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Glossary for the airline industry

From A-Z, this glossary covers definitions and explanations for common airline industry terminology.


As defined by ATPCO, a carrier is generally an airline (scheduled or chartered), but may also be a rail company or car rental company. It is the owner or service provider for a fare and is identified by an industry-standard alphanumeric code.

Carrier-Imposed Fees

A standardized, automated collection, distribution, and pricing method that provides marketing carriers (carriers that appear on the flight coupon) the ability to control and collect fees at the sector (coupon), at the portion of travel (multiple sectors), or on the journey. ATPCO's application handles fuel, insurance, and carrier-imposed miscellaneous fees.


Cost per Average Seat Kilometer. A measure of how expensive it is for airlines to operate any given route. This is calculated by dividing the operating cost per flight by the number of ASKs available on that particular flight. In the United States, CASM (Cost per Average Seat Mile) is used.


Abbreviation for category.


The structure within the Rules system is designed to identify various kinds of restrictive information regarding a fare. Restrictions are listed in the FareManager Rules database and are sorted by various categories of application such as day/time and season of travel.

1 Eligibility
2 Day/Time
3 Seasonality
4 Flight Application
5 Advanced Reservations/Ticketing
6 Minimum Stay
7 Maximum Stay
8 Stopovers
9 Transfers
10 Permitted Combinations
11 Blackout Dates
12 Surcharges
13 Accompanied Travel
14 Travel Restrictions
15 Sales Restrictions
16 Penalties
17 Higher Intermediate Point/Mileage
18 Ticket Endorsements
19 Children Discounts
20 Tour Conductor Discounts
21 Agency Discounts
22 All Other Discounts
23 Miscellaneous Provisions
25 Fare By Rule
26 Groups
27 Tours
28 Visit Another Country
29 Deposits
31 Voluntary Changes
33 Voluntary Refunds
35 Negotiated Fare Restrictions
50 Application and Other Conditions

CCF Subs

An ATPCO data subscription product that provides subscribers with new carrier, city, or fare class codes and multi-airport city relationships to validate before processing fares and related subscription products.

Chart 1

Contains RBD information for the carrier owning the fare (aside from primary RBD) and for secondary carriers participating on the fare. This data provides exceptions to the primary RBD. It is the same as Record 6 Convention 2.

Chart 2

RBD default information for the marketing carrier who is on the ticket but does not own the fare (the fare owner can be a carrier code or YY). Applies for secondary transportation on another carrier's fare, or for primary or secondary transportation on a YY fare. It is the same as Record 6 Convention 1.


A person who has reached his or her second birthday but not his or her twelfth birthday as of the date of commencement of travel from the journey origin.

circle trip
  1. (Two components, Subcategory 102, US/CA Fares) Travel from point A to point B and return to point A using two fare components only. At least one fare component must be priced using half of a round-trip fare. See also combinations.
  2. (More than two components, Subcategory 103, US/CA Fares) Travel on a single pricing unit from a point and return thereto by a continuous, circuitous route, using applicable half-round-trip fares. At least one fare component must be priced using half of a round-trip fare. See also combinations.
  3. (Subcategory 103, International Fares) Travel on a single pricing unit from a point and return thereto by a continuous, circuitous route, using applicable half-round-trip fares. Circle Trip includes pricing units comprising two fare components that do not meet the conditions of the round-trip definition. See also round-trip. See also combinations.

A piece of standards work which involves additions to wording that clarify the intent of the existing standard, but does not require ATPCO, nor any consumer of the data, to change processing.


Accompanied child (usually age 2-11)

code share

The practice of putting an airline's flight number on a segment that the airline does not operate with its own aircraft. This allows carriers to sell space on other airlines' flights, expanding a carrier's network.

coding conventions

A set of manual standards established to provide consistency in coding data. (A coding convention is not an actual programming edit.)


Whenever two or more one-way or round-trip or half round-trip fares are used and shown separately in a fare calculation. See circle trip, end-on-end, half-round-trip, open jaw, and round-trip.


An agreement requested of a carrier by another carrier to make tariff changes. A blanket concurrence (also called a preconcurrence) may be secured in advance to cover all future changes.


1. When a passenger changes planes within a fare component, and the duration of the change is not considered a stopover (established by carrier rules or industry default) (see stopover).

2. Also known as a transfer. The ability to transfer passengers, baggage, cargo or mail from one flight to another within a reasonable time period. On-line connections concern transfers between flights of the same airline designator and interline connections between flights of different airline designators.


IATA term for unspecified through fares created by the use of add-on amounts, or two or more fares shown as a single amount in a fare calculation. (ATPCO also refers to this as unpublished.)

continuous pricing

A method of dynamic pricing that is fully dynamic, choosing a price from a predetermined range or directly linking to an airline's revenue management system. This method does not depend upon predefined prices.

contract of carriage

An agreement between a carrier and a passenger that lists all the rights and responsibilities of each party.