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Denied Bording on airline because passport was not valid 3+ months beyond travel return

Discussion in 'Airlines' started by Polly, Mar 20, 2017.

  1. Polly

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    I am writing to alert travelers that I was denied boarding on an SAS flight from San Francisco to Copenhagen several weeks ago. I am a frequent traveler on this airline (have a second home in Sweden near the Danish border), and have always liked their services. However, when I got to the counter to check in, I was denied boarding on the flight. The reason was that my passport expires in mid-May (My trip was March 2-22nd). I would have renewed the passport upon my return. The U.S. and international sites say that 3+ months is "recommended" beyond the return date, but the sites do not say "required." Also, I found many of my savy colleagues were unaware of this ruling, and obviously so was I. SAS will not refund my ticket. Is there anything I could have done, or can do at this point? To be clear, the airline reps had no advice for me nor suggestions on how to quickly renew my passport nor find a new flight. Thanks.
     
    #1
  2. krisseye

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    https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/country/denmark.html

    If you click on Entry, Exit, and Visa Requirements, "Passports should be valid for at least 6 months beyond your stay" is in bold.

    I'm sorry you were turned away at the airport. Not the way to start a trip.
     
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  3. Christina H

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    The Schengen Agreement does not all visitors with passports that are expiring in less than 3 months and 6 is recommended. You had less than 3.

    I had my passport renewed in 2014 in 24 hours at the passport office in NYC because of this rule. This rule has been around for years.

    Unfortunately SAS had to refuse you otherwise they would risk being fined.
     

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    #3
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  4. Christina H

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    A person can make an appointment for an expedited passport at one of the passport agencies. There is one in SF.
     

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  5. JVillegirl541

    Staff Member Advocate

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    You should have a credit remaining for the ticket you lost. The Credit should be good for one year from date your purchased the ticket (not date of the flt) plus a change fee. Good luck!
     
    #5
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2017
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  6. technomage1

    Staff Member Forum Director

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    You beat me to it! This site is great.

    @Polly,

    There are a variety of ways to get your passport renewed. One business offers a 24 hour turn around but it costs $450. So my suggestion is to renew based on what cost youre willing to pay or how soon you need to go.

    Call the airline and ask about the particulars of using your credit.
     
    #6
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  7. jsn55

    Staff Member Advocate

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    My colleagues have given you very good advice, Polly. I just want to add my sympathy ... this 3-mo, 6-mo rule is definitely not something that is logical to the traveller ... few people are aware of it. If you have a return tix, why are they so stubborn about it? The only way to find out before you're denied boarding is to be sure the airline has all your detailed information. And I'm not sure they'd step up anyway.

    I hope this experience doesn't sour you on SAS, all the airlines behave this way. I'm surprised that they didn't make more of an effort to assist you by offering alternatives. Perhaps they use contract agents at SFO? Good luck, and please keep us informed.
     
    #7
  8. Neil

    Neil Moderator
    Staff Member Advocate

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    A good travel agent will tell every client to make sure their passport is valid for six months after their RETURN date so ensure they won't have problems like this.
     
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  9. CLOVERDALE

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    Polly,
    Do yourself a favor and start working with a competent travel agent. It's standard procedure in this office to check remaining validity on clients passports ( at least 6 months validity from the return date) and advise that at least one page be blank and available. When clients have a passport issue not easily resolved we call on our US Senator's local office for help.
     
    #9

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