How do I get a refund for my canceled Aerolíneas Argentinas flight?

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By Christopher Elliott

When Aerolíneas Argentinas changes Christina Skinner’s flight schedule by nine hours, she asks the carrier to cancel her ticket and issue a refund. Its response: silence. How do you get a refund for your canceled flight?


I want to get a refund for my canceled flight and I need your help. I recently booked a round-trip flight on Aerolíneas Argentinas from Miami to Buenos Aires. The flight was supposed to depart at 5:15 p.m. I received an email from the airline two months before my departure advising me that the flight was now going to depart at 8:05 a.m. the same day.

This was not going to work for me because I was flying from my hometown of Atlanta to Miami earlier that day.

I tried calling Aerolíneas Argentinas’ toll-free number six times. Each time, there was no answer — the call was just dropped. 

I went on the airline website and completed the cancellation request. I received an automated acknowledgment and case number. But I have not heard from the airline since then. 

I sent two successive emails to the airline, and I have tried communicating with it on WhatsApp, but it has not responded.

I would like Aerolíneas Argentinas to cancel the reservation and issue a full refund. Can you help me get my $571 back? — Christina Skinner, Lawrenceville, Ga.


Aerolíneas Argentinas should have sent you a refund within a week. That’s not just my opinion, it’s a government requirement. If you pay by credit card, the Department of Transportation (DOT) gives the airline 7 days; if it’s by cash or check, the airline has 20 days.

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Why didn’t it? Well, no airline wants to refund a ticket, so Aerolíneas Argentinas is hardly alone. I’ve seen them hem and haw and try to push passengers to take a different flight. But this was a significant schedule change, which means you can ask for a refund. (Related: They canceled the flight anyway — can I get a refund?)

The other issue is that your ticket change happened during a turbulent time for Argentina. It was in the middle of an election, and Aerolíneas Argentinas has almost certainly been affected since it is the state-owned flag carrier. 

How to get Aerolíneas Argentinas to cancel a ticket and issue a refund

Canceling a ticket through Aerolíneas Argentinas and getting a full refund should be relatively easy. Let’s go through the steps:

Whose rules apply?

Argentina has regulations that affect your ticket purchase. But for tickets booked in the United States and that leave from the States, DOT regulations apply. (Related: Why are travel refunds taking so long now?)

Check your fare rules

Take a minute to read your ticket’s fare rules. These outline cancellation fees and refund eligibility. You’ll find them on your Aerolíneas Argentinas booking confirmation or its site.

The sooner, the better

If you cancel within 24 hours of booking, you can get an immediate refund, no questions asked. But if you wait longer, you’ll have to accept a ticket credit for most fares. My advice: Don’t wait.

Here’s how to initiate a refund for your canceled flight

You can cancel online through its website, or call the Aerolíneas Argentinas phone number to cancel. If you booked through an online travel agency, contact the agent to process your refund. (It’s always better to do it in writing.) You can also visit an airline ticket counter to cancel and initiate a refund. (Related: Road Scholar refund: She wants her business class ticket back.)

Don’t forget to get a cancellation number from the airline and keep all documents. You may need them if the refund doesn’t come through in a timely manner.

What happened to your Aerolíneas Argentinas refund?

But I don’t want to make any excuses for the airline. It should have refunded you promptly. Interestingly, this was a direct booking, so there was no online travel agency involved. You did an excellent job of keeping a paper trail between you and the airline, although it was mostly emails to the airline with no response.

You might have tried escalating this to one of the executives whose names I publish on this site. But given all that was going on at the time, I’m not sure if they would have responded. (Here’s our guide to resolving your consumer problem.)

I contacted Aerolíneas Argentinas on your behalf. A few weeks later, you sent me an update.

“I wanted to provide the happy news that Aerolíneas Argentinas has responded and as of today, has fully refunded my airfare to my American Express account,” you wrote. “Thank you so much for your assistance in contacting them and spurring them into action!”

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Christopher Elliott

Christopher Elliott is the founder of Elliott Advocacy, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that empowers consumers to solve their problems and helps those who can't. He's the author of numerous books on consumer advocacy and writes three nationally syndicated columns. He also publishes the Elliott Report, a news site for consumers, and Elliott Confidential, a critically acclaimed newsletter about customer service. If you have a consumer problem you can't solve, contact him directly through his advocacy website. You can also follow him on X, Facebook, and LinkedIn, or sign up for his daily newsletter.

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