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Ryanair - Traveling to Belfast, Ireland without passport?
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BusinessStudent
Old 28-12-2008, 5:34 AM
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Default Ryanair - Traveling to Belfast, Ireland without passport?

Hello all,

I was lucky to get a few flights for 1p each way to Belfast, Ireland.

One of my friends has an expired passport and is unsure if he can travel to Belfast with just his driving license as proof as ID?

In order to get the 1p flights we selected "Online check in" which suggested you must have a valid passport to use this option.

I have looked into this and am not sure if this is right - my understanding is that my friend can travel to Belfast although he will have to use the airport check in and present his current UK driving license there? - he will be unable to use online check as this option requres him to have a passport?

He will also need to pay to use the aiport check in which will result in an additional 10 each way?
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# 2
wayne77
Old 28-12-2008, 6:14 AM
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Belfast is in NORTHERN Ireland.
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irishjohn
Old 28-12-2008, 6:33 AM
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This is what it says in their FAQs about online check in

What documents do I need to produce at the airport when using online check-in?

To qualify for Online Check-in each passenger must be an EU/EEA citizen (including Switzerland) and present either a valid passport or National Identity Card,


For British and Irish citizens who are travelling on flights to/from the United Kingdom, to/from the Republic of Ireland (Common Travel Area), a valid driving licence with photo is acceptable photo ID

And in What photo ID Question it states -

A valid driving licence with photo is acceptable photo ID for travel on domestic flights. (Please note that driving licences are not accepted when passengers are using online check-in)
So it would seem you are not going to be able to use the Driving Licence. If I remember right you have to quote your passport number as part of the on line check in process. So I guess its pay up or forget the trip.
John
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cceg
Old 28-12-2008, 8:31 AM
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My brother lives just outside of Ireland and i fly often with EasyJet from Gatwick to see him.
I HAVE to have my passport. No questions about it. I know it is part of the Uk etc and i know what it says on the questions board and someone has so kindly posted above. But when i flew last year sometime there was a business man without a passport who was saying he didnt need a passport as he was only flying into Belfast.
He wasnt allowed to board the flight as far as i knew.
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Edinburghlass
Old 28-12-2008, 8:43 AM
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The rest of you can still use the online check in though as you enter each one separately so it will only be your friend who has to pay the airport check in fees. Make sure his driving licence is a photographic one!
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Rachie004
Old 28-12-2008, 9:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cceg View Post
My brother lives just outside of Ireland and i fly often with EasyJet from Gatwick to see him.
I HAVE to have my passport. No questions about it. I know it is part of the Uk etc and i know what it says on the questions board and someone has so kindly posted above. But when i flew last year sometime there was a business man without a passport who was saying he didnt need a passport as he was only flying into Belfast.
He wasnt allowed to board the flight as far as i knew.
Do you not have any alternative photo identification, ie a photo driving licence? You really don't need a passport to travel to Northern or Republic of Ireland, you do however, need valid photo identification. I've done it enough times and (intentionally) left my passport at home - they haven't 'deported' me yet Perhaps its just an easyjet policy?

Assuming of course that you're a UK citizen, I'm not sure of the ins and outs for citizens of other countries.
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jammin
Old 28-12-2008, 11:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rachie004 View Post
Assuming of course that you're a UK citizen, I'm not sure of the ins and outs for citizens of other countries.
Indeed. Only British / Irish citizens are entitled to move among the Common Travel Area without the need to carry a passport. All other nationals must carry a valid passport or EEA National ID card, when travelling between the UK and Ireland.

Of course, this begs the question - are the provisions of the CTA agreement compatible with EU Directive 2004/38/EC on the right of citizens of the Union to move at reside freely among the Member States. It would appear not, since Member States are not permitted to treat their own citizens more favourably than other Union citizens. Still, that's another issue, not for here..

To answer the OP (and to echo the other advice given), Belfast is in the United Kingdom, not in Ireland. If your friend wishes to enter Northern Ireland from Britain, he is entitled to do so without any documentation whatsoever, regardless of his citizenship. However, since he is travelling by air, the airline is entitled to request to see photographic ID of all their passengers.

Ryanair do not permit the use of their online check-in service for passengers who are not carrying their passport. In short, your friend (unless he can obtain a passport in time for travel) will have to pay for Ryanair's airport check-in "service" and travel on his photocard driving licence.
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irishjohn
Old 28-12-2008, 12:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cceg View Post
My brother lives just outside of Ireland and i fly often with EasyJet from Gatwick to see him.
I HAVE to have my passport. No questions about it. I know it is part of the Uk etc and i know what it says on the questions board and someone has so kindly posted above. But when i flew last year sometime there was a business man without a passport who was saying he didnt need a passport as he was only flying into Belfast.
He wasnt allowed to board the flight as far as i knew.

For domestic flights withing the UK - which includes Northern Ireland - a passport is not essential - it is possible to fly using other photographic ID but not all airlines accept the same types of photo ID so its better to use the universal document - The passport
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PolishBigSpender
Old 28-12-2008, 3:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by irishjohn View Post
For domestic flights withing the UK - which includes Northern Ireland - a passport is not essential - it is possible to fly using other photographic ID but not all airlines accept the same types of photo ID so its better to use the universal document - The passport
Nonsense.

The individual airlines will all accept an EU driving licence on CTA flights - however, Ryanair (and possibly others) may insist that you check in at the airport if you aren't carrying a passport. It may be for security reasons - or it may just be Ryanair getting extra money. Whatever - the point is that a driving licence is accepted by all airlines on CTA flights.

It should be doubly noted that many CTA flights don't even go through passport control - Ireland will check at all ports, but anyone who's been through Dublin Airport or Dublin/Dun Laoghaire ferry ports will know that they tend to wave people through. And certainly, Aer Lingus flights from Ireland to Heathrow tend to land in the domestic areas anyway.
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PandaPants
Old 28-12-2008, 8:15 PM
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When you check in online they ask for your passport number, this seems to be a recent thing because I only did it for the first time this month. Not sure if they can pick up on an expired passport, but I would do airport check-in just to be sure.

A few months ago I managed to fly from Belfast to London on my driving licence, but they weren't going to let me through Stansted without a passport. I had to show them my boarding card from that same morning and got a telling off from th supervisor before they let me on.
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sarahluv
Old 28-12-2008, 8:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cceg View Post
My brother lives just outside of Ireland and i fly often with EasyJet from Gatwick to see him.
I HAVE to have my passport. No questions about it. I know it is part of the Uk etc and i know what it says on the questions board and someone has so kindly posted above. But when i flew last year sometime there was a business man without a passport who was saying he didnt need a passport as he was only flying into Belfast.
He wasnt allowed to board the flight as far as i knew.

that's just not correct. he would've needed photographic id, but not a passport.
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jammin
Old 28-12-2008, 9:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PandaPants View Post
A few months ago I managed to fly from Belfast to London on my driving licence, but they weren't going to let me through Stansted without a passport. I had to show them my boarding card from that same morning and got a telling off from th supervisor before they let me on.
You took a domestic, in-country flight and were stopped and asked to produce a passport? And got a telling off when you didn't have one? I find this most odd. Must I now carry my passport when I get the train from Birmingham to London? And if I drive?..
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Old 28-12-2008, 9:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jammin View Post
You took a domestic, in-country flight and were stopped and asked to produce a passport? And got a telling off when you didn't have one? I find this most odd. Must I now carry my passport when I get the train from Birmingham to London? And if I drive?..
It clearly states on the Ryanscare online boarding card that you must have a passport to use on-line check-in. However, my friend checked us in and printed off the boarding cards, so I didn't realise until I was actually on the flight, having got through Belfast with my driving licence as ID.

They now make you enter your passport number when you check in online.
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Old 28-12-2008, 9:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jammin View Post
You took a domestic, in-country flight and were stopped and asked to produce a passport? And got a telling off when you didn't have one? I find this most odd. Must I now carry my passport when I get the train from Birmingham to London? And if I drive?..
Indeed. Yet another reason not to use Ryanair.

I used them for the first time yesterday, and the experience was so bad that I have vowed that it will be my last flight with them.
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Old 28-12-2008, 10:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PandaPants View Post
It clearly states on the Ryanscare online boarding card..
Ah, seems I mis-read your post then. I thought that you meant the Immigration staff in Stanstead were giving you a rollocking for daring to fly from one end of the UK to the other sans passport.

I didn't realise you meant Ryanair staff giving you a telling off for using online checking with a driving licence and thus not adhering to their Ts & Cs..

That explains it then.
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Old 28-12-2008, 11:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jammin View Post
Ah, seems I mis-read your post then. I thought that you meant the Immigration staff in Stanstead were giving you a rollocking for daring to fly from one end of the UK to the other sans passport.

I didn't realise you meant Ryanair staff giving you a telling off for using online checking with a driving licence and thus not adhering to their Ts & Cs..

That explains it then.
The woman telling me off clearly missed her calling as a teacher. I felt about 5 years old and felt like crying.
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Old 29-12-2008, 4:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PolishBigSpender View Post
Nonsense.

The individual airlines will all accept an EU driving licence on CTA flights - however, Ryanair (and possibly others) may insist that you check in at the airport if you aren't carrying a passport. It may be for security reasons - or it may just be Ryanair getting extra money. Whatever - the point is that a driving licence is accepted by all airlines on CTA flights.

It should be doubly noted that many CTA flights don't even go through passport control - Ireland will check at all ports, but anyone who's been through Dublin Airport or Dublin/Dun Laoghaire ferry ports will know that they tend to wave people through. And certainly, Aer Lingus flights from Ireland to Heathrow tend to land in the domestic areas anyway.
I stand by what I said - a passport is not essential for domestic flights in the UK but as it is possible to get it wrong by choosing another document - then the passport is probably your best bet as it is universally accepted
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Old 29-12-2008, 4:15 PM
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Hi - Thanks all!

Will my friend be able to use the airport checkin for an additional fee payable on the day?
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Edinburghlass
Old 29-12-2008, 4:18 PM
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Yes, make sure they check in early though.

Airport Check-In
Each passenger checking in at the airport is subject to an Airport Check-In fee per person per one way flight. If the fee is paid at the time of flight reservation online the discounted rate of 5/€5 will apply. If the fee is paid at the airport the standard rate of 10/€10 person/per one way flight will apply
Standard opening of check-in desks is 2 hours prior to scheduled time of departure.
Ryanair recommends that passengers check in two hours prior to scheduled departure, especially if you have Checked Baggage. Check-in desks, self-service kiosks and Bag-Drops close strictly 40 minutes before scheduled departure. We reserve the right to cancel your reservation and deny you boarding if you do not comply with the Check-in Deadline.
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Old 29-12-2008, 5:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sarahluv View Post
that's just not correct. he would've needed photographic id, but not a passport.
It does depend on the carrier's restrictions. So it may be correct, may not be - all depends on the individual T&C's. Immigration/Special Branch have no issues with driving licences (provisional or full) on CTA flights, however - and this applies for all members of the CTA.

Quote:
Originally Posted by irishjohn
I stand by what I said - a passport is not essential for domestic flights in the UK but as it is possible to get it wrong by choosing another document - then the passport is probably your best bet as it is universally accepted
And if you don't have a passport, what's the point in shelling out a small fortune for one if you don't need one? Again, check the carrier's T&C's before travelling and you won't have a problem.
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