Airfare Policies

American Airlines provides a straightforward and efficient check-in policy designed to enhance the travel experience for its passengers. Whether flying domestically or internationally, understanding the check-in process can make your journey smoother and more enjoyable. This article offers a detailed overview of American Airlines' check-in policy, including timings, methods, and tips for a hassle-free start to your travels.

American Airline Check-In Timings

American Airlines allows passengers to check in for their flights with considerable flexibility:

Online and Mobile App Check-In: Opens 24 hours before the scheduled departure and closes 45 minutes prior for domestic flights and 90 minutes before for international flights. This convenient option lets you bypass the traditional check-in counters at the airport.

Airport Check-In: If you prefer to check in at the airport or need to drop off baggage, you should arrive a bit earlier. The check-in deadline for domestic flights is 45 minutes before departure. For international flights, this deadline can vary depending on the destination, but it is typically at least 90 minutes before the flight.

How to Check-In online for my American Airlines flight?

American Airlines offers several check-in options to accommodate different passenger needs:

How and When to Check In Online?

For American Airlines flights, passengers can start the online check-in process as early as 24 hours before the scheduled departure time. This option remains open up to 45 minutes before domestic flights and 90 minutes before international flights. To check in online, visit the American Airlines website or use the airline's mobile app. Both platforms provide step-by-step instructions to guide you through the process, making it quick and easy.

Requirements for Online Check-In

To check-in online, you will need:

Your booking reference (also known as a reservation number or record locator).
The first and last name of the passenger as it appears on the reservation.

After logging in, you can view your itinerary, select seats, and, if necessary, pay for any additional luggage or priority boarding. Once the check-in process is complete, you have the option to print your boarding pass or download it to your mobile device.

Airport Arrival Times

While online check-in saves time, passengers must still adhere to certain airport arrival deadlines to ensure a smooth and stress-free boarding process:

For flights within the U.S.: Arrive at the airport at least 45 minutes before your flight if you need to check bags or want to check in at the counter.
For international flights: Additional time may be required, depending on the destination.

It’s important to remember that, even if you’ve checked in online, you must still pass through airport security and be at your departure gate in time for boarding.

Benefits of Online Check-In

Checking in online for your American Airlines flight offers several advantages:

Convenience: Check-in from your home, office, or on the go.
Time-saving: Skip the check-in lines at the airport.
Flexibility: Choose your seat and handle baggage arrangements remotely.

Mobile App Check-In:

Using the American Airlines app, passengers can check-in, select seats, track their baggage, and receive updates about their flight status. Your boarding pass can be saved right on your device, facilitating security and boarding procedures.

Kiosk Check-In at the Airport:

For those who arrive at the airport without a printed boarding pass, self-service kiosks are available. These kiosks can be used to check in, select seats, and print boarding passes. They can also be used to check baggage.

Ticket Counter Check-In:

Passengers can also check in at the American Airlines ticket counter, where airline representatives can assist with check-in, baggage, and any travel concerns.

Required Documentation

When checking in, especially for international flights, ensure you have all necessary travel documents, including passports and visas. For domestic flights, a government-issued photo ID is required.

Tips for a Smooth Check-In Process

Be Prepared: Have your booking reference and identification handy when you start the check-in process, whether online, on your mobile, or at the airport.

Arrive Early: Especially for international flights or during busy travel seasons, arriving early can prevent last-minute stress.

Use Technology: Take advantage of online and mobile check-in to save time at the airport.

Follow Baggage Guidelines: Review American Airlines' baggage policies beforehand to ensure your luggage meets size and weight limits, which can expedite the check-in process.


American Airlines' flexible check-in policy is designed to cater to the diverse needs of modern travelers, offering multiple ways to check in and prepare for your flight. By understanding and utilizing these options effectively, you can ensure a seamless and stress-free start to your journey.

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