Checking in is an important step for air travel. Each airline performs its own check in, but in rare cases a handling agent representing the airline. The main purpose of checking-in is for the airline to take the luggage that goes in the cargo. This is the first step all passengers must undergo when arriving at the airport. The destination dictates the check in time: from 15 minutes and up to 4 hours before the flight.
Check in procedures usually depend on the airline. Sometimes even the same airline has different checking-in regulations in different airports. Most travelers are not aware of these differences, but they can be very problematic when a passengers expects the same thing from 2 different airlines.
Some cities around the world have made this process a lot more easy by creating luggage check in points in the city. This way, the time spent at the airport is drastically reduced. Some of the cities are Abu Dhabi, Taipei, Seoul, and Vienna. Passengers can self check-in at the Dublin Airport if they fly Aer Lingus.
The check-in time is when a passenger can request some information about the flight or destination, pay for upgrades, choose a seat, collect their air miles points, or even change reservations.
If you want to further ease your check-in process, you can try the online check-in. This process is widely used across Europe, but it slowly expands to other countries and continents. Some airlines may still ask for desk check-in, no matter you would prefer doing it elsewhere. Some airline offer mobile check-in, gate or lounge check-ins as well. Australian airlines started using the lounge and gate check-in, and it is permitted some 10 minutes before departure.
It is best to get well informed on the check-in procedures performed by your airline as to go prepared and for the process to go smoothly.