Unaccompanied Minor Service
As mentioned on other pages, the majority of our students travel using regular airline tickets; however, there is a small percentage of students who, upon their parents' or guardians' request, travel as an “Unaccompanied Minor".
We recommend booking this service if the child that is traveling is under the age of 13. Paying for the unaccompanied minor service ensures that your child is cared for during his/her flight by a qualified airline staff member. Services include: escorting the child from the gate to the plane, assisting the child to board the flight, ensuring that the child is in their assigned seat on the plane, escorting the child to the baggage claim area at his/her destination, helping them through customs and ensuring that the child meets with our designated staff member at the final destination’s airport.
Age requirements for this service varies from airline to airline. The Unaccompanied Minors service cannot be booked online; therefore, parents or guardians should contact the airline directly to arrange for this service.
Some of our Teenagers Abroad schools will only allow a child to travel as an Unaccompanied Minor if it is requested by the airline. An additional fee will apply on top of the fee paid to the airline.
Below are a few basic guidelines for traveling as an Unaccompanied Minor:
> Policies, ages and fees vary for each airline.
> Minors of qualifying ages (usually 5-17 years old) may fly nonstop, direct, or with connecting flights; however, they are usually not accepted on the day’s last connecting flight.
> Children under the age of 5 are normally not eligible for the Unaccompanied Minor service. These children must be accompanied by an older passenger over the age of 15.
> A fee of approximately $150 or more (each way) is typically charged upon check-in for the Unaccompanied Minor service.
> Airlines will request for the information of the person meeting with your child at the destination airports. Identification will be necessary to be shown before the airline staff member will relinquish the child. Therefore, please inform us if you are signing up for the unaccompanied minor service.
> For all segments of the minor’s flight, reservations must be first confirmed. It is not permitted to make standby reservations for any segment of the trip.
If you decide to book the Unaccompanied Minor service, an additional fee will be charged to your program price (see price page). In order for us to organize a chaperone with identification to pick up your child, we must be informed of you arranging for the unaccompanied minor service at least 21 days in advance of the program’s start date.
Young Travelers (under 16 years old):
Travelers under 16 years old that are traveling alone need a notarized document that certifies that both parents agree that the child may travel alone. This document needs to be carried by the student when they travel. The official document needs to state who/which organization is responsible for picking up the student at the airport, as well as giving the appropriate permission for the young student to travel alone.
Teenagers Abroad recommends that our clients book their flights as soon as they are confirmed to be in the program by a ‘confirmation email’. Also, it would be best to book a flight with as few layovers and connections as possible. Flying with a direct flight can be a little more expensive; however, they are well worth it because of the peace of mind and ease of travel that they provide.