How does e-ticketing work?

When boarding a flight, you need to pay special attention to bring along compulsory documents such as valid IDs and passports, visas and health documentation if necessary.

In the event that you forget any of these documents,  you should prioritse arrangements to get them before your flight departs, like driving home to fetch them or calling a family member to bring them for you.

Remembering to bring all your required documentation to the airport can often be a whole process on its own, which is why  the e-ticketing system was created- to reduce the amount of extra documentation you need to carry with you.

What is e-ticketing?
An e-ticket (electronic ticketing) is an electronic version of a paper ticket, which is stored in an airline's computer system. This acts as a confirmation of your seat in your particular flight. Since the airline keeps the ticket, a passenger is not required to travel with this piece of paper.

Here are a few facts you should know about e-ticketing:
  • Once a travel agent has issued your e-ticket, you receive an e-ticket receipt. This receipt does not need to be presented on the day of your flight (although you could bring this with you, just in case).
  • E-tickets are cost-effective to an airline. Instead of them having to print an extra receipt, the travel agency only need to update their database if there are any changes to be made.
  • You can save a lot of time standing in queues at the airport if you print your online boarding pass before your flight. Check-in online using your confirmation number from your e-ticket receipt and print your boarding pass 24 hours before your flight.
  • Another way to skip long lines is through self-service kiosks. Once you have an e-ticket and you need to have your boarding pass printed if you have not done so already, you can do so at one of these kiosks after you provide the assisting vendor with your e-ticket number.
  • Your e-ticket receipt is only required when checking-in for an international flight and not for a domestic flight.
  • Depending on the airport and the airline, you can use an e-ticketwithout printing it by simply scanning your mobile device and checking in.
We also recommend that you bring along your e-ticket itinerary (passenger itinerary receipt) when you travel, in case you are requested to present it.
You can collect tickets from any South African airport that offers SAA, SA Express or Airlink flights.
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