There are already a lot of questions on this site regarding ticket/passport name mismatches, but here is one with an extra twist:

We just booked a flight from Berlin to Boston (including return flight) for my wife, our infant child, and me, with Lufthansa (on their website). In the booking form, we entered all our names exactly as in the passports. We also had to specify whom our child was travelling with (we chose my wife). There was some weird popup saying that a name had been shortened. Now, in the "booking details" e-mail, my wife and our child are grouped together as follows:

<my wife's last name>/<my wife's first name> MRS with <first letter of our child's first given name> <complete double barrelled last name of our child with hyphen replaced by space>

Is it common practice to shorten an infant's given names to a single letter? I'm a bit worried that when they print our tickets/boarding passes and there is only the first letter on it, they won't accept that at the various airport security checks.

3 Answers 3


Answering my own question after getting in touch with customer service.

tl;dr: The infant is on the same ticket as one of the adults. This results in fewer characters being available to print on the ticket. Hence the name shortening. According to the airline, this will not pose a problem with airport security.

Long answer: we actually cancelled our booking with Lufthansa and rebooked with KLM when we found out that Lufthansa doesn't require passengers to do a PCR test for domestic flights (first leg would have been Berlin-Frankfurt). I thought maybe the name problem would go away with the new carrier. Instead, they shortened my wife's name to the first two letters in addition to the same shortening of our son's name.

So I contacted KLM customer service via WhatsApp and got the following reply:

Please know that an infant is always linked to an adult passenger and that on a ticket there is only a limited amount of characters available. The name of the infant and adult combined have too many characters, and therefore the name is shorted by our system. Rest assured that this will not be a problem when travelling.

With the reason they have given, this must be a common occurrence when travelling with an infant, and surely airport security is used to it.


I don't have any first hand experience with this, at least not recently, but I doubt they would be very picky with a child. I also doubt Lufthansa would do this if the German airport authorities were very picky about it.

I say "not recently" because twenty years ago this was common practice for some airlines, even for adults.


I doubt that there is a way to answer this question definitively one way or the other, but I can give you some first-hand experience:

I once flew internationally from the US to the UK on Virgin Atlantic on a ticket booked through a travel agent. The travel agent made a mistake with my name so that they replaced the last letter of my first name with the first letter of my middle name (and then the first letter of my middle name became the last letter of my first name!) It looked very silly/unpronounceable, but nobody batted an eyelash.

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