|Subject: RE: ZINE buying airline tickets on-line|
John has the right of it: there are so many sources for airline tickets these days, comparative shopping is a good idea.
Several other US carriers in addition to US Airways have imposed a $20 fee for paper tickets when etickets can be used. When irregular operations (crew, air traffic control or mechanical problems, or sometimes weather delays) cause your ticketed airline to cancel, other airlines may be more likely to accept your ticket when it's paper. However, in the current environment, even with a paper ticket, another carrier is very unwilling to accept your coupon unless the original carrier has ceased operations altogether (not just bankruptcy). Your ticketed airline has to give proof to the new airline that you have permission to travel on the new schedule. This is called an endorsement &usually is only given at the ticket counter of the original airline. Unfortunately, I've got lots of experience with these issues!
And on a personal note, on my Italy trip in May, with supercheap etickets purchased from a wholesaler, an incredible series of airline bungles cancelled our flights. Paper tickets wouldn't have made any difference; it was only my persistence, good humor & elite frequent flyer status that got us to Italy at all! The airlines can always issue FIMs (flight interruption manifests) if they choose. These coupons permit boarding without the customary printed coupons & don't always require an original flight coupon. Gail In Eugene but never for long