Other North & South America Frequent Flyer Programs - TAM same-day standby for earlier flights
Dec 8, 11, 6:25 pm
(I saw some other posts, but my situation might be slightly different.)
I have no type of airline status. I have a flight from FLN-GRU-EWR on 1 ticket (bought through United).
My flight out of FLN leaves at 8pm and is flown by TAM. This leaves about 90 minutes for my connection in GRU. Can I standby for an earlier flight to GRU if there's availability (there's a 2pm)? Or, is there a fee for that?
When I called, the agent asked why I would ever want to leave earlier? *sigh*
Dec 12, 11, 2:10 pm
You are very lucky if you are able to take your connecting flight in Sao Paulo in 90 minutes, the lines are enormous at Immigration and duties. 90 min is a tough bet.
Dec 12, 11, 4:28 pm
That's for sure! 3 hours was not enough last week. I would leave at least 5 hours to make connections. God help them with the World Cup.
Dec 14, 11, 10:49 am
So, I called TAM the day before my flight, and after some digging, they said, "No problem. There's even availability."
Of course, reality is different.
I got to the airport early (and am still here) and during check-in, they said no problem, but the agent was unable to complete the process (she honestly tried several times). She sent me to the "store" counter. There, they said they'd have to re-ticket the entire ticket (basically buy a whole new int'l ticket using same-day prices). I didn't really consider that an option.
After complaining for ages about being misinformed, I found an agent who actually knew the problem. I had purchased my flight through United, and apparently TAM can't (or isn't allowed? I don't know.) to change flights, even if for standing by for earlier flights.
So, I guess this is a lessons-learned for everyone...
Anyway, I'm LEAVING Brazil, so I hope I won't have to deal with crazy lines. Plus, I was told (here) that I can talk to any agent and go to the front of my line for my int'l connection to Newark. I'll see what happens in a few hours!
As for LEAVING Brazil immigration, the last time I did, the line took a whole 2 minutes and only took longer because I stopped to chat with one of the agents about something.
Dec 31, 11, 9:57 am
If you have a TAM ticket, and the prior flight has a seat available and you don`t have checked baggage, typically they will let you on board, in particular on flights out of the hubs CGH and SDU (eg for the Ponte Aerea), regardless of the tariff. Some times this works at check-in, sometimes only at the boarding gate. Ask them to "antecipar" your flight.