Since airlines wish to deter shortcut flights, there are some risks with you booking a shortcut flight.  Know that by taking a shortcut flight, you are being a little risqué!

Risk 1: The old switch’eroo

Sometimes airlines will need to change your flight based on weather, over-bookings, or just because they feel like it.  This may mean that they route you through another connection city (which you don’t want to go to) or they put you on a direct flight to the destination (which you also don’t want to go to).  If you argue, they may tell you that they only protect your flight from the origin to the destination, and are not obligated to ensure you stop over at the city you intended to jump off at.

If this happens, you are likely to be stressed.  Some shortcutters have told us that with a little persuasion they have been able to purchase a direct flight to the intended shortcut destination and then get the money back afterwards (via a well-reasoned complaint).  Others have had to cancel their flight and take alternate means of transportation.  Busy holiday weekends and bad weather may cause these, so try to avoid them when shortcutting!

Risk 2: No love for luggage

Some people may really want to check their luggage.  For an A-B-C flight, some shortcutters are able to convince the agents at the counter that they would like to have their bags tagged only to destination B.  A common reason is that you need to give that luggage to your friends at destination B.  Of course, your shortcut destination is also destination B, so it works out very well for you.

Just be careful that sometimes the airline agents at the counter may not let you do this.  If so, you might be stuck at the airport with luggage that is too big for carry-on, yet you can’t check it because you are not actually going to destination C.

Risk 3: Hero to zero…

One of the benefits of shortcut flights is that sometimes you earn more points, since the fare class is better if you travel internationally.  However, shortcutters should be aware that airlines have been known to cancel members’ rewards accounts if they are caught shortcutting too frequently.  All your hard-earned points may be taken away in one fell swoop.

Risk 4: What the… where am I?

When you arrive at your shortcut destination, you might accidentally follow the crowd at the airport to the wrong section.  This means you might end up at customs or the transfer area when you did not intend to.  By then, it may be too late to turn around and leave.  Airport security is tight - as it should be!

This would basically be your own fault and has nothing to do with the airline trying to stop you from shortcutting. The best way to avoid this is to read the airport signage carefully.  If you really find yourself in a bind, some shortcutters have been known to pull the “I have a personal emergency and must leave now” excuse, though why go there when you don’t have to.

Risk 5: Public shaming

Sometimes the agents will tell you that they know what you’re doing and that you shouldn’t be doing this. Shortcut Inc. recommends you answer honestly and let the agents decide what actions they want to take - if any.  More often than not, they will not exercise any sort of powers to prevent you from getting on that flight, since, for all they know, you might decide at the last minute to go to the actual final destination, and it would be difficult to provide evidence to the contrary.

Flight search

Search for another flight here: