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Should I Reconfirm My Reservation Before I Fly?

Dear Jessica,

Is the rule about “reconfirming a return reservation” when traveling abroad still in force? Recently my wife and I traveled to Amsterdam and forgot to do it, but since there were vacant seats on the return flight, no one with the airline even mentioned it. Is the rule still valid and enforced?


Dear L.O.,

Great question. In all my years of traveling abroad, I have never reconfirmed a reservation, so I turned to the airlines to find out if it is standard practice for other travelers.

In short, the answer is no, the rule is not in effect among the major U.S. airlines. A spokesperson for JetBlue said simply, “At JetBlue, no reservation reconfirmation is required.”

Likewise, a spokesperson for American said, “As long as a customer actually shows up and flies all of the itinerary segments that are prior to their return travel, there is no need to ‘reconfirm their return reservation.’ It remains in the computer as long as all segments are flown.

“If, for some reason, any customer ‘no-shows’ on any segment of their itinerary, the reservation would be routinely cancelled. That is common, standard practice, and is not new.”

RELATED: What Happens If I Skip Part of My Flight?

Although you don’t need to reconfirm your reservation with your airline, it’s still a good idea to visit your airline’s website before your flight to ensure that your itinerary has not been changed at all. Typically, airlines will notify passengers about any schedule changes, but I like to double-check to ensure I didn’t miss any notification from my airline.

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Last updated: August 14, 2015

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