Old Mar 17, 2020, 1:00 pm
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
Last edit by: oliver2002
Air France's rebooking policy: https://www.airfrance.nl/NL/en/common/page_flottante/hp/news-air-traffic-air-france.htm?_ga=2.60869669.82286185.1584471569-101309917.1487618201 KLM's rebooking policy: https://www.klm.com/travel/nl_nl/prepare_for_travel/up_to_date/flight_update/index.htm

Worksheet/flowchart for Travel Agents: http://image.email.bluebiz.info/lib/fe9013727c62017f75/m/4/575524f1-d29b-4548-b393-eb5ab0eee26b.pdf

European Commission EC261/2004 guidelines in context of COVD-19 dated 18 MAR 2020 US DoT Enforcement Notice regarding refunds dated 3 APR 2020.

Some additional information:
1) North American ticket holders can typically request chargebacks from their banks.
2) Furthermore, for flights that touch US soil, they may also file complains with the US DOT.
3) American Express in France and in the Netherlands reportedly refuse to open chargeback disputes for cardholders. Unclear whether other banks are following this policy.
4) At this stage, 14 EU member states out of 27 support amending EC261 regulation (which mandates airlines give the consumer the choice of a refund) for the duration of the crisis. Some of these member states have already suspended the enforcement of the regulation with respect to the obligation for a refund. Air France/KLM supports the proposed amendment.

Statement by 12 of these 14 EU member states: https://www.aviation24.be/miscellaneous/passenger-rights/coronavirus-twelve-eu-member-states-ask-commission-to-amend-regulation-ec-261-2004-to-allow-issuance-of-vouchers-in-lieu-of-refund/


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COVID-19: AF/KL rebooking/refund policy

Old Mar 24, 2020, 4:17 am
  #256  
 
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Be mindful that, if you wait until your flight has been cancelled, you have more options and rights compared with accepting the voluntary voucher. If your flight is cancelled, the voucher provided is refundable after a year. If the PAX initiates the request for a voucher while the flight is not (yet) cancelled, the voucher is non-refundable. And of course, one may at a later stage dispute the voucher for a cancelled flight and get a refund.
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 4:21 am
  #257  
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Originally Posted by Reload
do I have any other recourse with AF or is any other contact method worth trying? I can afford to 'park' the money with them but that's not really the point, as others have said why should they benefit from my funds interest free
You can follow the regular legal process , but you need to ask yourself few things
  1. Will you plan this trip again once everything return to normal ?
  2. Is this amount of money not worth the full legal process to get a refund ? especially if you know that all parties involved might not operate as usual due to covid-19 , which means it will be so much delayed that you will probably wait months to get money back

If answer to both questions are yes , then you can chillout and accept the voucher , cause AF is very unlikely to collapse , so the money wont disappear .

Originally Posted by Reload
why should they benefit from my funds interest free
i also fully agree , cause in case you go bankrupt , you can't ask gouvernment for a bailout , and no one will accept to give you money for work you won't be able to provide
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Last edited by fifty_two; Mar 24, 2020 at 4:32 am
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 4:38 am
  #258  
 
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I am on the phone right now with both Amex Travel Online and Air France.
Air France is telling Amex that they dont have the funds to refund the passenger (me) for a cancelled flight.
That they are issuing vouchers valid for one year only.

I declined their offer. Told them I will contest this with my credit card company.
Air France acknowledged this response and asked me to do so - despite my second request to try and amicably resolve / refund the tickets.

This sounds ominous.

How are credit card companies going to deal with these issues?
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 4:53 am
  #259  
 
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Originally Posted by gottaluvNW
I am on the phone right now with both Amex Travel Online and Air France.
Air France is telling Amex that they dont have the funds to refund the passenger (me) for a cancelled flight.
That they are issuing vouchers valid for one year only.

I declined their offer. Told them I will contest this with my credit card company.
Air France acknowledged this response and asked me to do so - despite my second request to try and amicably resolve / refund the tickets.

This sounds ominous.

How are credit card companies going to deal with these issues?
I got the same answer from Air France Israel, they are clearly out of cash, they also advised me to do a chargeback. It sure feels like they are about to go bust.
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 4:54 am
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Originally Posted by gottaluvNW

How are credit card companies going to deal with these issues?
There's a chance that given the potentially thousands of chargebacks they'd cancel the contracts with the airline which would therefore be unable to accept credit card payments.
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 5:01 am
  #261  
 
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Originally Posted by _nate
Is anyone with greater knowledge of this than me able to confirm: does the free date change apply to a return leg if the outbound has already been flown? Am I correct in assuming that the initial date for the return leg should be before 31st May if so? Thanks.
(This relates to KLM, for clarity. I've been through the terms and the thread and I really can't tell whether or not I can change the return after flying the outbound. It would make a huge difference as to whether or not I make a booking.)
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 5:08 am
  #262  
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There's a chance that given the potentially thousands of chargebacks they'd cancel the contracts with the airline which would therefore be unable to accept credit card payments.
Or Visa/Mastercard/Amex block all chargeback requests when it comes to transportation services, which were not rendered. Basically, a last-minute change in the chargeback rules;
That's why we need to receive reports from you once a chargeback has been successful.
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 5:14 am
  #263  
 
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Originally Posted by _nate
(This relates to KLM, for clarity. I've been through the terms and the thread and I really can't tell whether or not I can change the return after flying the outbound. It would make a huge difference as to whether or not I make a booking.)
I was able to change the date of my return flight after I had flown the outbound leg. On the phone the agent told me that the change was free of charge once, but if travel restrictions or cancellations would prohibit flying the new return flight, changes would of course be possible again for free. Hope this helps!

Last edited by TLSpace; Mar 24, 2020 at 5:23 am Reason: add quote
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 5:25 am
  #264  
 
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I have another much more expensive reservation and thinking of just informing the credit card company I don't remember ever making the transaction as it will be much easier to get a refund from the credit card company compared to a failure to provide goods claim.

In a pre-COVID19 world I would never think of doing something like this but I doubt AF-KL will be able to deal with it at the moment, they started it by descending into anarchy, so us customers can't be blamed for doing the same thing.
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 5:30 am
  #265  
 
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Originally Posted by TLSpace
I was able to change the date of my return flight after I had flown the outbound leg. On the phone the agent told me that the change was free of charge once, but if travel restrictions or cancellations would prohibit flying the new return flight, changes would of course be possible again for free. Hope this helps!
Thank you. This really helps tremendously.
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 6:34 am
  #266  
 
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Originally Posted by warakorn
Or Visa/Mastercard/Amex block all chargeback requests when it comes to transportation services, which were not rendered. Basically, a last-minute change in the chargeback rules;
That's why we need to receive reports from you once a chargeback has been successful.
I consider that rather unlikely. There have been reports of chargebacks against Swiss being processed successfully immediately.
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 7:22 am
  #267  
 
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It seems nobody cares about EU reg. right now and chargeback is the only option to get cash for canceled flights
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 7:47 am
  #268  
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Originally Posted by mfkne
I consider that rather unlikely. There have been reports of chargebacks against Swiss being processed successfully immediately.
Do you have any source on that, esp. regarding the success part of the chargeback process?
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 8:12 am
  #269  
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Originally Posted by Reload
Just been on the blower to AF reference a cancelled flight in 48hrs. Voucher is the only refund option offered. Arguing with the guy on the phone was a non starter, it's not his fault as he just says what AF management tell him to. Even acknowledged the fact that they are not following EC regulations, do I have any other recourse with AF or is any other contact method worth trying? I can afford to 'park' the money with them but that's not really the point, as others have said why should they benefit from my funds interest free
A bit OT, but remember that current interest rates in euro are negative. For example Euribor 3 months is -0,37%.
Of course AF is a large credit risk, so they cannot borrow today. But the expectation is that the State will step in, either by nationalization or guaranteed loans. I would be more worried about vouchers by some other airlines which might rather seek bankruptcy protection.

BTW, I share the worry of the future of credit card chargebacks. We are in an area of total uncertainty of pseudo-bankruptcy. Contracts do exist, but their enforcement might be left to the future when the world recovers.

Last edited by brunos; Mar 24, 2020 at 8:20 am
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Old Mar 24, 2020, 9:12 am
  #270  
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If credit card chargebacks are to be banned -> then Visa, MasterCard, Amex will experience their economic demise soon, too.
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