Traveling Together? Make Sure You Have This Code

Buying two round-the-world tickets is easy enough when you’re paying for them with a single credit card. But when I booked the round-the-world tickets for our honeymoon, I wanted to buy one ticket with my card and pay for the second one with air miles.

The end result of booking this way?

When we got to the gate, my husband and I were seated across the plane from each other… on day one of our honeymoon, mind you.

Turns out, if you pay for two separate tickets with two different payment methods, your tickets will be issued separate locator codes. And once those codes are separate, there’s nothing you can do to get them on the same record.

To ensure that you and your companion are seated together (and/or upgraded together), first and foremost try to book the tickets at the same time and pay for them together.

Now if, as in my situation, that’s not possible – perhaps because your company is paying for one ticket and you’re paying for the other – you can still call the airline and tell them to add a TCP2 code to your record.

TCP2 means To Complete a Party of 2. And while the airline computer system won’t recognize this code, your gate agent will. (It’s your fallback tactic when you can’t smile shyly and tell them you’re on your honeymoon.)

The TCP2 code might also help with upgrades, so long as both of your tickets are in the same full-fare class.

Full-fare tickets are often upgraded to first class when a flight is oversold in coach. A TCP2 code will let the gate agent know that you are traveling with someone if there is room for two upgrades.

So whenever you’re buying separate tickets, remember the TCP2 code and call your airline to see if they can add one to your record.

It’s not a miracle fix. But it can help.

[Lori Allen is the Director of AWAI’s Travel Division and the author of Travel Around the World: How to Design, Book, and Enjoy the Ultimate Adventure… and Even Make It Pay for Itself. You can get a free copy of this book when you test-drive The Ultimate Travel Writer’s Program.]