I have a mantra for my corporate clients and that is “Check in the day before your flight… do not leave for the airport unless you have checked in online!” Repeat 3 times daily and you will never miss another cut off to a flight and be denied boarding, or worse, have your ticket suspended. I have had clients at the airport trying to check in for their flight at the cutoff and be told, “Sorry, we’ll put you on the next flight,” even though they had plenty of time to crawl to the gate.
I have literally had clients call me from the car in a panic as they did not abide by the mantra andthey encountered traffic or an accident on the way to the airport and were sure they’d miss their flight. The worst part is many low fare tickets today require you check in and or cancel before flight time or your entire ticket issuspended and of no value. In essence, you have no ticket anymore andneed to purchase a new one at today’s price.
Every ticket has farerules, but the average flier doesn’t bother to understand what they’vepurchased other than its “not refundable.” When you purchase a ticket from FROSCH the basic fare rules are printed on your itinerary, but letsface it, who reads all that when you get your confirmation. I cannot stress enough to treat every reservation as if it had the most restrictive farerule, whether it does or not.
If you did not check in and you are not going to make your flight, your corporate agent can do one oftwo things; if it’s within an hour of flight time we can go online for you and check you in, or cancel your segment and rebook you for the next flight, hopefully with a same day confirmed change (which is free for many status fliers depending on the airline), for only $50/$75 rather than a $150 change fee plus fare difference. These same day confirmed options may or may not be available, dependent on the flight’s sales capacity.
As a corporate agent I’m like a “mama bear” to my clients, as I know they travel so much they can’t keep on top of the small details with regards to their travel and that is why they pay me to do it for them. At least twice a week I get that panicked call, “I’m going to miss my flight and I didn’t check in!!” But they know I have their back and appreciate what I do, even whenthey get my inescapable lecture for not heeding to the mantra!
By Debra Burman-Gisby