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Check-in and airport processing times

To help ensure that your trip goes smoothly, please allow enough time for checking in and passing through security. Additional time may be necessary when traveling around holidays or other peak travel times.

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) requires enhanced security measures for all flights departing from non-U.S. locations to the United States. We recommend that you ensure that any liquids, aerosols or gels that are included in your carry-on bags adhere to current restrictions. Visit the TSA website for details regarding these security measures.

Payment transactions at airports

The United check-in counters and kiosks at some of the airports we serve do not accept cash as a form of payment. For more information, visit the Accepted Forms of Payment page.

Check-in guidelines

The times below apply to flights operated by United and United Express®. For flights operated by another carrier, including our codeshare partners, the applicable check-in time limit for that carrier's flight will apply.

For flights within the U.S., as well as most international flights, baggage will generally not be accepted for check-in more than four hours before scheduled flight departure, although this policy varies by airport and based on daily check-in counter hours.

United has the right to cancel reservations, deny boarding and refuse the acceptance of checked baggage of any customer who does not meet their applicable check-in time limit.

Check-in is available starting 24 hours prior to scheduled departure. Check in now.

Check-in and boarding requirements for flights within the U.S., Guam, Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands

For flights within the U.S., Guam, Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands, customers and their bags must meet the check-in and boarding requirements below. These requirements refer to the minimum amount of time before scheduled departure.

Check-in and boarding requirements for flights within the U.S., Guam, Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands
Departure Airport Check-in and baggage check completed Available for boarding at the gate
Anchorage, AK (ANC) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Atlanta, GA (ATL) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Chicago, IL (ORD) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Cincinnati, OH (CVG) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Cleveland, OH (CLE) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Denver, CO (DEN) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Guam (GUM) 60 minutes 30 minutes
Fort Lauderdale, FL (FLL) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Houston, TX (IAH) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Honolulu, HI (HNL) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Indianapolis, IN (IND) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Jacksonville, FL (JAX) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Kahului, HI (OGG) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Kona, HI (KOA) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Las Vegas, NV (LAS) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Los Angeles, CA (LAX) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Miami, FL (MIA) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Newark, NJ (EWR) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Orange County, CA (SNA) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Orlando, FL (MCO) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Philadelphia, PA (PHL) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Phoenix, AZ (PHX) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Reno, NV (RNO) 45 minutes 15 minutes
San Francisco, CA (SFO) 45 minutes 15 minutes
San Juan, Puerto Rico (SJU) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Seattle, WA (SEA) 45 minutes 15 minutes
St. Louis, MO (STL) 45 minutes 15 minutes
St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands (STT) 60 minutes 15 minutes
Tampa/St. Petersburg, FL (TPA) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Washington, D.C. – Dulles (IAD) 45 minutes 15 minutes
Washington, D.C. – National (DCA) 45 minutes 15 minutes
All other airports within the U.S. and Puerto Rico 30 minutes 15 minutes

The minimum check-in time requirement for customers not checking bags on flights within the U.S., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands is 30 minutes, except for Guam, which is 60 minutes.

Check-in and boarding requirements for international flights

For international flights, customers and their bags must meet the check-in and boarding requirements below. These requirements refer to the minimum amount of time before scheduled departure.

Check-in and boarding requirements for international flights
Departure airport Check-in and baggage check completed Available for boarding at the gate
Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Marshall Islands, Palau:
  • Koror (ROR)
  • Kosrae (KSA)
  • Kwajalein (KWA)
  • Majuro (MAJ)
  • Pohnpei (PNI)
  • Truk (TKK)
  • Yap (YAP)
90 minutes 60 minutes
Dublin, Ireland (DUB) 75 minutes 30 minutes
Lagos, Nigeria (LOS) 90 minutes 60 minutes
Lima, Peru (LIM) 75 minutes 30 minutes
All other airports 60 minutes 30 minutes

Processing times for airports within the United States

As a result of heightened security measures, we suggest customers arrive at the airport early. Some local airport authorities have instituted additional measures beyond the mandatory security measures specified by the TSA. All vehicles approaching the airports are subject to search on the approaching roadways and within the traffic lanes at the terminals. This may add to your airport processing times, especially at major airports.

The metal detectors at most airports are very sensitive. To ensure a seamless security process, we suggest placing all metal items, including jewelry, in your carry-on luggage before arriving at the security checkpoint. In most cases, shoes should be removed and placed in the bins provided at the checkpoint.

If you are departing during peak traffic hours, the approximate processing time listed should provide you with enough time to make your flight. Especially heavy travel volumes on Sunday afternoons, Friday afternoons and Monday mornings may require an additional half hour.

Peak traffic hours at most airports are:

  • 6:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
  • 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.
  • 3:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Processing times for airports within the United States
City/airport name Approximate processing time during peak traffic hours
Albany, NY (ALB) 1 1/2 to 2 hours
Albuquerque, NM (ABQ) 1 3/4 to 2 hours
Alexandria, LA (AEX) 2 hours
Allentown/Bethlehem, PA (ABE) 1 1/2 hours
Amarillo, TX (AMA) 1 1/2 hours
Anchorage, AK (ANC) 2 hours
Asheville, NC (AVL) 1 1/2 hours
Atlanta, GA (ATL) 2 hours
Note: The latest possible baggage check-in time is 45 minutes before scheduled flight departure.
Austin, TX (AUS) 1 1/2 hours
Baltimore, MD (BWI) 1 1/2 hours
Baton Rouge, LA (BTR) 2 hours
Birmingham, AL (BHM) 1 1/2 to 2 hours
Boston, MA (BOS) 2 hours
Buffalo, NY (BUF) 1 3/4 hours
Burlington, VT (BTV) 1 1/2 hours
Charleston, SC (CHS) 1 1/2 hours
Charleston, WV (CRW) 1 to 1 1/2 hours
Charlotte, NC (CLT) 1 1/2 hours
Chicago, IL (ORD) 2 hours
Note: The latest possible baggage check-in time is 45 minutes before scheduled flight departure.
Cleveland, OH (CLE) 6:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.: 1 1/2 hours
11 a.m. – 2 p.m.: 1 1/4 hours
3:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.: 1 1/4 hours
Colorado Springs, CO (COS) 2 hours
Columbus, OH (CMH) 1 to 1 1/2 hours
Corpus Christi, TX (CRP) 1 1/2 hours
Dallas/Fort Worth, TX (DFW) 1 1/2 hours
Dayton, OH (DAY) 1 1/2 hours
Denver, CO (DEN) 2 hours
Note: The latest possible baggage check-in time is 45 minutes before scheduled flight departure.
Des Moines, IA (DSM) 1 1/2 to 2 hours
Detroit, MI (DTW) 1 1/2 hours
El Paso, TX (ELP) 1 1/2 hours
Fayetteville, AR (XNA) 1 to 1 1/2 hours
Fayetteville, NC (FAY) 45 minutes to 1 hour
Fort Lauderdale, FL (FLL) 2 hours
Fort Myers, FL (RSW) 1 1/2 hours
Grand Rapids, MI (GRR) 1 to 1 1/2 hours
Greensboro, NC (GSO) 1 1/2 hours
Greenville-Spartanburg, SC (GSP) 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours
Gulfport/Biloxi, MS (GPT) 1 1/2 hours
Harlingen, TX (HRL) 1 1/2 hours
Harrisburg, PA (MDT) 1 to 1 1/2 hours
Hartford, CT (BDL) 1 1/2 hours
Hayden/Steamboat Springs, CO (HDN) 2 hours
Houston, TX (IAH) 6:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.: 1 to 1 1/2 hours
11 a.m. – 2 p.m.: 1 hour
3:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.: 1 to 1 1/2 hours
Huntsville, AL (HSV) 2 hours
Islip, NY (ISP) 1 1/2 hours
Jackson, MS (JAN) 1 1/2 hours
Jackson Hole, WY (JAC) hours
Jacksonville, FL (JAX) 1 1/2 hours
Killeen, TX (GRK) 1 1/2 hours
Knoxville, TN (TYS) 1 1/2 hours
Lafayette, LA (LFT) 1 1/2 to 2 hours
Lake Charles, LA (LCH) 1 1/2 hours
Laredo, TX (LRD) 1 1/2 hours
Las Vegas, NV (LAS) 1 1/2 to 2 hours
Note: The latest possible baggage check-in time is 45 minutes before scheduled flight departure.
Lexington, KY (LEX) 1 to 1 1/2 hours
Little Rock, AR (LIT) 1 to 1 1/2 hours
Los Angeles, CA (LAX) 1 1/2 hours
Louisville, KY (SDF) 1 1/2 to 2 hours
Lubbock, TX (LBB) 1 1/2 hours
Madison, WI (MSN) 1 3/4 hours
Manchester, NH (MHT) 1 1/2 to 2 hours
McAllen, TX (MFE) 1 1/2 hours
Memphis, TN (MEM) 1 1/2 hours
Miami, FL (MIA) 1 1/2 to 2 hours
Midland/Odessa, TX (MAF) 1 1/2 hours
Milwaukee, WI (MKE) 1 1/2 hours
Minneapolis, MN (MSP) 1 1/2 hours
Montrose/Telluride, CO (MTJ) 2 hours
Nantucket, MA (ACK) 1 1/4 hours
Nashville, TN (BNA) 1 3/4 hours
New Orleans, LA (MSY) 1 3/4 hours
New York/Newark, NJ (EWR) 6:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.: 1 1/2 hours
11 a.m. – 2 p.m.: 1 1/2 hours
3:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m.: 1 1/2 hours
Note: Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and holidays
require 2 to 2 1/2 hours and all international
departures require 2 1/2 to 3 hours. An additional
half hour is required on Monday mornings.
New York, NY (JFK) 1 1/2 to 2 hours
Note: The latest possible baggage check-in time is 45 minutes before scheduled flight departure.
New York, NY (LGA – LaGuardia) 2 hours
Norfolk, VA (ORF) 2 hours
Oklahoma City, OK (OKC) 1 1/2 to 2 hours
Omaha, NE (OMA) 1 1/4 hours
Ontario, CA (ONT) 1 1/2 hours
Orange County, CA (SNA) 1 1/2 hours
Orlando, FL (MCO) 1 3/4 hours
Note: The latest possible baggage check-in time is 45 minutes before scheduled flight departure.
Palm Springs, CA (PSP) 1 1/2 hours
Philadelphia, PA (PHL) 2 hours
Note: The latest possible baggage check-in time is 45 minutes before scheduled flight departure.
Phoenix, AZ (PHX) 2 hours
Pittsburgh, PA (PIT) 2 hours
Portland, ME (PWM) 1 1/2 to 2 hours
Portland, OR (PDX) 2 hours
Providence, RI (PVD) 2 hours
Raleigh-Durham, NC (RDU) 2 hours
Reno, NV (RNO) 1 1/2 hours
Note: The latest possible baggage check-in time is 45 minutes before scheduled flight departure.
Rochester, NY (ROC) 2 hours
Sacramento, CA (SMF) 1 1/2 hours
Salt Lake City, UT (SLC) 1 1/2 hours
San Antonio, TX (SAT) 1 1/2 hours
San Diego, CA (SAN) 2 hours
San Francisco, CA (SFO) 1 1/2 hours
Note: The latest possible baggage check-in time is 45 minutes before scheduled flight departure.
San Jose, CA (SJC) 1 1/2 hours
Sarasota, FL (SRQ) 1 to 1 1/2 hours
Savannah, GA (SAV) 1 1/2 hours
Seattle, WA (SEA) 2 hours
St. Louis, MO (STL) 2 hours
Syracuse, NY (SYR) 1 1/2 hours
Tampa, FL (TPA) 1 1/2 hours
Tucson, AZ (TUS) 1 1/2 hours
Tulsa, OK (TUL) 1 1/2 hours
Vail/ Eagle, CO (EGE) 2 hours
Victoria, TX (VCT) 1 1/2 hours
Washington, D.C. – Dulles (IAD) 2 hours
Washington, D.C. – National (DCA) 2 hours
Columbia, SC (CAE) 1 to 1 1/2 hours
West Palm Beach, FL (PBI) 2 hours
Wichita, KS (ICT) 2 hours

Processing times for airports outside the United States

The approximate airport processing time for most cities and regions outside the U.S. is three hours. The following cities and regions are exceptions:

Processing times for airports outside the United States
City/airport/region name Approximate processing time during peak traffic hours
Aguascalientes, Mexico (AGU) 1 1/4 hours
Antigua (ANU) 2 hours
Belize City, Belize (BZE) 2 hours
Buenos Aires, Argentina (EZE) 3 hours
Caracas, Venezuela (CCS) 3 hours
Note: The latest possible baggage check-in time is 90 minutes before scheduled flight departure.
Chihuahua, Mexico (CUU) 2 hours
Geneva, Switzerland (GVA) 2 hours
Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands (GCM) 2 hours
Guatemala City, Guatemala (GUA) 2 hours
Halifax, NS, Canada (YHZ) 2 hours
Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo, Mexico (ZIH) 2 hours
Kelowna, BC, Canada (YLW) 1 1/2 to 2 hours
Note: The latest possible baggage check-in time is 60 minutes before scheduled flight departure.
Leon/Guanajuato, Mexico (BJX) 2 hours
Lima, Peru (LIM) 2 1/2 hours
Note: The latest possible baggage check-in time is 75 minutes before scheduled flight departure.
Managua, Nicaragua (MGA) 2 hours
Montego Bay, Jamaica (MBJ) 2 hours
Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic (POP) 2 hours
Quebec City, QC, Canada (YQB) 2 hours
Roatan, Honduras (RTB) 2 hours
Saltillo, Mexico (SLW) 1 1/2 hours
San Jose del Cabo, Mexico (SJD) 2 hours
San Jose, Costa Rica (SJO) 2 1/2 hours
San Luis Potosi, Mexico (SLP) 1 1/2 hours
San Pedro Sula, Honduras (SAP) 2 hours
San Salvador, El Salvador (SAL) 2 hours
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic (SDQ) 2 hours
St. John's, NL, Canada (YYT) 2 hours
St. Maarten, Netherlands Antilles (SXM) 2 hours
Tampico, Mexico (TAM) 2 hours
Tegucigalpa, Honduras (TGU) 2 hours
Torreon, Mexico (TRC) 2 1/2 hours
Veracruz, Mexico (VER) 1 1/2 hours
Villahermosa, Mexico (VSA) 1 1/2 hours
Zurich, Switzerland (ZRH) 2 hours