AmbergrisCaye.com Home

First time international traveler...have some questions

Posted By: jaybug

First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/06/06 09:47 PM

My husband and I are first time international travelers. We will be visiting at the end of January, and I am wondering what to expect going through customs. First of all, when do we go through customs? We are flying out of Chicago and into Dallas/Fort Worth and then out of DFW and into BZE. When is customs? Second...if anyone has flown American you would be most helpful here...if I check a bag does it go all the way through to BZE or do I have to get it in DFW and then re-check it? I have never had to connect before to another flight, all of my previous flights have been straight through! And lastly I am going to be bringing a camera and a portable dvd player, how do I go about getting them into and out of the country? Is there a form I have to fill out or something? I mean how do they know I brought that stuff into the country when I am leaving? Any and all information in regards to this topic would be most welcome. 13 more days!
Posted By: Dan Carey

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/06/06 09:57 PM

Hi Jaybug,
you'll go through customs at the end of the flight. Your bags will be checked through all the way to BZE, but on your return you'll have to go through US Custome at DFW. Declare your camera and DVD player on your Belize customs enrty forms and you shouldn't have any trouble at DFW because you can prove that you had them as you exited the US. Bring a pen with you so that you won't have to scrounge one up during the flight.
I'll be tramping around Belize at the same time as you, 1-28-06 through 2-4-06. Maybe our paths will cross.

Dan


Quote
Originally posted by jaybug:
My husband and I are first time international travelers. We will be visiting at the end of January, and I am wondering what to expect going through customs. First of all, when do we go through customs? We are flying out of Chicago and into Dallas/Fort Worth and then out of DFW and into BZE. When is customs? Second...if anyone has flown American you would be most helpful here...if I check a bag does it go all the way through to BZE or do I have to get it in DFW and then re-check it? I have never had to connect before to another flight, all of my previous flights have been straight through! And lastly I am going to be bringing a camera and a portable dvd player, how do I go about getting them into and out of the country? Is there a form I have to fill out or something? I mean how do they know I brought that stuff into the country when I am leaving? Any and all information in regards to this topic would be most welcome. 13 more days!
Posted By: jaybug

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/06/06 10:25 PM

Dan

Thanks for the info. We will be down the 20th thru the 30th and are staying at Sundiver. You never know we may run into eachother! Another question. When we fly back home and we check our bags in BZE will they go all the way back to Chicago? Or do we have to claim them when we get to DFW and recheck them after customs? I am still not even sure if we are going to check them or not, I am just covering my bases so I can make whatever decision is best for me! Also in your experiance, what can I expect going through customs? Is there alot of paperwork to do? My connection going to BZE is 50 minutes and coming home is 1 1/2 hours. Are these acceptable amounts of time to do what I need to do between flights?
Posted By: CHOOCHOO

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/06/06 10:33 PM

On your Belize Customs form you do not have to declare personal posessions that will return with you., i.e. your camera and DVD player. On your return you will reclaim your bags in the DFW Immigration and Customs area, go through both and proceed to a nearby counter in the customs area to have your bags forwarded to your next flight. 1 1/2 hours should be plenty of time.

Going from DFW to Bze only requires that you get to the international departure gate. Plenty of time.
Posted By: jaybug

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/06/06 10:41 PM

ChooChoo

Thanks for the info. I am trying not to stress, and now I see no reason to do so! I cannot wait to get there!
Posted By: klcman

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/06/06 10:59 PM

and do all the paperwork in-flight. Your flight attendant will pass out forms.....nothing to sweat.
Posted By: knowell

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/07/06 12:27 AM

We only fly American from DFW to BZE and back. But you will go through customs at DFW (your first stop back). Going down will be no problem. We have had no problems and have been there several times (3 times in 2005). We always keep the departure fees back but have never had to pay them. Bring a pen as suggested above and if about half way through the flight they haven't passed out the forms ask a flight attendant. They have forgotten before. Also as suggested above ask US or BZE when dollars are discussed. Hope this helps.
Posted By: Otteralum

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/07/06 01:44 AM

jaybug -- relax and have a great time. The advice on the board here is awesome. For 10-days you likely have a lot of stuff. It was recommended to me that I carry-on everything and this turned out great for us as the incoming connection was tight and our bags would not have made it. Nothing to stress over as this is rare, but something to think about if you have little stuff.
Posted By: Otteralum

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/07/06 01:45 AM

BTW -- I believe American builds the exit tax into their ticket price -- I KNOW Continental does -- call ahead to confirm this -- great if you don't have to worry about it.
Posted By: NYgal

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/07/06 02:32 AM

Great thread... Very helpful... What a good read... smile

Thanks smile
Posted By: klcman

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/07/06 03:02 AM

glad ta help another noobie! wink
Posted By: ScubaLdy

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/07/06 05:44 PM

You are allowed two carry-on pieces. One can be a purse or laptop computer. Be smart – put your purse in a larger bag – maybe a beach bag type. Put everything you HAVE to have in your carry on including medications, toiletries, change of clothes, swim suits, etc. If you are a diver include your mask, snorkel and regs. You will need very few clothes while here – shorts and tank tops and you can just buy your souvenir tanks here and wear them. You may want to buy one of the nice dresses or shirts also. There are some wonderful things here. The more you travel the more you know you need less and less. Relax! I always fly American and Tropic Air and have had nothing but excellent service.

cool
Posted By: ScubaLdy

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/07/06 05:51 PM

Another tip – The airlines have reduced check-in luggage to 50 pounds each (two bags allowed) for all travel – including international. (Used to be 70) When asked to put your luggage on the scale put the lighter one on first, and then after they have looked at that add the heavier on. If the two together don’t go over 100 pounds you should be put right through.
I learned this coming back from the states as I had gone in with a 70 pound allowance and had to get back here under the 50 pound rule. Don’t tell anyone that an airline employee tipped me off.
Posted By: Otteralum

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/07/06 09:04 PM

SL - that one's a great tip.
Posted By: NYgal

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/07/06 11:31 PM

I ran with put your purse in a larger bag smile
Posted By: jaybug

Re: First time international traveler...have some questions - 01/09/06 02:54 PM

Thank you to all who responded. All of the information was very helpful. I also want to say how much I appreciate everyone who contributes to this board. The information you all share is invaluable, thanks again!
© 2020 Ambergris Caye Belize Message Board