How Early Do You Really Need To Be Before A Flight?

travel plan airport

May 30, 2017 • Travel


As travellers, whenever we have our flights, we know that we need to be at the airport earlier than the departure time. There are a lot of things that we have to do in the airport, including going through all the hassles that our documents bring about. But how early do we really need to be there before our flight regardless of our travel lifestyle?


The answer depends on our destination and whether or not we’ve checked in ahead. There are two types of flights, international and local. For international flights to top destinations that accommodate a way much higher number of passengers than the local flights, we need to be there at least 3 hours before the flight. This is needed to avoid the hustle and bustle that can really make our flight a terrible one. And of course, we don’t want to be left behind by the plane because we did not anticipate that some of our documents will be questioned, so it will take some time of our time. We can go there even earlier than 3 hours before if we want to relax and wait for our flight while sipping coffee in our favorite coffee shop. But not later than this, if we don’t want to have that probability of putting our money into a waste. If we have checked in ahead, we can cut 1.5 hours from the set time.


For local flights, 2 hours are more than enough. The waiting time is lesser since we don’t have to pass the immigration for a thorough scrutiny. If we have checked in ahead, then 1 hour before the flight to be at the airport is not bad.


There are times when even if we arrive 1 hour before the departure, we will still get the plane. But this does not happen all the time and we don’t want to take that risk. It happened to me before and I had to buy a new ticket that cost me even more than the previous one for the international flight that I missed. You don’t want this happening to you.


The usual reminder we see in our booking details says 4 hours for international and 3 hours for local flights. If you are a jet setter, then you probably know how to estimate your time already. You can set it according to the travel planning you have always followed.


The early arrival is mandatory to let the passengers have sufficient time to go through all the processing and get aboard on their flight on time.

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