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  1. #1
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    Default How long does it take to get through Immigration at MIA?

    Hey Friends!

    I wanted to get your opinion about a timing issue-- my intnl. flight is coming in at 4 p.m. at MIA on Sunday, and I need to meet my real estate agent at 18335 Collins in Sunny Isles after I get in.

    What time is best to meet? How long would it take me to get out of the airport with customs/imm and get there via cab?

    Thank you, everyone!


    --M

    P.S. My husband and I disagree about how much time is needed, which is why I am asking others!
    Last edited by mei123; 01-11-2011 at 08:58 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    It's going to hinge on how many international flights customs has to service at your time of arrival.

    If you have a long flight, why not delay a meeting till the next day when you're bright eyed and bushy tailed ?

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Can I Get an Estimate?

    Quote Originally Posted by Under the Sun View Post
    It's going to hinge on how many international flights customs has to service at your time of arrival.

    If you have a long flight, why not delay a meeting till the next day when you're bright eyed and bushy tailed ?
    Oh, I would love that! I've got to work the next day, though, so I've got to pick up my keys that evening. What a pain, right?

  4. #4
    rk
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    I would allow at least 90 mins to get out of the airport, and at least 30 to 40 mins to get there by taxi, so you're looking at 6 PM at the earliest, 7 or 8 PM would be much better choices. That is assuming your flight lands on time....

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    Default Re: Can I Get an Estimate?

    rk, don't remind me! I hit some killer delays the last time I traveled. *Shivers*

  6. #6
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    Ok... you all have missed the important question... are you American?!

    I fly internationally all the time into MIA, and depending on which terminal and nationality you are, you can be out fast or be out in 2 hours. Last time I landed I was out in 20 minutes, landing at the furthest gate and running to immigration! The quicker you can get to immigration from the plane, the better. If you are American you should not wait long, if you are not, good luck.

    I would say if you are American you could be at Sunny Isles between an hour and an hour and a half after you land.

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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    My bad. I quoted " customs" instead of immigration. More than 3/4ths the time, I get the baggage claim area before the luggage arrives. I've had two horrendous waits because of unproper manning at the stations.

    Like Jess says, make a bee line straight to immigration. Also keep your eye out for an immigration official that feints he is going to open up another line and jump to it.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: How long does it take to get through Immigration at MIA?

    I am an American citizen, yes! The bad news? My husband isn't; he has a green card. I will report back and let you know how close your estimates were!

  9. #9
    Moderator Jess's Avatar
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    If you are American he can go through with you, plus he has a green card so he goes through the residents line anyway. That's how I understand it.

  10. #10
    Member Maria de los Angeles's Avatar
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    For me (US Citizen) it has always taken at least 1 hour and that's without lines. This is also due in part because you have to walk a long distance, although I haven't flown internationally since the new speedy trains were added to the American Airlines terminal ... not sure if and which international flights come in through there.

  11. #11
    rk
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    Default Re: How long does it take to get through Immigration at MIA?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jess View Post
    If you are American he can go through with you, plus he has a green card so he goes through the residents line anyway...
    That is not quite correct. If he's a green card holder he can go through with her, but if he's not, and not a citizen, then he must go through the line for non-citizens/non-greencard-holders.

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    Default Re: How long does it take to get through Immigration at MIA?

    Quote Originally Posted by rk View Post
    That is not quite correct. If he's a green card holder he can go through with her, but if he's not, and not a citizen, then he must go through the line for non-citizens/non-greencard-holders.
    Wow, my head is spinning with all your info! I have never flown into Miami on an international flight with my husband, so now I am curious how they have it worked out. In airports like La Guardia or JFK (can't remember which), my Green Card-holding husband had to go through the non-citizen's line, but Miami might have something else worked out because of its location & number of international, non-citizen travelers.

    Another thing to confirm while I am there!

  13. #13
    rk
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    Hmm... sorry about the confusion. I did not mean to say quite that. I just meant to say that if you're a non-citizen then you must go through the non-citizen line. I am not sure what happens if you are a green card holder. I am having a hard time recalling how the lines are set up in Miami. It is quite possible there are separate lines for citizens and green card holders.

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    Default Re: How long does it take to get through Immigration at MIA?

    Quote Originally Posted by rk View Post
    Hmm... sorry about the confusion. I did not mean to say quite that. I just meant to say that if you're a non-citizen then you must go through the non-citizen line. I am not sure what happens if you are a green card holder. I am having a hard time recalling how the lines are set up in Miami. It is quite possible there are separate lines for citizens and green card holders.
    I haven't seen a line just for those with green cards yet, but I wouldn't be surprised if there were one in Miami!

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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    The lines are divided between citizens and non-citizens only. This folowing link might prove helpful ... How to Pass Miami Airport Immigration and Customs | eHow.com

  16. #16
    rk
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    UTS, that link you provided implies there are three lines (Citizens, Residents (i.e. green card holders), and Non-citizens). However, I don't recall there being three lines, but then again these things keep changing.

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    Senior Member Blackford Oakes's Avatar
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    3
    When you deboard the airplane in Miami Airport, you will first go through Immigration. There are separate Immigration lines for U.S. Citizens, U.S. residents, and visitors.


    Read more: How to Pass Miami Airport Immigration and Customs | eHow.com How to Pass Miami Airport Immigration and Customs | eHow.com

    Ur right

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    Default Re: How long does it take to get through Immigration at MIA?

    I thought I should head back here to tell you what I saw: Citizens and Green Card Holders in one section, processed together, and everyone else in the other lines. The terminal was quiet on Sunday in J, and I think it would be a good time for someone to come in from Brazil via TAM. Definitely run from the plane to get a good place in line, though!

    My plane arrived on time, and I was in my cab in about a half hour. I could have gotten out faster, but I had to go through an extra security check because I was traveling with a cat and dog.

  19. #19
    rk
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    Thanks for the update! Since the thread I noticed the same thing myself, just two lines (US citizens/Green card holders in one line and everyone else in the other). Also the same at another airport, so that might be the standard these days.

    I have yet to figure out why they sometimes put an "Admitted" date stamp in my passport, and other times they don't. It almost seems like on a whim.

  20. #20
    Member Maria de los Angeles's Avatar
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    Thanks for the update, mei!

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