Once just an idea, e-tickets are now a reality having virtually replaced traditional paper tickets in most airports and airlines, and are also widely used for other events such as concerts and even football matches. The great thing about e-tickets is that they are easy to replace if they are lost and damaged and don’t need to be reordered through the post.
The rise in number of internet-based air ticketing sites means it is very easy to purchase your tickets online and there are some big savings to be made. You can compare price on a number of sites and use a credit or debit card to buy your ticket instantly.
When you purchase your flight ticket online, you will be sent an email confirmation stating the flight number as well as the time and date of flight, airport, seat number and travel class. This is your e-ticket. Simply print it out and hand it in along with your passport and baggage when you check in at the airport. If you decide to book your ticket through a travel agent, you will often receive an e-ticket as they will book your flight and the e-ticket will either be faxed instantly to their office or they will receive it via email.
When checking in, you will need to produce your e-ticket. However, the great thing about these tickets is that all the information is stored in the airline’s computer database, and should the worst happen and you manage to misplace your e-ticket on the way to the airport, the check in clerk should be able to find the details using your passport number and present you with your boarding pass right then and there.
The first e-tickets were used by Southwest Airlines in 1994 and although many people were slightly suspicious of the validity of the tickets at first, they were soon won over by the convenience it offered.