Saturday, January 18, 2014

Flying from Miami to Key West

Miami International Airport MIA

American Airlines operates 6 flights a day from Miami airport to Key West airport and is the only airline to fly direct from MIA to EYW (Key West). The actual flight time is 29 minutes at an altitude of only 16,000 feet.

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The Embraer RJ140 which is the small jet which American uses to fly from MIA to Key West.
This flight is operated by American Eagle and the equipment (aircraft) is an Embraer RJ140. If you're not familiar with this then this means a tiny little jet, one aisle, 16 rows by 3 seats across - A is by itself, then the aisle, then B and C together. Very small overhead compartments which will fit a back pack but not a suitcase.

Inside the cabin Miami Airport to Key West
At the time of writing, the flight times of the 6 flights a day from MIA are:

Embraer RJ140 on final approach to Key West
IMPORTANT NOTE: American can/does change these times during the year. They changed my flight time by almost 2 hours a few months after I booked. So you need to double check your flight times. Also note that these flights are often late, even when the weather is ok. So don't plan connections or arrangements too tight on time.

The flight itself takes off from D terminal at MIA, usually from D60 or D53, right down the bottom of this (long, long) terminal so allow 15 minutes for walking to it from security. Like other airports, security lines at Miami airport are regularly very long. Moral of the story: allow plenty of time.

The flight itself is very short, with the actual time in the air 29 minutes at an altitude of only 16,000 ft. (The schedule time is longer because of taxing time etc).

At this altitude and with such a small plane, and it being tropical, turbulence can be a real issue - just in case you are worried by that sort of thing.

If you get the connection times correct, and there are no delays, then this is a quicker option than driving down US1, albeit less scenic.

When you get to Key West International Airport
Key West International Airport is tiny and easy to navigate. Wait 5 wins for your bags, and then the taxi rank is just outside the main door. Taxi ride to Duval Street is 10-15 minutes depending on traffic. You'll often have to share a taxi/drop offs/cost. Shared taxi to Duval is $10.

American Airlines domestic check in at Miami - looking pretty quiet today

American Airlines flights to Key West are often delayed. One flight here delayed and also my flight, the 5.50pm, also later on was delayed by 30 mins

American Airlines to Key West - delays, delays

Eventually, you'll arrive!....
Key West international airport sign

Key West airport is small and not a busy airport, indeed at certain times can be very very quiet - see below pictures for case in point,

Baggage reclaim Key West airport
Some of the rentals are in the airport right by baggage reclaim
The exterior of Key West airport showing the taxi line area. This is a particularly quiet night - actually was last flight into town on new year's day


Planning a Key West vacation - things to consider and FAQs

When is the best time of year to visit Key West?