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I have a flight booked with KLM from New York (JFK) to Cape Town (CPT) in middle-late December. This flight includes a 3-hour transfer at Schiphol Airport (AMS) in Amsterdam. Recently my schedule has changed, and as such I am able to leave New York six days earlier. I am wondering if it would be possible to move my JFK-AMS flight earlier by a few days, so that I can stay over in Amsterdam for that time (I don't need a visa for short-term tourism). Effectively this would change my transfer in Amsterdam to a stopover of a few days, and my trip to a multi-city itinerary.

I have asked the airline about this, and I am waiting on a response. However, I am wondering whether anyone else has ever done anything similar. Some potential problems I have thought of include:

  1. Changing a flight that close to Christmas might be expensive, if any earlier flights are available at all.
  2. There would have to be special arrangements to get my luggage on arrival in AMS, and then recheck it to CPT.

Any advice is appreciated.

  • You've already done the appropriate thing: Asked the airline. Your best bet would be simply to call them, though (I'm guessing you sent an email if you are waiting for a response, yes?). – Flimzy Oct 19 '14 at 18:36
  • @pnuts Yes, essentially I want to change the type of my itinerary. Flimzy, I sent an email. I'll wait a day for a response and then follow up. My main reason for asking the question was to find someone who has done it, just to confirm that it's possible and not too expensive. – casper Oct 19 '14 at 18:44
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KLM is likely not tell you much in their reply, other than telling you to go online or call, as availability changes from minute to minute and what they show now is likely to be different when you email them back later.

Your best bet is to log into your current booking and use the change the flight options. You will be able to bail out before any change is made if the flights and costs are not what you wanted.

The second route is to call KLM and let their reservations person check into costs and availability. But KLM does charge an administrative fee for over the phone changes (in addition to any change fee and fare difference).

The costs will be dependent on the class you booked originally. Discounted tickets always come with a change fee attached, full fare tickets usually allow changes without fees. There will also likely be a change in the fare you are paying.

To get a real quick idea of fare costs, simply plug in the date and stops you want and see what the system kicks back out. It won't be 100% guaranteed, but will give you a good starting point for costs. If the fares look OK, then get after the change immediately, as those fares may not be available for long.

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