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What is "online check-in" all about?

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What is "online check-in" all about?

Old 16th Aug 2018, 23:01
  #1 (permalink)  
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What is "online check-in" all about?

If you don't check in online you
  • stand in a queue, show someone some paperwork, and they take your baggage
If you do check in online you
  • stand in a queue, show someone some paperwork, and they take your baggage
So from the punter's point of view, what's the gain from going through the extra hassle of fiddling around on the web the day before? (Assuming that you've already got your seat allocation, or that you don't care where you sit.)
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Old 16th Aug 2018, 23:19
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I was caught out in Hong Kong - although I had a reservation (and a ticket) I was unaware that I had to 'confirm' my reservation, and when I got to the airport my seat had been given away.
I had travelled from Denmark to Hong Kong and was scheduled to meet senior engineers in Singapore, so it was important that I 'had' to be on that aircraft - so I upgraded myself to First Class (where there was a seat), and I made my meeting as planned.
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Old 16th Aug 2018, 23:40
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The difference is money.

Online check in is free. In person check in can cost.
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 01:14
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I always check in online (easy), but the most recent trip required us to print our own baggage tags at one of the so called 'kiosks' scattered around the area when we arrived at the airport. This turned out to be an infuriatingly frustrating exercise for the newcomer ( I think I managed to print five boarding passes before it came good with the delivery of a second baggage tag!) after which we joined a significant cue to the 'bag drop'. New system in operation there too - also complicated. Put the second bag on too early and the conveyor reverses and fires the first one back at you to have to redo the process again. At no point was there a check to confirm who we were, or question us about the usual safety detail with hold luggage. There was an attendant at the bag drop, but she was to busy correcting the incompetent (Iself) on the correct procedure for feeding bags into the system. I felt sorry for her. She was approaching the frustration level of most of the puzzled 'guests' and may well have caught up and passed that level (She was not happy, poor thing). Given that we still had to queue anyway and the extra time wasted in negotiating with the strange logic in the bag tag printing process and the (third time lucky) delivery of the bags into the airline's care, it probably took twice as long as previous negotiations with a pleasant assistant behind the counter who knew how to do all this [email protected] Can this be progress?

The bloke behind us in the first queue didn't think so; he announced his intention to do his next trips with the other airline.

FOR
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 02:21
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For international flights the VISA, passport etc needs to be checked. This should be done before you pass thru immigration.

For domestic travel, as mentioned above, go direct to gate if you have no bags to check in.
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 02:59
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I, like many others on these pages, still travel a lot and see very little, if any, advanytage; especially if traveling
business class.

And I have always been wary, because I don't understand the consequences, of checking in on-line for the second leg of a journey with a change of carrier.
What happens when my CX gets to Hong Kong 4 hours late and the SQ upon which I have checked in on-line has departed an hour ago.I don't do on-line check in unless I'm staying at an hotel within a 10 minute shuttle ride from the check in counter.
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 05:30
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Originally Posted by Gertrude the Wombat View Post
.....from the punter's point of view, what's the gain from going through the extra hassle of fiddling around on the web the day before? (Assuming that you've already got your seat allocation, or that you don't care where you sit.)
Passport/visa checks are done at the gate not check-in ex many countries so as has been said if only travelling with handbaggage you avoid what might be a major queue at a bag drop....

I’m travelling hand baggage only later today. Given the bag drop and check-in area at my local airport is usually a major PITA and not well segregated I know I’m going to be saving myself at least 30 minutes this PM by spending 5 minutes on line last night.

Last edited by wiggy; 17th Aug 2018 at 06:52.
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 06:16
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As a poster above mentioned who had not re-confirmed, I check-in on line because having successfully completed this I am reasonably sure I will be on the flight and also have a chance to select a seat I prefer.

I even check-in on line when I do not have access to a printer and so still have to queue to get a boarding card (I find the machines more trouble than they are worth). As also mentioned, with only a cabin bag, and departing the UK, you can go straight to the gate if you have printed your boarding card. Only issue there is that the first time the airline sees your documents is at boarding and on one occasion they were (incorrectly) concerned about the suitability of my visa for the destination. It worked out and maybe they were more inclined to let me travel being at the gate rather than back at check-in.
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 06:58
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Originally Posted by Squawk 6042 View Post
As also mentioned, with only a cabin bag, and departing the UK, you can go straight to the gate if you have printed your boarding card.
Same across a lot of Europe, and possibly beyond, though everybody may need to go through police/border force passport screening on the way to the gate.....

Of course the real smart move is to go paper free, get rid of all the computer and printer/paper stuff and check-in on your mobile.....I Now do that but I must admit I’m not yet brave enough to travel without a paper copy of at least the booking reference and e-ticket number(s).
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 07:37
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Originally Posted by WingNut60 View Post
I, like many others on these pages, still travel a lot and see very little, if any, advanytage; especially if traveling
business class.

And I have always been wary, because I don't understand the consequences, of checking in on-line for the second leg of a journey with a change of carrier.
What happens when my CX gets to Hong Kong 4 hours late and the SQ upon which I have checked in on-line has departed an hour ago.I don't do on-line check in unless I'm staying at an hotel within a 10 minute shuttle ride from the check in counter.
Happened to us, all 11 checked in online, LH Frankfurt - Hong Kong, CX to Manila. Late arrival, flight gone. Operation normal, checked in on next flight, no difference.
We're happy with online check in. Select your seats, print out boarding pass, go to kiosk, print out tags, drop baggage, go through usual routines, have a drink. Better than long lines.
Per
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 07:57
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I can say it all depends.

On some airlines you can check in for the return flight before you even leave home. Ryanair used to require a 'free' online check in and printing boarding pass no more than 24 hr in advance. If you checked in at the airport it cost extra. Fine going from home but when on holiday! I went to the travel agent, paid Ä1 and got my boarding cards.
​​​​​
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 08:35
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It's all about moving cost.

Like most industries, the number of tasks has been reduced to the minimum so all can be done to reduce cost further is to move it. When it comes to check in the cost of this bit of admin is moved to the passenger (as well as the cost of printers, paper and ink!) and sold to us as a "benefit".
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 08:52
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When I was travelling I understood that the main point of the check-in process was to record the passenger's presence at the airport.
In these days of tight security I cannot see why that is not needed even more than it was.
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 09:01
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What it's all about? Reducing cost and shifting work from airline/GSP employees to passengers, whilst polishing the turd with a 'we provide oppertunities for our honoured guests', or other management drivel to the same effect.
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 09:14
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Originally Posted by Carry0nLuggage View Post
It's all about moving cost.

Like most industries, the number of tasks has been reduced to the minimum so all can be done to reduce cost further is to move it. When it comes to check in the cost of this bit of admin is moved to the passenger (as well as the cost of printers, paper and ink!) and sold to us as a "benefit".
Cost will be a big plus for the airline but itís not all about the money.

Over a sequence of flights there will be massive time benefits to on-line check for frequent flyers and Iím not sure many hanker to going back to standing in line for considerable periods of time just to get a piece of paper they could printed off at home or downloaded as an image...I certainly donít.

Now if you really want to see a step too far and something really worth griping about try DIY baggage check-in...
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 11:04
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online-checkin vs non online-checkin - the fact is all you need to show in either queues is your passport - so pick the shortest queue regardless if you have checked in on-line. Works for me.

PS: Sometimes the staff operating the business and first class queues may look bored so make some eye contact. Often they will waive you through and process you for being an observant SOB.
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 13:52
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In these days of tight security I cannot see why that is not needed even more than it was.
When you check in on-line, security get to know more about you than they would from you standing in front of them. They get everything on you already coded in computer format, nice and handy for running through their scanning software a whole day ahead of you travelling.
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 18:29
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What it's all about? Reducing cost and shifting work from airline/GSP employees to passengers
And this shifting of work to the customer to reduce cost is being done with other businesses. I sometimes stop(ped) at a nearby McDonald's to get a coffee on the way to work. Last time I was there they had gotten rid of counter persons; one had to place the order and pay via card at a kiosk. I refused and will never return. There are also self check out lines at local stores.
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 18:38
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Originally Posted by Blacksheep View Post
When you check in on-line, security get to know more about you than they would from you standing in front of them. They get everything on you already coded in computer format, nice and handy for running through their scanning software a whole day ahead of you travelling.
I suppose all that is available when you have made an on-line booking rather than after on-line check-in. My point was that in these days simply knowing that a passenger was there (or not) would be more important than it used to be.
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Old 17th Aug 2018, 18:45
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Well , when all the progressives demand a minimum $15 hourly for punching in the order at McDís, is it any wonder the company turns to a machine instead?
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