Most seasoned travelers are well aware of the shortcuts available to them in regards to air travel. Travelers who do not fly frequently may wonder, "What is online check in?" Many flyers now use this convenience as a way of skipping the counter line at the airport, saving what can be a lot of time.
What is Online Check-in?
Online check-in is a way for travelers to sign-in for their flight up to 24-hours before the departure. Using the internet and any internet capable wireless device, flyers can go to the website of the airline on which they are traveling to check-in for their flight. Domestic travelers can go online 1 to 24 hours prior to departure; international travelers can check in 2 to 24 hours prior to departure.
What about Luggage?
Many passengers who opt to check in for their flights online wonder what they are supposed to do with the luggage they want to bring upon arriving at the airport for their flight. Travelers are permitted to go on online if they are checking luggage. There is an option for travelers to state the number of bags they are checking on their flight; airlines that charge for checked luggage offer passengers the option to pay for their bags online as well. Upon arriving at the airport, anyone with bags must go to the designated airline kiosk or counter to drop off their luggage. An airline agent will print luggage tags, tag the luggage and place it on the conveyor belt.
How to Check In Online
Remote check-in is easy; simply visit the airline's website and click on the "Check-in" option on the main page. Each airline requires certain identifying information, though each one is different. Most airlines require travelers enter their last name, the credit card number they used to purchase their ticket, their frequent flyer number and/or their flight confirmation number. From there, travelers need only confirm the boxes next to the name of each person they are rgistering in for their flight, declare and pay for any checked luggage, and print their boarding passes.
Once a traveler has printed their boarding pass they are free to skip the airport counter lines - unless they have baggage to check. Those who have no luggage can head straight to the airport security line.