Another lost honeymoon. Who is to blame here?

Jason Clements and his new wife planned the perfect honeymoon in Ireland, including tickets from Phoenix to Dublin via Philadelphia on American Airlines and British Airways, purchased through the online travel site CheapOair (a brand of Fareportal). They even purchased trip protection insurance. But they didn’t get to take the trip – or receive a refund for their airfares.

Clements wants to know who is responsible for his lost honeymoon and whether he can get back the airfares and other costs he forfeited. His story is a reminder to always make sure that all details of a booking are correct before confirming it, and to do so in advance of your trip, not when it is under way.

Clements’ story began when he checked his booking from CheapOair, as he and his wife were on their way to the Phoenix airport to begin their honeymoon. At that time he discovered that his name was listed on his reservation as “Jay Clements” rather than as “Jason Clements.”

Don’t worry, CheapOair’s agent reassured him. Clements could have the ticket corrected at check-in at the Phoenix airport.

Except he couldn’t. Both American Airlines and British Airways informed Clements that CheapOair would have to correct the ticket. And neither airline allowed him to board his flight to Philadelphia.

Clements then called back CheapOair. Its agent told Clements that CheapOair could not correct the ticket, but it could sell him a new one for $2,000. Then, on a subsequent call, it upped the price of a new ticket to $2,500 – after both American Airlines and British Airways again refused to help, insisting that it was CheapOair’s error to fix.

By this time, Clements’ and his wife’s baggage was on a plane bound for Philadelphia – without them on it. They canceled their honeymoon and returned home.

“I have never worked with a company with so little compassion for someone with an urgent matter,” says Clements.

Clements asked CheapOair, American Airlines and British Airways for a full refund of his airfares. Although he claims that a British Airways agent told him he could expect a refund, he did not receive one from either airline or from CheapOair. He also found that his situation was not covered by his trip protection insurance.

Clements then turned to our advocacy team for assistance in securing a refund of his airfares. (Executive contact information for all three companies is available on our website.) He also initiated a chargeback.

But was it the airlines’ fault or CheapOair’s fault that Clements wasn’t able to go on his honeymoon?

Certainly CheapOair and the airlines should have gotten Clements’ name right on his tickets. But Clements should have made sure that his name was correct before confirming his booking with CheapOair — and should have contacted CheapOair to correct the error immediately upon discovering it. But the first time he contacted CheapOair to check his booking was on the way to the airport – far too late in the booking process.

CheapOair’s terms and conditions provide that for instances of human error,

If any of our agents make a mistake in the booking process we shall make reasonable attempts to rectify these errors at the time of occurrence. CheapOair stands committed to providing compensation up to a maximum of the entire service fees that CheapOair has collected for that booking in addition to a $50 coupon as redemption towards purchases from CheapOair within 12 months in the future. You must notify us of errors within 24 hours of receiving your itinerary. Beyond this 24 hour period, CheapOair will not be responsible for these errors.

It also indicates that

Most of our airline tickets, hotels, pre-paid car rentals, vacation packages and service fees are non-refundable after 24 hours of booking. … All cancellations must be done over the phone only. We can accept refund requests only if the following conditions have been met:

  • you have applied for a cancellation and refund with us and if the fare rules provide for cancellation and refunds;
  • you are not a “no show” (most “no show” bookings are in-eligible for any waiver from suppliers for refund processing); and
  • we are able to secure waivers from suppliers to process this requested cancellation and refund.

So had Clements notified CheapOair within 24 hours of booking his flights that his name was incorrect on his tickets, he would have been entitled to a refund of CheapOair’s fees and a $50 coupon, plus a refund of his airfares – if they were refundable.

Unfortunately for Clements, his reservation confirmation indicated that his tickets were nonrefundable and that a name change was not permitted.

Our advocates advised Clements to pursue an exception to British Airways’ nonrefundability policy by writing to British Airways using our executive contacts, starting with their customer relations form and escalating his complaint up the corporate ladder to the appropriate executive at each level after giving each respective executive a week to respond. We also invited him to post in our forums about his case and asked him to let us know the results of his contacts with British Airways. As of this writing we have not yet heard back from Clements, but we have offered to advocate his case if he does not receive the exception.

Should we advocate for Jason Clements if he does not receive an exception from British Airways?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...
RSS
Facebook
Twitter
Visit Us
LinkedIn

Underwritten by

This site is underwritten by Sodexo North America

Sodexo North America Sodexo North America is part of a global, Fortune 500 company with a presence in 80 countries. Sodexo is a leading provider of integrated food, facilities management and other services that enhance organizational performance, contribute to local communities and improve quality of life for millions of customers in corporate, education, healthcare, senior living, sports and leisure, government and other environments daily. Learn more at Sodexoinsights.com.

This site is underwritten by Travelex Insurance Services

Travelex Insurance Services is a leading travel insurance provider in the United States with over 55 years combined industry expertise of helping people dream, explore and travel with confidence. We offer comprehensive travel insurance plans with optional upgrades allowing travelers to customize the plans to fit their needs. Compare plans, get a quote and buy online at Travelexinsurance.com.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.

This site is 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.