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When are tickets issued?
This question is basically about terminology and timelines…
I recently bought some tickets for travel several months in advance through an online travel agency. I realise now that this is the first time I have used an agency for a long time – I normally buy tickets for simple itineraries directly from the airline. The tickets are for two people covering three cities and using two airlines. Almost immediately after paying I received an e-mail with a six-digit booking reference and a couple of 13-number ticket numbers.I also got an e-mail from one of the airlines with similar information.
When I logged in to the airline’s websites to ‘manage my booking’ I got a message saying that the ‘ticket wasn’t yet issued’. I can select seats but I can’t look at meals, book cars or anything else. When I contacted the airline for the first flight they told me to chill out, be patient and wait for the travel agent to issue the tickets (I paraphrase; they were very polite).
I assume that, behind the scenes, the agency hasn’t yet paid the airline(s) and that the ticket won’t be issued until they do. These seems fair enough – the flights are months away. So my questions are…
If there are no tickets issued, what do the ticket numbers mean?
How will I know when the tickets have been issued?
When can I expect the tickets to be issued?
When is an appropriate time to start hassling the agency? (I assume five months out is too early and the airport the day of travel is too late!)
How long has it been since you bought the tickets? If it’s only been a couple of weeks, or even a month, I wouldn’t worry. Sometimes these things take awhile. If you still can’t look at meals, etc. 90 days in advance then I’d start with your travel agent.
Thanks. It has been two weeks. It is another 4-5 months until we travel.
[QUOTE=”MidSouth Skier, post: 52559, member: 184″]How long has it been since you bought the tickets? If it’s only been a couple of weeks, or even a month, I wouldn’t worry. Sometimes these things take awhile. If you still can’t look at meals, etc. 90 days in advance then I’d start with your travel agent.[/QUOTE]
Having now completed the flights, it seems that it was nothing to do with payments or tickets being issued, but simply that the two airlines booking systems don’t synchronize as well as they might – the booking references and ticket numbers didn’t come through as they should. I was eventually able to manage the booking and check-in online as planned.