Booking an overseas flight ticket to your dream holiday destination should be an exciting prospect, but as many tickets are non-changeable, non-refundable, and non-cancellable, it can be nerve-wracking when clicking the ‘book now’ button.
If you accidentally select the wrong travel date, enter the incorrect airport code, or misspell your name, you may have to pay a hefty sum, up to 100% of the ticket price, to get it fixed, and so it is essential that you double-check all the details entered before clicking the button of no return, or better still, pass the responsibility on to your travel agent who will take care of everything for you!
Using Middle Names on Flight Tickets
There is a lot of confusion surrounding the use of middle names on flight tickets, and the airlines are to blame! When booking your ticket online, most flight booking engines request that you “enter all details exactly as per your passport” and so if your name is David Steven Jones, one would think that one should enter all names… but this is not necessarily so.
Today, many international airlines such as British Airways and Virgin Atlantic only require your first name and surname to confirm your ticket, and so you can leave your middle name out altogether. But as this is not stated at the time of booking, many people feel they should enter both their first name and middle name(s) as they appear in their passport, and then the dreaded happens…! Mr David Steven Jones becomes Jones/Davidsteven Mr and the panic begins!
But worry not. Airline booking systems do not recognise spaces, hyphens or apostrophes, and so if you enter a space between your first name and middle name, it will automatically link them both together to form one word. Check-in agents are used to this, and can just as easily identify David Steven as they can Davidsteven, and you will not have any problems boarding your flight.
Booking Flight Tickets with a Double-Barrelled Surname
The same applies to double-barrelled surnames and those with an apostrophe such as O’Connor. The airline booking system will not recognise the hyphen or the apostrophe, and so Mrs Sarah Porter-Jones will become Porterjones/Sarah Mrs on her flight tickets and boarding cards, and Mr Michael O’Connor will become Oconnor/Michael Mr.
Providing there are no spelling mistakes or errors in passport number, date of birth, or nationality, you will not have a problem with any of the above, but if you are worried about being turned away at the airport, simply give the airline a call and let them put your mind at rest.
As the only girl after a long line of brothers, my parents got carried away with middle names, and so I only ever book my flight tickets with my first name and last name… and I’ve managed to visit 53 countries so far without a single problem… so don’t worry!
Book, Travel and Enjoy! The world is waiting for you!