When Ellen Spertus receives a promotional code for a $150 companion ticket on Virgin America, she discovers that it’s unusable because of the airline’s blackout dates. When she tries again, she receives an error message, saying the code has been used. Now what? “This Virgin America companion ticket credit is unusable”
Yvette Law Lui pays extra for her seat assignments on Virgin America. She doesn’t get them. Is she entitled to a refund? “Virgin America switched my seats and denied me a refund”
Ashlea McDonald’s grandfather is dead. Virgin America should be pleased about that; it’s going to earn an extra $1,000 in change fees and fare differentials.
“Who knew dead people could be so profitable?”
The email from Jonica Brooks, received yesterday morning, was a simple request.
“I looked for the Virgin American contact information on your web site,” Brooks wrote. “But it seems you only have Virgin Atlantic. Do you have Virgin America contact information?”
If you think you know what happens next, grab a seat. Let me tell you a cool story.
“You want contacts? We’ve got contacts (and a cool story)”
The intoxicating combination of junk fees and loyalty programs seems too powerful for even the most consumer-friendly airline to resist.
At least that’s what passengers like Peter DeForest are discovering when they try to change an award ticket.
He’d saved up enough frequent flier miles on Virgin America, an airline with a stellar reputation for taking care of its customers, to fly himself and a companion from San Francisco to Las Vegas. But shortly before the trip, his companion fell ill. He asked Virgin if he could cancel the trip and get his miles back.
Sure, a representative told him. If he paid the airline a $100 per reservation “redeposit fee.”