Stupid Tip of the Day: Link Different Record Locators of Passengers Traveling Together

When people travel together on a trip — especially families — they typically book the trip as a group under the same record locator, which is an alphanumeric code of six characters in the reservation system of an airline. It is essentially similar to a confirmation number…

Stupid Tip of the Day: Link Different Record Locators of Passengers Traveling Together

…but at times, different passengers of the same group traveling together may have airline tickets with different record locator numbers. Two of many reasons may be that the reservations were booked separately — as in someone was originally unable to travel but plans changed — or that frequent travel loyalty program miles were redeemed for the ticket of one person but cash was paid for the other tickets.

In the event which you find that you are part of a group of people traveling together but not everyone is traveling under the same record locator, contact the airline as soon as possible to have the record locators of all of the travelers linked. This will help in situations in which inclement weather could cause passengers to be rebooked on different flights at different times but keep groups of travelers together, for example — or perhaps alert a gate agent to attempt to seat the passengers together if they have separate seat assignments in different parts of the same airplane.


Linking record locators of different passengers is not a definitive foolproof way of guaranteeing that passengers who travel together stay together; but doing so would typically cause no harm — and the chances of keeping passengers together in a group increase.

One possible disadvantage of linking record locators of different passengers may be that you might no longer be eligible for an upgraded seat if you have earned elite level status — but then, being separated from the rest of the group of travelers defeats the purpose of getting an upgrade…


Photograph ©2018 by Brian Cohen.

4 thoughts on “Stupid Tip of the Day: Link Different Record Locators of Passengers Traveling Together”

  1. EJ says:

    Really good tip. I learned this one the hard way. Pro tip to help the phone agent, AA refers to this as a “cross reference.”

    1. Brian Cohen says:

      I am not sure if all airlines refer to it as a “cross reference”; but you are correct: I know for a fact that American Airlines does indeed refer to linking record locators as that.

      Thank you for adding that, EJ. I appreciate it.

  2. kitt Katt says:

    Great tip! never heard of this or thought of it! this will be helpful on a very soon trip! Thanks for posting all these helpful tips.

    1. Brian Cohen says:

      The pleasure was all mine, kitt Katt.

      Thank you as always.

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