Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer
Member since 18 Feb 2017
Total posts 60
Hello, I have never been the the US before. In March I'm flying Premium Economy BNE>LAX>YVR. I land in LAX 0610hrs and my connecting flight departs 0830hrs (QF codeshare WestJet). I bought the entire ticket through QANTAS. I am panicking! I am QFF silver.
- any tips to get through all the red tape asap?
- what is the procedure?
- what if I miss my connecting flight?
- are both boarding passes issued at the same time (ie first flight)
Any advice would be greatly GREATLY appreciated as I made the rookie mistake of transitting through LAX. Thank you my very trusted FF community.
American Airlines - AAdvantage
Member since 13 Jul 2015
Total posts 50
To be honest, that is JUST enough time to get through. Once you land in LA, you have to clear customs (which can be tricky), but I know when I landed United gave me a express pass to clear customs quicker - look out for this when arriving. You just need to collect your bag and head to the transfer area where they will check your details and put it on the conveyor.
Try to situate yourself far up the plane as possible. If you miss, since you are on one ticket, Westjet will simply put you on the next flight.
Make sure you know which Terminal you are arriving in (Qantas is always at the Tom Bradley Temrinal) and which terminal your next flight is from, and plan your route there based on info on the net, either walking or by the transfer bus).
I wouldn't worry, it's surprisingly easy, despite the annoying steps. I've made it from landing to my next flight in 1 hour 30 before.
Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards
Member since 05 Sep 2013
Total posts 75
Tip 2: Ask for a seat at the front of the cabin if your cant choose your seat online so you can be one of the first ones of Premium Economy (not necessary but it's just peace of mind).
Tip 3: Look on the Qantas and TSA website to know the rules for US airports. Also Qantas has information on US flights and transfers.
Boarding passes: Most likely, Yes, but if you don't they will give it to you if LAX. Remember to pick up your checked bags in LAX.
IN LAX: Please make shore that you have your ESTA (US e-visa) before you arrive at the airport in Australia. You will need this as you will need to go through customs and border protecting in Los Angeles even if you are not staying in the US. Upon arrival you will go to Border Protection in LAX. If you are traveling with someone and you live at the same address you may use the same border kiosk together. On the Kiosk you will answer general questions and have your biometrics taken (Fingerprints and Photo). Just follow the instructions on the screen, relax take it slow, if you make a mistake don't panic, you can always press back to change your answers. You will then need to pick up your checked bags from your Qantas flight go through Customs and drop your bag off at a bag drop point. There is a bag drop point in TBIT (the terminal Qantas arrives in). If it is close to departure you may be asked to take your checked bag to terminal 3 (possible terminal 2 double check your ticket). There is a inter-terminal bus but it is easier to walk. As you exit TBIT terminal turn Left and follow the path to Terminal 3/2. At Westjet Check in/Bag drop they will send your bags on their way to YVR. Remember you also need a E-visa for Canada too (eTA).
If you miss your flight due to a delay on Qantas's part and it is on the same ticket they will rebook you on the next available flight. Don't panic. If it is going to be a tight connection due to a late arrival (think 1+ hour) on the aerobridge in LAX they may give a Yellow Express Card so that you can quickly get through customs quicker. A two hour and twenty minute connection is possible in LAX. If in double check with ground crew in LAX at the gate and always chat to the cabin crew on board they will have tips for you too.
Member since 19 Apr 2012
Total posts 584
Two and a half hours isn't too bad. It should be fine. Most times I have been through well inside an hour.
Etihad - Etihad Guest
Member since 23 May 2019
Total posts 2
Make sure you have the ESTA (for the USA) and the eTA (for Canada)!
Member since 31 Jan 2018
Total posts 15
Like other people have mentioned make sure you have applied for your ESTA at least 72 hours before your flight. As for the transit time, 2.5 hours should be fine. As this is your first trip to the US once you use the automated kiosks you will most likely have a cross through your details that are printed on the receipt that is issued by the machine so you will need line up to see an immigration officer. This will add a few minutes to your clearance time but as you are coming in from Brisbane this is the first flights of the day to arrive so it shouldn't be too crowded.
You have all been so helpful, I genuinely thank you for your generosity in sharing your expert tips. Thank you.
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Transit tips for connecting from Qantas to WestJet in Los Angeles (LAX)
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