FAQ about transfers and connecting flights: what is the difference that a passenger can and cannot do


    Perhaps we will put this inscription on receipts with four or more transfers as an Easter egg.

    Before starting work in Tutu. Aviation, I did not really understand how a transplant differs from a dock. And I was always afraid that I wouldn’t have time to switch from plane to plane at the airport and get stuck somewhere along the road. The specifics of the work of our call center in answers to questions about docking is that they are called after the fact when something did not work out. Therefore, let me tell you in detail what it is and how. So you know in advance. Maybe this will help someone.

    The most important thing:

    • One ticket receipt = you will be delivered to your seat in any way.
    • Transit zones in countries with transfers, as a rule, do not require a visa. Transit corridors do not require, but they have a mode of operation (you can not catch the corridor).
    • Baggage flies to the end if there is an agreement on common security protocols between the airport and the airline.
    • If your flight in the connecting chain is delayed and your visa expires, the airline will resolve the issue with the border guards.
    • There are no joins for more than a day, if the gap is greater - this is a stopover.
    • Transit passengers influence the choice of an alternate aerodrome when it is impossible to take the main one: the company evaluates the visa regime, the cost of continuing the flight, and so on.

    One receipt

    On this receipt, flights are docked.

    You can fly with a change with one ticket (more precisely, a ticket receipt), or you can fly with several.

    If all segments are combined on one receipt, there are connections between them. Usually you do not need to take baggage at intermediate points: you check in at the start point for all segments at once.

    In general, if you have only one receipt in your hands, then you are guaranteed to get to the final point at no extra cost, even if there will be a big flight delay on the way. It’s not a fact that it is with the indicated flights and the indicated route in the emergency case, but you will get.

    Miscellaneous receipts

    These are two different segments, and they are not connected to each other.

    If the segments are on different receipts, then each of them is considered as a separate flight.

    Even if both tickets are from the same airline.

    There are no guarantees between them: ticket 1 guarantees that you will reach the intermediate point, and ticket 2 - that you will reach the final point, if you board the flight in time on time. In case of delay of flight No. 1, it will be considered that you did not come to flight No. 2 of your own free will.

    Between such joints you need to get luggage, and then take it to the next leg.

    Is it possible not to go to some of the segments in connecting flights?

    No, as a rule, most airlines prohibit breaking the sequence of coupons and cancel all subsequent flights.

    But some carriers have an exception. If you warn the airline in advance that you will not fly further, then it is possible to save your further flight. This can be important in those cases when you yourself reached the next city by car, for example, and are waiting for a flight there. And they won’t put you in prison.

    Is it possible to unload luggage on the transplant road?

    You should notify the airline representative about this at the starting point of your route. And in this case, you will be registered only to an intermediate point and will be issued one luggage tag. But pay attention to the fact that at the intermediate point you have to go through registration again.

    What is minimum connection time?

    This is the time it takes for you to get out of the last seat of the plane, get into the last bus from 2-3 to the gate, transfer to the gate, go through security control, reach the speed of about 3-4 kilometers per hour the next gate and catch the last minute landing for the next segment. It is calculated statistically, but does not take into account chains of unpleasant coincidences such as strikes at the airport or an intensive search at a security point. Etc.

    If you are detained for personal search at the airport (you seem suspicious or fall under a random check) or something else goes wrong on the ground, then this is not the airline’s responsibility. That is, everything that happens on earth is, in general, your problem. But usually at "dense" transplants you are met and accompanied by company employees, or enough time is given for this airport. Failures and problems are a rare occurrence, usually they are solved individually. There is no general regulation of actions in such a situation.

    Usually, with very tight connections, you will be met by special people from the airline with signs that will help you to pass part of the queue bypassing, well, or simply will not let you get lost. Some airports have lines for late arrivals.

    When you buy tickets for connecting flights, you do not need to know anything about MCT. You will be met and led by the hand. The system will not allow to form a chain where there is a transplant shorter than MCT.

    On the other hand, when you buy individual tickets for segments, it becomes very important. We recommend laying 40 minutes on regular flights (and 2 hours on sometimes late) on top of the MCT.

    How to recognize him? Each pair of flights and airlines (domestic - international, international - international, etc.) has its own statistics, but it is available in professional accounts, for example, at expertflyer.com. In the simplest case, just google the transfer time at the destination airport. Or look at how much difference there is between connecting flights.

    We offer for sale only those tickets that correspond to the MCT according to the data of airlines or booking systems (someone can lay down more MCT airports for 10-20 minutes).

    Please note that there are aggregators that allow you to make a route less than MCT on transfers. This makes sense if you are the first to leave the plane on the platform with a telescopic ramp, run and you can bypass the queue with wild shouts: “I'm late, save!” But in the general case it’s better not to risk it.

    Ticket Sales Features

    You can find on sale connecting flights to your destination, but you can not find individual tickets for these segments. This means that some segment is something like the airline’s internal armor for transit passengers.

    You can find individual flights from one airline, but you can’t find a connecting flight. This means either possible problems with the MCT, or bad statistics on the delay of the first flight (for example, when departing from islands with often changing weather, the reserve of time for connecting is very large).

    Of course, connecting flights may be cheaper than individual flights. And vice versa.

    How to distinguish one receipt from several

    The receipt must have one number and one reservation. There are chances to buy two different tickets - this will not be a transfer.


    Waiting at the airport

    If the flight in the docked flight is delayed, then they will help you. In case of delay, you must transfer to the next flight of the same airline. If there is no suitable flight for this airline, they can also board the flight with another airline, following in the right direction by agreement on transit passengers. Previously, they often used a special subspecies of the ticket - Flight Interruption Manifest. Now FIM are being made in electronic workflow between companies.

    If you have to wait at the airport, you will first be offered water, then food, then a hotel and a sleeping set (or they will compensate for the costs of all this).

    The generally accepted standard (check according to local conditions) is a hotel in case of more than 6 hours of waiting at night and 8 hours of waiting during the day. 2 hours - drinks (often just water). 4 hours - food. For parents - mother and child’s room (check with an airline representative for details).

    This is not always the case. If passengers voluntarily refuse the hotel, for example, during the day, then it will not be. This is important because there is a fairly common practice - to talk about the delay immediately, do not wait for the set 6-8 hours at the airport and offer a city tour. Those who agreed are not wasting their time. At the connection to flights to Phuket, for example, there is a transition from Aeroflot to a local carrier in one alliance. The local carrier is sometimes delayed due to storms. Accordingly, it is often more convenient for tourists to look like guided tours of the city that they simply would have missed than to sit in a hotel at the airport. The airline representative offers this to the whole group, and then usually the group begins to roll up before the end of the flight.

    You can simply refuse without exchanging for other “goodies”: for example, when departing from St. Petersburg with a delay of 20 hours, it is strange to relax in a hotel, you can go to your home.

    Transit zones and corridors

    The transit zone is the zone to passport and customs control. That is, you do not need a visa of the country through which you are moving in transit, if you have a connection without leaving the transit zone.

    For example, if you carry a drone or alcohol, then you may experience friction with the customs of different countries. You cannot bring alcohol to Singapore, but there is a transit zone. You cannot import plastic bags into Kenya (ordinary plastic bags that are in your bag at home) - there is a fine of up to 38 thousand dollars or four years in prison.

    There are exceptions where baggage must still be received and passed through security control (but not through customs) with it. Security control is a check that you will not damage the airport. Customs is a filter at the entrance to the country. The transit zone is not part of the country in terms of customs.

    On a flight to New York via Heathrow (London), you will need to get your luggage, drag it through the introscope yourself and hand it over at the airline counter. This is because Heathrow does not trust all airports in the world. When they don’t know who and how had checked your luggage before and by what protocol (or they don’t trust these people), they need their own verification.

    The transit corridor differs from the transit zone in that it has a working time. For example, there is a frequent transit corridor in Dusseldorf. And at night it is closed. If you want to go through, you have to wait for the opening. If you want to pass by, get a transit visa. Therefore, this is another good chance to be late for a flight if something went wrong.

    At many airports, you can get a transit visa on site. Usually it is free or it costs symbolic money, but it requires moral suffering. Especially if you fly through Asia.

    In all reservation systems you are shown the visa that is needed for the flight, for example, with us like this:


    If you have problems with your visa due to a delayed segment in the chain of connecting flights (for example, the Schengen ended, you left on the last day, and the airport was closed due to the weather), there will be no violation: the airline will warn the country's immigration service.

    If you try to catch you on another route and drop off somewhere where there is no visa, then the airline will try to get transit in a special order. For example, on the closing day of Pakistan’s space, Rossiya Airlines landed on Goa, where all passengers received temporary visas.

    Can one of the segments be returned?

    Most often, without increasing to the business tariff, no. Nevertheless, we, for example, have the service of turning any ticket into a refundable one. In fact, this is non-travel insurance that covers the purchase of new tickets. This is how it looks:

    What is a stopover?

    You can request a pause of 2-3 days for a walk in the city at the dock (at your own expense, of course). To do this, look at the tariff and see if stopover is allowed. If yes - as a rule, the price will not change much, and you will get another city along the way. In a more complex case, it is enough to make routes with a pause of several days. This is, for example, a compound route option:

    Can there be different baggage on different segments?

    Yes maybe. For example, if connecting flights are operated by different carriers under a code share agreement. In this case, the baggage allowance and hand luggage must comply with the norms of the carrier that operates the flight.

    And finally, we show the danger of flight delays

    Here you see two interconnected flights (Singapore and the Emirates), and then several non-interconnected flights.


    You can click on “About Flight” and get access to the data that we take from our partner, who tracks the actual departure of each flight around the world by the defendants (in fact, by flyradar). Plus, we enrich this data with reviews on small aircraft (relevant for the Far East) and look at the percentage of cancellations. The following informers are obtained:


    You can see even more data:


    Actually, that’s all I wanted to tell about transit. In addition, it is worth considering that the airline sees all transit passengers on board when choosing possible alternate aerodromes and most often counts so that it turns out cheaper in the end (that is, there were fewer additional flights). This means, in particular, that when choosing which of the two sides can fly out (for example, due to weather problems, one needs to be delayed, because it will have a second pilot with a low tolerance on the weather), they will choose the one where there are more transit passengers. But such situations rarely occur.

    Here are more links from Tutu. Aviation: why specifically pour the plane before departure, and what will happen if this is not done, how business aviation works in Russia (FBO centers) ,FBO Sheremetyevo infrastructure: how light planes, cargo flights, flight preparation for pilots, on-board catering history and our rating of “tastiest” airlines, according to what rules an airplane flies in Russia, and flight safety are prepared for flight .

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