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Guide: Infant / lap child fares & fees for AA travel, including award & upgrades

Old May 17, 14, 4:00 pm
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Infant / lap child fares and fees on international travel, including award & upgrades

N.B.: This thread is restricted to discussion of AA (and AA awards, upgrades) ticketing rules for infants. Please do not use this thread to discuss opinions on safety issues associated with travel with lap children versus infants with their own purchased seats. Those discussions should be carried out in the

Travel with Children forum
, where many opinions have been shared and are welcome. Thank you for your cooperation.


On AA there is no charge for a lap child on domestic flights. In most instances for international travel the cost will be 10% of the adult fare in the cabin of travel (be aware in some instances / on some other airlines, it can be 25% of the cost of an adult ticket). From aa.com:

Are you traveling with an infant?

Passengers are considered infants if aged over 2 days and less than 2 years at the beginning of their journey. To travel with an infant, you must be an adult passenger aged 16 or older. Adults can travel with up to two infants and in these circumstances, can purchase an additional seat at a child fare.

Although infants can travel as early as 2 days after birth, you'll need to provide a medical certificate for infants traveling within 7 days after birth. Please contact Reservations for more information.

On U.S. domestic flights:

Infants not occupying a seat travel for free. If you prefer to book a seat for your infant, a child fare will apply.

You must call AA on the phone to add a lap infant to an existing reservation. The lap infant will NOT appear in the online reservation and receipt.

Travelers with a lap infant may check in online, for domestic flights only, and the boarding pass will be annotated with the words "WITH INFANT" immediately after the traveler's name.

On international flights:

Infants not occupying a seat benefit from a 90% discount on most adult fares

If your infant turns 2 during your trip, we'll provide you with a complimentary seat on the return flight. If the return journey is not on American Airlines, please contact the other airline to check if a seat must be purchased. (Infants and children must provide passports with any required visas; all children not traveling with both parents may be required to have a Letter of Consent signed by both parents.)

You must call AA on the phone to add a lap infant to an existing reservation, and will need to pay the fare at that time. The lab infant and fare WILL appear in the online reservation and receipt.

Travelers with a lap infant may NOT check in online for international flights and must check in at the airport.

NOTE: AA will not generally block a complimentary spare seat to be used by an infant or lap child. If seats are available at the airport, it might be possible to be assigned seating to include an adjacent empty seat if the flight will depart with sufficient empty seats.

Bassinets: These are portable, not bulkhead fastened, floor bassinet boxes. Not all aircraft may offer these, and generally are restricted to bulkhead seats.

See the bassinet thread here."]here[/URL].

See more here on aa.com.

For AA policies on required documentation for children, see here.

and

This thread regarding the use - and prohibition, on some aircraft - child safety seats.

For older threads on this topic, see:

https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/american-airlines-aadvantage/1949921-archive-infant-lap-child-fares-fees-aa-travel-including-award-upgrades.html 2010-2015

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/ameri...paid-fare.html (2008)

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/ameri...it-my-lap.html (2006)


dstan
AA Forum Co-Moderator
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Guide: Infant / lap child fares & fees for AA travel, including award & upgrades

Old Nov 19, 22, 12:28 am
  #361  
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: OMA
Programs: AA PLT 1MM, HHonors Diamond, IHG Gold, National Exec, Hertz 5-Star
Posts: 103
I recently started flying with our baby and I can only offer my experience.

Question 1: The plane is an A319 and the Main Cabin Extra seats are available for purchase. If I purchase those, will the middle seat also be blocked?
In our case, 8 of the 10 flights we've taken, AA proactively blocked the middle seat. As mentioned above, if flight is full or sold out, they will unblock and give it to a passenger. I have flights booked for next month and the middle seat was blocked off immediately.

Question 2: Do you recommend booking the Main Cabin Extra Bulkhead seats?
Didn't fly an A319, but on the 737-800 and A321s, we discovered that the bulkhead seats have airbags on the seat belts which prevented us from using the car seat we brought on board. We were able to switch to the MCE row behind us and use the car seat.

Question 3: Since I'm Gold and I'm traveliing with my Wife on the same ticket, we both get a free checked luggage but does the newborn also get a checked luggage?
Has already been answered.

Question 4: Am i allowed to bring another carry-on for the newborn? Or is the stroller considered a carry-on?
Has already been answered.

Question 5: What should I be asking? What I don't know that I should know or wish I knew?
All babies behave differently. We've been lucky that our baby has given us no issues while flying (crying during takeoff/landing, etc), at least so far. Still, we try and feed the baby during takeoff and landing to minimize their discomfort. Another thing to check is see which lavatories have changing tables, we discovered that not all aircraft lavatories have them.
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Old Nov 19, 22, 4:10 am
  #362  
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: SNA
Programs: AA EXP, Hilton Diamond, Hyatt Globalist, IHG Plat, Marriott Gold, National EE
Posts: 1,129
Seems extremely risky to count on empty seats. Lots of sold out flights these days.
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Old Dec 23, 22, 3:47 pm
  #363  
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 2
Booked award ticket on QR with AA miles and It seems that we are in a situation where AA says they can't add lap infants and QR tells us that they cant modify AA ticket. Is there a way out of this?
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Old Jan 11, 23, 3:31 pm
  #364  
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Programs: Marriott Gold, Hilton Diamond, Radisson Rewards Gold, Best Western Diamond Select
Posts: 1,788
Can AA add lap infant for BA metal?
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Old Jan 15, 23, 10:30 pm
  #365  
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Live: PWM/KBXM/BGR; Work: DCA/DFW/Everywhere; Play: LAS/AUA/MIA/MLE
Programs: AA EXP, DL PM, Hyatt Glob, Marriott Ambassador/LTP, Nat'l Exec Elite, mlife Noir, LEYE Gold
Posts: 6,036
Originally Posted by kirill View Post
Booked award ticket on QR with AA miles and It seems that we are in a situation where AA says they can't add lap infants and QR tells us that they cant modify AA ticket. Is there a way out of this?
No, it's literal hell. See here: Infant lap seat for a oneworld award

I've been trying to add a lap infant to ORD-DOH-MLE-DOH-JFK (all QR, in J, booked with AA miles) for like 7 months and still haven't been able to do it.

Tonight I called AA for something entirely unrelated but I got a fantastic agent who was able to do some complicated work on another international itinerary very deftly. So I asked her to help with this lap infant issue, and she agreed, thinking that there ought to be a way to issue the infant ticket since the awards on are AA stock.

I ended up spending 90 minutes on the phone with her, great agent, as she called the rate desk, a help desk, a oneworld liaison and then, ultimately, QR themselves (!) only to confirm that she cannot in fact do it, despite her every desire to get it done. She said that the QR agent seemed a bit clueless (she agreed that he was likely not in the US and likely was reading from a script) and she said that the QR agent's only solutions were (1) buy a J seat for the infant with money, (2) buy a J seat for the infant with miles, or (3) cancel one of the adults' mileage seats and buy an adult a J seat with cash, tacking the infant onto that.

So I will go back to calling QR periodically and hoping that I get the agent that @mulantree in the other thread claimed to have gotten -- the lore is that the right agent at QR can sell a standalone infant ticket so long as it is linked to the adult award reservations. But honestly I am beginning to doubt any anecdotes of success in this. My next step will be to try to find a QR desk at an airport that is willing to help, maybe, I don't know. I seriously wish a travel agent who reads things on this forum would send me a PM -- seems like the kind of ticket a TA should be able to just print off and charge me a fee for.

Not sure what I'll do if it doesn't work, probably just buy Y tickets with AA on JFK-DOH to use SWUs. But sure as heck not spending $5000 instead of 140k miles for an adult just to be able to pay for the infant, and not spending $5000 for the infant to have a seat that won't be used!
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Old Jan 24, 23, 11:41 pm
  #366  
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Live: PWM/KBXM/BGR; Work: DCA/DFW/Everywhere; Play: LAS/AUA/MIA/MLE
Programs: AA EXP, DL PM, Hyatt Glob, Marriott Ambassador/LTP, Nat'l Exec Elite, mlife Noir, LEYE Gold
Posts: 6,036
Originally Posted by platbrownguy View Post
No, it's literal hell. See here: Infant lap seat for a oneworld award

I've been trying to add a lap infant to ORD-DOH-MLE-DOH-JFK (all QR, in J, booked with AA miles) for like 7 months and still haven't been able to do it.

Tonight I called AA for something entirely unrelated but I got a fantastic agent who was able to do some complicated work on another international itinerary very deftly. So I asked her to help with this lap infant issue, and she agreed, thinking that there ought to be a way to issue the infant ticket since the awards on are AA stock.

I ended up spending 90 minutes on the phone with her, great agent, as she called the rate desk, a help desk, a oneworld liaison and then, ultimately, QR themselves (!) only to confirm that she cannot in fact do it, despite her every desire to get it done. She said that the QR agent seemed a bit clueless (she agreed that he was likely not in the US and likely was reading from a script) and she said that the QR agent's only solutions were (1) buy a J seat for the infant with money, (2) buy a J seat for the infant with miles, or (3) cancel one of the adults' mileage seats and buy an adult a J seat with cash, tacking the infant onto that.

So I will go back to calling QR periodically and hoping that I get the agent that @mulantree in the other thread claimed to have gotten -- the lore is that the right agent at QR can sell a standalone infant ticket so long as it is linked to the adult award reservations. But honestly I am beginning to doubt any anecdotes of success in this. My next step will be to try to find a QR desk at an airport that is willing to help, maybe, I don't know. I seriously wish a travel agent who reads things on this forum would send me a PM -- seems like the kind of ticket a TA should be able to just print off and charge me a fee for.

Not sure what I'll do if it doesn't work, probably just buy Y tickets with AA on JFK-DOH to use SWUs. But sure as heck not spending $5000 instead of 140k miles for an adult just to be able to pay for the infant, and not spending $5000 for the infant to have a seat that won't be used!
​​​​​​​This absurd saga finally came to an end. I called Qatar 10 more times, got different agents each time, all said no. I had 3 hours of driving so thankfully it was time to kill. I called AA and made the decision to cancel and redeposit the 280,000 AA miles. The AA agent says "okay, for a party of three?" And I flip out, because he said three, meaning someone added the infant. Turns out, unfortunately, that it was just the previous AA agent, and there was no ticket that had been or could be issued. This agent helpfully called all the desks and then called Qatar himself and was told, flat out, that it used to be possible to ticket an infant with cash and link it to an AA award on QR metal, but it's no longer possible. So, cancel and redeposit we did.

Thankfully, that meant getting back the $83 in taxes for the outbound and $360 for the return and saving the $800+ I would have had to pay for the infant. And I turned around and booked AA metal JFK-DOH (connecting to DOH-MLE on QR) for $545 each, going ahead and booking a seat for the infant because at that rate why not. Used SWUs to clear to J on the long flight, and QR let me pick Premium Economy seats (it's an ex-CX plane) for free on the short flight. Still figuring out the way back, but I am calling it a win on the outbound.
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