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Old Nov 7, 13, 3:49 am   #16
 
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Write hard letter asking for compensation

Next time fly her on WN where people are nicer to HRL
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Old Nov 7, 13, 6:45 am   #17
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While it's really nice that OP got into the mix by calling UA to rearrange her mother's travel, this ocurred at the same time that UA was doing so on its own because of the evident misconnect.

There is no real solution to the above problem because OP is stuck far away from the ground, while a CSR on the ground is tapping away trying to figure out how to get OP's mother to LGA.

Clearly someone at UA figured out that the mom is elderly because they actually rebooked an award ticket OA when there were decent (although not ideal for an elderly and presumably inexperienced) traveler, e.g., shifting LGA to EWR.

The urban myth of sending in snail mail letters is silly. Those are simply scanned into the same database as the webform, it just takes weeks longer.

But, OP might consider determining whether her mother held a valid AA BP, appeared at the gate for departure ontime and was denied boarding. She might -- and I stress might -- be entitled to IDB from AA which would be cold hard cash. As an educated guess, if the mother was able to check bags & held valid BP's, the only reason not to board her was an oversell, which can easily occur during IRROPS at a small airport.
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Old Nov 7, 13, 7:15 am   #18
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Did your mom receive boarding passes from AA? If yes, then you have a case of IDB by AA. If not, then there might be an ticket/reservation alignment issue, which is notorious on AA's system. Although, if bags were checked through AA, my assumption is BP were issued.

Quote:
Originally Posted by polandspringuy View Post
Thank you everyone for your comments and suggestions. I ended up renting a car as I wanted to be there to pick her up. I live in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.

It's after 2am here and I just got home. Mom is comfortably resting.

Here are the facts:
-Ticket was booked using my UA account, domestic saver @ 12.5k (don't know if relevant)
-I originally booked UA6146 / UA1632 arriving LGA at 22:08
-UA6146 delayed
-I called agent to change to UA6146 / UA1453 arriving LGA at 23:17 due to delay and subsequent mis-connect
-UA proactively moved her without notice to AA333 / AA1154 arriving LGA at 23:20
-Check in at MFE was with AA and bags were checked thru DFW to LGA, where they currently sit
-Ended up on UA5805 / UA1453 arriving EWR at 23:59 (actual 24:38 +1)
-I don't have the AA BPs as they were tossed. I do have the *Not Valid for Travel* AA itinerary printed on UA paper. Along with the AA baggage check tags.

I am unclear of the following:
-Timing of when I requested the change relative to when UA put her on AA
-Why UA would put her on AA (there were several UA options I believe)
-Why UA would instruct her to check in with AA and get AA BPs only to have AA deny boarding at the gate
-Finally put on UA5805 scheduled to land at IAH at 18:19 (actual 18:32). Connecting to UA1453 at 18:55 (actual 18:50). I believe A8 to E16, in 18 minutes?! Obviously missed, but not for lack of trying. Don't know what MCT at IAH is...
-Reason for the initial delay of UA6146 that started this whole mess and the additional "bonus" delay of her EWR flight.

Most important thing is that she made it one piece, though there were some worrisome moments for both of us. I had to rent a car to pick her up at a different airport than planned and a few hours later than scheduled. I also have to head over to LGA today to deal with AA to get her bags. The only bright spot is that I'm surprising her with a trip on LH F tomorrow (which is why I can't wait for the UA baggage claim & delivery).

Could/should I have done anything differently? I kept an eye out on all her flights and made the change as soon as I saw the delay. I thought I did well getting her in what I thought would be only an hour late. I usually deal with this stuff pretty well but it's a completely different story when it's a loved one. Felt completely helpless.
(emphasis added)

I know UA reuses certain flight numbers, but one of these numbers is probably not correct.
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Old Nov 7, 13, 9:53 am   #19
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PTahCha View Post
Did your mom receive boarding passes from AA? If yes, then you have a case of IDB by AA. If not, then there might be an ticket/reservation alignment issue, which is notorious on AA's system. Although, if bags were checked through AA, my assumption is BP were issued.



(emphasis added)

I know UA reuses certain flight numbers, but one of these numbers is probably not correct.
In the post you quote it says there were AA boarding passes but they were tossed.
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Old Nov 7, 13, 10:08 am   #20
 
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It seems being able to check bags on a flight you're not able to board would be a pretty significant issue - even a REAL security issue.

But is it possible OP called AFTER PAX checked in but BEFORE PAX boarded?

If so, would it have been possible for UA to re-re-accommodate back on UA flights, thus pulling her off the AA flights she'd already checked in for?
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Old Nov 7, 13, 12:33 pm   #21
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PTahCha View Post
Did your mom receive boarding passes from AA? If yes, then you have a case of IDB by AA. If not, then there might be an ticket/reservation alignment issue, which is notorious on AA's system. Although, if bags were checked through AA, my assumption is BP were issued.



(emphasis added)

I know UA reuses certain flight numbers, but one of these numbers is probably not correct.
I corrected the flight number. It was 1236 to EWR. She did receive AA BPs but they were taken by the AA GA.
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Old Nov 7, 13, 12:35 pm   #22
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raehl311 View Post
It seems being able to check bags on a flight you're not able to board would be a pretty significant issue - even a REAL security issue.

But is it possible OP called AFTER PAX checked in but BEFORE PAX boarded?

If so, would it have been possible for UA to re-re-accommodate back on UA flights, thus pulling her off the AA flights she'd already checked in for?
I think this sounds like a real possibility. May likely be what happened.

We're off to LGA now to pick up the bags. Thank you everyone.
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Old Nov 7, 13, 12:43 pm   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raehl311 View Post
It seems being able to check bags on a flight you're not able to board would be a pretty significant issue - even a REAL security issue. ....
PPBM (Positive Passenger Bag Match) is not a requirement (and fairly common) for domestic travel and airline driven rerouting (passagner / bag separation) on bags even for international travel is allowed
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Old Nov 7, 13, 12:46 pm   #24
 
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I've had UA move me to AA 3 times recently. In each case, US messed up the transfer, and despite me checking in, I was not able to board a flight without the flight coupon attached, which United never gave me. In one case, I made a few "runs" between AA and UA terminals. In the last case (due to the issues in my previous two) I proactively asked AA what was wrong, knowing something would be, and found a great AA agent who spent lots of time with UA on the phone and got it figured out. It seems UA transfers the eticket to a paper ticket, but never gives me the paper ticket.

Anyway, my point is (should have gotten right to it, sorry) it's likely the AA boarding passes required something from UA that UA did not provide (the ticket) hence the denial of getting on AA. Glad Mom is safely with you.
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Old Nov 7, 13, 12:54 pm   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by z28lt1 View Post
I've had UA move me to AA 3 times recently. In each case, US messed up the transfer, and despite me checking in, I was not able to board a flight without the flight coupon attached, which United never gave me. .....

Quote:
Originally Posted by polandspringuy View Post
....
-Check in at MFE was with AA and bags were checked thru DFW to LGA, where they currently sit
.....

-Why UA would instruct her to check in with AA and get AA BPs only to have AA deny boarding at the gate
...
Why isn't AA catching this at check-in?
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Old Nov 7, 13, 1:03 pm   #26
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
PPBM (Positive Passenger Bag Match) is not a requirement (and fairly common) for domestic travel and airline driven rerouting (passagner / bag separation) on bags even for international travel is allowed
Yes, I thought this went away when they started scanning all domestic checked bags. Also, I thought the rule only applied on the originating flight anyways and not with connecting flights.
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Old Nov 7, 13, 1:16 pm   #27
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eng3 View Post
Yes, I thought this went away when they started scanning all domestic checked bags. Also, I thought the rule only applied on the originating flight anyways and not with connecting flights.
USAir still uses it as an excuse to keep you from changing flights.
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Old Nov 7, 13, 1:25 pm   #28
 
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One important note -- you may have to deal with UA for the bags. While they were checked in with AA, the final flight was on UA.

In 2003, we had UA put us on AA due to a cancellation after bags had already been checked. The UA agent told us not to tell the AA agents that we had checked bags with UA when we checked in, but to file the lost bag claim with AA when we arrived. Did so, and the next day I drove back to the airport and the AA bag claim office walked me to the back room they shared with UA (who had transported the bag) and found it. They might have delivered, but the airport was close and I didn't really feel right since it truly wasn't their fault.

AA might just give you the bags at LGA with the claim check, but be prepared for the worst case of having to go back to UA -- possibly in EWR, but hopefully not.
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Old Nov 7, 13, 1:38 pm   #29
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WineCountryUA View Post
PPBM (Positive Passenger Bag Match) is not a requirement (and fairly common) for domestic travel and airline driven rerouting (passagner / bag separation) on bags even for international travel is allowed
I usually get quite a bit of pushback if I try and separate from my bags on my own initiative, even when flying domestically, but understand PPBM isn't a domestic requirement.

But if there was a reliable way for a passenger to KNOW they could get a bag on a flight and KNOW they wouldn't end up on that flight...

Yeah, guess you're right, they can already just not board and I doubt the airline is going to pull the bags prior to departure.
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Old Nov 7, 13, 5:29 pm   #30
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raehl311 View Post
It seems being able to check bags on a flight you're not able to board would be a pretty significant issue - even a REAL security issue.

But is it possible OP called AFTER PAX checked in but BEFORE PAX boarded?

If so, would it have been possible for UA to re-re-accommodate back on UA flights, thus pulling her off the AA flights she'd already checked in for?
Yes, I think this is the most likely explanation. When the OP called in to change, the UA agent ended up (not intentionally) cancelling the AA segments. The cancellation came through on to AA's computer system after check-in and was caught by the GA and, therefore, BP's were confiscated by the GA.

Honestly, it sounds like this one needs to be chalked up to random airline happenings. The OP's Mother arrived safely. Next time, maybe it would be a good idea to leave an extra long connecting time (perhaps 2 hours). When I used to fly CO out of SAT, I ALWAYS left a longer-than-normal connecting time because of weather issues.
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