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47 minute connection time between flights - very scared!

Manchester, United...
12 posts
47 minute connection time between flights - very scared!

Hi,

I will be travelling home from Orlando - Manchester via Atlanta in August and Virgin airlines have given us only 47 minutes to reach our connecting flight. We are obviously very stressed about this. We did originally have one hour but they changed the time of the Orlando-Atlanta flight and left us with only 47 minutes to catch our connecting flight from Atlanta-Manchester

Having no experience of Atlanta airport we wanted to see if this 47 minute connection time is feasible - we did try to ring Virgin to change the flight times to give us more time however they said the 'official' connection time for Atlanta is 40 minutes, we actually have slightly more time than recommended to make the flight. This obviously does not take into account slow disembarkment from the plane, queues, general crowds etc that we will have to fight our way through but after 2 phonecalls to Virgin they are adamant that we will have enough time and will not change the flight.

To make matters worse I am currently on crutches so won't be able to run through the airport at all. We have requested special assistance as suggested by Virgin but not sure how much this will actually make a difference - if we miss the connecting flight but the arrival flight was on time, then they are basically saying that's our fault and we will have to pay for a new flight to Manchester regardless.

Does any one have any suggestions or experience of Atlanta airport? Has anyone actually ever made this connection in 47 minutes?

53 replies to this topic
Decatur, GA
Destination Expert
for Atlanta
Level Contributor
7,502 posts
119 reviews
1. Re: 47 minute connection time between flights - very scared!

It has been done, but good luck. Your outbound flight will be boarding before you are off the plane for your inbound. Ask Virgin what they're going to do if you miss the connection and be prepared to spend a day in Atlanta.

Georgia
Level Contributor
3,184 posts
4 reviews
2. Re: 47 minute connection time between flights - very scared!

Are you flying Virgin from Orlando?

A quick google search suggests that all Virgin flights are out of the International terminal. Looks like international and domestic. If that's the case, then at least you won't need to change terminals.

If both legs are Virgin, they'll at least know your arrival status, so if you are on time I can't imagine them leaving you standing at the gate because it took you a few extra minutes.

Edited: 17 June 2018, 20:54
Georgia
Level Contributor
3,184 posts
4 reviews
3. Re: 47 minute connection time between flights - very scared!

OK, a little more checking and I'm not so sure.

Georgia
Destination Expert
for Atlanta, Savannah
Level Contributor
19,054 posts
95 reviews
4. Re: 47 minute connection time between flights - very scared!

"A quick google search suggests that all Virgin flights are out of the International terminal. Looks like international and domestic. If that's the case, then at least you won't need to change terminals."

What does that even mean? It doesn't make any sense whatsoever.

For connections inside the Atlanta airport, the "terminals" don't matter.

Today's flight from Manchester arrived at an F gate. When you have Delta flights to Orlando departing at A gates, you are basically going from one end of the airport to another. From concourse to concourse. F to A.

47 minutes is an exceptionally short time for that connection. There really is no margin for error. If the MAN flight is late, the traveler may be spending the day in the Atlanta airport, hoping to get on another flight. I can't imagine trying to make the connection while on crutches. The only "good" news is that this morning's flight took off from A18, which is close to the escalators from the train. If the gate for their flight in at the end of a concourse, not good at all.

If you miss the flight, it may be faster to rent a car and drive 6+ hours than to play the stand-by game for other flights.

Manchester, United...
12 posts
5. Re: 47 minute connection time between flights - very scared!

I asked them what what would happen if we missed the connecting flight and they said if we missed it WE would have to pay to get on the next available flight. I argued with them for over an hour and nothing I could say would make them change us to a later flight.

Edited: 17 June 2018, 21:21
Manchester, United...
12 posts
6. Re: 47 minute connection time between flights - very scared!

Thanks for the opinions everyone - I really won’t know which terminal the flight will come in at until the day but I know we will have to make it to the very far end of the airport for the international flight to Manchester. Virgin are insistent that we can do it on 40 mins. We even offered to pay extra for an earlier Orlando-Altlanta or later Atlanta-MCR flight but they said they couldn’t re-book one connection without changing the whole thing. Virgin have been really unhelpful. I guess all we can do is hope the people who are there to ‘specially assist’ us get us front A to B as quickly as possible or hope that the plane waits for the connecting passengers.

Georgia
Destination Expert
for Atlanta, Savannah
Level Contributor
19,054 posts
95 reviews
7. Re: 47 minute connection time between flights - very scared!

Did you book this directly through Virgin or through a third party vendor?

I would reserve a car (not-prepaid) as a backup.

I spent the entire day in the Orlando airport one day when Delta cancelled a morning flight due to a mechanical problem. It would have been faster for me to drive from Orlando to Atlanta. They were trying to put me on a stand-by flight (due to their cancellation) and there are almost hourly flights. I spent the day before there was room on another flight. Even if you have to buy a ticket, what are the changes seats will be available - and at what price?

Your situation does not sound good at all. Sorry to be the bearer of bad new, but I would be worried too. You can get from F to A on the train in 5 minutes. The problems could be 1) if the MAN plane is late and 2) where the departure gate is. On crutches, you'll need a lot of luck!

Edited: 17 June 2018, 21:23
Georgia
Destination Expert
for Atlanta, Savannah
Level Contributor
19,054 posts
95 reviews
8. Re: 47 minute connection time between flights - very scared!

"I will be travelling home from Orlando - Manchester via Atlanta in August and Virgin airlines"

Sorry. I read that backwards. But the logistics are the same. Good luck!

Manchester, United...
12 posts
9. Re: 47 minute connection time between flights - very scared!

I’m going the other way to the way that you think. I’m going Orlando-Atlanta-Manchester. We could drive from Orlando to Atlanta but Virgin have said that if we aren’t in the first flight (Orlando-Atlanta) we will not be able to fly on the second leg (Atlanta-MCR).

We booked direct throughout Virgin. I know it’s not a good situation but I don’t know what else I can do when Virgin are insistent that I can defy all the laws of physics and fly across the airport. They won’t even let me pay to change one part of the flight to accommodate a larger changeover time between flights. Needless to say I won’t be flying Virgin again lol.

Edited: 17 June 2018, 21:32
Atlanta, Georgia
Destination Expert
for Atlanta
Level Contributor
12,307 posts
103 reviews
10. Re: 47 minute connection time between flights - very scared!

I would tweet at Virgin. I find the social media teams give better customer support than customer service.

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