What is web check in, and how does it help?

You can save a lot of time at the airport and even pick a seat of your choice when you use your airline’s web check-in options.

It is a common scenario in most Indian cities – you are headed to the airport for your evening flight, but rush hour traffic is delaying you. Instead of panicking about making it for your flight, why not save time and hassle by doing a web check-in?

What is web check-in?

It is a process by which passengers with a flight ticket confirm that they will be taking the flight as per scheduled time. Earlier, passengers would check-in by arriving at the airport and waiting in line to hand over their luggage and get a printed boarding pass.

  • Web check-in, as the name suggests, is done over the internet. You can confirm that you are taking the flight as per time by using the web check-in option provided over email and/or SMS by the flight operator. You can also print your own boarding pass at the flight carrier’s kiosk near the entrance.
  • It is allowed up 2 days prior to flight departure time, in most cases.
  • Some flight carriers even allow passengers to specify the seat, meal preferences and baggage units as part of the web check-in options.
  • Web check-in cuts delays at the airport and reduces waiting time for passengers.
  • Apart from reducing waiting times for passengers, it allows the airline to check-in passengers much faster and estimate the flight capacity better.
  • However, passengers might still need to proceed to a separate check-in counter despite doing the web check-in, especially if they are flying internationally to a country where visas are required, and/or where airlines insist on matching the identity of the person with the ticket.

If you wish to use your airline’s web check-in options

  • You can exercise the available web check-in options up to 48 hours prior to departure of the flight from the official website or mobile app.
  • You must check-in at least one hour before your flight departs.
  • Some carriers allow you to choose the preferred seat on the flight during web check-in.
  • You may check-in your baggage as well, but you must still present your baggage at the check-in counter at least 45 minutes before the flight departs.

If you wish to check-in at the airport

  • You should arrive at the airport at least two hours prior to departure time in case of domestic flights, and three hours prior in case of international flights.
  • You must carry your original Aadhaar Card to show at the airport entrance gate, and also at the check-in counter.
  • Most check-in counters close about 45 minutes prior to flight departure, and boarding gates close 20 minutes before departure, so do plan your journey accordingly.