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When attempting to book a flight with Turkish Airlines from Cancun to Istanbul in October, I get a warning that "Sale of passenger tickets on this route is subject and conditioned to a prior authorization from the United Mexican States".

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What does this actually mean? Who needs approval? Is it just that I need to get a visa to Mexico in order to get on the flight or is it something else? Trying to google the phrase doesn't really tell me much, so hopefully someone here will know what the warning means.

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The route from Cancun to Istanbul is a new route for Turkish Airlines (I was recently on a Turkish flight where the crew was talking about it excitedly, as a nice new place for them to go) and service is set to start in August.

New international airline routes typically require the approval of the relevant governments, and can be the subject of trade negotiations. I suspect this message is meant as a notice that the Mexican government has not yet approved the new route. They wouldn't have put the flight on the schedule if they didn't believe the approval was forthcoming, but I'm not certain what will happen if you go ahead and book now. There's at least some small possibility the flight could be cancelled if they don't receive the necessary approvals in time, though the time between August and October gives you a decent buffer.

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    Actually, I think the OP is also very well interested in knowing if they have right to full compensation if the route gets canceled. Under EU consumer laws that is considered obvious (I live in EU), but I wouldn't take it as assumption when dealing with non-EU, non-US airlines – usr-local-ΕΨΗΕΛΩΝ Jun 6 at 12:58
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    The wording (somewhat) implies it. The flight is not contingent on route approval; the sale of the ticket is. No authorization, no sale. I won't claim that the wording was lawyer-written or -approved, though :) – chepner Jun 6 at 13:46
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    @chepner 's observation is extremely on-point: if the airline fails to get Mexican authorization, they will likely assert that no ticket sale took place, which would completely avoid any consumer laws about refunding tickets. I would fully expect a refund of credit card charges, but the purchaser would have no grounds to request, for example, being re-routed on a different flight. – CCTO Jun 6 at 16:23

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