What time do I need to get to Easterwood for the 6 am flight to IAH?

3,777 Views | 31 Replies | Last: 20 days ago by Slocum on a mobile
90 bull
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Is 45 mins about right?
TxSquarebody
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Should be plenty of time
MB19
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0130 hours, just to beat the rush.
AgGunNut
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Honestly, I'd get there only slightly later than you would for a flight from anywhere else. You just have a quicker drive to the airport.

TSA at Easterwood is VERY thorough compared to bigger airports in my experience, and there's one line for everyone. Most flights are full (so everyone is in line at relatively the same time). Also, the ticket gate personnel move to boarding at a specific time, so there may not be anyone at the ticket counter if you get there too late.
Aggie1205
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Been on that flight before. Never seen a line for security more than 4-5 people.
jeffk
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45 minutes tops. Especially if you're not checking bags.
75AG
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AgGunNut said:

Honestly, I'd get there only slightly later than you would for a flight from anywhere else. You just have a quicker drive to the airport.

TSA at Easterwood is VERY thorough compared to bigger airports in my experience, and there's one line for everyone. Most flights are full (so everyone is in line at relatively the same time). Also, the ticket gate personnel move to boarding at a specific time, so there may not be anyone at the ticket counter if you get there too late.
THIS! I wear a pair of dress shoes though every major airport in the US. Pre-check and I travel multiple times every week. Only at CLL will those shoes set off the alarm. Glad I'm old, or that damn thing might have sterilized me as they have it turned up so high.
CrazyAgE
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Ha! Just had a 5:40a flight there a couple weeks ago. We were the only 4 people in line for screening at the time. A few were already at the gate. The others just trickled in here and there. 45 min is plenty of time
UmustBKidding
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Don't show up 45 minutes before a flight if you are checking a bag. TSA requires the checked bags to be closed out 45 minutes before the flight to be screened and will not accept any more. They don't always enforce that but many times do. I have several times had one of my kids traveling for work with items that had to be checked show up an hour before a flight with a line at The counter or 40 minutes before and no line and they refuse to check his bag. Then I have to race him to Houston or worse.
You don't have to be there two hours before to check a bag but you have to be there more than 45 and aware if there might be some activities that will make the ticket counter crazy.
The beginning of spring break or the go home week of professional and international fire school two hours would be the minimum recommend.
jh88ag
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UmustBKidding said:

Don't show up 45 minutes before a flight if you are checking a bag. TSA requires the checked bags to be closed out 45 minutes before the flight to be screened and will not accept any more. They don't always enforce that but many times do. I have several times had one of my kids traveling for work with items that had to be checked show up an hour before a flight with a line at The counter or 40 minutes before and no line and they refuse to check his bag. Then I have to race him to Houston or worse.
You don't have to be there two hours before to check a bag but you have to be there more than 45 and aware if there might be some activities that will make the ticket counter crazy.
The beginning of spring break or the go home week of professional and international fire school two hours would be the minimum recommend.


This x1000
Belton Ag
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I had a 6am Easterwood flight to IAH with a final destination to Mexico once. I got there at just before 5am and when I checked in and the counter person harangued me for showing up less than 2 hours before an international flight. She was actually really rude about it. I had enough and asked her why and she said because I had go through extra security. I was literally the only person in the terminal besides her and TSA. I said "you're right, I'll go stand in that really long line and pray I'll make it on time."

So, my only advice is if it's an international flight get there at 4.
pattybrhg
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"Don't show up 45 minutes before a flight if you are checking a bag. TSA requires the checked bags to be closed out 45 minutes before the flight to be screened and will not accept any more. They don't always enforce that but many times do. I have several times had one of my kids traveling for work with items that had to be checked show up an hour before a flight with a line at The counter or 40 minutes before and no line and they refuse to check his bag. Then I have to race him to Houston or worse."

Everything else said about 45+ minutes I'd agree with and finish, not start, checking in by at least an hour prior on domestic itineraries.

TSA runs back and forth from the checkpoint, but they absolutley screen bags even after 30 minutes prior. That said, both airlines check in closes half an hour prior, and that line is a really hard cutoff line.

TSA line length depends a lot on how close American and United departure times are. Starting in May, both first flights are due out at 6, so during that time, plan for lines fi be worse. The line's already a bit longer with flights around the same time around 10:30.

The short answer is I'd say you're better off getting there an hour or so early and having 10-15 minutes of boredom than a multiple hour drive to another city.

If your kids are telling you otherwise, I'm betting you had some kids sleep in and try to shift some blame. That happens all the time for those early flights.
UmustBKidding
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My favorite was when he was on the last American flight out Sunday afternoon and due to a wreck on 2818 we were standing at the American counter with 43 minutes until flight time. Would not budge, can't check bag. He has everything from hard hat to hydraulic tools, impossible to carry on. So basically I ended up driving him from easterwood to Omaha Nebraska so he could meet the rest be of his crew at 6:30 am Monday morning.
Loads of fun

pattybrhg
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Just tossing it out there. If that is all completely true, the kiosks work for check in until 30 minutes prior too. Not sure which side, but something clearly doesn't add up with that narrative. You can't be prevented from checking in on the kiosks. American's conditions of carriage do require a minimum 45 minute checkin, but the computers and kiosks don't cut off until 30 prior.
Aggie1205
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I'm surprised people are sticking to claiming you need 2 hours minimum at Easterwood. I'm not saying you wait until less than an hour before, but two hours isnt needed.
UmustBKidding
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This was several years ago. No kiosk at least at that time.
Also don't try to arrive 2 hr before before The first flight, many times atr doors are locked and the building does not. Officially open until 1:30 before the first flight.
EBrazosAg
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All of the above would be why I would say drive to IAH.....not the best Chamber of Commerce answer, but the one that has worked for 21 years. Every 4-5 I relent - once - and then don't fly KCLL again for a long time.....it feels like changing planes more than doubles the odds of a snafu, it squares it......
OnlyANobody
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I know that others have stressed it, but I have to add my $.02 anyway. And that is - if you are checking a bag, I would absolutely not arrive at the counter less than 45 minutes prior to departure. I did - at about the 35 minute mark, on the day my dad passed away, and the woman was ruthless and rude about it. I'm a good sport and can take "no" for an answer, but she was just awful. I re-booked for later in the day and mentioned her to the agent who helped me. He said that the 45 minute rule was strictly enforced, but courtesy or lack thereof that you receive in the mornings can be a mixed bag, based on mood, was his best guess... I very rarely use Easterwood anymore, opting to drive to Houston or Austin, instead.
jeffk
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I 100% prefer dealing with an extra plane change flying out of Easterwood than driving down to IAH or Austin and having to park and wait through their security lines.
Scruffy
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When I was flying out ever 6 weeks or so, I would just use Ground Shuttle for home pick and drop off.

Take Ground shuttle to IAH or AUS ($50-60 for home p/u) then same for the return.
The travel time to AUS or IAH is ~1-1.5 hr.
Riding instead of driving allows for reading/napping/etc.
And on the return I don't have to fight traffic.
75AG
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jeffk said:

I 100% prefer dealing with an extra plane change flying out of Easterwood than driving down to IAH or Austin and having to park and wait through their security lines.
And you get 2 additional segments. For business travelers, it all about the miles/segments!
jeffk
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If you do take ground shuttle, try to get a seat up front. I made the mistake of climbing back to the back corner and had to endure an hour and a half drive with little air circulation and had my car sickness flare up for the first time since I was in grade school.
Counterpoint
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How much time should you have for an international flight connection? I found a cheap flight out of Easterwood that has a 1:19 layover before a flight to Costa Rica (on the same airline, but different terminal). And do you have to do that weird thing where they make you pick up your checked bags and check them again? Because if you do, that's DEFINITELY not enough time.
jeffk
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Which airport is the connection in? I think that's plenty of time to get from gate to gate in either IAH or DFW. You won't have time to eat or shop, but it should be enough to transfer.
Counterpoint
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jeffk said:

Which airport is the connection in? I think that's plenty of time to get from gate to gate in either IAH or DFW. You won't have time to eat or shop, but it should be enough to transfer.
IAH. Don't need to eat or shop. Don't even need a restroom break. Just want to make sure I make that flight. Since United offers it, they must agree that it's doable, I guess!
jeffk
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Yeah, I think you'll be fine. We recently navigated through a terminal change at IAH with about an hour layover and got to the new gate before boarding had even started.
Bob2525
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Minimum of 1 hour, 1:30 good. I've missed several connecting flights because of a variety of issues out of Easterwood. Big thing is to watch the return flight to CLL. There are not as many options now days.
spike427
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This was several years ago but we had a 35m connection at IAH to come home to Easterwood. We were scheduled to land at a different terminal and then our first flight left late! The captain came on about 20 minutes before landing and said there had been a terminal change...we pulled in to the gate right next to our departure gate, ran around the corner with 2 little kids, sat down and the plane backed away from the gate. I don't think my heartrate returned to normal until we landed in CS. So it sounds doable especially if you're traveling solo!
Counterpoint
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Thanks everyone. I'm feeling better about this now. Does the fact that it's an international connection with a checked bag complicate this any?
jeffk
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Not a huge difference - you just have to stay on the terminal link shuttle train for an extra stop.
Aggie@state.gov
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you don't have to claim your bag on a flight from the USA to a foreign country. only when you come back into the USA on your first point of entry into the USA do you have to claim your bag before customs and recheck it.

i assume you are booked on united from CLL to IAH then a connecting UA flight to Costa Rica. if so no problem. you will check your bag at Easterwood and see your bag again in Costa Rica (hopefully)

On your way back from Costa Rica, you will go thru immigration get your bag, then recheck it for your flight back to CLL. UA will have a recheck counter right after customs.
Slocum on a mobile
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Back in olden times, this flight on Mondays was packed with TEEX folks flying out for the week to train. So, I would up driving to IAH or AUS most of the time, because being in sales, I didn't know a few months out where I was going.
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