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TAP air vs. Aer Lingus to return from a transatlantic.-any good/bad about these airlines?


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I normally fly Delta, however I booked my cruise today and the March flight home is well over $1,000

I'm exploring flying via TAP air or Aer Lingus
Does anyone have any input?

TAP I can pick to have a 1 1/2 hr  or a 3 hour layover in Portual 
Aer Lingus would be close to 3 hour layover in Dublin.

Thank you for any input!

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I recently booked European airfare and I was presented with a slew of options that in some cases were mixing and matching various foreign carriers to hobble together a cheaper ticket.  

It wasn't very appealing to me to deal with multiple foreign airlines.  I know Delta and I felt safer booking an all Delta metal ticket.  

The lure of cheaper airfare was very real but I chose to fly on an airline I know.  The airline madness I don't think is over and there may be more turmoil ahead.  I feel like booking with the devil I know is better than booking with a devil I don't know.  My luggage will never interline so I feel like there is a better chance it might make it.

I'm a million miler on Delta so that is something that might mean something in a future chaos.  It's not a silver bullet but it's at least something I have that might help me out.   

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Thank you.

this would be an either TAP


Aer Lingus.

I had looked at the mixed carrier tickets and ruled those out, my thought was the luggage, so I moved up in price to a single airline with transfers. 

I’ll save about $500 by booking with these airlines rather than Delta non stop which would be my preferred but budget wise doesn’t make sense. 

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I don't know about either of those airlines firsthand, but if you have to go through customs, I would be more comfortable with a 3 hour layover rather than 1.5 hours. Also if the flight is late, look into EU261. I posted about it here:


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10 hours ago, AshleyDillo said:

Maybe @FionaMG has some thoughts?

Oh dear, looks like I missed the proverbial boat on this one. But I will chip in anyway as it might help anyone else looking at similar itineraries.

Out of the two options @Pattycruise mentions, and assuming a similar price point, Dublin wins hands-down. This is because Dublin has US pre-clearance, which means you go through US customs and immigration at Dublin before you even set foot on the plane. This has the effect of turning your international flight into a domestic one so, on arrival at your US destination, you simply grab your bags and go in the same way as you would if you were flying domestically within the US.

The 3-hour layover is about the sweet point, in my opinion, when connecting to a trans-Atlantic flight. It gives you time to get off the inbound aircraft without rushing, make the relevant pit stops and be at your departure gate with a bit of time to spare. As a nervous traveller, that's a huge consideration for me, especially as it also gives you a bit of a buffer if your inbound flight is running late.

When flying to Ireland from Europe, even from Schengen countries, you have to go through passport control at your European departure airport. This is because, although Ireland is an EU country, it is not in the Schengen area. However, as a transit passenger with a through ticket you do not have to clear Irish customs and immigration as, officially, you never actually enter the country.

If the TAP flight were significantly cheaper and budget mattered above all else, the process would be different. In this case, and assuming departure from a Schengen area country (e.g. Italy or Spain), you would not have any immigration or customs checks at your departure point and you would also have no inbound customs and immigration at Lisbon. However, since Lisbon would be your point of departure from the Schengen area you do have to go through outbound passport control. Lisbon uses e-gates for this and if you are unlucky enough to have your flight coincide with some other big ones going to places like Brazil or Africa, the lines for non-EU passport holders can be massive.

Partly for this reason and partly due to TAP's less-than-stellar timekeeping, I would be unlikely to recommend a 90-minute layover on this route. In theory, it could be done and braver souls than I have probably managed it successfully but it steps way over my risk-tolerance level even with the potential buffer of another flight going out 90 minutes later. I'm guessing we're talking about the NY area here, since I think that's the only US city that TAP has more than one flight to on the same day (JFK + EWR).

When departing from Lisbon to the US, there is also a secondary security check at the gate but no pre-clearance so you have to clear US customs and immigration when you arrive Stateside.

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