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Reservation Fees

When it comes to flying, everyone seems to want to buy the cheapest tickets available. Price comparison websites are a good place to start, but how can you find the cheapest tickets if you don’t know what is included in the ticket price?

Starting with the very act of purchasing tickets, do you know if your airline charges you just to make a reservation? Does it make a difference if you buy over the phone, online, or in person at the airport?

Take a look at the chart below to see.


Reservation Fees (1)
Phone Reservations
Online (2)
At Ticket Counter
American $50 Free Not Available
Delta Free (3) Free Free
Southwest Free Free Free
United $25 Free $30 / 50 (4)
Alaska $15 Free $15
JetBlue $25 Free
No Information
Spirit $35 $6.99 – 22.99
No Information
Frontier $25 Varies (5)
No Information
Allegiant $14.99 $18 (5)
No Information
Hawaiian (6) $25 Free $35
Sun Country No Information No Information
No Information
(1) Fees are often per ticket. Check your airline for specific details.
(2) Only applies to airline website. Additional fees may occur if booked through a third party or travel agent.
(3) Only applies to domestic U.S. reservations. Certain European cities may charge a $25 phone reservation fee.
(4) City ticket office / in person at the airport.
(5) “Carrier Interface Charge” or “Electronic Carrier Usage Charge” is included in the ticket prices displayed online.

Information current as of January 10, 2021.

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Jay Muller

Author of The Flight Advisor

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