Getting through Orlando International Airport stress free, well almost!!

It can be daunting arriving in an airport that you don’t know and are tired, so here’s a few tips to help you through the experience!

Flying into Orlando International Airport (MCO)

The majority of people going to the Central Florida area will fly into Orlando International Airport (MCO).   Both British Airwaysand Virgin Atlantic offering direct flights from Gatwick and  Manchester airports in the UK. Norwegian Air has now also started to offer flights from Gatwick at reasonable prices.

When the plane lands you will firstly need to head for passport control / U.S. Customs and Border Protection (follow the crowds!). You will need to have your passport and customs declaration form in hand. You would have completed the customs form on the plane, and are only required to have one of these forms per household. It is also wise to have a copy of your ESTA and your flight itinerary showing details of your return flightin your hand luggage, should you be asked to show it.

Sit at the front! 

The queue at US Customer Border can be very long, especially if you have just landed behind another flight. If you pre assign your seating try for seats to the front of the plane to be quicker off, it could save you an hour of queuing.

It's easier with an E- Passport!

If you hold an E-Passport and have been to the county within the last two years and had your finger prints scanned previously you can use the automated machines. Once you have scanned your passport, answered a series of questions and had your picture taken, a receipt will be printed. Take this receipt to a CBP officer to confirm the inspection for entry into the United States. These automated machines allow a much faster processing and shorter wait time.

Your passport will be stamped with your arrival date and the date by which you need to leave, which is within 3 months under the Visa Waiver Programme. You will be returned your passport and the customs declaration form.

Travelling with babies and children

If you are travelling with young ones that have pushchairs / prams, these are not returned until you have passed through passport control, therefore if you have baby carriers / slings, then I recommend packing them in your hand luggage.

Fines for Food!

You would have been told on the flight what foods are allowed into the United States, you will be asked again at the border if you have any. Failure to declare food products can result fines of up to $10,000 – not a good start to your holiday!