Swiss Air - Flight Passport Issues

Old Dec 14, 18, 10:49 pm
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Swiss Air - Flight Passport Issues

Hello

I had a flight from SFO-ZRH-BOM with 18 hour layover in ZRH (not by choice). My 5-year old sons USA passport expires February 24 2019 and was refused travel because of the passport validity. Now swiss air doesnt want to change the ticket for future travel. Any suggestions or feedback on what to do? There is nothing on swiss air that says their must be validity on passport.

Thank in advance

Vishal
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Old Dec 14, 18, 11:01 pm
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What do you mean by not by choice? Someone changed it?

https://www.ch.ch/en/short-term-stays-switzerland/

has nothing to do with Swiss Air but rather your requirements
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Old Dec 14, 18, 11:15 pm
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layover was not by choice but because the flight to BOM leaves before SFO flight arrives.. The requirements are not written on swiisair T&C
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Old Dec 14, 18, 11:43 pm
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This is a sad situation that could have been avoided if you had followed earlier advice provided in September:

https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/30262285-post2.html

I have sympathy for anyone who is denied boarding for lack of proper documentation even if he/she is at fault, but I also understand the airline point of view.
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Old Dec 15, 18, 12:52 am
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Originally Posted by s0ssos View Post
https://www.ch.ch/en/short-term-stays-switzerland/
Has nothing to do with Swiss Air but rather your requirements
Originally Posted by vishal407 View Post
The requirements are not written on swissair T&C
It is always the passengers responsibility to ensure passport, visa, etc comply with the requirements of transit countries and the destination country. That can vary a lot depending on your passport. Not the airlines problem or responsibility: the passengers

As link above-->ZRH transit
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Old Dec 15, 18, 1:23 am
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You are barking on the wrong tree... It is your responsibility to ave a pasport that is valid according to various rules...

Why do I see here on FT so many people complaining about clearly stated rules?
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Last edited by vbroucek; Dec 17, 18 at 1:46 pm
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Old Dec 15, 18, 5:45 am
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Originally Posted by vishal407 View Post
layover was not by choice but because the flight to BOM leaves before SFO flight arrives.. The requirements are not written on swiisair T&C
Do you mean they changed your flight? What was the original flight?
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Old Dec 15, 18, 6:14 am
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Not that it ultimately matters, but OP's assertion that the requirement of proper documents is not in the contract is simply wrong. It specifically states that the carrier may deny boarding if:
  • You do not appear to have valid travel documents, may
This language could not be more clear and concise.

It is also 100% OP's responsibility to have checked the document requirements for the entire journey. Had he done so, he would have learned that his son's passport was not sufficient for the 19-hour connection at ZRH. Whether that connection time was 19 hours at the time he booked or occurred as the result of a later change is irrelevant.

Air carriers check documents only because they are subject to fines if they are found to have transported a passenger without proper documents. But, from the passenger perspective, one has to ask what the point is of being permitted to board without sufficient documents so as to permit entry (including transit). OP's son would likely not have been admitted for the 19 hours and suffered a return journey to SFO.

While this has always been strictly enforced, it is even stricter in the case of young children. Not to suggest any impropriety by OP, but child trafficking issues abound and air carriers are part of the effort to stem that.

This was an easily solved problem. Had OP checked, he could have had his son's passport renewed in as little as a few hours at the San Francisco Passport Agency (presuming that the son is a USN). More to the point, if the trip was planned in advance, the standard mail-in procedures would have been just as effective.

Of course these things are a pity as it is hardly a 5 year old's fault. But, not checking document requirements falls squarely on the passenger.
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Last edited by Often1; Dec 15, 18 at 6:23 am
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Old Dec 15, 18, 6:20 am
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Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
This was an easily solved problem. Had OP checked, he could have had his son's passport renewed in as little as a few hours at the San Francisco Passport Agency (presuming that the son is a USN).
What is "USN"?
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Old Dec 15, 18, 8:50 am
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I guess US national
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Old Dec 15, 18, 8:52 am
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Originally Posted by s0ssos View Post
What is "USN"?

US National?
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Old Dec 15, 18, 9:09 am
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Originally Posted by anniegray View Post
US National?
How can you hold a US passport if you aren't a US national?
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Old Dec 15, 18, 1:57 pm
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You might be able to get away by spending those 18 hrs in the airport without entering Switzerland. It sucks as you have a young child - but as ZRH is open 24/7 this might work.

Good luck!
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Old Dec 15, 18, 8:56 pm
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Originally Posted by Maestro Ramen View Post
You might be able to get away by spending those 18 hrs in the airport without entering Switzerland. It sucks as you have a young child - but as ZRH is open 24/7 this might work.

Good luck!
From TIMATIC:
Switzerland - Transit Passport
Passport required.

Document validity rules:

Passports and other documents accepted for entry must be valid for a minimum of 3 months beyond the period of intended stay.

Type: Critical
Switzerland - Transit Visa
Visa not required.

Important:

Passengers in transit must hold passports or other documents accepted to enter Switzerland.
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Old Dec 15, 18, 9:44 pm
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Originally Posted by Maestro Ramen View Post
You might be able to get away by spending those 18 hrs in the airport without entering Switzerland. It sucks as you have a young child - but as ZRH is open 24/7 this might work.

Good luck!
No luck to be... expected: it will not work, since they will not let the child board the flight!
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