Flying with a Lap Infant on Delta
While all US airlines allow under 2’s to fly for free when flying within the US and its territories, not all airlines have the same process. Below are the details you need to know for flying with your little one with Delta.
Domestic Ticketing: While it’s recommended you call in add your lap infant before check in, you can add your baby at the ticket counter in the airport at check in. It takes longer to do so, however, as they have to cancel and re-issue your ticket.
If you add the lap infant before check in, you will be able to print your boarding pass or add the ticket to your Delta App. You will not need to go to the counter unless you need to check in bags.
If you have TSA Precheck, you do not need to enroll your child as long as they are under 12.
International Ticketing: International ticketing is the same as Domestic except you will have to pay a percentage of the ticket price as well as taxes and fees for your lap infant regardless if you book your tickets with cash or miles. If you paid cash for the ticket, it will be roughly 10% of the full fare ticket at the time you buy the infant fare. If you wait till check in to buy the infant fare, you will be buying the fare at 10% of a same day ticket, which is normally expensive. As of the beginning of 2018, Delta charges a much lower infant fare if you book the adult tickets with miles.
Also you will need a passport for your child no matter how little they are. You must provide the passport details to Delta in advance of check in if you don’t want to go to the counter. If you have Global Entry you will need to separately enroll your child in Global Entry as well.
Documentation: Delta accepts a passport or a copy of the birth certificate as proof of age. Also a digital copy of the birth certificate is fine, so I recommend just taking a picture of the physical certificate and saving it on your phone for ease of use. Delta agents usually will just eyeball your child and only check documents if they think the child is around 2 years old.
As always if you are traveling with an under 2 that is not your child, make sure to carry documentation that shows you are allowed to do so.
Luggage: Delta allows you to check 1 stroller and 1 car seat for no charge. You may also gate check these items either to your destination or short check them if you want access to them at any stop overs.
If you wish to put your child in a car seat during flight, you will need to buy an adult ticket for your little one. Of note, Delta agents are given the discretion to allow you to bring on the car seat free of charge if there is an empty seat beside you. Treat this as an act of kindness and not as a Constitutionally given right.
Car seats and strollers are normally (but not always) sorted into oversized luggage if you check them at the counter. If they will come out on a different conveyor belt. If you gate check them, you will be able to collect them at the jet bridge.
Boarding: Delta allows you to preboard usually right after First Class. If you’re flying First Class, you can board with that group.