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Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 7:43 am

I always hear this myth: If someone is born inflight, he or she will get life-time free travel on that airline. Is that true?

What's the restriction for pregnant women? I bet one cannot fly with 7 months of pregnancy right?
 
anamericanin
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 7:56 am

Regulations vary from airline to airline. My wife is pregnant and will be travelling later this month to deliver, so I can tell you that Air Moldova ( 9U ) accepts passengers to 32 weeks' gestation without documentation and to 35 weeks with a health certificate signed by the patient's attending physician within three days of departure. US Airways ( US ) requires a medical certificate at 36 weeks (40 weeks as calculated by the LMP method is considered full term), which I understand is the standard in the United States.

As for the free lifetime travel myth, it sounds like just that - a myth (but I don't know with 100% certainty).

EDIT: DL has no restrictions, UA and AA require a medical certificate at 36 weeks or greater. Clarified above to reflect US policy.

[Edited 2012-06-09 01:21:55]
 
DIJKKIJK
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 7:57 am

It used to be the case on some airlines. Pan Am was an example.

If you were born on a Pan Am plane, you not only got free passes for a lifetime, but also an American citizenship by birth. This was because you were considered being on US territory while on board a Pan Am plane, no matter where in the world the plane actually was.

My former landlady was born on a Pan Am plane while flying from Miami to somewhere in Latin America. She was really sad when PA closed down. She still keeps her US citizenship despite having visited the country only twice or so in her entire 45 year life.

[Edited 2012-06-09 00:58:12]
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flylku
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 5:20 pm

I should think the airlines would want to discourage this type of thing. But, what about conception on a flight?!
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BC77008
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 5:30 pm

Mom: "Ooooh ma water just broke! Why I think it's time!"
Dad: "I'll load up the minivan, we're going to the hospital!"
Mom: "Hospital? Hospital?! Are you crazy, take me to the airport!"

No, no airline that I know of gives free air travel for life for having a baby on the flight as it would only encourage some people to do it.
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N766UA
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 5:40 pm

The idea that an airline would give away thousands if not millions of dollars in revenue just because someone was "lucky" enough to be born on their jet strikes me as absolutely ludicrous. What would even be the point? It's not like the kid chose the airline and they're rewarding his loyalty- he'd have no choice in the matter!
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ORDJOE
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 6:03 pm

While pan AM and the other airlines back in the day spent money on stupid shi&*(t I find it hard to believe that they would give this away, today certainly not. Several airlines sold unlimited passes for a few hundred thousand years back and even then the airline wants to take away that service (usually is voided through bankruptcy) so if they regret giving lifetime free travel to someone who paid, they are not going to give it to someone that did not pay and possibly cost them a lot in flight diversion costs.


As for becoming a citizen if born on a US flight, could be possible, not sure as I am not a lawyer. It is my understanding once you step onto an airline you are under the laws of the aircrafts flag.
 
taichen
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 6:55 pm

A baby was born on an IB flight from Malabo to Madrid not long ago. IB gave the mother a few free tickets on the MAD-Malabo leg (something like 5x free return flights, or something like that) and other goodies such as diapers and other stuff. There were lots of complaints on the Iberia facebook page telling them they should have awarded life-free travel xD xD but I also think it is just a myth... or something that happened some years ago, but no any longer, just like free meals on a European shorthaul.
 
Tbone354
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:17 pm

Yeah. Makes about the same amount of sense as getting free lifetime health care from the hospital you were born in. Or free burgers for life if you are born at a McDonalds.
 
Type-Rated
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:47 pm

With the airlines today, I would not be surprised if the airline billed the birthing mother for supplied used during the birth and for cleanup of the cabin afterwards.

I have also heard that there have been mothers who fly to the USA at the last possible moment so that their kid can have US citizenship.
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Mr AirNZ
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 9:09 pm

One thing to consider with all this is different countries determine citizenship very differently. Some (such as the USA) determine it by (amongst other options) location of birth but many other countries determine it based on the parents nationality. Here in New Zealand, children born here to foreign nationals do not get automatic right to citizenship.
 
KLAXAirport
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 9:20 pm

How about that baby that was born on the LH flight from DEN-FRA between the US and Canada. Did he/she get lifetime travel?

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AirPacific747
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 9:41 pm

A friend of mine was born on a plane on its way to Alaska.. Official birthplace is Alaska.. Havent heard anything about free travels though.
 
PlymSpotter
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 9:56 pm

I've heard of this happening a few times. There was a birth on QR a few years back (Philippine woman working as a Saudi maid IIRC) and free lifetime travel was bestowed on the infant and possible mother too. Similarly a baby born on an Air Asia flight was given lifetime free travel a few years ago.

It happens, not that often, but the airlines don't do badly out of the PR surrounding it.


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fruitbat
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 10:02 pm

Quoting Tbone354 (Reply 8):
Makes about the same amount of sense as getting free lifetime health care from the hospital you were born in.

But that's what actually happens in Europe...............

  

 
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andrefranca
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 10:43 pm

I don't know if it's urban legend or myth here in Brazil but MAO manager once told me a women had a baby on a JJ flight decades ago, and went to court to ask for these "free tickets" result: They obviously found out after investigations she did that on purpose and lost the cause, I don't think it's the same these days as JJ asks from the 7th month a written notification from the physician.
 
3DoorsDown
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 11:14 pm

If I owned an airline and someone gave birth on board, I would probably send them a bill to clean the carpet.  
 
goboeing
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sat Jun 09, 2012 11:30 pm

Quoting fruitbat (Reply 14):
But that's what actually happens in Europe...............

Well, that's an odd definition of 'free'.


* * *



If any airline had this policy now I wouldn't put it past someone out there to attempt to have their child be born in flight to get travel perks. As in, intentionally trying to time it like that.
 
robsaw
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sun Jun 10, 2012 12:49 am

Quoting DIJKKIJK (Reply 2):
If you were born on a Pan Am plane, you not only got free passes for a lifetime, but also an American citizenship by birth. This was because you were considered being on US territory while on board a Pan Am plane, no matter where in the world the plane actually was.

While there are documented cases of a VERY FEW babies (and sometimes the mother) getting free passes for life there is nothing documented for Pan Am.

As for citizenship, the situation is not nearly as simplistic as you make it and has varied over the last several decades. The registration country of the aircraft may apply to PLACE of birth IF the aircraft is NOT in the jurisdiction of ANY country at the time of birth. However, under US law, birth on US vessel outside of the 12-mile US territorial limit is NOT (and never was) considered birth within US Territory and therefore citizenship was and is not automatic.
 
idlewildchild
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sun Jun 10, 2012 2:09 am

Grew up with a girl born in 1956 on an EI/IN SNN-JFK flight. I don't remember them saying they got anything from Aer Lingus.
 
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HELyes
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sun Jun 10, 2012 4:05 am

In 2008 a Swedish mother gave birth on Finnair flight BKK-HEL over Kazakhstan, everything went fine and the family got free return tickets to BKK, no lifetime free traveling though... The baby was registered to be born in Finland.

http://www.hs.fi/english/article/Swe...+Bangkok+to+Helsinki/1135241290049

Finnair on restrictions for pregnant passengers:

"Pregnant passengers beyond their 28th week of pregnancy must provide a doctor’s certificate confirming that the pregnancy has proceeded normally. However, pregnant passengers may travel up to the end of their 36th week, and on Finnair’s short domestic and Scandinavian flights they may travel up to the end of the 38th week, provided that the pregnancy has proceeded normally. In practice, the rule cannot be monitored with any real accuracy."

[Edited 2012-06-09 21:11:53]
 
Zudnic
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sun Jun 10, 2012 4:19 am

Providing free lifetime travel for babies born inflight makes poor business sense. Why would you want to provide an incentive to someone likely to cause a medical emergency or other costly delay?
 
DIJKKIJK
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sun Jun 10, 2012 6:11 am

Quoting robsaw (Reply 18):
While there are documented cases of a VERY FEW babies (and sometimes the mother) getting free passes for life there is nothing documented for Pan Am.

I have met and known people who has such passes with Pan Am.

Quoting robsaw (Reply 18):
As for citizenship, the situation is not nearly as simplistic as you make it and has varied over the last several decades. The registration country of the aircraft may apply to PLACE of birth IF the aircraft is NOT in the jurisdiction of ANY country at the time of birth. However, under US law, birth on US vessel outside of the 12-mile US territorial limit is NOT (and never was) considered birth within US Territory and therefore citizenship was and is not automatic.



I actually know someone who got a US citizenship like that. So it is true. Never mind all the legal jargon.
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CXfirst
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sun Jun 10, 2012 6:19 am

It's not a given that birth in flight gives unlimited free flights.

There have been cases where it has happened, such as with Air Asia in 2009. In this case mother and child got unlimited free travel.

http://www.abs-cbnnews.com/lifestyle...etime-free-flights-baby-born-plane

However, it's more likely being the airline giving flights for life as a PR exercise. Like above, it got into many newspapers around the world, however, I can't see it happening many times. Probably more often on newer smaller carriers, which might need the PR.

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neutrino
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sun Jun 10, 2012 2:34 pm

Air Asia gained huge PR mileage out of that inflight birth. It was the first time it happened on that LCC. It could also very well be the only instance as there are no other known cases thereafter. If there were, I believe Air Asia made that first occurance the only one they awarded the free lifetime travel passes. So it looks like a one-off PR gesture.
Maybe other new airline would do the same? To upcoming mothers-to-be; how about having a go with Scoot? They just might have the "scootitude".
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Viscount724
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Sun Jun 10, 2012 7:46 pm

Quoting DIJKKIJK (Reply 22):
I actually know someone who got a US citizenship like that. So it is true. Never mind all the legal jargon.

I think the U.S. is fairly unusual in granting citizenship based only on being born in the U.S., regardless of the nationality of the parents.
 
robsaw
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Mon Jun 11, 2012 6:10 am

Quoting DIJKKIJK (Reply 22):


I actually know someone who got a US citizenship like that. So it is true. Never mind all the legal jargon.

Yeh, I'm sure the USA ignored their own laws, just silly legal jargon after all.

As referenced, only infants born within US territorial limits (of which, an US registered airliner is not such in and of itself) automatically are conferred with US citizenship. After that, there is a whole host of complex laws that come into play.

[Edited 2012-06-10 23:14:11]
 
flyguy89
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Mon Jun 11, 2012 7:16 am

Quoting robsaw (Reply 26):
Quoting DIJKKIJK (Reply 22):


I actually know someone who got a US citizenship like that. So it is true. Never mind all the legal jargon.

Yeh, I'm sure the USA ignored their own laws, just silly legal jargon after all.

As referenced, only infants born within US territorial limits (of which, an US registered airliner is not such in and of itself) automatically are conferred with US citizenship. After that, there is a whole host of complex laws that come into play.

Yeah and I'm sure he's making it all up for fun  

When US airlines were regulated and when Pan Am was the de facto flag carrier of the US in the 50's, 60's, and early 70's, the laws may very well have been different.
 
Quokkas
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Mon Jun 11, 2012 7:41 am

Quoting robsaw (Reply 18):
The registration country of the aircraft may apply to PLACE of birth IF the aircraft is NOT in the jurisdiction of ANY country at the time of birth.

True: many countries will take into consideration whether the nationality of either the mother or the father bestows nationality and a claim to citizenship. The UN Convention covering the prevention of creating Stateless Persons only places an obligation on Contracting States to grant national status to a person board on an aircraft registered in a Contracting State if not doing so would render the person stateless. As you say, things are not always clear cut and simple.
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ASA
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RE: Babies Born Inflight=lifetime Free Travel?

Mon Jun 11, 2012 10:24 am

Quoting Tbone354 (Reply 8):
Yeah. Makes about the same amount of sense as getting free lifetime health care from the hospital you were born in. Or free burgers for life if you are born at a McDonalds.

        

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