Opodo Travel Blog icon
Opodo Travel Blog
  •   4 min read

In the airline industry, an adult is any passenger aged 16 and older. Any passenger under the age of 16 planning to fly alone must be clear about the rules as they change depending on the airline. To know exactly how old do you have to be to fly alone, we’ve outlined below some of the most popular airlines in the UK’s policies on unaccompanied minors flying alone.

Unaccompanied minors

Thomas Cook

Minimum age for flying alone: Thomas Cook allows children of 12 years of age to travel unaccompanied.

Escort Service: The airline offers an escort service for children between 5-16 of age at £ 20-49.

British Airways

Minimum age for flying alone: British Airways permits children of 12 years of age to fly without being accompanied by an adult.

✓ Escort Service: The airline requires minors of age 5-12 to book their Skyflyer solo service.

The British Airways Skyflyer Solo escort service prices are:

  • UK domestic flights: USD 50
  • Short-haul flights: USD 50
  • Long-haul flights: USD 75

Ryanair

Minimum age for flying alone: Ryanair does not allow children under the age of 16 to fly alone.

Escort service: Not available

easyJet

Minimum age for flying alone: easyJet does not allow children under the age of 14 to fly alone. Children under the age of 14 must be accompanied by a person 16 years or older to fly with the airline.

 Escort service: Not available

 

Unaccompanied minors (4)

Aer Lingus

Depending on the age of the minor, Aer lingus may allow minors to travel unaccompanied, but may require special permission.

Minimum age for flying alone: 12 years old.

  • Children 12-15 years old: May travel unaccompanied, however, an adult must sign the Form of Indemnity the day of flight departure at the airport check-in desk. Children without this completed form will not be allowed to fly.
  • Children under the age of 12: Must be accompanied by an adult 16 years or older.

Escort service: Not available

Flybe

Minimum age for flying alone: Flybe allows children of 12-16 to travel unaccompanied as adults but they have to book in advance as there is limited space on-board Flybe flights for unaccompanied minors.

✓ Escort Service: Children 5-12 years old may travel unaccompanied using the Flybe escort service. The price of this supervisory service is £39 per child and per flight.

Monarch

Minimum age for flying alone: Monarch does not allow children under the age of 16 to fly alone. They must be accompanied by an adult aged 16 or over. The adult accompanying the minor must be booked under the same reservation.

Escort service: They no long offer these services.

Wizz Air

Minimum age for flying alone: Wizz Air allows children of 14 and over to fly alone but they can’t be responsible for another child under the age of 14.

Therefore, children under 14 must travel with an adult (at least 16 years old) and both should be booked under the same reservation.

Escort service: Not available

Unaccompanied minors (2)

Virgin Atlantic

Minimum age for flying alone: Virgin Atlantic allows children between the ages of 5-15 years to travel alone if they fill out the Unaccompanied minors form and have it signed by their parents or legal guardians.

Children under 5 years old cannot fly alone, they must be accompanied by someone 16 years or older.

To inform Virgin Atlantic of the Unaccompanied Minor service, the adult making the booking must speak directly to the reservations team during booking. This must be done in advance and can only be booked over the telephone. The adult must complete and sign the Declaration of Indemnity form that will be provided by the airline. Part of the form must be turned in ahead of time, and the second part must be presented by the adult at airport check-in. All minors must be accompanied until check-in by the responsible adult or they will not be allowed to fly alone.

✓ Escort Service:  No extra charge but his/her flight ticket will be charged with an adult fare.

Lufthansa

Minimum age to fly without a parent: Children between 5 and 11 years of age are only allowed to fly by themselves if they use the Lufthansa service or travel together with a person who is at least 12 years of age. At the parents’ request, however, also children traveling alone between 12 and 17 years old can be escorted by airline staff.

Escort Service:

Within Europe: € 60

Intercontinental: € 60

KLM

Minimum age to fly unaccompanied: Children aged 15 and over can fly alone with KLM.

For children between the ages of 5 and 17, an escort service can be booked.

✓ Escort Service:

50 € short and medium distance

75 € long distance

How are your experiences with the different airlines and unaccompanied minors?

109 responses to “Unaccompanied minors – rules by airline

  1. Hi I’m 12 and I want to book a flight with the cheapest airline from Chicago to The island of Kauai to go see my friend do you know of the cheapest airline that would allow me to fly by myself?

  2. Good afternoon, I have a daughter of 12 y.o. who wanted to go to boarding school in the UK (Manchester), we leave abroad and our only direct flight to the UK (it’s a B.A.) goes to Gatwick, it looks like there are no flights from Gatwick to Manchester (or Newcastle which is another option), therefore she would need to change airport and go to Heathrow or South London, I would be able to go with her the first time but not each time she needs to come home for the school breaks, are there any options for her to be “escorted” from a
    B.A. representative or else during the transfer until she gets to Gatwick onto her destination flight?

  3. Hi….I’m 15yrs old and want to travel alone (without parents and siblings) to South Korea……. Can I travel alone….? And which flight should you prefer….?

  4. I am 16 years old flying with Thomas Cook from Scotland to Orlando, will I need to bring a note from my parents to the airport and birth certificate, I know I have to bring my passport.

  5. Hi,
    We are Canadians.
    My son is 16 years old and will visit alone a friend in Italy this summer.He will fly with KLN from Calgary to Rome via Amsterdam.
    What documents he will need aside the passaport ?
    Thank you.

  6. Carla, my 16 year old son and my 13 year old son are scheduled to fly from Lisbon, where they live, to Madrid (with TAP) and on to Mexico City where I live and will receive them (with Aeromexico) There is no code share between TAP and Aeromexico. They have dual EU/Mexican nationality. Aside from the permit to leave the country, required by Portuguese immigration, will they require any other other documents? TAP have no unaccompanied minor requirements for their age group. Aeromexico do for the 13 year old , who will turn 14 before the return trip. My main concern is immigration and check in for Aeromexico in Madrid without a parent. Is that possible? Many thanks in advance for your help. Hugo vB

  7. Carla, my 16 year old son and my 13 year old son are scheduled to fly from Lisbon, where they live, to Madrid (with TAP) and on to Mexico City where I live and will receive them (with Aeromexico) There is no code share between TAP and Aeromexico. They have dual EU/Mexican nationality. Aside from the permit to leave the country, required by Portuguese immigration, will they require any other other documents? TAP have no unaccompanied minor requirements for their age group. Aeromexico do for the 13 year old , who will turn 14 before the return trip. My main concern is immigration and check in for Aeromexico in Madrid without a parent. Is that possible? Many thanks in advance for your help. Hugo vB

  8. Hi my daughter is 16 and her friend is 15, they are traveling from Gatwick to Tenerife to visit the friends mum. Will her friend need an unaccompanied child form filled out or is it ok as my daughter is over 16. If she needs the form can I sign it at the airport or does it need to be her dad if so where can west a form as I am bringing them to the airport so would have to have it filled out before.

  9. hi…im 16 years old and im going in india 22 from london…..
    i wanted to ask if i can travel alone without any problem or i need some document…my Arline is Qatar airways and British airways…thanks

  10. Hello I am 13 and I am going to pairis but I’m bringing my cousin who lives in Tennessee and she is 11 what air line would work best for us cause we are flying alone 😥 I also need it to be cheap because then I could get to pairis with no issues

  11. Hello, I am 16 years old and want to travel to korea, to meet my girlfriend. can i do that without any parental consent?

  12. Hello, I am 17 from the UK and I am flying to Iowa to spend christmas with my girlfriend and her family. Can I do this?

  13. Hello!! So me and my brother are flying to the UK from the US alone, but he’s 12 and im 16, were flying with Thomas Cook, without an adult, would they let us go??

  14. I want to travel with my newphew of 5 years old his mom nd dad ia not here with him from spain to italy throught easyjet is there any prblm?plz help

  15. Hello my son is 15 flying alone on Norwegian Air, from the US to England. My husband will be dropping him off and I will be picking him up. What does my husband need to give the airline to allow him on the plane. I know there is some weird rule about two parent need to be present when a child is flying. Thank you for your help.

  16. i am 15 years old looking to fly with virign atlantic to NY.
    Do i need to sign an Unaccompanied minor form?
    And would that require me having someone actually accompanying me or is a form sufficient?
    i will have someone taking and picking me up at both ends

  17. Hello, I’m 16 years old and I want to travel from London to Greece with one of my parents.Do I need any declaration from the other parent? With Rayner or EasyJet. Thank you

  18. Hello, My name is Marie and next week I’m travelling with my brothers to Italy by Ryanair. I’m 18 and my brothers are 6 and 15 years old. I know I need an authorisation from my dad because of my youngest brother, because a don’t have the same surname. Do I need something else?
    Thank you.

  19. The senario is :

    Child just under 16 to travel with friends who are 16 to Jerez Spain.

    We have establish that they can travel with Ryanair because of the other 16 year olds but need to make sure they have the right documents. it is very hard to establish how the Spanish authorities view this and want to make sure there are no problems.

    Trying to contact the Spanish embassy is impossible.

    Can anyone give me some detailed advice please

  20. Hi, I’m 17 travelling with my 21 year old brother to spain with easy jet. I read there rules and I’m considered an adult but I’m wondering if there will be any problems like do my parents have to sign anything ?

  21. Hello
    I am 15 years old and i want to fly in Zurich, Switzerland with EasyJet by my own
    It will work?
    please help me

  22. Hi, i’m 15 and i’m travelling alone from uk to italy with jet2. What documents do i need to bring with me?

  23. Hi I am 14 almost 15 in a couple of weeks, I am just checking if it’s alright if I can travel with my 22 year old sister ? If so can I just travel with her without any documents or do I need documents ? If I need documents what documents do I need ?
    Thanks

  24. Hi!, is it possible if I a 15 year old and my friend who is 16 can travel together alone to japan? Much thanks!

  25. Hello, I’m 16 and I’m planning of traveling on my own to America(Hawaii)
    Possibly through the route of :
    UK airport —> Canada/America —> Hawaii
    Will I be able to do so ?
    Thanks for a reply in advance Xx

  26. Hi, we are taking our son’s friend on holiday who is 15 years old to Cyprus next week, we fly with BA and return with EasyJet. I have spoken with BA 3 times and had conflicting answers, two says no letter of authorisation is needed, but one said I just need copies of the parents passports? will she be ok to travel or do I need a letter ? thanks in advance.

  27. hi, my boyfriend is 16and he is flying alone from maryland to california, his parents cant drop him off, so hes takinig a bus to the airport. He is flying through Delta airline, do his parents need to fill out anything at the airport, for him to be able to fly alone?

  28. Hi,
    I am booked on Virgin Atlantic from LHR – JFK – LHR. I am an unaccompanied minor (15). My parents will be in Honolulu whilst I depart and return is my sibling or brother in law allowed to sign the form of indeminity on their behalf?
    Benjamin

  29. Hi, I am turning 15 in September, and next year, about july-september, my mother planned that I can go to the philippines, can I travel alone? Or maybe with a friend who has same age as me.? (But her birthday is in august.) Btw, travelling with qatar airways from barcelona. 🙂

  30. Hi, I am 14 years old and I want to travel with my friend (also 14 years old) from Bristol to Amsterdam with EasyJet just for a day trip. We would catch the early morning flight at around 7:00am and then get a train into the city centre of Amsterdam and then we would get the train back to the airport for the 7:00pm flight back. Would we be allowed to do this? I have been to Amsterdam before and I know my way around Schiphol airport. We wouldn’t be picked up from the airport because we would get a train from Schiphol Station (underneath the airport) to Amsterdam Centre. We wouldn’t be carrying any luggage. Is it possible to do this with just our Passports (and NHS health cards) without having to sign any forms and what is the policy in the Netherlands for letting children in unaccompanied? Many Thanks

  31. Hi My Daughters friend who is over 16 will be travelling with my family to Malaysia from Birmingham with Emirates. Do we need a Notorized Travel Consent form for any of this trip ?

  32. hi my son is 14 years old and he planned to fly from London to Hong Kong with Virgin Atlantic. If he uses the um service, is it possible to check in by himself without guardian/parent?

  33. Hi I’m 14 and I’m thinking of travelling alone from England To America but with help like escorts and that?is that possible ?

  34. Hey, I am 16 and I was wondering if I could travel from Germany to England alone. (I would go to Germany with parents but return alone){Go + Return ticket} and if so, will I need any forms to be signed? [Ryanair]

  35. Hello, my daughter is 14 years old will be flying with Wizzair from London Luton, UK to Vilnius, Lithuania. Do I need to sign any forms what so ever so she could fly by her own or any other reasons?

  36. My brother (18 years old) and I (15 years old) are going to make a daytrip to London from Bratislava with Ryanair, do we need any documents or just the passport? Can I travel alone just with him without our parents?

  37. hi im stayin in france and can i book the airline tickets in the uk website because the cost is less comparing to the france website…

  38. i am 13 and my dad lives in malaga spain and i have premition with my gaudians for me to fly alone i would be dropped at my gate and picked up from my gate what forms would my gaudians have to fill out for this to be possible with easyjet or and airline from luton london?

    1. Hi Jb, unfortunately, children aged 13 years or younger cannot travel with easyJet unless they are accompanied by an adult who is at least 16 years old and who will take full responsibility for them. Hope this helps!

  39. Hello, our 12 year old niece is coming to visit us in the UK and will fly in and out of Heathrow from the US. My question is when we take her to Heathrow, how far can I stay and accompany her? Can I go pass security and to the gate to see her off? Her mum is worried if I wouldn’t be able to accompany her to the gate in Heathrow.

  40. Hi my daughter’s friend who is 15 wants to fly from alicante to UK with jet2 I know the airline allows this but is anything else needed?

  41. Hi, I want my 14 year old daughter to fly by herself internationally with EasyJet. The problem is I dont know how to book the flight and dont know what I am supposed to do at the airport so my daughter can safely depart. Thank You

    1. Hi @disqus_W6dz8wCZER:disqus, you can book the flight online just like any other flight ticket. easyJet allows children aged 14 to 15 to travel on their own provided that they are not travelling with children aged 13 years or younger. Unfortunately, they don’t offer any official extra assistance however their ground and cabin crew will be on hand to answer any questions you may have and will try to help make her journey as easy as possible.

  42. Hello !
    My brother is 15 and I’m thinking about book a flight from Berlin (SXF) to London Gatwick (LGW), but I can’t meet him at the airport. He’s portuguese. Does he need any document besides my mum’s authorization and his ID?
    Do I need to pick him up at the airport or he can take the bus by himself ?
    Regards

  43. Hello I’m travelling with a friend this month from Alicante to London. We’re both 16 (and Spanish, we’ve got a spanish passport) and we’re travelling alone, without our parents. Our airline is fine with us, we don’t have any problem but I’m concerned about if we will have any problem there in the UK because we’re travelling alone. Do our parents need to fill something? Does the british law require any document for unaccompained minors? What do we need to travel alone?

    1. Hi, as long as the airline is fine with you flying alone, you won’t experience any problems with entering the country. Just don’t do anything that you’re not allowed to do by law! 😉

  44. Hi, my name is Catherine, and I am wondering if I can fly alone (without parents consent) if I’m 16 years old? And even if i’m not leaving the UK?

  45. Hi !
    I would like to know; as i actually get diffrent contradictory information; if my son, 9 years who is an SAS (ScandinavianID-passenger , can fly as an ID- passenger together with his older sister that is 17 years old with Vueling. The sister is a regular passenger.
    Thank you for any answer i can get

  46. My 13 year old is booked with the unaccompanied minors assistance on a vueling flight from Rome to London. My sister in law will take her to check in and I, her mother will meet her at Gatwick, a part from her british passport, what documents are needed?

    1. Hi Sal, your child needs 3 copies of the unaccompanied minor form signed you or any legal guardian. The person accompanying the child on departure (in this case, your sister in law), must be the same as stated on the form and must present the following documentation at check-in: ID(passport/DNI), Photocopy of the passport belonging to the legal guardian/your passport, passport of your daughter, and the 3 copies of the form. She will have to wait at the airport until the plane takes off.

      You will have to present proof of identity (passport or ID) and sign 2 copies of the form in order to pick up your daughter.

      Thanks for contacting us!

  47. Hello, I am 15 years old and I am travelling from Hong Kong to Edinburgh through Virgin Atlantic but the connecting flight back to Edinburgh is through aer lingus am I allowed to fly alone without filling out any forms or using their special service for minors

    1. Hi Tiffany, you’ll have to inform Virgin Atlantic that you’ll be flying alone and fill out their unaccompanied minors form. For your flight with Aer Lingus, your parent will have to sign the Form of Indemnity. Please contact Aer lingus and ask them to send you the form so you can bring it with you on the day of your flight.

      Thank you for contacting us!

  48. My 15 year old niece is travelling from Malaga to Spain with Easy Jet. I know the airline are fine with that but will the airport/passport control have any problems or need extra docs? I know sometimes when people take their friends kids on holiday they need a letter from the parent to say they had permission

    1. Hi Michelle! Your niece will be able to travel alone without signing any form. Passport control doesn’t need any extra documents because the airline allows her to travel on her own. Hope this helps!

  49. Hi, Next week me (age 17) and my little sister (age 7) will be flying to moscow on british airways, because i am over 16 years she can be accompanied by me right??
    Also does my mum have to write a permission letter allowing me and my sister to travel alone (we both have different surnames) so i know i will need to bring our birth certificates but will i need this letter in moscow?

  50. hi.
    I’m 16,romanian and I live in the uk.
    I want to go back to Romania for summer holiday and I want go on my own.
    Do I need any declaration from parents?
    I know I need some papers when I’m coming back but I don’t know if I need anything else apart of my passport??
    Pls help me with an answer

      1. Ryanair, 16 years old, going to Romania next week by myself. There shouldn’t be any problem right? Thanks ✋

  51. I can’t do online check in for my first child, because there is a different definition of adult/children’s age between Opodo and Ryan Air. I book my tickets through Opodo website, but then I found it difficult to do online check in through Ryan Air website. Anyone can help me?

    1. Hi! Please send us a private message on Facebook and/or Twitter with your booking number and email address. Our CS agents will look into your case. Thanks and sorry for the inconveniences!

  52. I booked 4 tickets for a Ryan Air flight from Birmingham to Dublin. When I registered through Opodo, I put my first child (13) as an adult, because the website says that children are only 2-11. Meanwhile Ryan Air requires us to do online check in though its website/application prior to the departure. Unfortunately I can’t input my first child’s birthday due to the different definition of adult/children’s age between opted and Ryan Air. It’s locked. What should I do? This is not my fault at all.

  53. Her airlines is malaysian airlines, she also change the date of her flight after the visa was released. She is 17 already and i was wondering if you could help us with the matter, thank you

  54. Hi my sister is traveling to UK this july she is just 17 and her visa type is type C accompanied. Can we appeal to the uk embassy to change her visa type to unaccompied??? What are the documents needed? Thank you

  55. My daughter is 15 years old and will be flying with cousin 16 years on Korean Airlines? I’m worried she won’t be allowed to fly. Can someone give me an idea. Thanks.

  56. Hi, I am 15. I would like to know can I flight on my own from Poland to England, by British Airways?
    Do I need any other documents than a passpotr? Do I need to inform the airlaines earlier, that I am not 18 yet? Or is it ok and they will let me into the plane without any troubles or problems?

  57. Hi!
    I’m a 15 year old girl. I bought my tickets from Finnair, but my flight is operated by British Airways.
    A 15 year old cannot fly alone to USA from Finland without an Unaccompanied Minor -reservation, but with British Airways it is possible. So, my question is, am I allowed to fly on my one, even if Finnair doesn’t allow me but British Airways does?

    1. Hi, although your flight is operated by British Airways, your booking is with Finnair. Thus, you’ll have to follow Finnair’s rules. Therefore, you’ll have to book an unaccompanied minor reservation. Please contact our Customer Service (Facebook / Twitter) to book this service. Hope this was helpful! 😉

  58. Hello,
    can you help, please? I’ve booked a flight to London with Lufthansa for my daughter who’s 15. I know that she’s allowed to fly unaccompanied with Lufthansa, but does she need to be picked up at Heathrow or can she simply proceed to the Underground? She’ll be staying with friends of mine who probably won’t be able to pick her up that day. Thank you so much for an answer!

    1. Hi Diana, children aged from 12 up to a maximum of 17 years old, who are travelling alone, can be looked after by Lufthansa at the request of their parents and has an extra charge of 50-80€. Regardless, she can simply proceed to the underground. Hope this helps! 🙂

  59. Hello,
    my daughter ( 14 year) is going to Istanbul on her own from Dusseldorf (germany) with Turkish Airlines and I can’y accompany her when she is checkin in, my question is does she need me to be with her during checking in, do I need to fill a form or something?

  60. Can i travel alone on jet2 or easy jet, im 15 and will be flying to Dalaman airport in Turkey from Manchester airport. Will i need any forms or to be signed off by anyone? i will be meeting my dad there for a holiday because there is no space on his flight. i have to travel to Dalama airport alone and catch the plane alone home but he will meet me when i get off the plane at dalaman on the way there. Thanks in advance

  61. My Niece and her friend both 15 want to visit me on thursday. My sister must have accidentally booked the 2 as adults with RYAN AIR and only realised when checking in with the date of birth the error. Is there anyway Ryanair would allow them on the flight. I will pick them up in London.

    1. Hi Murat. Thanks for reaching out to us. Ryanair policy states the following on their site, for unaccompanied minors: Ryanair does not carry unaccompanied minors under 16 years. Children under the age of 16 years must always be accompanied by a passenger over 16 years. We recommend contacting the airline directly for further instruction on this matter. We wish you the best of luck!

  62. Hello,
    Can you help me?
    I have two 15 year old french girls who want to fly alone to France . I can’t accompany them to the airport the day they want to travel . This is with Flybe.
    Will they be ok to travel?

    1. Hi Bill. Thank you for writing to us in regards to unaccompanied minors rule for Flybe flights. Children between the ages of 12-16 are allowed to fly without an adult. You may however, request for a child between the ages of 12 and 16 years to be carried as an Unaccompanied Minor, in which case, you would have to telephone Flybe’s Customer Call Centre to reserve. We hope that was helpful. Thanks!

  63. But what about Turkish Airlines?? Me (12) and my big sister (will be 17 then) need to fly out together in 2 months. Is it allowed on that airline?

    1. Hi, Ozaz. Children between 7 and 12 years old can travel alone on Turkish Airlines. They must be however, accompanied by an adult (your big sister for example) and an Unaccompanied Minor Declaration Forms is required to be filled out and signed by a parent or guardian at the time of check in, at least 2 hours prior to boarding the flight. Thanks!

  64. My son is 17 years old travelling with British Airways to Canada from UK.Does he allow to travel on his own?

  65. My son is 13, his sister 10 and the plan is for an unaccompanied flight UK to CH – if on BA he qualifies to travel alone, does it mean the 10 year old can travel alone with him ie he qualifies as the ‘escort’?

    1. Hi Edith,

      We appreciate your reaching out to us with your question. You are right abot your son being able to fly alone, but your daughter, because she is 10, must be accompanied by someone 16 years or older in order to qualify as an escort for her. We hope that was helpful. Thanks!

  66. i have 13 years old son is going to UK with a family friends my question is do i need easy jet form or any other document for minors .
    PS. flying from Morocco. USA. passport.
    thank you .

    1. Hi, Hammond. Thank you for your inquiry. easyJet requires your son be accompanied by an adult, of at least 16 years of age. Your son must also have his valid passport with him prior to boarding, but no form is required beforehand. Thanks!

      1. Hi, Katie. Thanks for reaching out. Depending on the airline, a 15-year-old may be able to fly alone. With British Airways, children 12-18 years old can fly either alone or with an escort service. With Aer Lingus, children 12-15 years old may travel unaccompanied, however, an adult must sign the Form of Indemnity the day of flight departure at the airport check-in desk. If flying with Flybe, children 12-16 years old may travel unaccompanied as adults, but it must be booked in advance as there is limited space on-board Flybe flights for unaccompanied minors. And lastly, Virgin Atlantic allows children between the ages of 5-15 years to travel alone. We hope that was helpful.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

footer logo
Made with for you