Flying is a convenient and fast way of transportation. In order for such a trip to go smoothly, you should pay attention to certain things when planning it. Unfortunately, it often happens that only after experiencing losses after an unsuccessful trip, passengers start to take a more serious interest in the rules governing their rights and flight conditions.
We remind passengers about the most important conditions and features of a successful flight.
Different fares. What lies behind them.
If you are going to use the services of an airline, we draw your attention to the fact that there is a certain system of determining ticket rates in air transport. Tickets of different prices can be used only in accordance with the set tariff rules corresponding to the specific price level. These rules define the following conditions for the use of the ticket: the period of validity of the ticket, whether the ticket can be returned, whether it is possible to change the route, flight date, whether the ticket can be rewritten in the name of another passenger, etc. As a general rule, the cheaper the ticket, the more restrictions there are. Ticket rates and conditions of their application are determined by the carriers themselves.
In order to avoid possible losses, for example, not getting money back for a non-refundable ticket, if travel plans have changed or in other cases, we advise you to find out exactly all the conditions that apply to the ticket you are buying, even before purchasing it. It is the responsibility of the passenger to familiarize himself with these conditions, because by purchasing a ticket, the passenger concludes a contract of carriage, that is, confirms that he agrees to the conditions of carriage.
The final price of the ticket means that at least: the air fare or air fare, taxes, airport taxes and other mandatory and additional fees, charges, such as those related to security or fuel, are indicated.
Optional extras must be clearly, transparently and unambiguously indicated at the beginning of any booking process and the user must be given the opportunity to choose them freely.
Air fares and air fares set for the public for air transport services provided from an airport located in the territory of a Member State must be applied without discriminating against customers on the basis of nationality or place of residence or on the basis of the place of establishment of the air carrier’s agent or other ticket seller in the Community.
Legal information. in 2008 September 24 signed regulation of the European Parliament and the Council (EC) no. 1008/2008 on general rules for the provision of air transport services in the Community provides that in any form, including online, when offering or publishing to the public air transport prices and air transport tariffs for air transport services provided from an airport located in the territory of a Member State, the applicable conditions. The final price payable shall always be quoted and shall include the applicable air fare or air fare and all applicable taxes, fees, surcharges and charges which cannot be avoided and which can be foreseen at the time of publication.
Practical fuses. Ticket payment recommendations and insurance
If possible, it is a good idea to pay for tickets by card rather than bank transfer or cash. In cases of insolvency of airlines or tour operators, passengers who have paid for their tickets by credit card have more opportunities to recover the money they paid and can do so much faster.
It should be noted that some payment cards provide cancellation insurance, so in this case all risks related to canceled flights are assumed by the banks or insurance companies that issued the card. In any case, regardless of the type of payment card you have, we recommend that passengers pay for their tickets with payment cards, as using this payment method there are more opportunities to recover money for services not provided (e.g. canceled flights). You should check the terms and conditions of the card and the applicable insurance in advance.
When purchasing plane tickets, passengers should also look into additional travel cancellation or delay insurance, as this is currently the only effective means by which passengers can minimize the damage caused by cancellation of flights by an airline or tour operator in the event of their insolvency.
It is advisable to carefully familiarize yourself with the conditions of carriage
The main conditions of carriage are information about the start and end time of check-in for the flight, the time of departure and arrival at the final destination; the actual air carrier or air carriers, regardless of the air carrier with which the passenger concluded a contract of carriage; the basic conditions of the ticket fare (whether the ticket is refundable or not; exchangeable or not; necessary conditions for return and exchange), applicable restrictions on the content and quantity of baggage, limits of liability of the air carrier, necessary travel documents of the passenger, a list of items prohibited from being carried in baggage.
Therefore, before purchasing a ticket, we recommend that you carefully read the conditions of carriage and only then confirm that you have read them.
If the passenger was not properly informed about the basic conditions of transportation at the time of purchasing the ticket, then it can be said that his rights to get acquainted with the terms of the contract were violated. In this case, the contract may be declared invalid.
Legal information. The rules for the carriage of passengers, baggage, mail and cargo by air provide that the airline or the ticket seller must ensure that the passenger will have the opportunity to familiarize himself with the rules of the air carrier, as well as notify the main conditions of carriage in writing or in another durable medium, which must be given to the passenger before purchasing a ticket.
Connection time is important when flying with a connection
If you are flying with a connection, evaluate and choose the optimal connection time so that you can catch another plane at the intermediate airport. It is advisable to choose flights with the same airline or its partners (when one joint ticket is issued for the entire trip – one contract of carriage), because in case of a delay, flight cancellation or postponement for a long time, the airline or its partners will have to take care of you.
If you have separate flight tickets (separate reservations) for each leg of your journey and, for example, due to a delay or cancellation of the first flight, you cannot transfer to another plane at an intermediate airport, it will be considered that you did not arrive on time for check-in. As a result, the money paid for the unused ticket will not be refunded and you will continue to be responsible for your own travel. If this has happened, there remains the possibility of compensation for the loss suffered as a result of the delay under the Montreal Convention.
Tips for purchasing electronic tickets
Since 2008 June 1 paper plane tickets were abandoned. They were replaced by electronic ones. An electronic ticket (or e-ticket) is a virtual form of a plane ticket that remains the main travel document. Checked Baggage Receipt is an integral part of the ticket. When traveling by plane, it is usually no longer necessary to present a paper or printed electronic ticket. When checking in for a flight at the airport, it is usually sufficient to present only a valid identity document (passport, identity card). However, we advise passengers to always have a printed e-ticket with you, which will help you prove your right to fly in the event of a system error or other malfunctions. We also recommend keeping the ticket until the end of the journey, until all the carrier’s obligations under the contract of carriage have been fulfilled.
However, there are certain risks when buying an e-ticket online that:
- if you enter personal data incorrectly, you will not be able to change them;
- due to data inconsistency, you risk not being allowed to board the plane;
- when paying for a ticket online, interbank money transfer problems are possible;
- after receiving the confirmation of the ticket reservation, you may not receive the confirmation of the e-ticket itself;
- pre-checked boxes are available for ordering additional services that the passenger may not need. Therefore, we recommend you to be careful when ordering a ticket.
Ticket reservation confirmation is not confirmation of your purchased e-ticket, so we recommend:
- to check whether after reserving the ticket and paying for it, you received the e-ticket confirmation message to the e-mail box you indicated;
- if you do not receive such a message within a few days, contact the airline from which you purchased the ticket;
- after receiving the e-ticket confirmation message, print it and have it with your other documents before the flight.
Before paying for an e-ticket, make sure that:
- the ticket price includes the cost of air transportation, taxes, airport taxes, other mandatory fees, additional fees and contributions;
- you have familiarized yourself with the rules applicable to that ticket (is the ticket exchangeable or non-exchangeable; in what cases is it exchangeable; is it refundable or non-refundable; other conditions) and have you consciously chosen the appropriate fare;
- on a ticket with one or more connections, the transfer time between flights is sufficient, especially on transatlantic flights. You can do this by visiting the websites of the airlines whose planes you intend to fly;
- you have entered your contact details correctly (so that the airline can inform you of changes to the flight details).