Do I need a passport for domestic flights in the USA?
You don’t need a passport when flying domestically within the USA, however you will need some form of acceptable photo identification(ID) for adult travellers aged over 18. This can include a passport or passport card, driver's license or a DMV-issued photo ID card.
However, identification requirements will be changing and getting more secure as of October 2020. If you are planning on using a state-issued ID or license when flying domestically within the USA, they will have to be Real-ID compliant. This has already been enforced in 28 states, including Texas, Arizona and Florida, are beginning to require a Real-ID approved driver’s license, which will roll out to the whole of the USA in October 2020.
Children under 18 are not required to provide ID when flying domestically and travelling with an adult. It may be a good idea to contact the airline you are travelling with to ensure that they don’t have any additional policies, or be prepared to have identification ready to show in case you are asked.
How early do I need to arrive for domestic flights in the USA?
Check-in times for domestic flights in the USA vary depending on the airline. The TSA (Transportation Security Administration) recommends arriving at the airport 2 hours prior to departure for domestic flights to allow time for check-in, bag drop and security. However, different airlines have different cut-off times for check-in so be sure to check with the airline you are flying with if you are unsure.
We have compiled a list of some common airlines which fly popular domestic routes, along with their recommended arrival time for check-in for domestic flight within the USA:
American Airlines - 1.5 hours, closing 45 minutes prior to departure
Delta Airlines - 2 hours, closing at least 30 minutes prior to departure
Spirit Airlines - 2 hours, closing at least 30 minutes prior to departure
Alaska Airlines - No later than 40 minutes prior to departure
United Airlines - At least 30 minutes without checked baggage and at least 45 minutes with checked baggage.
When is the best time to find cheap domestic flights for the USA?
As explored in our blog regarding the cheapest day to buy flights, there is no set time or day to buy the best domestic flights in the USA. Regardless, this blog provides many tips which can make sure that you are getting the best deal using Alternative Airlines. You can also get cheap domestic flights in the USA by choosing to buy a red eye flight. Because of their obscure flying times, red eye flights are often cheaper than other flights.
If you're looking for an affordable way to pay for domestic flights within the USA, why not choose Affirm as a payment method? Affirm allows you to pay off your flights in monthly payments.
How much baggage can I take on domestic flights within the USA?
Most airlines will offer free hand luggage when travelling domestically within the USA. Some also offer one piece of checked baggage, typically weighing up to 23kg.
However, this is very general and it is best to check with the airline that you are travelling with to see their individual policies regarding baggage for domestic flights in the USA, checking both weights and dimensions permitted as part of the baggage rules.
Can I book domestic flights in the USA online?
Alternative Airlines offer online booking for your domestic flights. Use our search bar to search and buy domestic flights with different airlines to destinations across the USA.