Newlywed Asked to Rebook $6,400 in Flights After Name Change

Newlywed Asked to Rebook $6,400 in Flights After Name Change

Airplane preparing for boarding / PHOTO: Riku Lu

Details like pre-booked flights can add expense to a name change if you don't plan for them.

By Joseph Beard


When changing a name after a marriage, forgetting something small can add big costs and trouble down the road. That's what happened to Australian newlyweds Brendan and Julie Widdowson who booked their honeymoon flight through Croatia, Montenegro, and Albania last year before Julie took Brendan's last name, according to a Travel + Leisure story originally from

The airline Julie and Brendan traveled on, Virgin Australia, told them that Julie would need to buy new tickets for the entire trip under her new name. Those tickets added up to 8,500 AUD ($6,400 USD).

They said they expected a fee to change the name on the tickets, but didn't expect to have to buy new tickets completely.

In a statement, Virgin Australia wrote, “Due to security reasons, the International Air Transport Authority does not permit any airline to change names on issued international tickets. IATA only allows three letters to be changed in the instance of a spelling name; therefore in order to change a name, an airline must cancel and rebook a ticket."

After Brenden voiced his concerns on the airline's Facebook page, it agreed to book the couple a new flight with Etihad Airways.

The couple were able to go on their honeymoon, but still had to pay a $460 USD carrier fee for the new flights and an additional $750 USD in taxes due to differences in how the two airlines are taxed.


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