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Old Feb 28, 08, 4:10 pm   #1
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Join Date: Apr 2007
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Overbooking/Bumped Compensation for Flight

Hi Everyone,
I did a search in the forum for the aforementioned subject but was unable to find recent detailed information on this topic.

My only experience being bumped involuntarily on a flight occured last year with the Welcome Aboard pass, with a trip to Las Vegas as a non-status member. I ended up being put onto a Phillipine Airlines flight and I had to push for that, and received no other compensation. At the time, I did not know what was going on and the Air Canada gate agents made it seem like it was my fault that I was being bumped (the exact reasoning they provided was that the flight was overbooked when I used the flight credit and I should not have been allowed to be confirmed on the flight since it was overbooked).

Anyways, that's behind me now. After a year of reading the forums, I have gained a better understanding of the system. I have my eyes set on a flight that I'm pretty sure is overbooked (all 0s in seatcounter) and am trying to get a better idea of what compensation I should expect when I put my name on the bump list (A-class fare), and if negotiation is possible.

Flight details:
March 2, 2008
Flight 780 SAN-YYZ

The only other flight to Canada on AC leaves 50 minutes later for Vancouver (Flight 555).

Input from anyone with experience in VDB compensation and overbooked flights is appreciated.


P.S. I'm not sure if it's relevant, but I believe SAN has UA gate agents.

Last edited by ViperXF; Feb 28, 08 at 5:10 pm Reason: date
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Old Feb 28, 08, 4:45 pm   #2
Join Date: Aug 2000
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I believe AC has a standard $200 AC funny money policy for VDB. For involuntary ex-USA they are supposed to follow DOT policy of up to $400 USD cash.
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Old Feb 29, 08, 10:25 pm   #3
Join Date: Oct 2007
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I was on AC 594 on Feb 4, 2008 which was cancelled due to mechanicals on the incoming flight. Once in Las Vegas, the crew needs 8 hours of "rest" so that cancelled the flight for us all, until the afternoon the next day.

We all received a letter from Air Canada the next day for a $100 voucher - this was a Las Vegas to Toronto flight, obviously, a flight originating in the USA. I haven't had a chance to write anything to Air Canada, to hopefully bump that up a bit.

In 2007, I was on flight AC 512 ORD-YYZ, which was downgauged, a little plane appeared where a big one should have been. No hotel, or any other type of compensation was provided, as this was the last flight back. My complaint then got me $200, so it seems that writing a complaint letter might work.

Does anyone know if there is a standard type of payment that an airline leaving from the USA is supposed to pay a passenger, when travelling outside of USA (ie - back to Canada) ? And a handy weblink to a US DOT rule, that I could quickly pass to Air Canada, so I can hopefully get a bump up in the voucher without too much back and forth?

Thanks all!
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Old Feb 29, 08, 11:18 pm   #4
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They seem to get cheaper and cheaper. Back in 2005 I got a 200 dollar MCO for an 11 hour delay, since then I've read a few stories / talked to a few people of delayed flights of just as long, if not longer and the standard AC compensation seems to be a lot less than I received.
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Old Mar 1, 08, 5:55 am   #5
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The question was re: VDB. A cancellation is not a denied boarding scenario so that is not handled the same. AC also does not consider an aircraft downgrade to be an overbook situation, at least not at the time when I read the policy on this (not sure what DOT in the US has to say on that) and hence does not necc. follow those procedures. I suppose the argument is they could have just cancelled the entire flight but only cancelled the part that didn't show up at the gate! Of course they should treat passengers better regardless of the semantics but they don't neccessarily do that.
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Old Mar 1, 08, 6:09 am   #6
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Here's a link to a U.S. Department of Transportation web site.


As Altaflyer points out, delayed is not VDB. Aircraft substitution is not VDB. These rules do not apply to scheduled aircraft seating 60 passengers or less - like CRJ200s.
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