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Flying domestic leg of international itinerary without passport

Flying domestic leg of international itinerary without passport

Old Jan 1, 20, 9:29 am
  #1  
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Flying domestic leg of international itinerary without passport

Hi all-

I am looking for some advice here as we are in a tough spot.

On Jan 3rd my girlfriend and I are flying BNA-LAX, a 10 hour layover, and LAX-NAN. This is booked as a single AA award. We are on the same PNR.

Unfortunately she lives in LA and has left her passport in LA (we expected to go to her place and pack for NAN during the layover).

Because I believe they will need to check her passport at BNA for the trip to NAN, I am asking for advice on what to do. Here are the options I think I have:

- Fly her back to LA to get her passport, and fly back to BNA (safest but very expensive. Unfortunately no time to mail the passport).
- Show up to BNA and hope they let us on the flight, saying that the 10 hour layover is actually a stopover? Seems very risky
- Call AA and see if I can separate her ticket, change it to LAX-NAN, and buy the BNA-LAX leg separately

Your constructive advice is appreciated! I know we have made an error here but just trying to find the way forward.
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Old Jan 1, 20, 9:35 am
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I'm 99.9% certain that on a single PNR with a domestic-international connection, you MUST have your passport to check-in for the initial flight.

Asking AA to split the tickets is a great option, but will almost certainly result in a reprice which likely won't work out in your favor.
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Old Jan 1, 20, 9:46 am
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Originally Posted by dave_261 View Post
I'm 99.9% certain that on a single PNR with a domestic-international connection, you MUST have your passport to check-in for the initial flight.

Asking AA to split the tickets is a great option, but will almost certainly result in a reprice which likely won't work out in your favor.
Unfortunately I agree with you regarding the passports, hence my post. I have found examples of UA and DL denying passengers in this situation. However not AA, so if anyone has any experience... Also what is the rule on stopovers? Maybe 10 hours is long enough that it isn't a 'layover' and I can check-in for just the first leg? But I won't know until later, which is worrying.

It's an award ticket so if I remove the BNA-LAX it shouldn't reprice, but I do worry about them losing the FJ space in the process. Yes, I'd have to buy a BNA-LAX ticket which would not be cheap...

Is anyone flying LAX-BNA tomorrow that can carry a passport? :/

Last edited by CPMaverick; Jan 2, 20 at 12:36 am
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Old Jan 1, 20, 9:48 am
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Can FedEx not get it there overnight?
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Old Jan 1, 20, 9:50 am
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Why not consider Fedex sameday? I think if you can get someone to drop it off in LA early tomorrow you could get it in Nashville tomorrow night. Would cost a few hundred bucks but might be the best option (if you trust same day)...
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Old Jan 1, 20, 9:52 am
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I would first try online check-in at aa.com or the AA app, every now and then on a mixed carrier int'l itinerary it will check you in for the domestic flight but not the int'l one.

If that doesn't work, you can always go to BNA a day early on the 2nd and check in with an agent there, explain the situation, and see if they can check you in just to LAX. At least if that doesn't work you would still have 24 hrs to figure something out. I ended up having to cancel the ticket so not sure how it would've worked.

FWIW, I had asked about a similar situation in November, flying LAX-RDU overnight layover then RDU-LHR, same PNR, I potentially wouldn't have my passport for the LAX-RDU segment. The agent in the AC I asked said they could just check me in for LAX-RDU without my passport.
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Old Jan 1, 20, 9:53 am
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Originally Posted by dave_261 View Post
Why not consider Fedex sameday? I think if you can get someone to drop it off in LA early tomorrow you could get it in Nashville tomorrow night. Would cost a few hundred bucks but might be the best option (if you trust same day)...
Yes, my concern is how much to trust same-day. I've never done it before. Experience/advice on that would be appreciated too. Thanks for the thought.

She does have a roommate who can get the document, but not sure how reliable the roommate is...

Originally Posted by VegasGambler View Post
Can FedEx not get it there overnight?
It has to be there for an early-AM flight on 3 Jan. Fedex doesn't ship today it is a holiday.

I can't see how to send FedEx same-day. It seems to be for businesses only.

Last edited by JY1024; Jan 1, 20 at 11:42 am Reason: Merged consecutive posts
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Old Jan 1, 20, 10:15 am
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Originally Posted by JJeffrey View Post
I would first try online check-in at aa.com or the AA app, every now and then on a mixed carrier int'l itinerary it will check you in for the domestic flight but not the int'l one.
i think online check-in won’t work for OP because a visa check is required. I have never been able to online check-in in that scenario.

I agree with OP that best course of action is to have the passport as it will either be required at check in or requested by the gate agent as a document check. It has always been checked regardless of length of layover even overnight in my experience.
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Old Jan 1, 20, 10:18 am
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The first thing I would do would be to call AA and explain the situation (maybe 2 or 3 times if you don't get the answer you want at first). See if there's some way they can leave you on the same flights and check in only the AA segment to LAX. If that completely fails, then go to the airport a day early and explain the situation again as you were planning to do and see what they recommend. Sometimes staff on the ground are a bit more understanding than those over the phone, and sometimes they're not.
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Old Jan 1, 20, 10:26 am
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I'm a nobody with AA now. So I really don't trust the phone agents I would speak to. They have misled me in the past. The status members get much better phone agents.

I feel the current course of action is to call AA, split the PNR, and remove the BNA-LAX leg from her ticket. Then we buy the BNA-LAX on its own.

I am just a little concerned that a poorly trained agent will lose the FJ LAX-NAN leg in the process. If it is lost, I know AA can't force FJ to open the space back up. The flight is almost full and no current award space. It's about $900 for the one way at the moment.
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Old Jan 1, 20, 10:28 am
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She will have to have the passport to board the initial flight. They either ask for it at the Check In Counter or the Gate before boarding. I have never had an instance where they haven’t demanded it before the initial domestic flight. Phone AA and see if you can work something out but do not assume you can fly the domestic segment without the passport.
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Old Jan 1, 20, 10:34 am
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Originally Posted by CPMaverick View Post
I'm a nobody with AA now. So I really don't trust the phone agents I would speak to. They have misled me in the past. The status members get much better phone agents.

I feel the current course of action is to call AA, split the PNR, and remove the BNA-LAX leg from her ticket. Then we buy the BNA-LAX on its own.

I am just a little concerned that a poorly trained agent will lose the FJ LAX-NAN leg in the process. If it is lost, I know AA can't force FJ to open the space back up. The flight is almost full and no current award space. It's about $900 for the one way at the moment.
It should be easy for an agent to drop BNA-LAX without affecting the other segment. If they sound unsure just HUCA.

As mentioned above though I would seriously go to BNA tomorrow morning (once you're within 24 hrs) and see if they can just check her in to LAX. Worth a shot before you go through the hassle (and expense) of dropping the segment and buying another ticket.
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Old Jan 1, 20, 10:41 am
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See later post with possible USPS option or changed BNA departure time.

Fedex overnight shipped from Los Angeles to Nashville on 1/2, has a delivery commitment of 8:00 AM on 1/3 for "First Overnight". Cost is $89.95. That drops to $49.85 if 10:30 AM works. Don't know what time you have to leave for the airport, but if 8:00 AM will do, go for that.

Same Day is not available, according to Fedex, for that city pair.

Last edited by Often1; Jan 1, 20 at 11:13 am
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Old Jan 1, 20, 10:45 am
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I assume you've already checked to make sure that seats are for sale on the early BNA-LAX flight? Also, is BNA expected to be relatively delay-free in the morning of the 3rd? There'd be a big mess if IROPs would mean not enough time at LAX to fetch the passport.
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Old Jan 1, 20, 10:47 am
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My experience with AA on a domestic to international (SFO-JFK-LHR, ORD-CLT-LHR and other routes some all AA and some AA on the domestic and BA on the international) is that they want to see the passport at the initial airport and won't let you check-in on just the domestic flights without ID.that is valid for the entire trip and that is online and at the airport.
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