Advice on flight options ORD-xxx-HAM

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by gobluetwo, Mar 17, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. gobluetwo
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    gobluetwo Silver Member

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    I'll be going to Germany in paid C in April and need some advice on flight options. Since there is no non-stop ORD-HAM, I'll be forced to connect somewhere. The real question is whether it's worth taking UA on the old 777 through FRA/MUC vs. a UA 747 through LHR vs. a LH 747 through FRA. I'm leaning toward LHR (UA 747), or on Lufthansa through FRA. Any thoughts on those respective transfers and flight experiences?

    Options are as follows:

    2:24 PM ORD - 5:45 AM FRA, United 944 (Boeing 777)
    connecting to
    7:00 AM FRA - 8:00 AM HAM, United 8986, Operated by Lufthansa (A321)

    3:40 PM ORD - 6:50 AM FRA, United 8837, Operated by Lufthansa (747)
    connecting to
    8:30 AM FRA - 9:30 AM HAM, United 8934, Operated by Lufthansa (A321)

    4:18 PM ORD - 5:55 AM LHR, United 958 (747)
    connecting to
    8:55 AM LHR - 11:25 AM HAM, United 9238, Operated by Lufthansa (737-300)

    There are also some options through MUC/FRA that depart ORD at 6 and 6:15 respectively on 777s.

    Departure time isn't so much of an issue, as long as I arrive in Hamburg at some point on 4/7 (meeting is 4/8).

    I've flown C in both the UA 777 and 747, never in the LH 747. Assuming I do LH, should I use my CO account, to pad my meager lifetime miles count?

    On the return, I'll probably be coming through AMS, so the non-stop at 11:15am on a 767 looks good.
     
  2. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    The LH 747 C experience (actually all the LH C options) isn't particularly great. Angled seats and moderate food.

    For me, no way I'd depart on any of those early flights as they are all way too early for me to sleep. I'd even consider the CO connection via EWR. Not having to transit at LHR or FRA would be nice and it is a decently long flight with a full flat bed for sleeping in C.
     
  3. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    If you're a 1K go Lufthansa Business and try to upgrade to First with a Systemwide...

    If you're Global Services and trying to requalify, go with UA through LHR.

    I'd definitely rank the business seats themselves as
    UA 747 > LH 747/Airbus > UA 777

    I don't love the Newark transit personally, though Wandering Aramean has a not terrible idea. I'd just be tempted to book a too-long connection, not wanting to misconnect. Though I suppose that's unnecessary, worst case wind up hopping the late Newark - Frankfurt flight and connect on to HAM if getting hosed by irrops.
     
  4. rggale
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    rggale Gold Member

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    I agree with Wandering Aramean, as going through EWR would be a lot more relaxing, and if you misconnect you won't be too screwed.

    Keep in mind the old "April Showers Bring May Flowers" hoopla, as rain often impacts arrivals/departures at EWR.
     
  5. gobluetwo
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    gobluetwo Silver Member

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    Sounds like CO through EWR is actually 2 connections. I'm not seeing it come up in our corporate search engine. I did see another option, though. What do you think of SAS in C, ORD-ARN-HAM? ARN-HAM would be a CR9 on LH, but it's a short flight. ORD-ARN on SK is on an A330 which (per seatguru) is lie-flat. Would a 1hr 20min connection in ARN be doable?

    Also, would a 1hr 40min layover in FRA be enough time?

    @gleff, afraid I'm only 1P. At least I still get lounge access.
     
  6. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    80 minutes in ARN is fine. 100 minutes in FRA is fine.

    But CO operates EWR-HAM non-stop daily as CO74. You'd need to grab the 1pm ORD-EWR though if you want to catch it and that gives you just enough time for a legal connection.

    SK seats are angled-flat rather than flat beds.
     
  7. mundosurfer
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    mundosurfer Gold Member

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    This is correct, and they are on a steep angle. I can usually sleep on these types of seats but had a difficult time on EWR-ARN.
     
  8. gobluetwo
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    gobluetwo Silver Member

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    CO74 looks like a really good option, and the 1pm ORD-EWR works out - I have a client meeting out in the chicago 'burbs until 11am that day, so I could head straight to the airport afterward. My only concern would be that any delay with ORD-EWR could put me in a tight spot making the connection, particularly having to go from terminal A to C. Aside from that, though, that looks like my first choice. Would also give me a lot of time to explore the area before my meeting the next day.
     
  9. jason8612
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    jason8612 Gold Member

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    what about via AMS on UA 767. You can get flatbeds then
     
  10. gleff
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    gleff Co-founder

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    Unless you switch alliances over to KLM for AMS-HAM, you've got a 7.5 hour connection to the next LH flight.
     
  11. jason8612
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    jason8612 Gold Member

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    Ah :(
     
  12. milepig
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    milepig Silver Member

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    Between FRA and MUC, I'd go with MUC. Transfers are much easier, and the scheduled flight time is only 15 minutes longer.

    Too bad about the AMS xfer time - I've done ORD-AMS-HAM, but always with an overnight in AMS on the way.
     
  13. bez7
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    bez7 Gold Member

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    ARN connections are quite painless
     
  14. gobluetwo
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    gobluetwo Silver Member

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    I'm still definitely going to FRA, but HAM is still up in the air (no pun intended). Assuming HAM is confirmed soon, I'll likely be going with CO74. But what would happen if I misconnect coming in from ORD? That's my biggest concern.
     
  15. ande777emt
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    ande777emt Gold Member

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    I'll echo the MUC. There's also a later LH flight that departs at 20:45

    LH 432
    20:45 ORD-12:30 MUC on a 346.

    LH 2072
    14:30 MUC-15:45 HAM on a 321.

    This option allows a later flight and would give you ample time to use a SEN lounge and take a shower upon arrival at MUC.
     
  16. Hartmann
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    Hartmann Gold Member

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    Why not go with LX out of ORD? ORD-ZRH-HAM. Their new J is really nice.
     

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