You aren’t entitled to LATAM’s fares for Peruvians if you are traveling on a US passport

Charlotte West buys a ticket on LATAM Airlines and books the the cheaper rate for Peruvians. But, she’s flying with a U.S passport, so the airline won’t honor the fare. She had to pay another $177 for the ticket. Can our advocates get the money back?

Question: I booked a round trip flight from Lima to Cajamarca, Peru, on LATAM Airlines. I’m a U.S. citizen but was a resident of Peru at the time that I took the flight.

LATAM has special rates for Peruvian residents. I booked my ticket with my Carnet de Extranjeria, which is a Peruvian identification card for foreign residents. I used my U.S. passport to check in for the flight and LATAM refused to honor the resident fare. I had to pay another $177 because I didn’t have my resident card with me.

I asked if I could get a refund if I showed my resident card at a later date, and the airport staff gave me a phone number to call in Lima. I called later and was directed to the LATAM website. After I filed the claim online, I called again. The customer service agent said she couldn’t help and I would have to seek resolution another way.

I emailed a company executive listed on your site, but have not received a response. I’ve waited two months and haven’t received anything other than a form reply indicating that these are special fares for Peruvian residents.

I’ve left Peru and returned to the U.S. But I was a Peruvian resident when I bought the ticket and took the flights, so I was eligible for the same fares as Peruvians. I acknowledge that this is partially my fault because I should have brought my resident identification to the airport. But I would have thought twice about paying the $177 if I didn’t think it was possible to get a refund.Charlotte West, Camano Island, Wash.

Answer: It is unfortunate that you did not bring your Peruvian resident card to the airport when you checked in for your flight. Subsequent to the flight, you produced documents that established that you were eligible for the fare. But producing the required documents retroactively was insufficient for the airline to refund your money.

Although you acknowledge that this is partially your fault, I think that’s it’s more than partially your fault. Airlines are very clear and very strict about the types of identification required to check in. Beyond government issued identification, such as a passport or driver’s license, airlines commonly require proof that a flyer meets the criteria for a special fare.

As an example, many airlines offer discounts to those serving in the U.S. Military. You can be assured that if someone books with this discount and can’t produce military identification when required by the airline, the fare won’t be honored.

The LATAM transport agreement provides that:

Passengers are solely responsible for informing themselves about, and obtaining and fulfilling all travel requirements imposed by any authority in the place of origin and the place of destination, and must present identification documents, permits for exit, transit or entry, visa and any other required documents dependent upon the destination. The Carrier will not be held liable whatsoever for any delays or boarding refusals passengers may experience in association with, or arising from, their failure to comply with this obligation.

In trying to resolve this yourself, you did what we recommend. You started with customer service agents on the phone and contacted LATAM Airlines by email. Then, you escalated your complaint to a company executive. We list company contact information for LATAM Airlines on our website. You also could have tried posting your question to our help forums. Our help forums are staffed by travel industry experts and they may have had helpful suggestions about how to address this issue with the airline.

We sympathize with your situation, and we’re writing about it because it’s a cautionary tale for other travelers. We’re sorry that we couldn’t help you resolve this, and we have to file this as Case Dismissed.

Underwritten by

Underwritten by AirHelp

AirHelp is the world’s leading flight delays compensation company, helping passengers apply for compensation following a delayed or canceled flight or when boarding has been denied. It is AirHelp’s mission to fight for passenger rights by holding airlines accountable for flights disruptions that are out of passengers’ control. AirHelp has already helped 5 million people, taking the stress out of applying for compensation and making it as hassle-free as possible for travelers around the world.

Underwritten by Allianz Travel Insurance

The Allianz Travel Insurance company has built its reputation on partnering with agents all around the world to provide comprehensive travel insurance for their clients. Contact Allianz Travel Insurance for a comprehensive list of coverage.

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.

Underwritten by Enterprise

A family-owned, world-class portfolio of brands. A global network that spans across more than 85 countries. Some 97,000 dedicated team members sharing common values. And more than 1.9 million vehicles taking our customers wherever they need to go.

Underwritten by Fareportal

Fareportal’s portfolio of brands, which include  CheapOair and  OneTravel, are dedicated to helping customers enjoy their trip. Whether you want to call, click, or use one of our travel apps, one thing is clear: We make it easy to take it easy.

Underwritten by Insuremyrentalcar.com

An independent provider of low cost CDW/LDW insurance for use with rental cars. Up to $100,000 cover with no deductible. Policies available on a per day, per trip or per year basis. Also works with overseas rentals. Try  Insuremyrentalcar.comnow.

Underwritten by InsureMyTrip

It’s simple. InsureMyTrip finds you the right travel insurance plan, every time. InsureMyTrip is the authority on travel insurance. Rated A+ for travel insurance by the Better Business Bureau. All travelers that purchase a policy through  InsureMyTrip have access to Anytime Advocates® for claims assistance.

Underwritten by Mediacom Communications

The nation’s fifth-largest cable operator, serving the smaller cities and towns in the Midwest and Southern regions of the United States. We are a high-performance broadband, entertainment, and communications company that brings the power of modern technology and quality customer experience to life inside the connected home by combining ultra-fast gigabit speeds with personalized local and over-the-top entertainment choices that fit your lifestyle. Details at  Mediacomcable.com.

Underwritten by SCOTTeVEST

An innovative apparel brand for people who want easy access to everything they need. For those who live for every second, SCOTTeVEST lets you maximize your life. Ditch the carry-on bag and pick up a  SCOTTeVEST.

Underwritten by Virtuoso

The leading global network for luxury and experiential travel. This invitation-only organization comprises over 1,000 travel agency locations with 17,500 advisors in over 45 countries, and holds preferred relationships with 1,700 of the world’s finest travel companies. Virtuoso advisors collaborate with their clients to create personalized itineraries featuring exclusive perks, while also providing advice, access, advocacy, and accountability. For more information, visit  Virtuoso.com.

Underwritten by VisitorsCoverage

As a company that is constantly striving to simplify travel insurance, VisitorsCoverage, is on a mission to help travelers make the better decisions about purchasing travel insurance, quickly. VisitorsCoverage has helped millions of travelers globally to buy the suitable travel insurance and explore the world with confidence. Get insurance for your next trip at  VisitorsCoverage. Lowest Price Guaranteed.

Underwritten by MedjetAssist

Medjet is the premier global air-medical transport, travel security and crisis response membership program for travelers. With a MedjetAssist membership, if you become hospitalized more than 150 miles from home, we will get you from that unfamiliar hospital all the way home to the hospital you trust. All you ever pay is your membership fee. MedjetHorizon members add 24/7 personal security and crisis response benefits. Elliott.org readers enjoy discounted rates. Travel safer with  MedjetAssist.

Underwritten by Southwest Airlines

The mission of Southwest Airlines is dedication to the highest quality of Customer Service delivered with a sense of warmth, friendliness, individual pride, and Company Spirit. We are committed to provide our Employees a stable work environment with equal opportunity for learning and personal growth.

Underwritten by Sungard Availability Services

Leveraging more than 35 years of experience, Sungard AS designs, builds and runs critical IT services that help businesses manage complex IT, adapt quickly and build resiliency and availability. A leading provider of critical production and recovery services, Sungard AS partners with customers across the globe, delivering resilient IT systems, infrastructure and recovery services tailored to achieving desired business outcomes.

Underwritten by TravelInsurance.com

TravelInsurance.com makes it fast and easy to compare and buy travel insurance online from top rated providers. Our unbiased comparison engine allows travelers to read reviews, compare pricing and benefits and buy the right policy with a price guarantee, every time. Compare and buy travel insurance now at  TravelInsurance.com.

Underwritten by Squaremouth

Squaremouth helps travelers easily and instantly compare travel insurance policies from all major providers. Only companies that meet the strict requirements of Squaremouth’s Zero Complaint Guarantee are available on the website. Compare policies on  Squaremouth.com to save over 70 percent on your next purchase.

Underwritten by Travel Leaders Group

Travel Leaders Group is transforming travel through its progressive approach toward each unique travel experience. Travel Leaders Group assists millions of travelers through its leisure, business and network travel operations under a variety of diversified divisions and brands including All Aboard Travel, Andrew Harper Travel, Colletts Travel, Corporate Travel Services, CruCon Cruise Outlet, Cruise Specialists, Nexion, Protravel International, SinglesCruise.com, Travel Leaders Corporate, Travel Leaders Network and Tzell Travel Group, and its merger with ALTOUR. With more than 7,000 agency locations and 52,000 travel advisors, Travel Leaders Group ranks as one of the industry’s largest retail travel agency companies.

Underwritten by Travelers United

If you’ve been mistreated by the airlines, Travelers United is your voice in Washington. Join the #1 travel advocacy organization working with Congress to improve and protect travelers. Plus, get $400 of annual benefits you can use for travel for only $29/year. Add your voice to ours. Make travel better.  Join today.

%d bloggers like this:
Get smart. Sign up for the newsletter.