If you are new to travel, this handy Glossary will become your best friend!  The best consumer is the informed one.  If your online search reflects terms that you are not familiar with, return to the Glossary and clarify what you may be dealing with.

Add-on – A selection, typically at an increased price, added to a travel reservation.

Adjoining rooms– Bordering hotel rooms that do not share a common door.

Advance purchase requirement – Ticket must be purchased a minimum number of days before the flight departs.

ARC – The Airlines Reporting Corporation – is responsible for supervising payments from travel agencies to airlines along with the manner in which tickets are issued to consumers.

Airport access fee – A fee paid to the airport authority by car rental companies for the use of shuttle vehicles.  This often appears in customer’s car rental bills.

Availability – The total number of seats allowed to be sold at a particular rate.

Base fare – The cost of an airfare prior to addition of fees, taxes or surcharges.

Blackout dates – Specific dates in which special fares or promotions do not apply.  Typically exist around holidays or special events.

Blocked space – Seats reserved to be sold to third party companies at a discounted group rate.

Boarding pass – A ticket issued at airport check-in that authorizes airplane boarding.

Bulk contract – An agreement whereby an airline sells large blocks of seats at a discount for resale by a third party.

Bulk fare – A reduced fare for purchases of a large number of tickets.

Business class– While amenities vary based on the airline, business class generally falls between first class and coach.

Cancellation penalty – A fee to charged to customers that cancel flights after booking reservations.  Fees typically vary based on the agency or carrier.

Commission– A small fee that a travel agency or services adds to the total fee in order to make money.

Consolidator – A business that has contracts with airlines to sell tickets in bulk, generally at a discounted rate.

Corporate agency – A travel agency that usually caters to medium-large sized businesses.

Domestic fare – An additional fare added to national flights.

Electronic ticket – A paperless ticket that allows travelers to fly with only a photo ID.  Commonly referred to as “E-ticket’s”, they cannot be lost or stolen because it is an electronic reservation.

Exclusive fare– Discounted airfares offered by travel consolidators.

Fare basis (code) – The code that determines the price of an airline ticket.

First class – The class which offers the most premium service.  Enhanced seating, meal selection, and drink offerings staples of this services.

Global distribution system (GDS) – An international computer reservation system that accesses many databases of suppliers, airlines, etc. in different countries, such as Sabre.

Hub – A city in which an airline has a major presence.  Often, it is the city in which the airline was formed.

IATAN – International Airlines Travel Agent Network – Administers the IATAN card, the only widely accepted form of legitimate travel agent identification.

Interline connection – A trip with a connection flight from a different airline.

Land arrangements – All non-flying reservations upon arrival such as car rental, hotel, and tourist reservations.

Layover – The period of time spent between connecting flights.

LDW – loss damage waiver – Supplementary car rental insurance that covers theft, vandalism, and accident damage.

Leisure travel – Usually signifies traveling for relaxation, vacation, or to visit friends/family.

Limited service hotel – A hotel without a restaurant on the premises.

Lowest available fare – The most inexpensive flight currently available

Maximum stay – The longest period of time a traveler can stay at a particular destination and still qualify for the promotion or discounted fare.

Minimum connect time – The shortest time required in order to successfully transfer to a connecting flight.  It is recommended to select a connecting flight that exceeds the minimum connection time.

Modified American plan (MAP) – Meal plan that includes two daily meals, usually breakfast and dinner

Net fare, net rate– Implies the commission has already been added to the price of the fare.

No show – A traveler that doesn’t appear for their flight, hotel, or car rental reservation.

Non-refundable– A ticket in which no money will be returned if the customer no longer intends to use the ticket.

Non-transferable – A ticket that can only be used by the person who was originally scheduled to fly at the time of purchase.

Nonstop – A flight that travels directly to its destination without connections or layovers

Occupancy rate – The proportion of reservations expected during any given period.

Offline connection – A connection that requires switching to both a new aircraft and carrier.

Off-peak – A less expensive time to travel as result of lower consumer volume during these periods.

Operator – Any company that provides any transportation service.  Not just limited to flights, it also includes trains, buses, and cruise ships.

Overbooking – When a carrier books more reservations than available seats

Passenger facility charge (PFC) – an additional fee for the use of the airport.

Passenger name record (PNR) – The official name of one’s reservation in a computer reservation system (CRS).

Personal effects coverage – Additional car rental insurance covering loss of personal property from the rented vehicle.

Point-to-point – Refers to the fares between two cities.

Published fare – A fare immediately offered for purchase by the airline.  This does not include heavily discounted flights usually offered to consolidaters.

Rack rate – The price of a hotel prior to discount.

Reconfirm – to double-check a reservation.

Record locator – The number assigned to a reservation in the airlines number.  This number is unique, as it will never be assigned again.

Red-eye flight – A flight in which the travel takes place between the hours of 9pm and 7am.

Reissue – When a new ticket is issued as a result of a change of plans.  This can often require fees or penalties from the airport.

Round trip – Two flights: the destination flight and its return trip

Sabre ® – The world’s largest travel reservation system.

Saturday night stay – In order to receive a specialty fare, a Saturday stay over is sometimes required.

Scheduled carrier – An airline that offers regularly scheduled flights between destinations.

Special fare – Any fare that deviates from normal pricing (typically discounted).

Shoulder season – The period of time between busy and quiet seasons in which prices are typically at a midpoint.

Suite – A hotel room that usually offers a living room and kitchenette in addition to the bedroom.

Supplier – A company that offer travel services to the general public

Through passenger – A passenger who remains on the plane at a connecting stop on the way to his/her final destination.

Ticket stock – Blank airline tickets.

Travel agent-. An individual or company that sell travel services on a commission basis.

Travel agency– Usually used in the travel industry to refer to an ARC-appointed storefront retailer.

Unlimited mileage – Signifies there are no mileage restrictions for renters.

Unrestricted fare – An airfare with no limitations.  It is typically refundable and has no blackout days

Waiver – A written acknowledgment that a passenger has declined something

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