Tips and mistakes to avoid before booking your International flight for Study Abroad
Recommendations by our Flight Experts, who look at the following points before booking your Flight Ticket
Transit Visa Requirements
An India passport holder needs a USA Transit/Tourist Visa to transit at any USA airport. It is required even if you are planning to leave the airport as per regulations. Getting a USA transit visa might be cumbersome and expensive for many people, so you should avoid flights with a layover in the USA.
For example, an Indian passport travels to Toronto (Canada) from New Delhi (India ) and has a layover in the USA. In this case, the student will need a USA transit or tourist visa to board the flight.
For example, a student with an Indian passport travels from India to the USA and has a layover in more than one European or Schengen country. They need a Schengen Transit/Tourist visa else they will be denied boarding at the first point.
Some airlines offer cheap flights without baggage, and you have to pay extra for your luggage after booking on the airline's website or over the counter at the airport. You should avoid these flights unless you are traveling without luggage because baggage charges are quite high, and you end up paying a higher amount.
For example, Air Canada from India to Canada offers only 1 Checked baggage of 23 Kg in the Standard ticket, and you have to purchase another bag of 23 Kg at CAD 100 if required.
Duration of Layover
As a student, you should avoid flights with long layovers because waiting for an onward flight might not be comfortable. If you like traveling and want to visit a new country, you may choose the following options.
- Ethiopian Airlines: If the layover is longer than 8 hours, the airline will provide you with a visa, accommodation, return airport transfers by Bus, and meals according to the duration of the layover. Once in the city, you can hire a taxi or book a tour around the city. Read more
- Egypt Air: They will cover your Transit Visa, Accommodation, airport transfers, and meals if the layover duration is more than 8 hours and they don't have any flight available earlier. If you plan to visit the pyramids, you can choose a city tour costing USD 50 or CAD 60 at the airport or book on your own. Read more
- Sri Lankan Airways: If your layover is more than 12 hours, you are eligible for Transit Accommodation, and if it is between 8 hours and 12 hours, then you will get meal vouchers to use at the airport. You must pre-book your accommodation at least 48 hours before the flight and make your visa arrangements (Sri Lanka provides a Free Transit Visa of 2 days to almost all nationalities, including India). Read more
Airline Student Programmes
Many airlines provide special discounts and extra baggage allowance for international students traveling abroad for their Studies. They know that a student has more luggage than normal passengers as they travel longer. Hence, they have an extra baggage allowance, especially for students. We listed some of the major airlines having student programs.
- Emirates: Offers up to 10% discount and has an extra baggage allowance of 10kg or one piece depending on the route.
- Qatar Airways: Offers 10% off for the first, 15% for the second, and 20% for the third and fourth bookings. Being a student, you are also eligible for a 10 kg extra baggage allowance or one piece (23 Kg) depending on the route.
- Etihad Airways
- SriLankan Airlines
- British Airways
- Cathay Pacific
- Turkish Airlines
- Singapore Airlines
- Air France
Suppose you have dietary, allergic, or religious food requirements like Vegetarian, Jain, or Lactose-Free. In that case, you should pre-book it on the airline's website. The airline may not have your required food on board if you don't pre-book it before boarding.
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