Romford, United...
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2. Re: Johannesburg to Orlando (MCO) via Abu Dhabi & Chicago (ORD)

Why did you purchase two separate tickets when AA is a codeshare partner?

Portland, Oregon
Destination Expert
for Air Travel
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27,994 posts
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3. Re: Johannesburg to Orlando (MCO) via Abu Dhabi & Chicago (ORD)

I hope you allowed plenty of time between these flights, since you are traveling on two separate tickets.

======

Indeed -

tripadvisor.com/Travel-g41707-c207311/Newton…

Also, if you're traveling economy, don't forget that American charges baggage fees and, because your AA flights are separately ticketed, you'd be liable for those fees.

Just one point --- "1. No, you'll have to pick up your bag, clear customs at ORD" ----- There is now Preclearance at AUH so there'll be no Customs on arrival at ORD. But you'd still have to collect your bags there as ORD is the final destination on that ticket.

Edited: 29 July 2014, 17:13
Romford, United...
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4. Re: Johannesburg to Orlando (MCO) via Abu Dhabi & Chicago (ORD)

I do hope that your flight from JNB is one of those flights that arrives in the time frame that allows you to pre-clear INS/Customs at AUH otherwise you will need at least 3hrs minimum to clear INS/Customs/transfer to T3 from T5 and because you have separate ticket ORD-MCO if you miss it, you may open up a whole new can of grief

Nashville, TN
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5. Re: Johannesburg to Orlando (MCO) via Abu Dhabi & Chicago (ORD)

Note on question point 4; If you are also on separate tickets on your return flight, you will probably need to pick up your bags at your transfer point and recheck them in with Etihad.

Whether or not they are checked all the way through is at the discretion of the ticket counter agents. They have been getting stricter on this and there's a good chance they will only be checked as far as the final destination on the individual ticket, not your final destination.

Edited: 29 July 2014, 19:11
6. Re: Johannesburg to Orlando (MCO) via Abu Dhabi & Chicago (ORD)

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