Don’t throw out – or delete – your airline boarding pass once you tough down.
Here’s a story I recently put together for CNBC about all the hidden perks airline – and railroad – boarding passes can provide.
Bonuses for air travelers include everything from free ski lift tickets, to complimentary wine tastings and discounts on meals, ground transportation and adventures.
of the deals below are offered for limited times or only during certain
seasons. Others can be used multiple times. Read the program details and, of
course, don’t be too quick to delete your boarding pass image from your phone
or crumple up that paper pass after your trip.
Skiers can score a free lift ticket and, in some cases, free or discounted gear rental by showing an Alaska Airlines boarding pass at a dozen ski resorts in Alaska, California, Canada, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Utah. Most of the deals invite travelers to hit the slopes on the days they arrive or depart and can represent a savings of up to $200.
some resorts, such as Squaw
Valley and Alpine Meadows in North Lake Tahoe, California, guests
who show a same-day boarding pass from any commercial airline receive a
complimentary lift ticket for the day they arrive.
Sip and ship wine for free
Oregon, Washington, Idaho and parts of California, an Alaska Airlines boarding
pass is a win-win for fans of wine.
the airline’s “Wine
Flies Free” program, members of the airline’s Mileage Plan frequent
flyer plan may check a case (12 bottles) of wine for free when flying
domestically on Alaska Airlines, Horizon Air and SkyWest flights from 29 west
coast cities, including San Francisco, Portland, Seattle and Boise, ID.
the wine regions of both Oregon and Washington, hundreds of participating
wineries also offer complimentary tastings to anyone showing an in-bound Alaska
Airlines boarding pass and proof of Mileage Plan membership.
as part of Washington’s Taste and Tote
program with Alaska, the drop-off fee will be waived for one-way Hertz rental
cars picked up in Yakima,
Pasco/Tri-Cities or Walla Walla and returned at one of the other two cities in
Boarding pass deals from
Airlines passengers with layovers of between six and 24 hours in Istanbul can
show their boarding passes at the Hotel Desk and join a
free highlight tour of the city.
Boarding Pass program offers a full week of perks in Korea to
passengers who hold onto their international boarding pass from an overseas
region. Passengers traveling from Korea to an international destination can
take advantage of boarding pass offers for a full month.
Korea, the perks include discounts on everything from meals, attractions and
cultural performances to cell phone rentals, rail tickets and medical services.
Worldwide, the perks range from discounts at outlet malls in the United States
and 30 percent off single visits to the aquarium, zoo and other attractions in
Airlines’ Boarding Pass Privileges program offers
Singapore Airlines and SilkAir passengers a full month of discounts on hotel
stays, car rentals, meals, purchases and attractions, including the Gardens by
Bay, the Singapore Flyer, and the Singapore Zoo. Deals are updated every six
months and include discounts on shopping, dining and spa services inside Changi
Airport as well.
Boarding Pass program from Asiana Airlines offers passengers
discounts on tours, transportation, hotels, restaurants, shopping, theater and
attractions around the world for up to a month after a flight. In Korea, the
perks include discounts at Seoul’s Lotte World Aquarium and JeJu’s Teddy Bear
Museum. In the U.S., Asiana Airlines passengers get a discount when riding the
Hawaii’s Waikiki Trolley. And in Rome, pass holders gets a free gift with
purchase at the Hard Rock Café.
Train travelers get boarding pass perks
boarding pass perks aren’t limited to air travelers. Amtrak and Eurostar riders
get bonuses too.
In California, Amtrak has
a discount offer on Disneyland Resort theme park tickets for passengers with
reservations on the Pacific Surfliner. Many
transit providers along the route also provide free
bus or shuttle rides to passengers who show their Pacific Surfliner
ticket. Train passengers may also purchase discounted day passes for the Los
Angeles Metro and San Diego MTS buses and trolleys in the Surfliner’s Café Car.
A “Car Free” promotion in
Barbara offers discounts on
tours, attractions and meals to Amtrak ticket holders as well.
And Eurostar boarding passes entitle passengers to 2-for-1 tickets on entry and special paid exhibitions at museums in destination cities including London, Brussels, Paris and Lille, France.
Have you found a hidden perk in your boarding pass? Let us know!
Airlines are offering change fee waivers and refunds in response to the California wildfires.
Some airlines are also helping out with emergency relief efforts for those affected by the fires.
See the links and tweets below for specific dates and details of the alerts airlines have posted.
Wildfires seen from space. Courtesy NASA
American Airlines – The travel alert posted on November 11 offers change fee waivers for passengers booked travel to, through or from Burbank, California (BUR), Los Angeles, California (LAX), Oakland, California (OAK), Sacramento, California (SMF) and San Francisco, California (SFO) through November 13, 2018. Waiver is available for rebooked flights through November 18, 2018.
American will also give you 10 miles for every dollar you donate to the American Red Cross on donations of $25 or more.
JetBlue is offering to waive change/cancel fees and fare differences for customers traveling through Tuesday, November 12, to/from the Burbank (BUR), Los Angeles (LAX), Oakland (OAK), Sacramento (SMF) and San Francisco (SFO).
The wildfire travel advisory for Southwest Airlines currently applies to flights booked through November 16 to, through or from Burbank (BUR), Los Angeles (LAX), Oakland (OAK), Sacramento (SMF), San Francisco (SFO) and San Jose (SJC).
“Customers who are holding reservations on the abovementioned dates, and want to alter their travel plans may rebook in the original class of service or travel standby (within 14 days of their original date of travel between the original city-pairs and in accordance with our accommodation procedures) without paying any additional charge,” Southwest says on its website.
Here’s the most recent information on wildfire waivers from United Airlines:
We have issued a weather advisory for those traveling to/from/through Pensacola, FL (PNS), Atlanta, GA (ATL), Tampa, FL (TPA) and Birmingham, AL (BHM)) on 10/9 – 10/11. If your travel is affected, please read full details here: https://t.co/c17wLa3jb1pic.twitter.com/5qxK5YwpQY
Airlines growing their own food? It’s a thing. Korean Air recently invited me to visit the company’s ranch in South Korea where they farm livestock, chicken, veggies, fruit and bottle their own water to serve to passengers.
Other airlines have farming projects underway as well.
Back in 1972, when beef was in short supply in South Korea, the then chairman of Korea Air’s parent group bought a 3,700 acre ranch on South Korea’s Jeju Island.
Imported Angus cattle got things started, but now the herd is about 2,200 Korean native cattle known as Hanwoo.
Meat from these animals, and from the farm’s flock of approximately 6000 free-range chickens, is sent to Korean Air’s flight catering kitchens in Seoul for use in meals served to first and business-class passengers.
In addition to raising cows and chickens, the ranch also produces fruit, vegetables – and bottled water – for Korean Air passengers.
The water bottling plant at the ranch has been operating for 35 years and there they make and fill cups and bottles of the airline’s branded ‘Hanjin Jeju Pure Water.’ The water is pumped from 1,070 feet underground and filtered through layers of the island’s volcanic rock.
Other airlines explore agriculture
In 2015 JetBlue debuted a large milk-crate garden outside Terminal 5 at New York’s John F Kennedy International Airport. Potatoes, vegetables and herbs grown there are donated to local food banks.
Japan Air Lines is creating a ‘you-pick’ agritourism attraction on land near Tokyo’s Narita International Airport that is scheduled to open in 2020. The carrier hopes to add food grown on that farm to in-flight and lounge menus.
And Emirates is having the world’s largest vertical farming facility built near the Dubai airport. At full production, the daily harvest from the the 130,000-square foot facility should be about three tons of pesticide-free leafy greens that will be used in many of the meals Emirates Flight Catering prepares for 105 airlines and 25 airport lounges.