Booking flight tickets for yourself is exciting and pretty easy, however, when talking about buying a plane ticket for someone else in another country, you should think about it and research this desire (or request) before you start acting. At first glance, it seems that no troubles should be met during the process of booking a flight for someone else, but there are some significant things that need to be taken into consideration.

Either you want to gift someone with a flight ticket, or you just need to pay it for someone, the person will be thrilled of your gesture. But before you get excited about it, you should know the giftee’s personal information. This is one thing you need to check before making the reservation. Read on to find out what information is needed if you decide buying airline tickets for someone else.

Essential Information for Air Travel

Before you book flight for someone else, find out what documents are required for the person who has been given as a gift a plane ticket. You’ll need to provide the same information for that traveler, as you’d do it for yourself. These include at least the date of birth, the full name, and the residence of the person. And here comes one of the questions: do you know which is her legal name? Or, are you sure you know all the details?

You should also check if you need to provide the ID number or passport number, according to the type of ticket you are going to purchase. Most of the airlines would allow their passengers to fill in the passport details, but this is an uncertain thing, that should be checked.

Verify if your friend needs a visa, as well. Don’t purchase the ticket before you get the visa as it might be unfortunate to get it rejected and not be able to get a refund.

If you decided to gift your friend with an airplane ticket, make sure he brings with him the required document. Every country has its particular regulation, so make sure you and your friend comprehend the restrictions and allowances before flight ticket booking.

Check the Payment Methods

The next question we are going to answer is not 'how can I buy a plane ticket for someone else in another country?', as it is  simple as to pay for your own ticket, but 'how to pay for someone else's flight?'.

Regulations are different for every country and airline, that’s why you might be asked to show the credit card you used for the purchase at the check-in desk. For that reason, the person whom you bought the ticket should bring evidence that you paid for it using your credit card (a copy of it or a photo would be enough, just make sure the expiry date and security code are covered).

You can also send an authorization letter to the airline that will include the scan of your credit card, and stating that you purchased the ticket for that person. If the person in another country can check-in online, then this concern shouldn’t be addressed at all. Besides that, buying tickets from an OTA can solve credit card issues, as airlines aren’t bothered by credit card fraudulent any more.

To put your and your friend’s minds at ease, get the required information ahead of the reservation. If you want to buy a ticket by cash from a sales counter, make sure you can do it for the person in a specific country. There is a chance that you won’t be able to buy a ticket in the US originated in another country. If you can do that, be careful that a money fee might be involved, as the ticket details must be hooked up by hand to the airport or the ticket office of the departure point.

Consider Purchasing Some Extras

Nowadays, an increasing number of airlines offer additional in-flight options, and air passengers can purchase them separately. Before you book a trip by air for your friend, think about what he’d enjoy. He can always purchase on his own, but if you are going to pay for the ticket, you might not want to pay only for the plain seat. Thus, you can add the extra legroom, checked baggage, or pre-ordered meals to the ticket.

Communication Is the Key

Unless you know the person you want to gift with a ticket very well, or she will pay for the extras individually, a little communication before the purchase is quite welcome. Once you’ve made the purchase, send your friend the itinerary and the rest of the flight details. When you purchase a ticket for a minor, you would want to keep him notified. So, get signed up for flight updates.

Can I Buy a Ticket for a Minor?

So, you've been probably questioning yourself: "Can I purchase an airline ticket for someone else, if that person is a minor?" The short answer is 'Yes.' But, as different airlines have their own regulations on how an unaccompanied minor can travel, you should get informed about them before you make the purchase.

Besides age restriction, there are also rules on such as how long a layover for minors can be, during which period of the day they can fly, what type of identification they need to hold, and who can drop them off and pick them up at the airport.

Air Miles Can Be Applied

Frequent flyer miles can be applied to the tickets you buy for someone else the same way you would do it for yourself. By doing it, you won’t pay any fees (if you transfer these miles to your friend, you’d have to pay a fee for it), which is absolutely a benefit. Nonetheless, most airlines have serious regulations upon the selling or exchange of frequent flyer miles. So tell your friend about it to be sure that you made a gift by purchasing a ticket for him.

The Checklist:

In order to ease your task of buying a plane ticket for someone else in another country, we provided below some practival instructions on what information do you need to book a flight for someone else, that you should consider before you start acting.

  • Get the personal details of your friend, including his legal name, his place of residence and his birthdate;
  • Check with the airline the suitable payment method you’d want to apply for your purchase and the regulation on it;
  • If you want to purchase a ticket for a minor, verify the terms and conditions you need to follow;
  • Check with the airline if you can and how to apply frequent flyer miles (if you have some);
  • Before flight booking, see what documents are required and if the visa has to be achieved;
  • Consider communicating with your giftee before booking flight tickets for someone else if you have some concerns about his details.

There you have it, a detailed answer to your question about 'how do I buy an airline ticket for someone else?'. Keep in mind that there are many easier ways to purchase tickets for your friends. For instance, buying them from OTAs such as

By purchasing tickets from an OTA, you solve such issues as the credit card requests, time limitation, and even budget constraints. What's more the dilemma "How do I book a flight for someone else," will be avoided, since Wowfare's Travel Agents will address this concern.

Additionally, these flight search engines allow people to find flights from and to any destination and buy cheap air tickets. And you might find them useful when buying an airline ticket for someone else.

Airflyby Team is always ready to help you out find the right answer either on how to book a flight for someone else or how to travel cheaply.

Last Updated on January 9, 2020.