8 Things to Consider Before Booking Flight Tickets to USA ( from India )

In this article, I will walk through some of the challenges you could run into with your flight reservations, if you don’t pay close attention to your tickets, routes, connection times and baggage allowance.

I took a set of questions about flight reservations and explained the various scenarios you could encounter and what can be done to avoid them.

Question 1 :  I am trying to book my flight to Wichita. My dates of recommended arrival is First Week of January. I tried all the dates that I can book. The best offer is INR 45,000 in Make Makemytrip for Lufthansa 2 hauls.  I tried going to Lufthansa website itself for even cheaper rates, but flights were not available in their website. Will it be cheaper if we can directly contact airlines and get a deal?

Sometimes, airlines give the same fare they offer travel agents. But, with Lufthansa I doubt you will see the same low fare from agent. Jet airways and Emirates have low fares on their website.

Question 2 : For lufthansa my Port of Entry will be Denver. Is it OK?

Denver as Port of Entry is not a problem.  In fact, your port of entry can be different and most cases you have to get a connecting flight within USA.

Question 3 : The connection time between landing in Denver and next  flight is check in time is 2 hrs and 40 mins. Will it be sufficient for Port of Entry procedures?

2 hours and 40 minutes between connecting flight at port of entry will be good time to clear your immigration and customs. Denver airport will not be as busy as New York, Atlanta or other major airports. But, when traveling first time to USA, try to have atleast 3 hours between the connecting lights at port of entry in USA.

Question 4 : And If my miss my connection flight will I get another one for free?

If you miss the connecting flight, they will book you in the next available flight.

Next available flight could be same day or next day. Please DO  NOT book flight tickets where you have to change airports to for the connecting flight.

Such instances can happen when you have transit in London and New York (JFK, LGA, EWR).

Question 5 : Also, for further inquiries after booking, should I contact Lufthansa or makemytrip? The makemytrip staff are not good in customer care. Most of them only know Hindi and not English. I had experiences with ’em.

It’s unlikely you would have to contact them again. But, if in case you have to change the schedule, you have to contact the agent where ticket was booked. If you book the ticket via Make My Trip and call Lufthansa to reschedule, they will ask you to contact Makemytrip.

If you have any questions related to baggage, flight timings, ticket confirmation, you can contact Lufthansa (or their website)

Also, if you can give some tips and caution while booking flights, it will be good.

Question 6 : I tried booking a ticket via BA.COM, they charge 46439 INR. They assure no baggage check in charges and also a backup connection flight if we miss the first one due to POE procedures and BA delays.The same deal when taken with makemytrip.com comes with 43890 INR with baggage free check in at the US domestic flight not guaranteed (they told to contact BA), also the connection flight is not guaranteed if we miss it.

So is it the same flight that BA.COM offered me with assurances (the date of flights and arrivals are same) or will it be different one charging me for checking in when at the US? Can we trust makemytrip.com or will they dumb us with checking in charges and no backup connection flights?

If they book the complete complete travel under single reservation, you will not have any problems. There are few travel agents who have no clue about problems international travelers will encounter.

They might book separate ticket for domestic. So, your international ticket is not connected to USA domestic flight. Try to avoid such booking.

Even in that case, if you miss the flight they put you on next available flight. But, you might end up paying for baggage fees within USA.

Question 7 : Jet airways has an offer to the students (Edujetter kit), we can take 3 bags of 23kgs. However, it is connected by United airlines. In the United Air website they state they charge for every checked in baggage. So will it be mere loss if we are charged checking in for 3 bags ? I found an offer of 42013 for Jet airways at makemytrip.com, but in the jet airways website, the minimum is 112000.

I usually don’t believe in the fare quoted in makemytrip.com. Call them or chat with them to get the exact fare. Often, when you click on the quoted fare, it will show increased fare. I have purchased tickets from them, but through phone or via chat.

Tip – you can bargain for ticket proce with Make My Trip. So, use your haggling skills to get lower ticket price. But, don’t expect great customer service from them.

Question 8 : Do we need a transit UK visa for our connection at london which will take 3hrs time. VFS said we need transit Visa if the Terminal is going to change at London. Also, do we need a transit visa when connecting at Brussels with same connection time.

Additional Air Travel Tips

I have traveled via Brussels (Jet Airways) and transit visa is not required (at time of this writing).

London is always tricky. You have to read the transit visa rules carefully. Usually, if you have valid visa and onward journey to USA doesn’t require transit visa. But, check their website for correct information. I never had transit via London just for the same reason.

I have traveled recently (within 1 year) via Jet Airways (twice) and Emirates (very recently) to India. I did like Emirates A-380 experience much better. Having said that, Jet Airways is also good.In future, I will consider paying extra money to travel via Emirates (A380).

But, you have to see which airline, connection, baggage allowance will work for you. Jet Airways with 3 bags will be useful for you.Taking additional 23 Kgs will come in handy.

Now, you know the answers to your questions, now go books your flight tickets.

See Also :  32 Flight Travel Articles for First Time Travelers Flying to USA