Go Back  FlyerTalk Forums > Miles&Points > Airlines and Mileage Programs > American Airlines | AAdvantage
Reload this Page >

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

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

    Hide Wikipost
Old Aug 11, 19, 2:45 am   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Last edit by: JDiver
Wiki Link
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:

Print Wikipost

Old Mar 21, 16, 7:51 pm
  #31  
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: DFW
Programs: AA EXP, LT Gold
Posts: 3,017
Originally Posted by Dave Noble View Post
If you book business class for yourself and wish to swap with wife, that will be likely allowed, but you cannot move to have the adult sharing the seat with the infant
I agree. They likely will not mind you swapping with your spouse (I've done it numerous times, even with me sitting in J for 50% of the flight and my wife taking the other 50%), but the infant thing is pushing the limits IMO.
econometrics is offline  
Old Mar 21, 16, 10:30 pm
  #32  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 42,130
Originally Posted by econometrics View Post
I agree. They likely will not mind you swapping with your spouse (I've done it numerous times, even with me sitting in J for 50% of the flight and my wife taking the other 50%), but the infant thing is pushing the limits IMO.
The infant moving would be no different to an economy passenger seeing an empty seat in business class and then deciding that it was ok to sit there
Dave Noble is offline  
Old Apr 9, 16, 5:06 am
  #33  
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: LON
Programs: BA Gold, LH SEN , A3*G & others less exciting that don't fit in my wallet
Posts: 1,420
Flying to Mexico - MIA-CUN-MIA .. Ticket booked on AA's UK site for 2 adults .. Called up AA reservations this morning to add the infant to the booking

After a rather lengthy call the agent told me it was done and there's no additional fare nor any requirement for an e-ticket to be issued for the infant because "it is a domestic flight" and I just need to checkin at the airport and the infant will get a boarding card

Now obviously it's not domestic - but maybe US - Mexico has the same rules for lap infants as domestic ?

Can anyone advise if this is correct ... I also have an AA international ticket (Europe - South America which this is an extra side trip) and for that I called up reservations and they charged 10% of the adult fare + a few taxes which I thought was normal and the infant got an eticket issued etc. ... I expected the same process for the MIA-CUN flight ... obviously if it's free it's better, but it seems a bit odd .. I challenged the agent a few times but they were insistent that this was the case for MIA-CUN

Thanks !
EvilDoctorK is offline  
Old Apr 9, 16, 6:13 am
  #34  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Watchlisted by the prejudiced, en route to purgatory
Programs: Just Say No to Fleecing and Blacklisting
Posts: 97,797
Originally Posted by EvilDoctorK View Post
Flying to Mexico - MIA-CUN-MIA .. Ticket booked on AA's UK site for 2 adults .. Called up AA reservations this morning to add the infant to the booking

After a rather lengthy call the agent told me it was done and there's no additional fare nor any requirement for an e-ticket to be issued for the infant because "it is a domestic flight" and I just need to checkin at the airport and the infant will get a boarding card

Now obviously it's not domestic - but maybe US - Mexico has the same rules for lap infants as domestic ?

Can anyone advise if this is correct ... I also have an AA international ticket (Europe - South America which this is an extra side trip) and for that I called up reservations and they charged 10% of the adult fare + a few taxes which I thought was normal and the infant got an eticket issued etc. ... I expected the same process for the MIA-CUN flight ... obviously if it's free it's better, but it seems a bit odd .. I challenged the agent a few times but they were insistent that this was the case for MIA-CUN

Thanks !
US-Mexico lap child tickets on AA planes used to involve a flat fee of some sort plus taxes/fees. At least I don't recall it being free around 3 or 4 years ago. They could do this at check-in then, but you'll probably want to add a good hour or so on top of your normal check-in habits for this.
GUWonder is offline  
Old Apr 9, 16, 6:42 am
  #35  
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: LON
Programs: BA Gold, LH SEN , A3*G & others less exciting that don't fit in my wallet
Posts: 1,420
Originally Posted by GUWonder View Post
... you'll probably want to add a good hour or so on top of your normal check-in habits for this.
Thanks for the info GUWonder .. Hopefully this isn't the case but I'll keep it in mind and allow a little extra time .. Surely it would be much simpler if they just issued a ticket for the infant like on international itineraries and as I've seen on any other airlines that I've flown with infants on ...

Also we're flying PHL-MIA-CUN .. with the PHL-MIA leg being on the Int'l ticket where the infant has a ticket so no problem there, but we've then 1h25 in MIA connecting onto the CUN flight so adequate, but not excessive time for messing around with check in desks/ ticket desks ... I assume if there's anything that needs to be sorted out anyway we can sort it out in PHL before the first flight and they'll be able to check us right through.

Last edited by EvilDoctorK; Apr 9, 16 at 6:48 am
EvilDoctorK is offline  
Old Apr 9, 16, 6:57 am
  #36  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 42,130
Doing a dummy booking on ITA for adult plus infant, it shows that there is a fare of zero plus $16.46 of taxes made up of

US Customs Fee (YC) US$5.50
US Immigration Fee (XY) US$7.00
USDA APHIS Fee (XA) US$3.96
Dave Noble is offline  
Old Apr 9, 16, 7:02 am
  #37  
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: LON
Programs: BA Gold, LH SEN , A3*G & others less exciting that don't fit in my wallet
Posts: 1,420
Originally Posted by Dave Noble View Post
Doing a dummy booking on ITA for adult plus infant, it shows that there is a fare of zero plus $16.46 of taxes
....
This sounds absolutely fine ( I would have expected 10% of the base adult fare too ) .. I'd just love to pay it in advance rather than have to mess around at checkin , especially in MIA on a relatively short layover
EvilDoctorK is offline  
Old Apr 9, 16, 7:38 am
  #38  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Watchlisted by the prejudiced, en route to purgatory
Programs: Just Say No to Fleecing and Blacklisting
Posts: 97,797
Originally Posted by EvilDoctorK View Post
This sounds absolutely fine ( I would have expected 10% of the base adult fare too ) .. I'd just love to pay it in advance rather than have to mess around at checkin , especially in MIA on a relatively short layover
You could try to have AA at LHR do the lap-child ticketing for MIA-CUN-MIA well in advance of your trip to the US. Not sure how convenient that is for you, but that is what I would do if in such circumstances.

When it comes to even Canada-US lap-child tickets, I'd be looking for a ticket number for the lap-child well before the day of travel.
GUWonder is offline  
Old Apr 9, 16, 7:43 am
  #39  
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: LON
Programs: BA Gold, LH SEN , A3*G & others less exciting that don't fit in my wallet
Posts: 1,420
I don't know if I'll be in LHR T3 before then .. If I am I will ... Otherwise we're departing from DUB .. they can perhaps do it there, or else I will check at PHL when we arrive

Still not sure why AA can't just do it over the phone .. but anyway I'm sure it will be fine


Or alternatively if it's likely to be such a nightmare as some previous posts suggest I can cancel (it is within 24h of booking) these tickets and re-purchase via BA with Avios where it's simple to purchase the infant ticket at the same time ( it's just a relatively poor value use of Avios points, but might save a lot of hassle!)

Last edited by EvilDoctorK; Apr 9, 16 at 8:00 am
EvilDoctorK is offline  
Old Apr 12, 16, 3:51 am
  #40  
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: LON
Programs: BA Gold, LH SEN , A3*G & others less exciting that don't fit in my wallet
Posts: 1,420
Smile

To close the loop on this in case it is of some use to anyone else in the future :

Following the call I mentioned here earlier where AA reservations told me it was a domestic flight from Miami to Cancun(!) and that I could just sort it out at the airport I received the email below today ... I guess this was related to the Infant that was added and not ticketed on the booking as the booking for my wife and I was ticketed and paid for already.

Please call us to talk to our Customer Service teams. We are unable to process your booking. Booking reference xxxxx. Click here to contact us.

We look forward to speaking to you.
I called AA reservations on the UK 0207 Number and an extremely helpful guy named Paul sorted it all out. He sounded like he was UK based, I guess during the week the UK number is answered locally and at the weekend it goes elsewhere.

Anyway he told me to ignore the email, he understood that MIA-CUN is not a domestic sector and he got it ticketed for me with the help of his rates desk, just took a couple of minutes on hold..

I now have an eticket for the infant on the booking so I'm happy that we won't have problems en route.The final cost was £11.70 ( so a little under $20 ), e-ticket shows it as all taxes and the base fare as 0.00

I guess it probably would have worked out the other way too, but I suspect it would have been more hassle and stress so it seems easier to get it sorted this way ... Still seems strange how difficult it is to book infant tickets with AA, they really don't make it that simple !
EvilDoctorK is offline  
Old Apr 22, 16, 8:47 am
  #41  
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 45
Yesterday, I called AA to add on a lap infant for my Award Travel from SFO - NRT (CX Outbound, JL Inbound) for November and the CSR took down my infant's name and birthday. I was put on a brief hold and CSR came back and said my infant has been added to the reservation.

There was no mention of any additional cost, which I found strange. I asked if I would get confirmation of this change and she said on her end, it's inputted. I logged in to my award ticket details and I noticed this message that wasn't on there before the call:

Please check in at the airport

Since you’re traveling with an infant (in lap), you’ll need to check in at the airport.

So, what now? Do I call back and ask about additional charge or hope that I flew under the radar? Definitely don't want to be put in a situation at the airport where I pay the exorbitant last minute fare costs...

Last edited by jmschn; Apr 22, 16 at 8:55 am
jmschn is offline  
Old Apr 22, 16, 11:00 am
  #42  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Programs: DL 1 million, AA 1 mil, HH lapsed Diamond, Marriott Plat
Posts: 28,189
Originally Posted by jmschn View Post
So, what now? Do I call back and ask about additional charge or hope that I flew under the radar? Definitely don't want to be put in a situation at the airport where I pay the exorbitant last minute fare costs...
Your infant needs a ticket - not just 'added to reservation'. Since one pays the infant's fare based on available adult fare at time of infant ticketing don't wait until day of travel to do this.
3Cforme is offline  
Old Apr 22, 16, 11:40 am
  #43  
 
Join Date: May 2008
Posts: 45
Originally Posted by 3Cforme View Post
Your infant needs a ticket - not just 'added to reservation'. Since one pays the infant's fare based on available adult fare at time of infant ticketing don't wait until day of travel to do this.
Thank you!
jmschn is offline  
Old Apr 22, 16, 2:04 pm
  #44  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Posts: 42,130
Originally Posted by jmschn View Post
So, what now? Do I call back and ask about additional charge or hope that I flew under the radar? Definitely don't want to be put in a situation at the airport where I pay the exorbitant last minute fare costs...
You won't fly under the radar - CX will not alllow the passenger to check in without a ticket number in the booking

For the journey mentioned however, I think that the only fare that AA will be able to sell will likely be "exhorbitant". a r/t journeyt using CX out and JL back is likely to require an expensive fare so you may not save money with advance purchase

Last edited by Dave Noble; Apr 22, 16 at 2:09 pm
Dave Noble is offline  
Old Apr 22, 16, 2:21 pm
  #45  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Watchlisted by the prejudiced, en route to purgatory
Programs: Just Say No to Fleecing and Blacklisting
Posts: 97,797
Originally Posted by Dave Noble View Post
You won't fly under the radar - CX will not alllow the passenger to check in without a ticket number in the booking

For the journey mentioned however, I think that the only fare that AA will be able to sell will likely be "exhorbitant". a r/t journeyt using CX out and JL back is likely to require an expensive fare ( around $700 exconomy and $2000 business would seem possible) so you may not save money with advance purchase
Indeed. Rather it's often been the case that the operating carrier at the airport charges my relatives way less for lap child tickets purchased the night before or on day of travel than what the adult ticketing carrier asks when doing the lap child booking, for example, over the phone with AA weeks or months in advance. It's not always a huge difference, but the price difference may vary (in either direction) from phone call to phone call even when the calls are done within minutes of each other or overlapping in time.
GUWonder is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread