“Seamless Light” - Experiences with QF’s new terminal transfer at SYD

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TheTravelExperience

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Mr Spieck had SYD international to domestic connection early am Monday this week. Missed his 2 hour connection to ADL as 45 mins waiting for bags (despite flying F,) 1 hour wait to recheck bags and 20 min wait for bus. Said it was chaos. …. In retrospect said he should have got taxi or train with bags and tried checking bags in at domestic terminal instead.


Sorry to hear about the missed connection and airport chaos.

From what you shared, I am guessing it would have required a 3.5 - 4.0 hour connection time to be safe? I based it on, 15 mins to clear immigration in T1, 45 mins wait for bags, 1 hour to recheck and 30 mins for bus (wait + travel) and then another 30mins to reclear security in T3?

I'll be doing a SIN-SYD-BNE trip in July and now am getting super nervous. Any points and insights would be great!
 

TheTravelExperience

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I arrived on QF8 on Sat, 21 May, transferring to BNE. I was in J, but we had baggage handling delays, and it took over 45mins for our luggage to arrive on the belt. Most other early arrivals seemed to have left the luggage carousels by then. I was on a 10am-ish flight to BNE.

I took my two bags, and dropped them off, which was straightforward. There was a bigger queue of people needing to be rebooked due to missing their connection, or they would be missing their connection.
I then joined the line for the landside bus to domestic. After about 2 mins, I judged I was going to be in the 2nd or even 3rd bus to come along. So I walked through the entrance lines (couldn't get past people lined up for the bus - still inside the baggage dropoff building) and made my way to the train station. While I guess it cost me $10, 20mins later I was in the Domestic J Lounge.

I think one of the security machines for the former transfer area had been completely removed, and one was partly dismantled.


Hi,

Thanks for sharing your experience. Just to confirm, you were flying DFW-SYD-BNE?

Could I ask how long it took you from say, disembarking QF8 to the time it took you to reach the Domestic J Lounge in T3?

Will be flying SIN-SYD-BNE in July and trying to estimate how long a transit time would we need to be safe. It would be our first time in SYD ever :D
 

Kceips

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Sorry to hear about the missed connection and airport chaos.

From what you shared, I am guessing it would have required a 3.5 - 4.0 hour connection time to be safe? I based it on, 15 mins to clear immigration in T1, 45 mins wait for bags, 1 hour to recheck and 30 mins for bus (wait + travel) and then another 30mins to reclear security in T3?

I'll be doing a SIN-SYD-BNE trip in July and now am getting super nervous. Any points and insights would be great!
I think 3 hours should be fine.
I am flying back from Europe via Sydney in 19 days with a 3 hour connection so can update with my experience then.
 

Katie

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Sep 21, 2009
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Hi,

Thanks for sharing your experience. Just to confirm, you were flying DFW-SYD-BNE?

Could I ask how long it took you from say, disembarking QF8 to the time it took you to reach the Domestic J Lounge in T3?

Will be flying SIN-SYD-BNE in July and trying to estimate how long a transit time would we need to be safe. It would be our first time in SYD ever :D
Yes, I was on QF8 in J.

It would have been about 1.5-1.75hrs. Bags weren’t out until after 7:30.
I don’t think we landed until after 6:30; I have a pic of my coffee in the domestic J Lounge at 8:30am.
 

TheTravelExperience

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Mar 1, 2022
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Family arrived on a delayed QF12 on Friday morning. QF had rebooked her domestic connection @ 2.5 hrs but she missed that. May have made a 3hr connection.
There was a 150 minute connection time but even that wasn’t sufficient to protect from the crowds and delays at the airport?

Oh MY…. Thank you thank you…..I think I’ll go for 210-240 mins then….rather be bored (in the lounge) than having to bother about delays and rebooking
 

Mwenenzi

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Will be flying SIN-SYD-BNE in July and trying to estimate how long a transit time would we need to be safe. It would be our first time in SYD ever :D
AU passport? Eligible for the immigration kiosk? By the "'our" comment multiple people.
But if SIN-SYD-BNE is all on 1 ticket the problem is QF's and not yours. If separate tickets SIN-SYD and SYD-BNE its all your problem.
QF2 has a scheduled arrival of 05:10 and QF82 a scheduled arrival of 06:50. 06:50 is the peak of long haul wide body international arrivals. Allow plenty of time. If arriving at say 14:00 the suggestion would be different.
I pay good money to avoid SYD T1-T2 / T2 - T1 transfers

 
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T bus left with about a dozen of us the other morng from Intl to Dom. Didn’t check the time but def didn’t look like ground staff or driver were clock-watching.

This bus svc might be OK for people checking bags with QF, but for Intl arrivals transferring to To VA Dom it’s a walk down to the far Sth end of Intl arrvls, checking in and then walking back up the near length of the Intl arrivals concourse to find the T bus signage.
 

FishFood

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I flew HNL-SYD-PER yesterday. Originally 2.5 hour transfer time but due to a 1 hour delay leaving HNL I arrived with 1.5 hours to spare. The luggage came out quickly and overall a hurried but successful transfer. I arrived at the domestic gate 15 minutes before boarding commenced and funnily enough the domestic flight was then delayed.
 

TheTravelExperience

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AU passport? Eligible for the immigration kiosk? By the "'our" comment multiple people.
But if SIN-SYD-BNE is all on 1 ticket the problem is QF's and not yours. If separate tickets SIN-SYD and SYD-BNE its all your problem.
QF2 has a scheduled arrival of 05:10 and QF82 a scheduled arrival of 06:50. 06:50 is the peak of long haul wide body international arrivals. Allow plenty of time. If arriving at say 14:00 the suggestion would be different.
I pay good money to avoid SYD T1-T2 / T2 - T1 transfers


Hi, my answers below

AU passport?
nope, but have a Visa

Eligible for the immigration kiosk?
not 100% sure, so I would assume No

By the "'our" comment multiple people.
Yes you are right, me and the missus. two passengers, and both of us will have check in luggage

But if SIN-SYD-BNE is all on 1 ticket the problem is QF's and not yours. If separate tickets SIN-SYD and SYD-BNE its all your problem.
AH! THAT IS GREAT to hear! yes all on one ticket. Forgive my ignorance, but, does that mean, if say we get delayed collecting bags and more importantly delayed waiting for transport to get to T3 and delayed further by the checking in / security lines in T3, causing us to get to the gate late (yeah worried about a "perfect storm" as it were) QF would still rebook us at their expense? I always thought that so long as the arrival flight was on time, getting on to the next segment was the passenger's sole responsibility and airport queues our problem

QF2 has a scheduled arrival of 05:10 and QF82 a scheduled arrival of 06:50.
we are on QF 2, scheduled arrival of 05:10

I pay good money to avoid SYD T1-T2 / T2 - T1 transfers
I am beginning to think I should try to transit via MEL or try flying direct to BNE

Hey, thank you very very much for the questions and the amount of consideration and views you are sharing, really really appreciate it !
 
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For Thetravellingexperience, for a first timer, (trying to do T1 to T2/T3 in SYD), I would do it the other way around at least the first time, once, to learn the ins and out of it all, first, and then, later on, once you have done it, then you can do the T1 to T2/T3 within about 2.5 to 3 hours, till things settle down, dom security screening wise.
July is school holidays too.
So, maybe for this trip, try to do a transit via MEL, where you can easily walk between terminals, or
BNE, where there is the orange bus, and "probably" not so many people doing the transit, or doing the flight, and that you live in that city, so no rush.
IF QF hasn't done away with the T1 to T3 secure side bus, I would say, transit SYD.
But now that xray is done at T3 for QFd oncoming from T1, even 2.5 hours will be tight, not so bad if your flight from overseas is earlier on in the day, but would be scary if its later on in the day, or evening.
But QF SIN - SYD is early am, so even if you miss the SYD - BNE flight, there are other flights during the day.
Anyway, see if you can get the SIN - SYD flight changed, to avoid SYD.
 

TheTravelExperience

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Mar 1, 2022
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For Thetravellingexperience, for a first timer, (trying to do T1 to T2/T3 in SYD), I would do it the other way around at least the first time, once, to learn the ins and out of it all, first, and then, later on, once you have done it, then you can do the T1 to T2/T3 within about 2.5 to 3 hours, till things settle down, dom security screening wise.
July is school holidays too.
So, maybe for this trip, try to do a transit via MEL, where you can easily walk between terminals, or
BNE, where there is the orange bus, and "probably" not so many people doing the transit, or doing the flight, and that you live in that city, so no rush.
IF QF hasn't done away with the T1 to T3 secure side bus, I would say, transit SYD.
But now that xray is done at T3 for QFd oncoming from T1, even 2.5 hours will be tight, not so bad if your flight from overseas is earlier on in the day, but would be scary if its later on in the day, or evening.
But QF SIN - SYD is early am, so even if you miss the SYD - BNE flight, there are other flights during the day.
Anyway, see if you can get the SIN - SYD flight changed, to avoid SYD.


Thank you for the advice and concern...

Yeah, during the April DSCs campaign we booked an itinerary with maximum connections to...well maximise the double SCs...and also to try out the A380, hence why the initial choice of Sydney...but now I have a feeling we bit off more than we can chew this time...

Thank you again very very much! Truly Appreciated, we will try to see if we change the transit airport while keeping the Origin and Final Destination the same. Owe you!
 

jpp42

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Thank you for the advice and concern...

Yeah, during the April DSCs campaign we booked an itinerary with maximum connections to...well maximise the double SCs...and also to try out the A380, hence why the initial choice of Sydney...but now I have a feeling we bit off more than we can chew this time...

Thank you again very very much! Truly Appreciated, we will try to see if we change the transit airport while keeping the Origin and Final Destination the same. Owe you!

I wouldn't change anything now, it might mess up your DSC's. Thousands of people transit SYD every day, it's not *that* scary. To answer your question above, yes if you miss the connecting flight due to a problem caused by Qantas - in this case long lines at their check in desk or bus - they will reschedule you. But don't take it for granted - there has to be space available on another flight and it could delay you to the next day depending on your destination. Your best bet is to judge the length of the line when you get there and if they seem excessive, use the T bus to domestic instead and check your bags there.
 

serfty

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Landed this morning QF24 ~6:33... had to wait 25 minutes for a medical issue to be resolved for one of the PAX - I hope they are ok.

Off by 7, went to Men's to change (I was wearing a light tracksuit, not suited to a chilly Sydney morning).

Purchased some duty free, docket indicates 7:22am. Queues were backing up past DF - two queues that far out, one for OZ and NZ PP not using Smartgate (why?), another for all others. I walked down past them to the right, I already had my slip from the kiosk from further up the concourse, strangely there was a third queue of 50-60 people lining up for a kiosk. I walked past them as well and up to a vacant smart gate (could have chosen from half a dozen).

I had no checked luggage.

Waved through by customs and outside just catching the 7:30am T-Bus.

Was in domestic business lounge by 7:55am - might have been quicker if I had got off at the T2 stop and walked through the car park to T3 rather than waiting for the T-Bus PAX to untangle themselves to get their stuff off.
 

Scarlett

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Your best bet is to judge the length of the line when you get there and if they seem excessive, use the T bus to domestic instead and check your bags there.

If I had arrived internationally into SYD with luggage, I’m not sure I’d take the risk of getting myself over to the domestic terminals to recheck in, when there is the facility to do it in (SYD) T1. My thinking being that staff in the international terminal understand the situation there, including luggage delays and the recheck line in front of them. If you’re delayed they can see it and hopefully sort it out for you with alternative connections.

I’m not sure I’d want to leave it up to any chance of arriving late over at the domestic terminal and hoping the check in staff there will be as understanding of any international transfer related delays.

Yes it might be quicker if there’s a long line at international, but it’s adding another couple of unknown levels of risk to head over to domestic to recheck in. Firstly, there may be equally long lines at domestic, and, (I’d really hope this doesn’t happen) the domestic staff may consider you have taken too long to make your connection.
 

Scarlett

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The solution that will (probably) never happen because it would cost SYD airport corporation money for the trifling benefit of ‘passenger convenience’, is to just build a passenger tunnel between SYD international and domestic sides.

Just let people walk.

E80B767F-D792-4AB1-8CB8-B2F4202BD0BB.jpeg
Just over a kilometre! That’s a 10 minute walk for those who walk quickly and 20 minutes for those who stroll. Quicker in almost all cases than lining up for a bus and doing the transfer via the roads. They could even install moving walkways if they really wanted to.

Probably cheaper than running the Tbus over time too and they could beat their chest about reducing emissions and traffic!
 

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