Going through Customs

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Aug 19, 2018
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#1
Hi,

Thank you for your help in advance. It’s been a while since I’ve flown last time internationally, over 10 years, so I forgot the process of going through the customs and baggage retrieval.

My flight

Delta Salt Lake City — Seattle (transit 3 hours)
Korean Air contracted by Delta Seattle — Seoul.


Back

Korean Air contracted by Delta Seoul - Las Vegas (transit almost 3 hours)
Las Vegas — Salt Lake City

1. I assume we will be going through customs in Seattle and Las Vegas. Is almost 3 hours enough? My husband is the US citizen and I’m a green card holder.

2. I’m worried about our baggage. Would we need to claim/check in our baggage in the transit airports or can we request our baggage to meet us at our final destinations ( Seoul and Salt Lake City)?

Thank you!
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#2
Outgoing there is no customs check in the US. There will be a document check by airline personnel at check in. Please be sure that your travel documents are in order, check with the Korean consulate. Baggage will check through.

You will go through customs and immigration in Korea.

Return flight — you will go through US customs and immigration at Las Vegas — immigration first, pick up luggage, and then customs. Then recheck luggage after customs.

Declare everything and especially food items.

There will be a place to recheck luggage and go to connecting gate, but will need to pass through security again.

Have a wonderful trip.
 
Likes: Neil Maley
Dec 26, 2014
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#3
I have read enough here to know that "documents are in order" means that you need to be sure about the Visa requirements for any country you visit, not the airline, AND make sure your passports are good for at least 6 months from the date of your flights.
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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#5
Three hours for the formalities should be adequate. It's been a long time since I did a connecting flight, but usually you claim our bags, deal with the officials, and recheck the bags at a place very close and convenient. Review all documents six times to be sure you've done it all correctly and have everything you need to board the plane. We see the most heart-rending posts here from people who are denied boarding for paperwork issues. In addition to your regular ID on your bag, put a copy of your itinerary in an outside pocket, also right on top of your clothing to be seen if the bag is opened. If your tags get ripped off, that's the only way the bags will find you again.
 
Aug 19, 2018
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#6
Thank you everyone for such great advice! All the paperwork is in order. Passports are valid; my husband is American, so he does not need a visa since our stay will be 2 weeks only. Citizens of my country do not need a visa to Korea as well. Great advice on including tags to our bags! Thank you!

My name in my foreign passport is my maiden name as well as on my ticket. But my green card and driver's license are in my married name. I am bringing my marriage certificate for the US customs in order to prove I am the same person as on the ticket.

So on our way to Korea, we don't need to worry about rechecking our bags in Seattle, but on our way back to the US, in Las Vegas, we have to recheck our bags because we need to go through the customs? Just wanted to make sure I understood it correctly.
 

Carrie Livingston

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Jan 6, 2015
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#7
I believe they have to be with you through customs in case they need to do a search and then you recheck after clearing customs. That's why you want to make sure you have plenty of time. I think Chris or Michelle just did a case on a couple that missed their connecting flight because there wasn't enough time after clearing customs.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#8
Thank you everyone for such great advice! All the paperwork is in order. Passports are valid; my husband is American, so he does not need a visa since our stay will be 2 weeks only. Citizens of my country do not need a visa to Korea as well. Great advice on including tags to our bags! Thank you!

My name in my foreign passport is my maiden name as well as on my ticket. But my green card and driver's license are in my married name. I am bringing my marriage certificate for the US customs in order to prove I am the same person as on the ticket.

So on our way to Korea, we don't need to worry about rechecking our bags in Seattle, but on our way back to the US, in Las Vegas, we have to recheck our bags because we need to go through the customs? Just wanted to make sure I understood it correctly.
Yes you understand. There will be no formal customs and immigration when leaving the US — airline staff check documents. The luggage will not be seen in Seattle and will be like any other connecting flight.

Coming back to US — Las Vegas is where you will go through immigration, pick up luggage, go through customs, and there will be a place to put luggage to have it sent to connecting flight. 3 hours should be ok.
 
Jan 22, 2015
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#9
Depending on your country of origin you may be eligible for Global Entry. Global Entry speeds your arrival into the United States. As a bonus, it usually includes TSA Pre-Check
Also depends on how far out your trip is, as it can take awhile to process your information.

In addition to US Citizens, people from the following countries are eligible to apply: Canada, Argentina, India, Colombia, United Kingdom, Germany, Panama, Singapore, South Korea, Switzerland, Taiwan, and Mexican nationals
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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6,784
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San Francisco
#10
Thank you everyone for such great advice! All the paperwork is in order. Passports are valid; my husband is American, so he does not need a visa since our stay will be 2 weeks only. Citizens of my country do not need a visa to Korea as well. Great advice on including tags to our bags! Thank you!

My name in my foreign passport is my maiden name as well as on my ticket. But my green card and driver's license are in my married name. I am bringing my marriage certificate for the US customs in order to prove I am the same person as on the ticket.

So on our way to Korea, we don't need to worry about rechecking our bags in Seattle, but on our way back to the US, in Las Vegas, we have to recheck our bags because we need to go through the customs? Just wanted to make sure I understood it correctly.
I'm glad everything is looking good for your trip. I would definitely contact the authorities to be sure of what's required with your name. I would think the passport matching the tix would suffice, but always a good idea to check directly.