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On this page please find:

  • -Travel Tip:  Airline reconfirmation policy

  • -Air New Zealand Explorer Pass

  • -United Mileage Plus Information

Tom boarding a “delivery flight” to Hong Kong with Cathay Pacific

Tom’s Travel Tip:  Travelers who do not reconfirm their flights are really at risk.

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Part of the terms and conditions of ticketing with Tom Smith Travel is that you are aware that it is your responsibility to reconfirm your flights.It has happened a couple times this year.  A traveler calls me from the airport or getting ready to go to the airport and he finds out that his flight was cancelled by the airline or it has already left.  According to the passenger contract that each passengers has with the carrier, an airline can change the schedule and/or cancel the flight.  It is the responsibility of the passenger to reconfirm his/her itinerary.  This is so easy to do!  All you need do is call me or email me and I am always happy to reconfirm for you.  Or you can call the airline directly.  For domestic USA flights call 24 hours in advance for International flights call 72 hours in advance.  I wish more travelers would do this….it saves such alot of hassle and frustration!
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Air New Zealand Explorer Pass: Fly throughout the South Pacific!

747-400 on takeoff.

Available  exclusively to residents of USA and Canada travelling on an Air New  Zealand fare to New Zealand, Australia or the Pacific Islands, the Air New Zealand Explorer Pass is an easy and cost-effective way to travel within New Zealand and to also visit Australia and the Pacific Islands on the  same trip.

The Air New Zealand Explorer Pass enables you to purchase between  three and ten flights using zone fares, allowing you to maximize your time in the South Pacific and to see as much of the region as you want.  Here are a few rules:

  • You must fly Air New Zealand from the USA to New Zealand.  Either one way or round trip.
  • You cannot take advantage of these Explorer Pass flights if you are using an award or mileage ticket.
  • You can make changes once you are ticketed, there is of course a change fee.
  • Non-Refundable
  • There is a service fee for issuance of the Explorer Pass.
  • This Pass is good for a stay of up to 12 months!

The Explorer Pass on Air New Zealand is applicable to flights all over the North or South Island of New Zealand, Fiji, Tahiti, Tonga, Australia, and lots more destinations serviced by Air New Zealand!  Ask Tom to sort out the details of this great pass for travel in the South Pacific!

Here are some samples of Explorer Pass itineraries:  (Taxes must be added to these fares ).  Per person

  •  Auckland (AKL) to Queenstown to Christchurch to Rotorua to Sydney, Australia to Auckland:  $695.00
  • Rotorua to Wellington, Christchurch to Queenstown to Auckland:  $267.00
  • AKL-Kerikeri-AKL-Napier-Christchurch-Queenstown-AKL  $664.00
  • AKL to Taupo to Wellington to Queenstown to Melbourne, Australia, to Auckland to Nadi, Fiji to AKL:  $1063.00

Tom’s Travel Tip:  Yes this is complicated, that is why you have me.  Give me a call or email and I will help you figure this Explorer Pass.  NO, you cannot do this online…..

 

For those travelers who are members of a frequent flyer program with any airline, or for that matter any frequent guest with a hotel chain or car rental chain we are always happy to add your membership number to your reservation.  It is the goal of many of these programs to NOT give you your miles so you need to be aware of this when reading your statement from the mileage program.  If you have not been credited with your miles or stay or car rental you will need to proove that you in fact did fly, sleep or drive!  The only way that these programs will credit your miles should they not show it on your statement,  is if you provide them with proof, hard copy proof.  We will be happy to provide you the hard copies of your passenger receipt or reservation and in fact we do every time we make reservations and ticket you as our client.If you have a frequent flyer membership number in your personal profile with Tom Smith Travel it will automatically be posted to your air, car or hotel reservation.  Just give us your Frequent Flyer information and we will always add it to your reservations. We can however provide you with the exact proof they need.  You will need to deal with the program directly yourself and in some cases we have seen our clients have their attorney write a letter on their behalf to get their miles credited to their frequent flyer account.  Honestly, the airlines really do not want to give you your miles so you have to be diligent.  We will help you all we can by providing you copies of the passenger receipt of your airline ticket.  We cannot provide you with copies of your boarding passes (you receive these when you board an aircraft),  Nor can we provide you with copies of your car rental agreement ( you receive this when you pick up your car) Nor can we provide you with a copy of your receipt when you check out of a hotel (you need to get a receipt when you check out).  We can give you addresses to write to and the correct place to plea your case.  The good rule is to remember;  never to throw away any paperwork we send you or you are given while traveling until after you are back home and you see your miles credited on your frequent flyer account. The airline will quickly deny you the miles if you cannot produce the hard copy. Tom Smith Travel does not make reservations, search flights or ticket Frequent Flyer Award tickets or upgrades.  We are happy to refer you to a company that only does award travel:   www.bookyouraward.com  they are the experts and can take care of all of your award travel.  contact them at:   gary@bookyouraward.com

 

 

Baggage…..your biggest challenge when traveling.

What to do with your baggage when flying?  Many travelers today are simply carrying their baggage on board the aircraft as “carry-on” baggage.  This is because most airlines now charge to check luggage. Anywhere from $25 to $50 per bag for the first piece of luggage and upward for your 2nd piece of luggage.  Luckily carriers do not charge for carry-on bags.  So if you can consolidate what you take with you on a trip and can fit it into the carry-on limits I say go for it.  To further complicate matters airlines are now not honoring their “interline passage agreements”.  This means that the agreements that two different airlines no longer will allow you to check your baggage from your origin to your destination if you make a change of airline along the way.  There are exceptions to this rule and the biggest one is that if you have one ticket that covers all your flights, as opposed to two seperate tickets then you can check your baggage all the way through with only one charge for baggage.  For most international trips there is a free allowance that give you one free cecked bags.  Of course there are a million exceptions to this and if you are flying Business Class or First Class on on ticket there is no charge for checked baggage.  Again, there are exceptions.  So please ask the questions at the time of booking your air reservations, I will do my best to give you the most up to date information.

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