boarding pass check-in advice and why you should print it -

Boarding pass and check-in advice… when in doubt, print it out. It’s my opinion, plain and simple. In this digital age, many think it is ridiculous to bother printing out a boarding pass when traveling. So, I ask you… which type of boarding pass should you use? I was surprised the answer is more complicated than you think.

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We like to err on the side of caution and print out our passes, even if we’ve already checked in online and have a mobile screenshot version on our phones. I prefer the paper-printed boarding pass because it’s easier and right at my fingertips.

According to my research when exploring this topic for this post, most flight attendants with years of experience will advise you to print them. Their reasons were logical. Many didn’t want to rely on their phones as their battery can run low, or the gate is in a “dead zone” with no signal. No one wants to be that person who holds up the boarding process because of technical issues.

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The Boarding Pass – Airlines Recommend

The airlines will especially recommend printing a boarding pass if you’re taking connecting flights, as the longer you’re in transit, the more likely your phone battery will run low or die completely. Good point. Also, what if the airline’s app crashes? I would assume that’s happened before. How many of us get to the gate early and use our phones to catch up on email or if bored and trying to kill some time, play a game of solitaire or two?

If you are traveling internationally, a border agent may ask to see your boarding pass. This doesn’t seem to be the ‘norm’ but I would find it easier to hand over a paper version rather than my phone.

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Some Airlines Don’t Accept Mobile Passes

boarding pass check-in advice and why you should print it -

Did you know that some airports don’t allow mobile passes? A particular city that seemed to come up several times in my search is the Marrakesh Airport. They have signs to inform passengers that digital documents are not accepted at security checkpoints. Also, EasyJet has fifteen airports in its network that do not allow mobile passes.  

Check-in Advice at the Airport or Online

On the other hand, acquiring a printed boarding pass requires you to either check in at a kiosk or a ticketing desk (unless you’re flying on an airline that lets you print boarding passes out at home). This alone can increase your overall airport process time, and if you’re someone who might be inclined to cut it close with checking in, this might not be an option for you. If you’re checking a bag, it’s pretty standard that the agent will print out a copy of your pass. A printed boarding pass is also where your agent will staple your checked bag receipt. If you are using a mobile pass, this receipt will be something you need to hang onto separately.

Important check-in advice, you should always do it as soon as you can. It’s the best way to ensure getting the seats you want and avoid getting bumped should the plane be overbooked. They are already aware you have registered and will be a passenger on the flight.
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It Makes Sense to Print…

If you are a family traveling with children, you most certainly would print boarding passes. Your young children won’t have cell phones, obviously, but I can’t imagine standing at the boarding podium and scrolling through everyone’s boarding passes. I think that’s just common sense, but I haven’t traveled that way in some time.

Additional Information

I know in this day and age, most people might be inclined to use a mobile boarding pass. I would think nothing of it if I was taking a short flight and only bringing a carry-on bag. These circumstances are a bit different. But then again, who am I kidding? I would print the boarding pass – regardless.

Either way, whether you choose a printed or mobile boarding pass, the overwhelming tip from flight attendants is to always take a screenshot of your boarding pass. Why may you ask? In the event your frequent flier miles are not credited to your account properly, you may need to submit a boarding pass as evidence you took the flight.

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Boarding Pass Conclusion

I think we can all agree on the check-in advice we have mentioned. That’s a no-brainer. We all use our phones for everything these days so it’s almost a no-brainer to add boarding passes to the list of ways to use them. But just think, what’s your plan if you drop your phone and it breaks, if you run out of roaming data, or again – if the battery dies? 

Is there a right or wrong answer when it comes to deciding which type of boarding pass is right for you? No, both will work just fine. I just find I have enough going on in my head when traveling and I just prefer to play it safe and print our boarding passes. So, hit the print button or get the airport to print one for you. You’ll be happy you did. 

👉 What are your thoughts? Do you print your boarding pass? It will be interesting to see the various comments on this post.

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boarding pass check-in advice and why you should print it -


  1. We do 100% the same thing! Online check-in, print, photo on phone. It gives us peace of mind. We find it easier to each have our own boarding pass than passing a phone back and forth. Our nieces and nephews tease us about our “old style” travel, but then they complain about dying batteries or forgotten charging cords. 🙂

  2. I also prefer printing out the ticket. I do check in online and put the ticket in my wallet but most of the time I also print them out for the reasons you mentioned.

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