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Old Jun 18, 17, 7:41 pm   #1
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Post Thai Airways won't accommodate a legal name change

My fiancé and I are traveling with Thai Airways from Thailand to Sweden and back to get married. My fiancé intends to change her name directly after the wedding. However, we do not know if that will happen before our return flight from Sweden to Thailand. If she can change her name, I asked Thai Airways how they handle a legal name change on the flight reservation. Thai Airways said they have never done this even though Thailand is a honeymoon destination for many people and I would conclude that nobody has ever spelled their name wrong on their booking either. I have emailed Thai Airways several times and gotten nowhere with them. Every airline in the US accommodates this situation as it is the exact same passenger. Please advice.
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Old Jun 18, 17, 8:01 pm   #2
  
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How long are you going to be in Sweden? Unless things are different in her country of residence, as a U.S. Citizen it was quite easy for me to go by one name or the other for a couple of months, until I got all my records sorted with social security, banks, passport, etc. I used whatever matched the appropriate document at the time. Would it hurt for her to fly back under her maiden name? Is her photo ID and passport already going to be changed with the married name somehow while you're in Sweden?
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Old Jun 18, 17, 8:48 pm   #3
  
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is your fiancé Thai?
where is she going to change her passport to accommodate name change? If this is in Thailand after your return, then there will be no Problems for the flight back as ticket still corresponds with passport (=maiden name).
If you intended to change the passport at the Royal Thai Embassy in Sweden, you have to be aware that marriage registration does not happen at the same time in both countries, so embassy might not have info about the change and could not issue the new passport
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Old Jun 18, 17, 9:57 pm   #4
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She is Swedish and I am American. The process to legally change her name and get a new passport may be quick in Sweden. So quick she may have a new passport and a new legal name within a week of our marriage before we flight back to Thailand. So she may have a new legal name by the time of our return flight to Thailand. Since the flight is international, she needs to show her passport. Most airlines in the world would change the name with the proper documentation. I have done my research and most airlines do that. Also, Aviation Law which is the law of international aviation that the entire world follows says nothing about it being illegal to change the name of a ticket. Airlines don't allow you to transfer the ticket to another passenger because they may make less money. I don't see why the same person cannot update their ticket, especially since this was not an option when booking the ticket.
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Old Jun 18, 17, 10:35 pm   #5
  
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You are incorrect that most airlines will do a free name change. Even if it is maiden to married. A lot of people get stung by this out of Australia where airlines will deny check in because passport name doesn't match ticket name.
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Old Jun 19, 17, 3:07 am   #6
  
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If she is Swedish and brings the proper papers to the airport - evidencing the name change + the old (but revoked) passport (she should not throw that away after new passport has been issued) I doubt she is going to face any problems at check-in (I assume that you are on the direct TG 961 to BKK) - the risk of not being allowed on the flight would have been higher flying into Europe.

There is no need to waste more time trying to get a name change.
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Old Jun 19, 17, 3:10 am   #7
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travelislife- nobody said free name change even though it should be free as long as it is the same person. Are you referring to Quantas that denies check-in? I have done a little research. There is nothing in Aviation Law governed by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) that says that a name change is illegal per Aviation’s Bylaws. Every major US carrier allows passengers to change the name on a ticket to match their new legal name if it is due to marriage. Those airlines include but not limited to the largest airline in the world, American Airlines Group, the second largest airlines in the world, Delta Air Lines, the third largest airlines in the world, United Continental Holdings, the seventh largest airline in the world, Southwest Airlines among many smaller US carriers.

Shouldn't this discrimination be illegal? Please provide any other business outside of aviation that would treat a customer this way and not respect a legal name change? I am just looking for one industry or business on this planet.
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Old Jun 19, 17, 3:29 am   #8
  
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The perception that everything works like in the US is wrong. You are dealing with TG/Thailand!

Anything slightly out of the ordinary will be hard to accomplish (unless a manager steps in); nobody is prepared to take the resposibility for accomodating a name change if there is even a slight chance that may turn out to be a wrong decision (and the employee/agent will losse face). It is much easier to say "Sorry, we can't do that"

Trust me, you will get nowhere with trying to getting this solved in advance (and there is no need to, cfr. my earlier advice).
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Old Jun 19, 17, 5:56 am   #9
  
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If I were in your situation, I would wait till after travelling to change my passport. Yes, it would be nice if the airline wold accommodate this rare circumstance. But more likely, you will spend hours on the phone and get nowhere. As the Desiderata says, "grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change", save your time (and sanity) by doing it the airline's way, even if it means sacrificing a few days living under the maiden name.
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Old Jun 19, 17, 5:58 am   #10
  
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I'm not sure if your wife needs to change her passport immediately. My wife traveled on her old passport with her old name on several flights up to one month after she changed her name.

There are plenty of people who get married and then jump on a honeymoon flight on the next day, and obviously they don't have time to get new passports at all.
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Old Jun 19, 17, 6:07 am   #11
  
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The simple solution is not to change her name straight away

What do you hope to achieve with the rest of the whining about what other airlines do and stupid claims of discrimination? All that matters is Thai's policy.
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Old Jun 20, 17, 8:57 am   #12
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexY80 View Post
There is nothing in Aviation Law governed by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) that says that a name change is illegal per Aviation’s Bylaws.
I doubt there are laws involved in this situation (at least in most countries) -hence no quetion of 'illegality'. In short, you either agree or not to the terms and conditions of the contract you enter into with the airline. If Thai cannot accommodate your desires for the name change, then you are free to select another carrier.
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Old Jun 28, 17, 5:53 am   #13
  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexY80 View Post
There is nothing in Aviation Law governed by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) that says that a name change is illegal per Aviation’s Bylaws.
And no law that says you CAN change a name. Further, ICAO provisions are not laws. They are an agreement between the members.

Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexY80 View Post
Every major US carrier allows passengers to change the name on a ticket to match their new legal name if it is due to marriage.
No they don't. Once a PNR is issued, there is no physical means to change the name in the system.

The airlines may allow the passenger to travel with the married name if you have the documentation to substantiate the change, but that does not change the name in the PNR.
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Old Jun 30, 17, 6:57 am   #14
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Should have booked two one way fares for her...
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Old Jun 30, 17, 8:48 am   #15
  
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Originally Posted by m0hamed View Post
Should have booked two one way fares for her...
best contribution in this thread so far!
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