Airline Reservations & Flight Restrictions [Travel Tips]

Airline Reservations & Flight Restrictions [Travel Tips]

Post Last Modified – April 24, 2020

Know Your Airline Reservations & Restrictions

I thought I would share some very important travel information on Airline Flight Reservations & Restrictions that you should be aware of, especially should you happen to miss your flight.  You definitely don’t want your travel plans disrupted, because of specific airline policies that you may have missed.

Did you know, if you should miss one segment of booked flights, the airlines have the right to cancel your entire reservation?

That’s right!

Missing your flight can be a stressful and costly experience. Check out this very informative short video explaining a few very simple ways to avoid being late for a flight or any other travel reservations.

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Airline Flight Restrictions Regarding Missed Flights

I have experienced first hand what it’s like to miss a flight as a result of being caught in heavy traffic, and of course, not being aware of airline policies when this happens. After arriving at the airport late for my flight, I discovered my connecting flight had also been cancelled automatically.

My chosen airline graciously put me on standby for the next available flight.  Fortunately, there was a seat available for me. If not, it could have cost me another full fare.

This could have happened because I had not informed the airlines soon enough, as required in their reservation policy.

Airline Reservations – Example

Here’s an example of a typical missed flight scenario …

Let’s say a person has a flight from Bellingham, Washington to Phoenix, Arizona in the United States, with a quick stopover and connecting flight in Seattle, Washington.  This is a quick 20 minute flight to Seattle where you make your connection onto Phoenix.  You have a return flight with the exact same itinerary.

This individual has paid for all his airline reservations in full and they are set to go!  Then, as luck as it, they get stuck in traffic and miss the first segment of their flight. That person proceeds to the check in counter of the selected airline and discovers that their entire flight reservations had been cancelled, even for their next connecting flight!

Suddenly, that persons jaw drops and heart skips a beat and simply cannot believe what he is hearing!  Had he read the airline reservation policy ahead of time, he may have been able to avoid this from happening.

Airline Reservations & Airline Flight Policies

If you are a no show or do not call within a prescribed time limit prior to your departure, with most major carriers, your airline reservations are normally cancelled.

Don’t ever assume that if you miss any segment of a flight reservation, that you still hold your reservations for your other flights!

Most airlines do have a  flat tire or 2 hour rule that you should be familiar with. You need to call the airlines no later than 2 hours after missing your flight, otherwise you are out of luck completely!

Read The Fine Print On Airline Flight Policies

It’s real ly important to read and be familiar with policies for your selected airline, prior to your departure.  For example, have a quick look at  Alaska Airlines Missed Flight Policy of typical airline guidelines regarding a missed or no-show airline flight reservation.

At the bottom of the page, it clearly specifies what their rules are.

“We’ll cancel your flight reservation and all continuing and return flights.”

For normal domestic flights, you need to be at the gate ready to board at least 30 minutes before departure.  This is pretty standard with most airlines for domestic flights.   For international flights, you should be at the gate at least one hour before your flight.

With tougher security measures in place and with the extra waits that are now standard to pass through security, it is even more important that you arrive extra early to get to your boarding gate.

Arrived Late And Missed Your Flight?


You must immediately proceed to your airlines customer service desk or check in counter!

It is strongly suggested that you try to remain calm and do not get angry with your airline representative.  They will do what they can to accommodate you. In most cases they will try to arrange to get you on the next available flight.

You may have to be put on standby and perhaps pay a surcharge as well, depending on availability.

This is standard for most airlines and it is certainly better than having to purchase new tickets at full fare.  The airlines are competing for business and they definitely want your repeat business, so if you remain calm and be as polite as you can with the airline employee, they will certainly do their best for you.

Review Airline Reservation Policies Before Travel 


Airlines Are Not Obliged To Book Another Flight

Most airlines will do what they can to assist you, but be forewarned, they are under no obligation to re-schedule  a new flight for you.  They will hopefully be able to book new airline reservation for you and if the flights are not full, they can usually re-book you back on the same flights you had.

In the event that you are going to be late, you must call the airline as soon as you can and make them aware of your situation. This can also be easier said than done.  Have you ever tried to call the airlines without remaining on hold forever? 🙁   

As well, read the information on your insurance policy and see if you have any cancellation coverage. Depending on the circumstances you may be covered for your loss.

Just a quick tip that I feel is something everyone should be aware of when traveling by air, especially when connecting flights are involved.  You may also enjoy reading my recent article on Airplane Travel Etiquette

Yes, there are some simple rules of etiquette you should follow when flying!

Safe and Healthy Travels! 🙂

Did You Know …

“American Airlines started the very first frequent flyer mileage program in 1981.”



➡   Air Travel Health Tips For Your Next Flight

➡   Beware Of In Flight Theft On Your Next Flight

➡   Airport Air Travel Security Screening Tips

🙂 Don’t Forget It … Be Sure To Pin It! 🙂



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