How to Check Flight Reservations

Three Methods:Verifying Your Flight InformationChecking on Special RequestsChecking In the Day of Your Flight

Whether you book your airline tickets online, by phone or through a travel agent, it is always a good idea to check your reservations several times before the day of departure to confirm you have a seat on the flights you chose. You will also have the opportunity to make final preparations for your trip. When you check your flights, you can choose your seats, purchase meals and make requests for any special accommodations you might need. Check flight reservations by visiting the airline's website or calling their toll-free number. Try to verify your flight information beforehand, make any special requests, and be prepared to check-in the day of travel.

Method 1
Verifying Your Flight Information

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    Visit the website of the airline you are flying. After you’ve made your flight reservation, it’s always good to check to make sure the airline has recognized your transaction. [1]
    • Click on the tab that says "Manage Reservation," [2] “My Trips,”[3] or “My Trips/Check-In”. Each airline will have a different name for this tab, but it should be easy to locate. [4]
    • Type in your reservation number or ticket number. If you do not have your reservation number, you might be able to use your flight number and your last name. Check the e-mail you received when you purchased the ticket to find your reservation or ticket number.
    • Look for a confirmation screen. You should see your flight information, including the number of travelers, departure and arrival times and cities.
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    Check your flight reservations online through an online travel agency. If you booked your reservation through a site like Orbitz, Expedia, or Kayak, you may be able to check your reservation through their website.
    • Locate your reference code or confirmation number. This should have been given to you when you booked your flight.
    • Look for dual codes if you used an online travel agency such as Orbitz, Expedia or Kayak. The agency will have a confirmation code that may be different from the airline's reservation number assigned to you.
    • Check your reservation by signing into their website. For many online travel agencies, you can either start an account or log in using social media like Facebook. It’s also possible to check your status without setting an account if you have your reservation number.
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    Call the airline to check your flight reservation. You can call the airline directly as well to verify your travel information. This may be especially useful if you cannot locate your reservation number.
    • Call the airline's toll-free number. You can find this on your confirmation page, or your ticket. If you cannot find it, visit the airline's website and look for the number on the Contact Us page.
    • Share your reservation number with the agent who answers your call. You may also need to provide your name, flight number and date of departure.
    • You may need to provide other important information, especially if you do not have your reservation number. Be wary of supplying too much information to anyone over the phone, especially your credit card number.
    • Confirm all your flight details with the agent. Make sure everything matches your own records. The agent may offer to email or fax you a copy of your confirmation. Getting a copy of this confirmation will be useful for you.
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    Sign up for automatic alerts from the airline. You can sign up either online or on the phone to get alerts about your flight. Make sure you know what time your flight leaves in case there are any changes in your reservation.
    • Provide your cell phone number or e-mail. Make sure to give your contact information to the automatic alert system so you will not miss out on any changes.
    • Set the alert to remind you of any changes as they occur. It’s important to know of any big changes to the flight well in advance so you’re not surprised the day of your flight.
    • Sign up for hourly updating as your flight approaches. This will likely be available about 24 hours before flight time. You can get regular e-mails or text messages to let you know the planned arrival and departure time of your flight.
    • Make sure you are checking any alerts in the hours leading up to when you head to the airport. Knowing about any changes to your flight will save you time and protect you from any surprises at the airport.
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    Check your flight reservations on your mobile phone. You can also check your flight reservations digitally. It may be useful to download an application, including those provided by the airlines, to keep up with your reservation.
    • Download an application for your smart phone. Many airlines provide an app, or you can use a general travel service such as Virtually There.
    • Enter your flight details into the app once it’s downloaded. Wait for confirmation and verify your information ins correct.
    • Keep up with your flight reservation using the mobile app. Make sure nothing has changed before your flight.

Method 2
Checking on Special Requests

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    Make any changes or upgrades to your flight once you check your reservation. After verifying your flight reservation, you may want to check or make changes to your reservation.
    • Visit the website of the airline you’re flying on. You should be able to view your reservation on their website.
    • Log in using your confirmation number or flight information. You may also need important information like your name and date of birth.
    • Look at the additional information after your flight status. Check the options for ordering meals, checking in pets, checking luggage and choosing your seats.
    • Know that changing any flight information after making your reservation may cost extra. If possible, try to make sure all your special requests are in by the time you make the reservation.
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    Order meals. While confirming your flight, you may have the option to choose meals for your flight. Prepare to pay for them, since most domestic flights no longer include free meals.
    • Consider your airline. Each airline has slightly different food policies and options. Make sure you know what is available on your carrier. [5]
    • Know that most airlines charge for meals. If you want a full meal on a flight, there is usually a cost not included with your ticket.
    • Settle for snacks and drinks. Most airlines offer light snacks and drinks on short domestic.
    • International flights often offer complimentary meals. There should be a number of options that are available for a variety of diets.
    • Contact the airline if you have any unique dietary restrictions or food allergies. Call the airline directly or contact them via e-mail if you need special food or have severe food allergies so they will be prepared the day of the flight.
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    Pay for checked and carry-on luggage. Most airlines charge for both checked and carry-on luggage. Make sure to check-in and pay for all bags before heading to the airport.
    • Bags checked ahead of time are cheaper than paying for it at the gate. Know how many bags you pay to check ahead of time.
    • Checked and carry-on luggage is often more expensive in the 24 hours leading up to the flight than prior to that time period. Make sure to pay all baggage fees well in advance.
    • If you know how many bags you will be checking, enter the number and pay for them ahead of departure with a credit card.
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    Choose seats on your departing, connecting and return flights. For most airlines, you can choose your seat. Some have individual fees for different types of seats, while others charge more for first-class seating.
    • Most airlines will allow you to choose your seats ahead of time. Check in and find the seat that’s in the best location for your travel.
    • Consider if you’d rather sit in an aisle or window seat. If possible, try to avoid the middle seat since that offers the least amount of space.
    • Know that you may have to pay a fee for your seats. Some discount airlines charge per seat and charge different amounts depending on where the seat is on the plane.
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    Check in pets. If you are traveling with pets, make sure you’ve verified all details with the airlines beforehand. Flying with pets is difficult and you want to know that everything is ready when you arrive. [6]
    • Know that smaller pets can sometimes be taken as carry-ons. Larger animals cannot be carried on and need to be kept underneath the cabin.
    • Pets usually need to be a minimum age to fly. Most airlines suggest 6 to 8 weeks.
    • Small dogs and cats also need to have a health certificate issued by a vet close to the time of departure and arrival. How recent the health certificate needs to be depends on the airline.
    • Verify your kennel meets the appropriate sizes and regulation for the airline. There are size requirements for both carry-on kennels and checked kennels.
    • Know about any special weather restrictions. Airlines often have travel restrictions for pets based on the time of the year. Verify with your airline that you will meet the appropriate restrictions during the time of your flight. [7]

Method 3
Checking In the Day of Your Flight

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    Check-in 24 hours in advance. Once you’ve verified all of your flight information, you’re ready to do the final check-in. Make sure to check-in all final baggage, seats, and pets online prior to your flight time.
    • Go to the website of your airline. You can often be redirected there from online travel booking agencies, but it may be easiest to go directly to the airline.
    • Find the section of the website where you can “Check In”. Remember, you can only do this 24 hours prior to your departure time.
    • Input your reservation number or flight number. You may need other additional information to confirm your identity.
    • Finalize all baggage, seats, and pets on your check-in. If you added them beforehand, verify that these special requests are all being honored by the airline.
    • Print out your boarding pass. You can print it at the terminal, but it’s often easier to have it in your hand when you go to the airport.
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    Check in at airport terminal. After you’ve checked in your flight, baggage, and any pets online prior to your flight time, you’ll be ready to complete the final check-in at the airport. Make sure to bring all important ID when flying so you’ll have a smooth check-in at the terminal.
    • Have your documents prepared when you come to the terminal. Airport terminals are busy places, so being ready to show the attendant all necessary documents will make sure you get through the line quickly and easily.
    • Have photo ID. The airline will need to verify your identity. Bring your driver’s license, passport, or other government-issued photo ID when you travel.
    • Bring your flight confirmation or boarding pass. After you’ve checked in online, you’ll usually have a boarding pass. They can print it at the terminal, but you’ll be more prepared to have it with you when you arrive.
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    Bring checked luggage and checked pets. Make sure you have all your checked luggage ready to give to the attendant at the terminal. Keep your luggage secure and ready to be kept under the plane.
    • Make sure your luggage is secure. While you can’t lock your baggage, make sure all zippers are closed fully so nothing falls out.
    • Verify that your checked luggage meets the weight requirements. Most airlines charge extra for luggage over 50 pounds. Make sure your luggage is not too heavy.
    • Keep your luggage well marked and easy to locate. Much luggage looks the same. Do something to make your luggage distinctive so you’ll recognize it when you see it again at your arrival destination.
    • Make sure your pets are secure and ready to travel in their kennel. They need to have been fed and be calm for the flight.
    • Drop off pets at the predetermined location. They should be there plenty of time beforehand so the attendance can verify your paperwork.
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    Have carry-on luggage and pets prepared. Small pets and small bags can be carried onto the plane. However, it is important that both meet the requirements for carry-on luggage and are easy to store in the cabin.
    • Make sure your carry-on bag meets the size requirements. Most carry-on bags need to be able to fit into the overhead compartment. Airports usually have a measurement box so you can test out your baggage.
    • Verify that your baggage is not too heavy. Heavy baggage can make it difficult to maneuver around the plane and in the terminal.
    • Keep your baggage well secured. Baggage may shift during the flight, so all zipper should be zipped and secured.
    • Make sure your pet kennel meets the required size and weight requirements. You can find the size and weight requirements on your airline’s website.
    • Verify that your pet is calm and ready to fly. You don’t want to have a noisy pet when you come onto the airplane. Noisy pets make for a long and annoying plane ride for your fellow passengers.

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Categories: Air Travel