Using Someone Else's Ticket

Old Aug 28, 12, 9:48 pm
  #1  
Original Member
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 1998
Location: Costa Mesa, CA, USA
Programs: AA (Life Plat), Starwood (Plat) and every other US program
Posts: 5,626
Using Someone Else's Ticket

Am I correct that it is still easy to use somone else's ticket for domestic travel? I am not posting the method here, but it seems to me that it would be really easy, unless I am missing something. (I am not talking about using any fake id.)
sbrower is offline  
Old Aug 28, 12, 10:53 pm
  #2  
nrr
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: jfk area
Programs: AA platinum; 2MM AA, Delta Diamond, Hilton Diamond
Posts: 9,072
Originally Posted by sbrower View Post
Am I correct that it is still easy to use somone else's ticket for domestic travel? I am not posting the method here, but it seems to me that it would be really easy, unless I am missing something. (I am not talking about using any fake id.)
TSA (most of the time) compares your name on the id with the one on the ticket (bp)--so if these don't match, they probably won't let you through.
Assuming you get beyond this point, airlines rarely check id's anymore when boarding an aircraft, so you can board with someone else's bp.
The only time GA's (might) look for id's is when you are standby and exchanging a bp with NO assigned seat for one with a confirmed seat assignment.
Here is a scenario where what you want would work:
You buy a REFUNDABLE ticket with your name and use this to pass TSA, but at the gate present the other person's bp. Even if TSA is checking people at the gate, you would still show the bp which matches your id--this scenario could fall apart if TSA has a copy of the passenger list and is cross-indexing--not very likely.
nrr is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 9:49 am
  #3  
Ari
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Chicago
Posts: 11,116
Originally Posted by sbrower View Post
I am not posting the method here . . .
Thank heavens, because no one has ever thought of your idea before. Don't want to give away national security secrets.
Ari is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 10:53 am
  #4  
Original Member
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 1998
Location: Costa Mesa, CA, USA
Programs: AA (Life Plat), Starwood (Plat) and every other US program
Posts: 5,626
Originally Posted by Ari View Post
Thank heavens, because no one has ever thought of your idea before. Don't want to give away national security secrets.
You are right. And post #2 has the method I was thinking. My problem is that I generally take a position in favor of following the rules and I wasn't trying to start a thread, in my name, with the proposed method.
sbrower is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 10:58 am
  #5  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: DCA
Programs: UA US CO AA DL FL
Posts: 47,847
The answer is that it is not allowed, is actually illegal and, at a minimum will subject you to a world of hurt if you are ever caught. For what it's worth, TSA does random secondaries at the gate, often checking ID's just to root this out. At that point, you're standing at the gate with a useless ticket and either purchasing a seat at walk-up fares or slinking away.
Often1 is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 12:31 pm
  #6  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: LAX/TPE
Programs: CO Platinum 1K, United 1K, SPG LT Platinum, National Executive Elite, Platinum TSA Hater
Posts: 35,223
Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
The answer is that it is not allowed, is actually illegal and, at a minimum will subject you to a world of hurt if you are ever caught. For what it's worth, TSA does random secondaries at the gate, often checking ID's just to root this out. At that point, you're standing at the gate with a useless ticket and either purchasing a seat at walk-up fares or slinking away.
Except you don't need ID to fly - if you know the specific personal details of the person whose ticket you are using, you can just show up, claim you lost your ID and answer their "special questions" with answers supplied by the 'friend' - that will take care of the TSA and the airline.
bocastephen is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 12:50 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 631
I've never been gate-checked.

It's a function of expected value. Multiply the price of a refundable ticket by the chance you get caught. It should be low. Assume there's a 1% chance of being caught and you have to use the refundable ticket that costs $1000, the expected cost to you is $10. That's a great deal for a "valueless" ticket, it's like paying $10 for a flight. If it were possible, I would start an insurance business for this and charge $20, and absorb the cost of the refundable ticket if you get caught. Lots of people would pay $20 to be able to fly on someone else's ticket if they can't fly. Why should the airlines be allowed to sell the same seat twice? It doesn't matter whose body is in a seat as long as the seat is paid for and the person isn't a terrorist.
nd2010 is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 1:51 pm
  #8  
nrr
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: jfk area
Programs: AA platinum; 2MM AA, Delta Diamond, Hilton Diamond
Posts: 9,072
The general concept of "substitution" can violate ethical and/or legal rules.
(1)A student has a friend take his tests for him
(2)Harrah's is running a casino promo, if you play in x number of their casinos nationwide you get y bonus points; discussed in another forum on ft, how people would swap their casino cards and play for other people.
(3)Taking a defensive driving course on-line (to get insurance and/or point reduction on your driving record), leaves the system open to substitutes taking the course for you.
(4)Having substitutes take SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) for them, to get higher scores and land places in better colleges. [This led to a big scandal on LI recently.]
(1)-(4) and the theme of this thread, are rule violations, but you add:
(5)A train motorman, bus driver (even a pilot) has a "competent" friend fill in for him--now the substitution can lead to serious safety issues (where lives are at stake).
Bottom line, IMHO, even if you can get away with this--don't.
nrr is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 1:57 pm
  #9  
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Washington, DC
Programs: UA 1K, AA, DL, LH, VX, HA
Posts: 5,893
Originally Posted by nrr View Post
The general concept of "substitution" can violate ethical and/or legal rules..
This has little to do with ethics. It has only to do with compliance with legal rules that put in place nominally for security reasons but also because the airlines wanted to eliminate the secondary market in non-refundable tickets.
drewguy is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 2:03 pm
  #10  
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: ORD
Programs: AA Platinum, HHonors Diamond
Posts: 1,177
I don't really know, but I wonder if it is even a crime to do this. To comply with the TSA you have to have travel documents to enter the secure area. You could buy a pass to the airline club and get a gate pass. Nothing illegal here.

Once in the secure area, as long as there is no TSA gate check, you are breaking a contract with the airline. Illegal, but I don't think criminal.
cparekh is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 2:04 pm
  #11  
A FlyerTalk Posting Legend
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: DCA
Programs: UA US CO AA DL FL
Posts: 47,847
Originally Posted by bocastephen View Post
Except you don't need ID to fly - if you know the specific personal details of the person whose ticket you are using, you can just show up, claim you lost your ID and answer their "special questions" with answers supplied by the 'friend' - that will take care of the TSA and the airline.
Yup. And if you wear a mask to a bank robbery, they might not ID you and you might get away with it.

Point is that anybody who commits a 5-year federal felony over an air ticket, isn't thinking.
Often1 is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 5:33 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Salish Sea
Programs: DL,AC,HH,PC
Posts: 8,977
Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
The answer is that it is not allowed, is actually illegal
Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
Point is that anybody who commits a 5-year federal felony over an air ticket, isn't thinking.
USC chapter and verse please, I suspect you're bending the statute a bit wrt OP's scenario.
Wally Bird is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 6:25 pm
  #13  
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Northern VA
Posts: 1,004
Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
The answer is that it is not allowed, is actually illegal and, at a minimum will subject you to a world of hurt if you are ever caught. For what it's worth, TSA does random secondaries at the gate, often checking ID's just to root this out. At that point, you're standing at the gate with a useless ticket and either purchasing a seat at walk-up fares or slinking away.
Odds of the TSA "random secondary" finding a valid boarding pass that matches the person's ID is about a million to one. If you don't know the method we're talking about you're in happy pretend land.
Pesky Monkey is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 6:59 pm
  #14  
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: 91,678
Originally Posted by sbrower View Post
Am I correct that it is still easy to use somone else's ticket for domestic travel? I am not posting the method here, but it seems to me that it would be really easy, unless I am missing something. (I am not talking about using any fake id.)
Pretty easy still; even if there is sometimes an ID check at the gate being done by the TSA, there are still easy ways around that too. No fake photo ID needed for any of that to take place.

Not as easy as it was in the early 1990s and before, but still pretty easy.
GUWonder is offline  
Old Aug 29, 12, 7:03 pm
  #15  
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: 91,678
Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
The answer is that it is not allowed, is actually illegal and, at a minimum will subject you to a world of hurt if you are ever caught. For what it's worth, TSA does random secondaries at the gate, often checking ID's just to root this out. At that point, you're standing at the gate with a useless ticket and either purchasing a seat at walk-up fares or slinking away.
Most always, the TSA has missed this during "random secondaries at the gate". The rare occasions where someone has been caught has generally involved no "world of hurt" whatsoever for the person "caught".
GUWonder is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search Engine: