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-   -   Reservations US AIRWAYS ripped us off and left us stranded (https://www.AirlineComplaints.org/showthread.php?t=8640)

MamieT Jun 20, 2011 4:31 PM

US AIRWAYS ripped us off and left us stranded
 
I paid for two round-trips on the US Airways website for a trip encompassing Thursday to Friday, June 9 – 10, 2011, between St. Louis and Philly (total $590.80), to witness the young woman we had mentored graduate from high school. Another meeting came up: we needed to move our outbound flight a day ahead to accommodate it. The US Airways website allowed this change at the additional cost of $720. Rather than pay this exorbitant price, we bought two new one-way tickets for $339.80 (also on a US Airways flight booked through United’s website). So far, we have spent $930.60.

We received check-in notices ahead of time for all three legs of the flight--the two going to Philly and the one returning to St. Louis. Surprisingly, upon arriving at PHL for our return flight, the US Airways 'customer service' manager informed our return flight reservation had been cancelled because we hadn't shown up for our original Thursday flight. (Remember: we had paid his airline and additional $320 to leave a day earlier). He told us that--in order to get home on the flight that we had already paid for--we had to now PURCHASE THE SAME TICKETS AGAIN PLUS PAY ADDITIONAL MONEY in change fees to get our paid-for tickets back. At this point, we had already paid for three legs of a journey, and were being asked to pay for a fourth plus additional fees and charges--we were quoted about $450-500 in additional ticket fees plus a firm $300 in change fees. (As an aside: the reason for paying a change fee for something we allegedly no longer owned was never quite explained. One of those things you go back later and say "I wish I had asked.") Money spent so far: $930.60, with no prospect of a return flight. Total outlay if we were to get home: $1700. US Airways was essentially holding us hostage for an additional $750 - $800 just to be able to use the TICKETS WE HAD ALREADY PURCHASED IN FULL.

All we wanted was to use the seats we had already paid for on a 1000-mile flight that would or wouldn't take off with us on board. It would have been no skin off the tail (forgive the pun) of US Airways to honor our reservation. We were faced with the prospect of being stranded in Philadelphia without a way to get home.

Instead, we bought one-way tickets from Southwest. It cost us $600 (now our trip total is up to $1,570)—steep, but still less than the additional money US Airways demanded in order to use our paid-for tickets. The folks at Southwest were understanding and accommodating (Quote: “Other airlines do that. We don’t”).

Maybe what US Airways does is legal; maybe it isn't. I do think this: if our airline travel is this bad all over the country, then I guess Al Qaeda has already won and I should simply shut up and quit travelling. US Airways appears to be on a flight to the bottom of the financial barrel, and it seems intent on making the rest of the country suffer along with it.

azstar Jun 20, 2011 7:58 PM

It's bad business, but it's legal. Your ticket is a contract. When you bought it you agreed to travel on those flights, on those dates. When you failed to use the original outbound flights you violated the contract. Sometimes the "discounted" roundtrip fare is cheaper than a one way fare. Airlines feel that since you didn't purchase a one way ticket at the one way price, they are entitled to collect the difference, and then some. Stick to airlines like Southwest and Frontier who only sell one way fares. That way, if you fail to use the original flight (your remaining unused reservations will be cancelled if you don't notify them before the original flight leaves) you can still use the return flights without paying anything.

A320FAN Jun 20, 2011 10:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MamieT (Post 21605)
I paid for two round-trips on the US Airways website for a trip encompassing Thursday to Friday, June 9 – 10, 2011, between St. Louis and Philly (total $590.80), to witness the young woman we had mentored graduate from high school. Another meeting came up: we needed to move our outbound flight a day ahead to accommodate it. The US Airways website allowed this change at the additional cost of $720. Rather than pay this exorbitant price, we bought two new one-way tickets for $339.80 (also on a US Airways flight booked through United’s website). So far, we have spent $930.60.

We received check-in notices ahead of time for all three legs of the flight--the two going to Philly and the one returning to St. Louis. Surprisingly, upon arriving at PHL for our return flight, the US Airways 'customer service' manager informed our return flight reservation had been cancelled because we hadn't shown up for our original Thursday flight. (Remember: we had paid his airline and additional $320 to leave a day earlier). He told us that--in order to get home on the flight that we had already paid for--we had to now PURCHASE THE SAME TICKETS AGAIN PLUS PAY ADDITIONAL MONEY in change fees to get our paid-for tickets back. At this point, we had already paid for three legs of a journey, and were being asked to pay for a fourth plus additional fees and charges--we were quoted about $450-500 in additional ticket fees plus a firm $300 in change fees. (As an aside: the reason for paying a change fee for something we allegedly no longer owned was never quite explained. One of those things you go back later and say "I wish I had asked.") Money spent so far: $930.60, with no prospect of a return flight. Total outlay if we were to get home: $1700. US Airways was essentially holding us hostage for an additional $750 - $800 just to be able to use the TICKETS WE HAD ALREADY PURCHASED IN FULL.

All we wanted was to use the seats we had already paid for on a 1000-mile flight that would or wouldn't take off with us on board. It would have been no skin off the tail (forgive the pun) of US Airways to honor our reservation. We were faced with the prospect of being stranded in Philadelphia without a way to get home.

Instead, we bought one-way tickets from Southwest. It cost us $600 (now our trip total is up to $1,570)—steep, but still less than the additional money US Airways demanded in order to use our paid-for tickets. The folks at Southwest were understanding and accommodating (Quote: “Other airlines do that. We don’t”).

Maybe what US Airways does is legal; maybe it isn't. I do think this: if our airline travel is this bad all over the country, then I guess Al Qaeda has already won and I should simply shut up and quit travelling. US Airways appears to be on a flight to the bottom of the financial barrel, and it seems intent on making the rest of the country suffer along with it.

Actually what happened was that since you No showed on the 1st portion of the original itinerary, the return portion is then automatically canceled out of the system. It also re-opens a seat up for sale again as well for a last minute travler. If you do not call US Airways directly atleast 24-72 hours prior to the departure of the original flight and :

A.) Make a change to one of the segments
B.) Cancel all or part of the original itinerary
C.) attempt to check in for the flight via the web or in person
at a US Airways ticket counter

then you have forefited the fare. The practice is fairly common with 98% airlines out there EXCEPT the Low Cost Carriers (I.E. semi no frills airlines),
as their segments can always be booked as 1 way tickets all the time. As a matter of fact I am holding onto 2 1-way tickets right now with 2 different airlines as the schedule was much more flexiable for me and the person I am travling with. You could have essentially booked STL-PHL with US Airways and then a 1 way back with another airline. This way you can control you schedule. I am siding with US Airways in this case.

jimworcs Jun 21, 2011 9:08 PM

In these circumstances, it is legal but utterly unethical. US airways abused this passenger and exploited them. Disgraceful.

tinm9n Aug 9, 2015 1:09 PM

Cancel Flight
 
I’m sharing with you my recent, horrendous experience with US Airways so that you all can be informed before booking a flight with them. Due to convenience of location, I simply booked most of my flights with US/American Airlines although
they consistently exhibits poor conduct and manipulation. On a recent flight to Greenville, NC, my wife’s flight got canceled before 50 minutes departure time, due to their so-called reason, “too late” to check in. Hence, her flight got pushed back to stand-by. She waited from 4 am to 2pm and none of the seat from standby flights available. Consequently, she spoke to the US Airway agent to see if they can honored the returned portion of the trip if she booked another departure flight with Southwest since there’s no guarantee of their flight availability. The agent reassured her that she could and their airline would honored it. However, when she got to the check in today for her returned flight, the agent at the counter informed her the ticket was automatically voided because she did not fly out on her initial flight (although her baggage initially was already checked in and arrived to Greenville). If she purchases that same returned flight, it would cost her over $800 (in addition to $200 fee charged for changing her flight). Needless to say, we could not win any argument with US Airways and in the end, we spent close to $2000 for our ticket because of the greedy, sneaky business operation of US airline. We had no luck trying to deal with customer service since they refuse to look for any possible remedies to rectify all their shortcomings as an business entity. What’s a costly, stressful experience! Think before you book another flight with US Airways.


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