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Check-in - on-line up to 24 hours ahead, why?

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Check-in - on-line up to 24 hours ahead, why?

Old 9th Jun 2019, 20:04
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Check-in - on-line up to 24 hours ahead, why?

Can somebody explain to me the logic/sense behind on-line flight check-in?

If you do check-in up to 24 hours ahead, you could be 1000's of miles away and there is no certainty that you won't be delayed and miss the flight etc. If you do miss the flight, what happens? Presumably you have guaranteed that your seat will be held so you will be charged, whoever the airline has double booked won't make the flight and your seat will fly empty? You still need to arrive at the airport in time to check your hold luggage in so the advantage is exactly what?

Rans6.....................



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Old 9th Jun 2019, 20:22
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Originally Posted by rans6andrew View Post
You still need to arrive at the airport in time to check your hold luggage in so the advantage is exactly what?
Well, it used to be that you would stand in a queue to hand your baggage in.

With this new system, you do some extra bureaucracy at home (which you can't do for the return trip anyway, as you can't print the boarding pass, as you don't carry a printer around with your laptop), then you stand in a queue to fiddle with an incomprehensible machine at the airport to print your own baggage labels, then you stand in a queue to hand your baggage in.

Whoever might derive an "advantage" from imposing this additional work, cost and queuing on the passenger, it sure ain't the passenger.
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Old 9th Jun 2019, 20:34
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Originally Posted by Gertrude the Wombat View Post
Well, it used to be that you would stand in a queue to hand your baggage in.

With this new system, you do some extra bureaucracy at home (which you can't do for the return trip anyway, as you can't print the boarding pass, as you don't carry a printer around with your laptop), then you stand in a queue to fiddle with an incomprehensible machine at the airport to print your own baggage labels, then you stand in a queue to hand your baggage in.

Whoever might derive an "advantage" from imposing this additional work, cost and queuing on the passenger, it sure ain't the passenger.
I don't see the cost involved since most often than not I have either WiFi or data and I buy plenty of paper so a single sheet will not be an issue. If no printer is available I ask the airline to print the boarding pass at the airport.
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Old 9th Jun 2019, 20:44
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Originally Posted by Rwy in Sight View Post
I don't see the cost involved since most often than not I have either WiFi or data and I buy plenty of paper so a single sheet will not be an issue. If no printer is available I ask the airline to print the boarding pass at the airport.
The cost isn't significant, no, but the additional time and hassle caused by the airline offloading this cost are. I'd rather pay 2p more for the fare to cover the ink and the paper and have the airline do the printing at the point where I have to queue up to hand my bags in anyway.
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Old 9th Jun 2019, 21:38
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Originally Posted by rans6andrew View Post
Can somebody explain to me the logic/sense behind on-line flight check-in?

If you do check-in up to 24 hours ahead, you could be 1000's of miles away and there is no certainty that you won't be delayed and miss the flight etc. If you do miss the flight, what happens? Presumably you have guaranteed that your seat will be held so you will be charged..
Most categories of tickets, especially the cheaper ones, are non flexible, non refundable. If you miss the flight you will be charged anyway, regardless of whether you have checked in or not.

As for other points raised, on-line check-in does have certain advantages:

Depending on the airline on-line check in may allow you to look at a seat plan and potentially reserve that particular seat/aisle seat/window seat you want from home, rather than simply be asked something like “window or aisle” at the desk..if you are lucky...

If you are travelling handbaggage only then on-line check-in means one less queue to stand in at the airport..

As for paper and ink, and boarding cards for return sectors....these days, depending on the airline, you can often do the whole check-in process including downloading a boarding card on your mobile, so paper, ink and quite possibly even access to a computer not required.

TBH I rather suspect many passengers, especially the hand baggage only frequent flyers would rather have their wisdom teeth removed without anaesthetic than be forced to go back to standing in line to be issued a paper card..

I do however admit to not being a fan of self service bag drops, and I do know those labels are the work of the devil...

Last edited by wiggy; 9th Jun 2019 at 22:04.
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Old 9th Jun 2019, 21:51
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Originally Posted by wiggy View Post
If you are travelling handbaggage only then on-line check in means one less line to stand in at the airport..
In the 1980s this was called "gate check-in". You showed your ticket at the gate instead of your boarding card.
Originally Posted by wiggy View Post
As for paper and ink...if you trust your smartphone then you can probably load your boarding pass onto that, so paper and ink not required.
Ah, so instead of buying a 1p sheet of paper you have to buy and run a smartphone.
Originally Posted by wiggy View Post
TBH I rather suspect many passengers, especially the frequent flyers, would rather have their wisdom teeth removed without anaesthetic than be forced to go back to the days of standing in line for a paper card..
But you've got to stand in the line anyway to hand in your baggage ...
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Old 9th Jun 2019, 22:30
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Passing the gate check-in person en route to the jetway:

Me:
"Here's my paper boarding pass -- ding-ding -- thank you sir, have a nice flight."
SmartphoneGuy:
"Wait, I had it on here before. Where did it go?
Maybe my phone went into sleep, just a min.
Hold on, Jessica, I'm just checking in to my flight here -- I'll get back to you.
Wait, I'll have to reboot.
But it was just here, I saw it.
What do you mean your reader cant see the barcode thingy.
Which way do I have to turn it?
It worked on the way out, did they update the app or something?
OK here, there you go."

I'll just stick to the paper one, thank you.
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Old 9th Jun 2019, 23:07
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Originally Posted by Gertrude the Wombat View Post
Ah, so instead of buying a 1p sheet of paper you have to buy and run a smartphone..
If you don’t have a smartphone then that’s your call - I wouldn’t go out and buy one just for the purposes of air travel, but I (and many others) have one anyway, so it’s nil cost.

But you've got to stand in the line anyway to hand in your baggage
But you haven’t got to stand in a line to hand in baggage if you are travelling hand baggage only.

As for phones going flat or not working..true, it happens..but people also lose paper boarding cards on the way to the gate....

TBH I’m sensing for some reason this is a controversial issue here with some, almost as if on-line check-in is wrong, and I’m not sure why. If you are happy with queuing for a card so be it, but forcing everybody to do will just make the queues longer.




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Old 9th Jun 2019, 23:48
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If it is such a boon to the passenger, then why do they still have desk check-in for business / first class?
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Old 10th Jun 2019, 01:30
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Originally Posted by Gertrude the Wombat View Post

With this new system, you do some extra bureaucracy at home (which you can't do for the return trip anyway, as you can't print the boarding pass, as you don't carry a printer around with your laptop), then you stand in a queue to fiddle with an incomprehensible machine at the airport to print your own baggage labels, then you stand in a queue to hand your baggage in.

Whoever might derive an "advantage" from imposing this additional work, cost and queuing on the passenger, it sure ain't the passenger.
My better half recently traveled from Sydney to the Gold Coast with Jetstar. She was able to check in for both legs of the journey form home and print boarding passes even though the return journey was 6 days away.
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Old 10th Jun 2019, 02:20
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As is usual with this type of thread the dinosaurs appear to bash technology. Ooohhhh....buy and run a smart phone. Not like it was back in my day with with my slate and chalk. You're the type of people who are a nightmare to get stuck behind going through security. Where's my paper boarding pass? Oh I dropped it back over there. Works both ways you see.......
I run two airline apps, depending on who I fly with. Bloody marvelous is all I can say. Check in is a breeze. Instant updates on delays or gate changes. Instant updates on seat changes. Heck you can Google your flight number and it well tell you everything you need to know about your flight. Have to make a connection? No problem as we're taxiing in, I Google it and bingo I know exactly where I have to go. Makes it so much faster and more efficient. Faster that is once I get past you lot trying to find your flight info on the monitors or crowding around an airline rep. As for checking in bags.....don't do it at the front. If I check baggage I take it through and check it at the gate. That also means I don't pay for my bag to fly.
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Old 10th Jun 2019, 03:29
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Lighten up, Vaquero. All I said was that I find a paper boarding pass easier to handle than a phone version.

Sure, check in from home online. Use one of the 6 airline apps on my phone. (Some work very well, others, like Delta, are useless.) I'm not the one delaying you at security -- have TSA prechecks, and also Mobile Passport (best traveler app around!) But I am delayed while you fiddle with your giant baggage which you couldn't be arsed to check earlier.

We all have our gripes about flying. It's no longer a pleasure. I just don't find the phone boarding pass that great an innovation.
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Old 10th Jun 2019, 06:20
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Ryanair, not flown with them for over a decade, offered 24 he online check-in. For an extortionate you could queue and pay instead. As pointed out, it is not easy to print a boarding pass away from home.

I popped into a cooperative Spanish travel agent, they let me log in and print both cards for , saved 24. And as hand baggage only no queue either.
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Old 10th Jun 2019, 06:42
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Originally Posted by Rwy in Sight View Post
If no printer is available I ask the airline to print the boarding pass at the airport.
I'm guessing that you haven't tried that with Ryanair ...

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Old 10th Jun 2019, 06:51
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What law says you have to have any kind of mobile phone ?

I'm a Student Dinosaur - managed to get through Life so far, why fix things that ain't broke ?

Southwest seating and Online check-in is a nightmare, Free seating, so initially those first at the airport got Line A , board first and got choice of seat. First time I experienced this was Hawaii to Florida with an aircraft change at Chicago. The first aircraft was some sort ot CodeShare, i.e. not specifically a Southwest aircraft, and they only gave me a boarding card out of Hawaii to Chicago, but we were there early so got an A priority on that sector. . Changing flights at Chicago was between 03.00 and 05.00 I got to the Southwest Transfer Desk before the staff, but when they arrived I was given a C line priority. WTF? I'm the only one here and clearly the first. No, we have Online check-in now and many are ahead of you, why didn't you check in earlier ? How TF could I, I was on YOUR aircraft and had already checked in out of Hawaii. No, that was our partner airline, doesn't count on this sector.

Next time, checking in 24 hrs before departure, as was the next trick, I was of course again a C line holder, which was when I learned of the new procedure that allows check in at 00.00hrs on any day of your departure, so was once again relegated to the back of the queue. Next time I got up and checked in just after Midnight, but was still way too late to get an A priority. WTF ? I asked one of the A line passengers what time they had checked in ? 23.59 the day before, I was told ??? He then explained that one signs in just before 23.59, in time to complete the Online procedure, and when finally submitting your details get a message that this operation is not allowed . You then rattle the "refresh" key constantly, and at 00.00 hrs.plus 1 second your application is accepted, and if lucky you are one of the first 30 to get a A line priority booking !

What a performance, just to get a desired seat, bring back airport check in, Southwest, and reward those who take the trouble to travel to the airport early. One can imagine millions of Southwest passengers all still awake at Midnight manning their computer keyboards and rattling their Refresh keys ! What a Life. Dinosaurs Rule, OK ?
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Old 10th Jun 2019, 08:43
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“Did you pack your bags yourself?”
”Has anyone approached you in the airport asking you to carry or take any luggage for them?”

When did we last hear those words?
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Old 10th Jun 2019, 09:45
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We were able to check-in online some 28 days before a couple of flights, only a few weeks ago, and all went smoothly.

In contrast, our daughter and her husband recently tried to check-in online 24hrs before a return flight from Mauritius to Gatwick, only to be greeted by the following message:-

“We are unable to process this booking, please sort it out at the airport,”
At the airport they were told that no seats were available because the flight was overbooked. Only after declining 500 each to take a much later and very inconvenient flight, were they able to board their original flight.
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Old 10th Jun 2019, 09:50
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Originally Posted by Gertrude the Wombat View Post
Ah, so instead of buying a 1p sheet of paper you have to buy and run a smartphone.
Plus 3.26 for the ink to print those stupid multi-colored ads plastered all over the page.
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Old 10th Jun 2019, 09:59
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I, too, find a paper boarding pass far preferable to one that may or may not be accessible when it's needed on a mobile 'smart' phone.

What I do find odd, though, is that Ryanair let me check-in on-line and print my pass 60 days before my flight, while BA only let me do this 24 hours ahead. Not too handy, that, if you're out in the boonies abroad, and miles from a computer, let alone a printer. Why the difference?
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Old 10th Jun 2019, 10:10
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Why check in at all? In this computerised day and age, seat allocations can start weeks out, bags can be added last minute, weight and balance is done electronically. Changes are handled electronically. No one even checks me for identification when I travel within Australia.
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