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Advice on when to be at the airport

If you pre-book your seat with Skyservice (still debating this issue), when can we arrive at the airport. We are use to being there 3 hrs before to get good seats (together). If we prebook, can we be there 2 hrs before???

We know you’ll get a variety of oppinions on this one, including those who brag about how they ignore airline recommendations and show up as close to flight time as possible. However, there are a couple of things to consider.

First, if your carrier asks that you be at the airport two–three–or whatever hours before your flight, just do it. Why try to be different? Even though you have pre-booked your seats, you will still have to line up for checkin. By showing up at the recommended time, everyone should be checked in so the flight can depart on time. If everyone decided to show up later than the recommended time, chances are you will face a delay.

Secondly, one of the main reasons carriers ask for early arrival at the airport is because, after everyone is checked in, the passenger list is submitted to the good old USA who give final approval for the flight to pass over or by their country. That’s why, on most southern charters, the checkin is closed anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour prior to the departure time.

We normally checkin three hours before flight, then often leave the airport to get some fresh air, returning an hour prior to takeoff so we have ample time to go through security.

the minimum prior to departure time your flight carrier announces to be at the airport has nothing to do with ‘getting the best seats’, it is just the time required to check you and your luggage in and bring you throu customs check even on a busy day/primetime aso.
if your flight carrier advices to be there 3 hrs prior to take off and you arrive at the counter just 2hrs prior to departure and the counter is closed you should not complain about the airline, seats prebooked or not.
the prebooked seats have just 2 advantages:

  • you get exactly that seat(mostly at least)
  • you get your prebooked seat(at least mostly) even if your are just in the middle or at the end of the line, while others without a preseat booking would have better chances to get their preferred seats when starting at the front of the line when the counter opens(would mean to arrive more than the required 3 hrs prior to take off).
    happy travel

I called our travel provider today to get the answers about check in. They said the check in counter opens 3 hours before our flight departs. They told me if we have seats booked already, we don’t have to be in the check in line up until 2 hours before departure. They did tell me that if I didn’t have seats pre-booked to come 3 hrs before departure, and then I will have a better chance at securing the seats we prefer. So now I know. Thanks to you all for your input.