Hey United, where’s the refund you promised for our rental car?

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Rachel Hall and her husband needed to fly from San Francisco to Portland, Maine, for a wedding. They made it as far as Newark.

That’s when the fun started.

“Our pilot never showed up,” she explains.

Elliott Advocacy is underwritten by Chubb. Chubb is the world’s largest publicly traded property and casualty insurance company, and recognized as the premier provider of insurance for successful individuals and families in the U.S. and selected international markets, offering coverage for high-value automobile, homeowners, recreational marine/aviation, valuables and umbrella liability coverage. As an underwriting company, Chubb assesses, assumes and manages risk with insight and discipline, and combines the precision of craftsmanship with decades of experience to conceive, craft and deliver the best insurance coverage and services to individuals, families and business of all size.

By the time United Airlines canceled their flight, there was only one possible way to get to the church on time, and it was a big “maybe.” A customer service representative told her she could instead fly to Boston and then make the two-hour drive to Portland.

“She guaranteed that United would reimburse us for costs we incurred for renting a car from Boston to Portland, including rental car fees, gas, and tolls, because the airline failed to get us to our final destination,” remembers Hall.

You can probably guess what happened next. The Halls flew to Boston, rented a car and then United refused to refund them.

So they called me.

I really dislike he said/she said cases, because there’s usually no proof that someone said what they claimed to have said. Also, companies will make assumptions, such as, “We train our agents to never make those promises; therefore, she couldn’t have possibly said ‘X.'”

This appears to be one of those situations.

“I followed up with customer service the next week and they reiterated that we would be reimbursed and guided me to file a claim on customer care with my receipts attached,” she says. “I just heard back from them yesterday and rather than compensating us for the $253 in costs we incurred, they said that they do not reimburse out of pocket costs but instead offered me a $75 voucher for future travel.”

I was a little conflicted about this case. On the one hand, I believe Hall when she says a United agent promised her the airline would pay for her expenses. On the other hand, Hall didn’t get it in writing, and it is probably also true that the agent shouldn’t have made an explicit promise to refund her rental car.

What irks me — and Hall — is the cause of the delay. The United pilot didn’t show up for work. It seems to her, and to me, that the airline should be going the extra mile to fix whatever happened as a result of the absent crewmember.

Alas, United’s contract of carriage, the legal agreement between Hall and the airline, says the company isn’t responsible for keeping its published schedule. By using her ticket, she agreed to the terms.

I contacted United on her behalf. I could have written the response myself:

Dear Ms. Hall,

Your concern has been escalated to my attention. Thank you once again and I apologize for your continued frustration.

Ms. Hall, please know that I have thoroughly reviewed your concerns. I have already taken the step to submit your concerns as a formal complaint.

I am sorry you were given erroneous information. Contrary to the impression we have left with you, we truly appreciate and value your business.

Please know your business and goodwill are never taken for granted by our airline, and we will strive always to meet your expectations of clean, safe and reliable air transportation coupled with exemplary customer service.

Regrettably, the facts of your experience do not warrant additional compensation.

United Airlines is not liable for any consequential, compensatory, indirect, incidental or punitive damages arising out of or in connection with the performance of its obligations, and Rule 24 Section F1c advises that we are not responsible for providing amenities when delays are due to circumstances outside United’s control such as weather condition and air traffic controls delays.

You may view our Contract of Carriage at the following site; http://www.united.com/web/format/pdf/Contract_of_Carriage.pdf

Regrettably we are unable to change any aspect of our policies and procedures. Rule 3, Section I of our Contract of Carriage explains that United is not liable for any consequential, compensatory, indirect, incidental or punitive damages arising out of or in connection with the performance of its obligations.

Ms. Hall, I hope we have not exacerbated your disappointment and frustration, as this is not our intention. As always, we thank you for including United Airlines in your travel plans, and on behalf of my co-workers, we look forward to welcoming you aboard a future flight.

Ah, don’t you love how an employee who doesn’t show up for work is deemed a circumstance “beyond” United’s control?

By the way, the Halls missed the wedding, which just added insult to injury. I’m moving this into the “case dismissed” file.

Next time your airline promises you something, get it in writing.

Should United have paid for Hall's rental car?

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83 thoughts on “Hey United, where’s the refund you promised for our rental car?

  1. I would argue that a pilot not showing up is not something that is 100% beyond United’s control. While they can’t force an individual pilot to show up, they are ultimately responsible for the scheduling system of their employees. If one of them doesn’t show up, then they should have a system in place that allows for a backup. This should not be an issue in a hub city like Newark. If they don’t schedule employees properly, then they should be on the hook for compensation.

  2. I’m not going to read the CoC but based on this letter, it sounds like Ms. Hall has a reasonable case.

    A pilot not showing up to work is not a circumstance outside of United’s control. The actions of its employees are imputed to United if occurring as part of the employees job. The pilot failing to show up is foursquare within United’s control.

    1. Also, they say “I am sorry you were given erroneous information.” Well, that sounds to me like they’re admitting that their agent screwed up. They should be on the hook to make that right then.

    2. We had a similar problem with Continental when they took our flight scheduled from Houston to New Orleans and used the plane and crew to fly from Houston to Newark. There were serious thunderstorms and planes and crews were scarce.

      They were honest: They said flying passengers to their international gateway of Newark was a priority. So we drove to New Orleans but Continental made it clear they would NOT pay for a rental car because they said it might leave them on the hook for some liability.

      Bottom line, Continental would only offer us $50.00 vouchers, so we sued in Small Claims for half the value of the ticket (they didn’t get us there, but did get us home.) Two days after they were served by mail, we got a call and an arrangement to be paid half the value of the tickets, in cash, plus filing and service fees.

      Go sue them in small claims.

    3. I had a situation where I was to be traveling on Greyhound Lines between High Point, N.C. and Knoxville, Tenn. The driver did show up where the schedule originated, Norfolk, Va., but the driver decided to skip the en-route station in High Point, and went directly to the next stop, Winston-Salem, N.C. I was traveling to meet a business colleague that evening in Knoxville (and conducting a full day’s business the next day), but since there were no more scheduled departures that day, I was compelled to travel by taxi from High Point. Greyhound Lines ignored my letters for reimbursement (as the company does for many or most of its complaints), and only by taking the company to small claims court was I able to get the company to address the situation. This, too, was a situation not being beyond the control of the carrier, and in the end, I negotiated a settlement with Greyhound Lines that reimbursed me all my out-of-pocket taxi costs.

      What does seem unusual (at least to me) is a alleged promise to reimburse for a rental vehicle rather than for common carrier travel. From Boston Logan Airport, Concord Coach Lines operates very frequent express buses to Portland (last bus at 11:25 p.m.), about two hours travel time on what I consider to be the best regular-route bus service in the United States (Logan Airport is also very close to South Station–a very quick ride on the MBTA Silver Line–from which there is hourly service via Concord Coach Lines). Travel on Concord Coach Lines, in place of a United Air Lines failure, seems to me to be more reasonable than a rental car.

      1. There is also a train service from Boston North Station called the Amtrak Downeaster. While not quite as easy to get to from Logan, there are trains five times a day and it takes about 2.5 hours to get to Portland. Many would find trains more comfortable than a coach. And United already has an interline ticketing arrangement with Amtrak, although possibly not for this route.

        1. As you’ve pointed out, the train at North Station is cumbersome to get to (silver line + red line + orange/green line, or Massport bus + blue line + orange/green line), especially with luggage in tow, whereas the bus picks up right at Logan. And there’s only a handful of trains compared to many buses. The train has 8 intermediate stops and takes a bit longer (though not much) than the non-stop bus ride. The only reason for going by train is a personal preference for train over bus service that is great enough to overcome the several advantages of the bus.

          I think it would be more convenient if all the air carriers, bus carriers, and rail carriers reconciled through a common clearing house, so that a single ticket could be used on all modes, and, especially important here, air carriers could reroute more readily on bus carriers (though the contracts of carriage of air carriers typically recognize only air carriers as counting towards their obligations to passengers for transportation).

  3. Crew staffing is certainly within United control. They make the schedule and they employee the crews. I find it very difficult to believe that in a hub city such as Newark there was not a pilot available or who could be called to service this flight.

    However, I do not believe the LW is deserved anything other then a refund for the flight or accommodation onto the next available flight, and possibly some meal/accommodation vouchers. This idea however that the airline has an obligation to get you to a wedding is nuts, they have an obligation to get you to the destination, and they owe you nothing beyond that.

    What bothers and concerns me however is that anyone still believes an airline is going to put themselves on the line to do anything outside of providing you transportation in the CoC. That doesnt happen, and anyone who believes any airline employee in telling them that better have such an agreement in writing, otherwise they are just trying to get rid of you, and no one should believe they will be reimbursed or compensated for anything.

  4. Did the pilot not “show up for work” as suggested? The OP simply said the pilot “never showed up.” After their transcontinental flight, I can’t imagine they would know if the pilot never showed up for work that day, whereas they’d know if the pilot didn’t show up for their flight.

    The former makes it sound like the pilot just skipped that day to eat bon bons and watch movies. The latter could mean that the pilot was on another flight that was delayed or went over the allowable time for the day. One could be United’s problem, while the other is not.

    1. Whether the pilot didn’t show up for work at all, or didn’t show up for that specific flight is irrelevant. What IS relevant is that there wasn’t anyone to pilot the plane.

  5. In the midst of a four hour delay from Las Vegas to Los Angeles a few years ago, I was informed that it was an insurance issue as to why United could not reimburse for a $99 rental car. They WERE willing to reimburse for a hotel in Las Vegas though.

    1. That must be the industry standard. After a delay leaving YVR, Air Canada wanted me to stay in an SFO hotel overnight (before taking a flight to SMF early the next morning) rather than reimbursing for a rental car. I drove instead of staying the night.

      1. I’d like to hear the exact wording of the conversation. (Not just how it was remembered.) Having been misquoted over the years, I would be willing to bet many conversations have went this way:

        Passenger: “Could I get a refund for the rental car?”

        Airline Agent at Airport: “I’m sorry that’s not within my power to offer.”

        Passenger: “Well who would I ask?”

        Agent: “You could ask our customer service department, their contact info is on our website.”

        Fast forward….

        Passenger: “I was told you contact you to authorize a refund for our rental car.”

        Corp. Cust. Service Agent: “I’m sorry, we don’t refund rental car charges.”

        1. My incident was in 2002 so I don’t have a transcript! 🙂 The agent claimed they didn’t reimburse for travel via rental cars for liability reasons. Sure I could have continued to argue with her or a supervisor, but it was faster to get into a rental car and drive to SMF.

          1. They already have the rooms on reserve at a cheap rate to them. Rental cars – not on their list.

          2. No, they have contracted rates with hotels. Nothing is reserved until the carrier calls and can get a room for the passenger. Then the passenger is given a voucher to present at the front desk.

          3. Ok, you’re being picky. Let me rephrase: They get the rooms really cheap from the hotels. They wouldn’t get a car rental really cheap.

  6. I’ve found that UA gate agents and customer no-service agents adhere to the “lie to their face to get them out of your space” mentality.

    UA needs to make right here.

  7. Agree that staffing is 100 percent in united’s control….BUT….I would never cut it that close to get to a wedding I really cared about….it sucks, but it’s why flying in a day early is a necessity.

      1. I’ve seen that happen with certain airlines that fly on weekend or weekday schedules. So trying to get to a certain city on a particular day can be several hundred dollars.

        That said, flying in early can be an option. If the wedding is that important, someone should put up them up.

        1. If the LW is hourly in addition to any additional expenses, (car rental, eating out, etc.) the LW might be out an extra days wages.

          The LW might not be able to get the extra day off work,

          Many reasons why these additional costs may be unavoidable. Plus, depending on the size of the LWs entourage, (spouse, small children, pets) being put up may not be a realistic option.

          1. Agreed. It’s a real challenge. Even if the LW paid full fare, or even business class, United has no legal obligation to get them to their destination within a reasonable time frame.

            Would travel insurance help? Are there policies available with high premiums that would guarantee payment for a flight with another carrier (or rental car) to get them to their destination on time?

      2. It’s about priorities. Things can always go wrong. You either plan for unexpected occurrences, or sometimes things do not work out the way one would like.

    1. Not everyone has the luxury of a flexible schedule that allows taking an extra day. Yes, it is the right thing to do if you can, but it is not something that can always be done.

  8. 99% of the time, an airline will never show up in small claims court, therefore the plaintiff will win. Then try to collect your judgment.

    1. Go out to the airport the night before and identify their airplane positioned at the gate for the first take-off of the next morning. Have the Sheriff impound the airplane when it’s full and about to push off from the gate. One lawyer did that when they lost by default, and INSISTED upon cash – wouldn’t accept their check. They had to go around to their competitor airlines so early in the morning to get the cash before the SHERIFF would remove the impound order from the airplane. He then told ’em that they were gonna pay for his costs of collecting the judgement, or he was gonna do it again! Looks like they crossed the wrong lawyer.

      1. You’ve mentioned this a couple of times. In the event some of us might feel we need to resort to this someday, I was wondering how that could actually work if the only way you can get to the gate is to have a ticket. Maybe buy a refundable ticket for the last flight of the day, go thru security to the gate, get the plane info (what info exactly?), then exit the airport and get a refund on the ticket? I’d really, really want to stick it to an airline to go to the trouble, unless I’m missing something.

        1. I’m not sure how he spotted the airplane. Could be he was able to see it from outside the gate area, using binoculars. Or else, he was able to gain access somehow; I don’t know. Or maybe he watched it land, and spotted the tail number that way. Or maybe that story took place pre-9/11. All he needed was the tail number and the airline name. Should be easy enough to ID the a/c to the judge for issuance of an impound order.

          I looked for that story on the web for you ; can ‘t find it. If I come across it, I’ll post it.

          1. Perhaps having both a court document, and the Sheriff, with you, might be enough to get you thru security.

      2. PS: That was me – happened to TWA in 1988. A partner at my first got royally pissed and we had the ability to make it so – TWA morning nonstop to JFK from LAX. Yep -they went door to door to other airlines to collect the cash . . . .

        1. TWA – that used to be the Pope’s airline……

          You were the guy, hah? I tried to find the story on the net, but couldn’t. I remembered reading it and laughing….. How much did you bang ’em for?

          1. wasn’t alot = the judgment was only for $1200, plus $3k in collection fees – was fun to watch the station manager scramble . . .

  9. Do no other airlines fly from Newark to Portland that United could have switched them to? Or were they (gasp!) more interested in keeping the revenue than helping the customer? I’ve flown out of Logan many times; getting in and out of that airport is a nightmare. Come to think of it, driving anywhere in Boston, other than very early or very late, is a nightmare.

    1. UA is the only non-stop. Many other airlines would fly you there, but only with a connection in their hub way far away which would put the LW in Portland too late in the day for any wedding.

  10. As much as I’d like to side against United, I have to side with them simply due to the customer not getting anything in regarding regarding the refund she would get. If you’ve read this column enough to write to him, you’d think she would know the need to have it in writing.

  11. Multiple lessons learned for this group….

    When you have a hard time for something, always give your self fall back flights to get there – If everything has to work perfectly, you’ll probably lose.

    Promises from gate agents aren’t worth the paper their written on

    I love how staffing issues are deemed “beyond their control.” Only exception would be a weather event causing them to have to scramble for crews and times (it happens). I still would think that they should be calling in their reserve crews then ….

  12. Looking at the UA schedule, it appears the only way to make it from SFO to Portland Maine in time for a wedding the day of arrival is to take the overnight red eye into EWR and then the first flight out to Portland. Any other flight from SFO during the day would get you to EWR (or any other UA hub with flights to Portland) in the afternoon with an arrival in Portland around 8 or 9 PM. If they did take the overnight, then the statement about the pilot not showing up for the morning flight could be accurate. The pilot could have been on a late arriving flight the previous evening and not had his mandated rest period. And knowing UA, they probably refused to make the cancellation decision or reaccommodate anyone until hours later when the other options were no longer suitable to get the LW to the destination in time. While I know it is impossible for any airline to have backup pilots sitting around at every airport, you would think that in their major hub in EWR they would have one or two.

  13. Okay, reading the CoC, pre-caffeine:

    If the pilot didn’t show up for work because of a “sick out” or something like that, that’s a strike (stoppage of labor). That ends up falling under “Force Majeure” rules in the CoC (Rule 24.B. 4b) and all that gets the OP is a travel voucher. If the pilot didn’t show up for work for another reason, well, United STILL calls it “Force Majeure” (Rule 24.B.4d).

    Okay, so what happens when FM is invoked. Rule 24D says (emphasis mine),
    “D) Force Majeure Event – In the event of a Force Majeure Event, UA without notice, may cancel, terminate, divert, postpone, or delay any flight, right of carriage or reservations (whether or not confirmed) and determine if any departure or landing should be made, without any liability on the part of UA. UA may re-accommodate Passengers on another available UA flight or on another carrier or combination of carriers, or via ground transportation, or may refund any unused portions of the Ticket in the form of a travel certificate.”

    I think United owes her the rental car reimbursement. Thoughts, everyone?

      1. I’ve been on that bus route, but going further up to Augusta and earlier in the day (a weekday, not a weekend). Had an opportunity to slowly enjoy the scenery, both ways. Not what these folks needed for a quick trip, was it?

    1. Ground transportation would mean bus taxi or train. Not a rental car because an airline could end up being liable for damage caused during the rental and there is nothing stopping the driver of a rental car from taking detours that the airline doesn’t want to pay for. I have had UA (CO actually before the merger) send me from airport to airport several times when the puddle jumper couldn’t get me there for whatever reason.

      1. Not really disagreeing with you, but “ground transportation” isn’t actually defined in the CoC. Most everything else is. The gate agent or customer service person (not clear from the article if it was at the airport) may have made the error, figuring ground transportation = rental car. The OP spoke with someone from Customer Service after the trip as well and that person said to send in receipts via the Customer Care form. So, UA personnel twice were unclear on “ground transportation”.

        So – 1) term is not defined in the CoC; and 2) personnel were not trained. I still think that UA owes the reimbursement.

        1. True, and I am surprised the term is not defined. Closest I can find is this:

          “Ground Transportation – When lodging is furnished in accordance with 1) above and ground transportation is not furnished by the hotel, UA will provide ground transportation to the place of lodging via public conveyance. Where ground transportation has been offered but not accepted by a Passenger for whatever reason, UA is not liable to reimburse the Passenger for expenses relating to alternative ground transportation secured by the Passenger.

          So I guess UA is off the hook because the ground transportation was secured by the passenger.

          1. Saw that too, but figured that since lodging wasn’t part of this mix, it wouldn’t apply. I’m sure UA will try to make it apply.

          2. I think the key here is from your comment: UA may re-accommodate

            Since it was the LW that rented the car and paid for it, UA did not “re-accommodate” her and because of this wording will weasel out of it. If UA would have handed a voucher form to the LW for any rental company and then the LW got charged for something, it would be a different situation completely.

          3. I’m not a lawyer (hey, Carver or Joe, feel free to chime in!), but I still think the OP could make a good case for reimbursement in small claims court. And then UA will add new verbiage to their CoC defining ground transportation.

          4. Too many missing facts. I’ve haven’t been on United since 2001 and never in that area so I couldn’t even hazard a guess.

        1. I saw it. I have never heard of them paying for a rental car, but it could be possible. We were put on a shuttle van, what drove us over 1 1 /2 hours to get to get us to our home. A client was suppose to fly into SFO and the carrier due to weather conditions at her departing airport, couldn’t get her plane in, so the carrier put her on a departing flight to OAK and left her there. She called me, I told her to go talk to customer service and the carrier put her on a shuttle to SFO to get her car. Never once was a rental car offered in either situation. I have know people to get a car, but it was always at their own expense.

          1. Similar thing happened to me with CO. Flying from EFD (small field near NASA in south Houston) through IAH on my return the weather was too bad for the little prop planes to make the 50 mile hop. Several times they put me in a cab, shuttle van a couple times with others, and even chartered a Greyhound when the whole plane load of us couldn’t get to EFD. Also never was there any mention of a rental car (which would have done no good since there were no rental car facilities at EFD to return the car to anyway).

  14. This should be an easy one. Just verify that the flight was actually canceled, and not for weather. That makes United, as a system airline, liable for getting the passenger there.

  15. I voted NO because nothing in writing was given or even asked for. I can understand Elliot’s hesitancy with these he said/she said problems.

  16. Learn the truth about airlines. Time to spare, go by air. So sorry that you missed the wedding, but who in this time in airline history would travel the day of the event? I have never in my 45 years in travel heard of any airline providing a car; cabs or shuttles, yes. I have even chartered a bus if there were enough passengers affected. Reason number 1 is that most of the time they would still fly from thier original return point of travel and the car would be in the wrong city, 2) The airline would never leave itself open to a ??? amount on this car rental amount. New and un-caring agents at airports are very smart, they say anything to get you AWAY. Far, far away. Travelers are caught off guard when they hear what they want to, and go AWAY….without getting the name of the person that authorized the car. Even with the name, I doubt that United would do a thing. Still, by law (somebody come up with a lawyer and some money to change that law) United owes them nada.

    1. I’ve American provide a cab. My San Jose to LAx flight was cancelled. They put me on San Jose to Orange county and gave me a cab voucher to LAX from Orange County.

  17. I voted no! Anyone flying cross-country on the same day as the event (wedding) to which they are headed for, just got a reality check! If the wedding is important enough to attend, then one needs to schedule accordingly; no excuses! Work schedules can usually be managed, such that one has that extra time. It doesn’t appear as if the wedding was just announced yesterday. I routinely fly cross-country, to go on cruises and I never fly from CA to FL on the same day as the cruise. That’s pushing the envelop beyond its flap! People who take a chance are often on the dock, waving goodbye to their cruise ship! The OP is entitle to nothing, regardless of what they were told or thought they understood. Case closed!

    1. That’s a very limited perspective. Work schedules cannot always be managed. It depends on what you do and how many other people are involved. I can’t change an investor meeting, certain court appearances, etc. Plus, if you’re hourly that may mean a days pay forfeited. And of course, if you have a SO or children, those schedules also need to be considered.

      1. You may have missed my point that in all probability, the OP knew well enough in advance of the wedding, in order to schedule accordingly. If not, then the OP had the choice of not attending the wedding (which they missed anyway) or taking a chance by flying on the day of the wedding (which was a total waste of money). In either case, it was/is the total responsibility of the OP, to make the schedule happen. When things went awry, the OP bet against the odds and hoped that everything would work out. Failure on the OP’s part does not constitute an obligation upon the airline.

  18. Did the OP get any of her flight refunded? At least that could have hopefully offset the costs of rental car, etc… Maybe I need to re-read the story but I didn’t come away clear on that point…

    1. They probably re-priced the itinerary since they did not fly the final segment in such a way that the LW owed UA more money.

  19. I know it sounds fair to have United pay for the rental car, but the truth is that as far as I understand it, their responsibility is to get the passenger to their destination. The fact that there’s a wedding on a certain day and certain time necessitated a car rental, but the normal airline solution would be to pay hotel and fly them there the next day.

    The way I look at it, these things happen sometimes, but not all that often and sometimes you just have to dig into your pocket and pay for these things or the outcome isn’t what you’d like.

    There are how many thousand people flying to weddings, funerals, graduations, meetings, etc, and if the airlines started renting cars for everyone that was delayed, they would soon go out of business or airfares would skyrocket.

    Maybe United “should” pay for the car rental, but I really don’t see it happening and I don’t think this one will get fixed, because if it did, it would “open a whole other can of worms”.

  20. Of course the answer is absolutely no. A lack of proper planning on the OP’s part should not be an emergency on the airlines part.

    Why didn’t they fly a day early if it was that important? Delays happen in air travel, it’s the nature of the game. What did she expect? The pilot could have been sick, car accident, death in the family, or overslept/hungover… that reason doesn’t matter. Were they going to reimburse the entire flight of people for whatever their issues were?

  21. When I am promised something out of the ordinary by customer service in any industry I get the information in writing. And that includes airline ticket agents. If they will not give it to me in writing then I know that I have been lied to. He said/she said is never easy to figure out. But without anything in writing Ms. Hall is out the money.

  22. If a pilot doesn’t show up to work, United should be able to assign another pilot to the flight, not delay everyone, make promises, and then refuse to keep them while claiming the “it’s not our fault, this is beyond our control” line.

    1. I’m sure they do that exact thing when they can, but sometimes they can’t. With an airline that size, they have to do quite a bit of juggling…sometimes it works, sometimes it does not.
      Actually I think it is somewhat of a miracle that it isn’t a lot worse than it is. The logistics must be a nightmare.

      I don’t always defend the airlines, there is a lot they do wrong, however, it is quite a massive undertaking that they accomplish each day It is quite amazing there are so few problems as there are, quite frankly.

      I’m sorry they had to rent a car. Those things happen.

  23. Are we to believe that UA doesn’t have a few crew members on call at EWR? It’s a major hub for them. No matter what the cause, it ain’t right to dump passengers in cities other than the one to which they were booked. The airlines’ attitude of “oh well, too bad” gets very tiring. We seem to be helpless customers … I like the idea of small claims court, but aren’t there jurisdiction issues as to where you can file the claim?

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