Bye-bye airline tickets

No more tickets for flying, at least not paper tickets. Gone will be the awesome red “carbon” paper, stickers for changing your date of travel and/or routing and booklets of stubs, stapled together for each trip. Also gone will be the ability to easily walk to another carrier and have them accept your stub as payment (either partial or in full) for getting you to your destination, even if you didn’t buy your ticket from them.

The airlines are going totally electronic.

Most airlines already are totally electronic, and some countries are close (China expects to be there by the end of 2007), but there are a lot who couldn’t be further from an all-electronic environment. Russia requires paper tickets. So does Vietnam. And on our aRound The World trip last summer we had to switch from electronic tickets to paper tickets because of the stops in SGN/HAN.

Still, this is a great benefit overall, as long as it means that all the carriers agree to work together to respect each others’ eTickets, especially for multi-carrier itineraries. That’s usually where the wheels come falling off of plans like this, and I am guessing that this will be no different for trips shortly after the change happens next summer.

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.