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What Do You Need To Know About a Fare Basis Code? Is This Important for You?

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    Jonathan Chum

If you plan on flying in the near future, there is a good chance you are going to run into terms that are unfamiliar to you. That is okay! We are here to help you learn them. One of the terms that you may run into is called a fair bases code. Is this something that you need to know? What does this even mean? A fare basis code is a code that indicates what specific contract applies to your ticket. In this post, we are going to cover:

  • What a fare basis code is
  • Where you can find your fare basis code
  • What you should do with your fare basis code

We have flown all over the world under a wide variety of fare basis codes. We can explain what they mean to you. Learn more about fare basis codes, how you can use them, and what they mean for you below!

An Overview of a Fare Basis Code

A fare basis code, which is commonly referred to as a fare class, is a set of letters and numbers that usually shows up on your ticket. You can also find it in your booking record. This code is used to tell the staff at the airline what contract has been assigned to your ticket.

For example, the fare basis code will let the staff that you are eligible for an upgrade. If there is an open seat in business class or first class, there is a chance you could be moved up at the airline staff takes a look at your fare basis code and decides if you qualify. In addition, this code may also tell the airline staff if your ticket is refundable. For example, if you have an emergency and need to change your plans, you may not get your money back. If you have a specific fare basis code applied to your ticket, then you may actually get your money back. If you are curious about how many miles you are going to earn for your ticket, your fare basis code plays a role in this as well.

There are numerous fare basis codes out there. The most basic way to divide them is based on seating class. For example, there is a different fare basis code for business class, first class, and economy. On the other hand, there could also be multiple fare basis codes within the same class. Therefore, it can be difficult to keep up with them, especially if they change from airline to airline.

Where Do You Find Your Fare Basis Code?

If you are interested in learning your fare basis code, you simply have to take a look at your ticket or booking confirmation. Usually, you can find your fare basis code there. In some cases, it may only be a single letter. Often, this will be displayed next to the class of your seat. For example, if you have a seat in first class, there may be a single letter in the “first class” assignment on your ticket. The same could be true of economy or business-class.

Of course, this letter may not mean anything to you. In order for you to actually do something with this information, you have to go to the website of the airline to which you have been assigned. Keep in mind that different airlines may have different fare basis codes, so the fare basis code with one airline could have a different code on a different airline. Then, you can figure out what kind of upgrades you might be eligible for.

What Do You Do with Your Fare Basis Code?

There are a lot of people who believe that fare basis codes are only for airline staff. It is true that you do not need to know your fare basis code in order to get on a plane; however, you may be able to save a significant amount of time if you know what your fare basis code means. For example, if you take a close look at your fare basis code, you might be able to figure out if it is even worth it to ask a member of the airline staff for an upgrade.

So, go to the website of the airline. Take a look at your fare basis code. Some other things that you may want to take a look at include:

  • What percentage of award miles are you given for every mile flown? Ideally, you would like this to be 100 percent or more.
  • Are you eligible for any upgrades? Take a look and see if there are any free upgrades listed next to your fare basis code.
  • How many segments are you going to be awarded? In some cases, you may get upgraded in your frequent flyer class based on the number of segments you have flown.

These are just a few of the most important things to which you should pay attention if you are taking a look at your fare basis code. If you know your fare basis code in advance, you may be able to save a significant amount of time. Furthermore, if you already know what your fare basis code is when you go to customer service, you may be able to save them a lot of time as well. Then, they may be more likely to be nice to you.

Fly with All the Necessary Information

In the end, information is power. This is particularly true when it comes to flying. There was a lot of jargon that flies around; however, if you take the time to learn it, you can fly from a position of strength. That is where the fare basis code is important. Take a look at your fare basis code and learn about what this means for your ticket. That way, you can figure out if you are going to be eligible for any upgrades the next time you fly.