Whether you’re visiting a sick relative, helping out a cross-border friend in dire need, or have another emergency, the hassle of booking a last-minute flight is the last thing you need when dealing with arranging emergency air travel.
With many airlines becoming Low-Cost Carriers (LCCs), it might not be easy to find an available and reasonably priced seat at the eleventh hour.
However, if you’re eyeing a flight within a two-hour window, you should head straight to the airport, ASAP.
While hotels cut down prices for last-minute room bookings, airlines do not follow the same principle. Don’t expect discount deals—depending on the airline, you may even have to pay double the ticket price other passengers paid.
While some airlines offer compassion/bereavement fare at reduced rates, many carriers do not offer slashed ticket prices for emergency flight bookings. Those that do might not offer it for online bookings, requiring you to speak directly with an agent.
Popular airlines like Emirates, Virgin Australia Airlines, and Jetstar Airways do not offer customers any last-minute booking discounts for bereavement fares for funeral purposes.
When booking a last-minute flight, remember that each airline has its own policies. It’s possible for one carrier to allow passengers to book flights within two hours of departure, while others may not.
Domestic flights are more likely to accept online bookings within such a short time frame, but if the window is narrower than that, tickets might have to be purchased at the airport ticket counter.
If you’re on your way to the airport, we suggest booking a ticket over the phone or heading straight to the ticket counter once you reach.
Change of Plans During A Layover
In case you need to book an emergency ticket during a layover, ask the airline help desk for assistance. Or, when making a last-minute booking while you’re already at the gate, request the gate’s desk agents to help you out.
Depending on the airline you choose, you may even have to make a trip to the ticket counter and go through the security screening process again.
Passenger Screening Time
If you’ve managed to grab a ticket close to departure time—without breaking your bank—pay attention to your boarding pass. If it’s printed with the TSA code SSSS (Secondary Security Screening Selection), it means you may have to undergo more thorough screening than other passengers.
The code signifies that due to the traveler’s last-minute ticket purchase, they weren’t pre-checked against watchlists and similar databases. Even if the TSA agent inspects each and every item you have (including within your suitcases), remain calm and cooperative to get past airport security quickly.
Make Emergency Flight Bookings Easy
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