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Checking in into a flight is a process which allows you to perform certain activities and finally get the boarding pass to board the plane.

Methods of Check In

Check in can be accomplished in a number of ways.

  • You can visit the airport and be at the ticket counter for this purpose.
  • These days check in can also be done using the online medium.
  • You can even make use of the mobile application of that particular airline to do it.
  • Airports have kiosk machines which can also be used for checking in.
  • To further reduce loads on airports, some airlines also allow checking in baggage at curbside, outside the airport.

Some airlines might also allow check in right from the cities or even from some transportation link that leads to airport. Each of these check in methods has its own procedure and set cut-off times. It is the purpose of this website to provide comprehensive information about all these checking in methods for USA airlines.

So, what does check in allow you to do? Typically, you can perform a number of tasks during the check in process. These vary from airline to airline. However, some of these are:

  • Seat assignment
  • Paying for excess baggage
  • Making special service requests, such as meals, etc
  • Obtaining the boarding pass

There could be many more facilities available during this process.


Not all persons are eligible for check in using all mediums. While airport check in counter check in is available for all, the online check in method can not be used by all. There are restrictions on using this method of check in. Similarly, there could be similar restrictions for other methods of check in as well. This website provides this information as well.

Valid ID Proofs for Air TravelĀ in US

For the purposes of checking in and clearing all formalities at airport before boarding the plane, you need to provide a valid identification proof.

What are the valid ID proofs for domestic travel?

Adult passengers of age 18 and over shall have any of the following ID proofs for traveling by air.

  • Driver’s licenses or other state photo identity cards issued by Department of Motor Vehicles (or equivalent). From Jan 22, 2018, the travelers will have to show their REAL ID cards if their state is compliant with REAL ID Act. If it is not compliant and has not been given extension as well, then alternative form of valid ID proof will have to be shown.
  • U.S. passport card
  • U.S. passport
  • Traveler cards such as Global Entry, NEXUS, SENTRI, FAST that are trusted by DHS (Department of Homeland Security)
  • U.S. military ID. Both active duty or retired military personnel and their dependents can show their IDs to travel. DoD civilians can also travel with their ID.
  • Border crossing card
  • Permanent Resident card
  • DHS-designated enhanced driver’s license
  • Tribal-issued photo ID which has been recognized by Federal government.
  • HSPD-12 PIV card
  • Foreign government-issued passport
  • Canadian provincial driver’s license or Indian and Northern Affairs Canada card
  • U.S. Merchant Mariner Credential
  • Transportation worker identification credential
  • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Employment Authorization Card (I-766)

In the absence of valid Id proof, you might still be allowed to board the flight after filling out the form and getting your identity verified. You can be subject to additional screening and checks.

Children below 18 years of age do not need identification proof if travelling with a companion but the companion must have the valid ID.