8

I'm trying to save some money on a flight, and I found one that's cheaper than the original. Since flights are easily tracked, location names will be changed to "A" "B" and "C". So here's what im trying to do:

  • I'm starting at "A", and the final stop for the airplane is at "C" with a layover at "B".
  • I want to get off at "B" and intentionally miss the flight to "C".

So that's my plan, but my concern is that "C" is in another country, so would I have to provide a passport when going from "A" to "B" or would I have to provide a passport when going from "B" to "C"? My hope is that a passport would be needed to go from "B" to "C", because then I wouldn't have to worry about it. Also, I'm flying American Airlines.

Edit: A and B are in the USA, C is in Canada.

  • 1
    I do not have a passport, and I intend to get off at "B". "B" is my home town. – aud.io Oct 11 '16 at 16:14
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    Possible duplicate of Not flying the last segment of the first half of a return flight – blackbird Oct 11 '16 at 16:19
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    close to a duplicate, but not quite. I want to know about the passport, not the trip being canceled. It's one way anyways so I could care less about "C". – aud.io Oct 11 '16 at 16:24
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    You need to list the countries involved, it's impossible to answer this. Voting to close as too broad until. – chx Oct 11 '16 at 16:37
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    As someone who regularly flies to Canada from the US, I am flabbergasted that you found any US -> Canada that was cheaper than a shorter flight within the US. But flight pricing can be weird, I guess. – Michael Seifert Oct 11 '16 at 17:36
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If it's American Airlines, you will have to provide your Passport details at some point before or during check-in. I always have.

You don't have to enter them online, but even if you use the kiosk at the airport, it will ask you to scan your passport.

No one at the A gate will ask to see your Passport, will I've never been asked.

There is no way to short check bags. And you can't do this round trip.

  • Can't you use a fake passport number during check in? – JonathanReez Oct 11 '16 at 17:31
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    Interesting question, but since that could be considered a fraudulent document, I never saw it ;) The problem would be if the bogus number is flagged before the A-B flight. – Johns-305 Oct 11 '16 at 17:36
  • People make mistakes all the time without getting flagged though – JonathanReez Oct 11 '16 at 18:25
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    Let's not hash through this again. Mistakes are one thing if they fit in certain parameters. An outright bogus number is a different situation. – Johns-305 Oct 11 '16 at 20:09
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    On my flights on both American and Delta, passport has always been checked at A, not B, even when A->B was domestic. At least in my experience, if you don't show your passport at the check-in desk at A, you'll be required to show it at the boarding gate at A. – reirab Oct 11 '16 at 23:02
3

It may not be "always, everywhere, everyone" but so far¹ I have had to show my passport to somebody every time. And if you check in bags, you could have a hassle retrieving them in your "hidden city."

The chance of the airline coming after you for the price difference is extremely small, but legally possible.

¹Over a dozen airports in nine countries, including a few where the next stop was in the same country. And in USA, TSA always wanted to see it.

  • I would be more worried about being barred from future flights for violating my contract than from being sued or something over the price difference. – Mehrdad Oct 12 '16 at 7:53
  • @Mehrdad Not going to happen, people miss flights all the time. But if you do this weekly for a year... – jpatokal Oct 12 '16 at 8:37
  • TSA never needs to see a passport. They need to see identification, and they have a specific list of what ID is allowed - which includes passports. If you can provide suitable other ID (eg, a US drivers license) then you do NOT need a passport - even for an international flight. (I use my DL all the time at TSA for international flights) – Doc Oct 16 '16 at 21:26
  • I could have sworn I had said something like "I read that you could use a driver's license, if it is not from one of four states that chose not to follow some rule about format." But they have always asked for a passport, and since mine is always easy to get to, I never bothered to discuss other options. – WGroleau Oct 16 '16 at 23:31
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So now we know the OP is starting in the United States and flies to Canada. There is a passport check at the gate in B. There is just no other way to do this: people starting from B with an online / automated check in will meet a human at this point only. Passport checks are always at gate and not at check in.

  • just to be even more clear, "A" is the united states and "C" is canada. Im staying in the united states. – aud.io Oct 11 '16 at 16:48
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    Aye. B is Seattle, C is Vancouver, what makes you think we don't know how this goes? There's no point in all this secrecy, I've seen this a million times but didn't do it because I usually have checked luggage. – chx Oct 11 '16 at 16:48
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    However I'm thinking the OP will have to enter a passport number when they check in onlilne. – DJClayworth Oct 11 '16 at 16:52
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    In my experience, this is not always true. There may be an additional passport check at the gate, but one is often needed at check-in. With online checkin or a kiosk, you have to scan your passport (or at least enter its details) to get a boarding pass. And if you're checking luggage, a passport is checked then (though if the OP checks luggage in this case, they have a big problem, since they plan to not fly the last segment). – Zach Lipton Oct 11 '16 at 17:16
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    I have never seen passport checks implemented this way in the U.S. The check was always before the first flight of the itinerary, even if that was a domestic flight. The check was usually either done at the check-in desk or at the gate at A, not at the gate at B. When I print my boarding pass online before going to the airport, a note prints on it telling the agent to check travel documents. At least in the case of Delta, I've seen them do this at the gate many, many times for passengers who were boarding a domestic flight to connect to an international one. – reirab Oct 11 '16 at 22:42

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