I just booked tickets to Tokyo; the process included providing the airline with my passport number.

My passport expires three months after returning to the US. My understanding is that this won't be a problem for Japan (right?), but a number of other countries nearby require a passport that's valid for six months after exit.

Say I would like to renew my passport, just in case I decide to take a side trip, or just to avoid potential confusion with the six-month rule. Would it be an issue if I show a new passport, with a different passport number than I reserved the ticket with, when I show up at the airport? Should I contact the airline and update the number beforehand? Would I need to bring my old, canceled passport, or is a matching name enough?

(I am American with a US passport and, in case it matters, global entry and the accompanying TSA Pre-check)

  • @Willeke Poster will be unable to check in without re-confirming his passport number. – Calchas Sep 20 '15 at 20:57
  • If you update it, you might consider traveling with both passports. I did this once after partially destroying an old passport. At check-in, I handed over the new one and the agent asked for the old one as well. I didn't have any issues. I might have also been fine without the old passport, but it's less stress to have all your documentation with you. – Steve Blackwell Nov 19 '18 at 8:36

There should be no problem at all. At checkin, the desk agent will ask for your passport because you are taking an international flight. They will scan it (or enter the info manually) and then they will have your correct passport number on file. You won't be able to board the plane without this step. As long as the name continues to match your booking name, the fact that you have a new passport is of no practical consequence.

  • Great, just wanted to double-check. I get the idea the airlines really don't like mismatches. – Kevin Sep 21 '15 at 1:02
  • @Kevin I often check in with a passport from an entirely different country from the one I used to book the ticket (or check in with on the first leg of the itinerary). Nobody has ever shown the slightest hesitation or other indication that they even noticed that it was a different document. – phoog May 23 '16 at 23:02

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