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Air Nz offering 'Change Flexibility', but only for new bookings.

Air Nz offering 'Change Flexibility', but only for new bookings.

Old Mar 8, 20, 9:11 pm
  #1  
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: South Island, New Zealand
Programs: Krisflyer, Qantas Frequent Flyer, Air NZ Airpoints, Koru, NZ*S and former *G
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Air Nz offering 'Change Flexibility', but only for new bookings.

I see the news "Air New Zealand is introducing booking change flexibility for all new international bookings ticketed from 5 March to 31 March 2020". Change fees and penalties will be waived.
That is a good way to alienate your existing passengers with no flexibility offered for changes/cancellations whilst offering this to new bookings.
Clearly a way to try and encourage those with any doubts to have confidence and make bookings, but what about recognising your existing customers?
Mrs Ottie and I have PE/J fares booked to LHR in a few weeks time and due to changes in the cruise we were taking (we cancelled it!) would like to have flexibility to change our bookings accordingly to fit with our new arrangements, but apparently NZ don't want to facilitate that.
Sorry NZ, but this leaves a bad taste in my mouth. I was always told it made better sense in business long term to look after your existing customer and their needs ahead of canvassing for new business.
I guess it is worth a call to them to appeal to their sense of fairness - has anyone else tried this with making international booking changes?
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Old Mar 8, 20, 9:24 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
Location: NZ
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Yes I tried just yesterday and no lenience, was told could amend but would inccur change fee + service fee + any fare difference, if cancelled then nothing. I agree it really puts everyone who booked prior to 5 March in a less than ideal situation, also considering most travel insurance won't help
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Old Mar 8, 20, 10:06 pm
  #3  
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Join Date: Sep 2014
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I figured that might have been the situation. They should take a lesson from the cruise industry who are offering a range of lenient cancellation policies now (the difference being that airlines have our money once we book, while cruise lines often only have a deposit until final payment date arrives), so relatively NZ is in a stronger position as they have our money!
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Old Mar 8, 20, 10:28 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
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rang them today about a March booking - that now I am considering to cancel
I must say they have been so rigid that I am most disappointed
I am extremely surprised that they have not been more relax at times like this - this is the first time for a long time that I am feeling like this towards the airline
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Old Mar 8, 20, 11:22 pm
  #5  
 
Join Date: Nov 2012
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Originally Posted by mmonster View Post
rang them today about a March booking - that now I am considering to cancel
I must say they have been so rigid that I am most disappointed
I am extremely surprised that they have not been more relax at times like this - this is the first time for a long time that I am feeling like this towards the airline
I've been affected by this, as I'm sure many of us have, and I really don't think their hard-nosed attitude is good business practice.
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Old Mar 9, 20, 2:28 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
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Yes, I tried to cancel flights without having to pay the penalty but the person on the phone/their supervisor was not helpful and refused to waive the penalty. That is ok (I did pay the cheap, non-refundable fare as well) but then I got a lecture about how I should take vitamin D supplements to 'boost my immune system' to prevent the coronavirus! The person on the phone also suggested that COVID-19 rates were so high in the northern hemisphere because over there it is winter and sunlight levels are low leading to low levels of vitamin D! Extremely unprofessional and, frankly, useless information. I am in the medical field so I know the truth.. vitamin D does not prevent COVID-19!
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Old Mar 9, 20, 2:29 am
  #7  
 
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I’ve had to reschedule two long-haul PE journeys ex-AKL to the U.S. this week. Both booked on Global Saver / Global Sale fares (later of which is fully non-refundable, non-changeable). I rang to enquire how much changing the flights would be, and as per usual, the answer was “change fee, service fee, fare difference”. Since I don’t yet know what dates to reschedule to, pending changes in event schedules, they immediately offered (without me asking) to hold the entire fare in credit for 12 months until I‘ve worked out my plans. Once I know my new dates, taking into account fare availability, I simply ring back and pay the fees only. Contrary to the complaints about airlines I’ve been hearing, I find that VERY reasonable given I purchased good value fares that I cannot use now. They are well aware I would not have traveled this week, and yet they offered to keep the full ticket value in credit.
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Old Mar 9, 20, 4:09 am
  #8  
 
Join Date: Aug 2018
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Originally Posted by adventure_seeker View Post
I’ve had to reschedule two long-haul PE journeys ex-AKL to the U.S. this week. Both booked on Global Saver / Global Sale fares (later of which is fully non-refundable, non-changeable). I rang to enquire how much changing the flights would be, and as per usual, the answer was “change fee, service fee, fare difference”. Since I don’t yet know what dates to reschedule to, pending changes in event schedules, they immediately offered (without me asking) to hold the entire fare in credit for 12 months until I‘ve worked out my plans. Once I know my new dates, taking into account fare availability, I simply ring back and pay the fees only. Contrary to the complaints about airlines I’ve been hearing, I find that VERY reasonable given I purchased good value fares that I cannot use now. They are well aware I would not have traveled this week, and yet they offered to keep the full ticket value in credit.
That's a good outcome and what I would have expected in most situations, but it appears not to be the blanket approach. I would happily have taken a credit to use later offer.
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Old Mar 9, 20, 4:06 pm
  #9  
 
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Originally Posted by racekp View Post
That's a good outcome and what I would have expected in most situations, but it appears not to be the blanket approach. I would happily have taken a credit to use later offer.
Twice in the past couple of years I have had to cancel non refundable fares, the first they did as above and credited the tickets. The second time the person on the phone insisted this was impossible, so I hung up, rang back, spoke to someone else and got it done.
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Old Mar 9, 20, 4:55 pm
  #10  
 
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Originally Posted by curioustill View Post
but then I got a lecture about how I should take vitamin D supplements to 'boost my immune system' to prevent the coronavirus! The person on the phone also suggested that COVID-19 rates were so high in the northern hemisphere because over there it is winter and sunlight levels are low leading to low levels of vitamin D! Extremely unprofessional and, frankly, useless information. I am in the medical field so I know the truth.. vitamin D does not prevent COVID-19!
This is disgraceful, and very dangerous. Presumably AirNZ records its calls, you should email them about this as they should under no circumstances be giving dodgy "health" advice like this to customers
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Old Mar 9, 20, 5:40 pm
  #11  
 
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Originally Posted by oranjemakker View Post
This is disgraceful, and very dangerous. Presumably AirNZ records its calls, you should email them about this as they should under no circumstances be giving dodgy "health" advice like this to customers
Seconded I would call them out on this.
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Old Mar 9, 20, 9:04 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
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Originally Posted by adventure_seeker View Post
I’ve had to reschedule two long-haul PE journeys ex-AKL to the U.S. this week. Both booked on Global Saver / Global Sale fares (later of which is fully non-refundable, non-changeable). I rang to enquire how much changing the flights would be, and as per usual, the answer was “change fee, service fee, fare difference”. Since I don’t yet know what dates to reschedule to, pending changes in event schedules, they immediately offered (without me asking) to hold the entire fare in credit for 12 months until I‘ve worked out my plans. Once I know my new dates, taking into account fare availability, I simply ring back and pay the fees only. Contrary to the complaints about airlines I’ve been hearing, I find that VERY reasonable given I purchased good value fares that I cannot use now. They are well aware I would not have traveled this week, and yet they offered to keep the full ticket value in credit.
That s good but my understanding is that they will charge the change fee and service fee and of course fare difference at the time when you make your booking - so what is held in credit is not going to cover and you still have to fork out the difference and including these fees....
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Old Mar 10, 20, 6:50 am
  #13  
 
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Originally Posted by mmonster View Post
That s good but my understanding is that they will charge the change fee and service fee and of course fare difference at the time when you make your booking - so what is held in credit is not going to cover and you still have to fork out the difference and including these fees....
Yes, of course I’ll be paying the fees at that time, but considering I could have lost the total ~$7k value of two return long-haul PE tickets, I maintain the view their handling of the situation was not only reasonable, but with a clear customer relationship focus in mind.
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Old Mar 10, 20, 6:56 am
  #14  
 
Join Date: May 2005
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Originally Posted by curioustill View Post
Yes, I tried to cancel flights without having to pay the penalty but the person on the phone/their supervisor was not helpful and refused to waive the penalty. That is ok (I did pay the cheap, non-refundable fare as well) but then I got a lecture about how I should take vitamin D supplements to 'boost my immune system' to prevent the coronavirus! The person on the phone also suggested that COVID-19 rates were so high in the northern hemisphere because over there it is winter and sunlight levels are low leading to low levels of vitamin D! Extremely unprofessional and, frankly, useless information. I am in the medical field so I know the truth.. vitamin D does not prevent COVID-19!
Doesn't explain why Canada and Australia have similar number of cases.
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Old Mar 10, 20, 3:29 pm
  #15  
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
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Originally Posted by adventure_seeker View Post
Yes, of course I’ll be paying the fees at that time, but considering I could have lost the total ~$7k value of two return long-haul PE tickets, I maintain the view their handling of the situation was not only reasonable, but with a clear customer relationship focus in mind.
sure - I guess that we should be thankful that we can do that - but that is the case for most tickets so I do not see what they are doing extra at this difficult time (I must admit that it is a difficult time for them as well)
but then ther are a bit of inconsistent practices and several Asian airlines have been waving all fees and is able to refund - so why can't NZ? that is for existing bookings, not for 'new' bookings as the airline now suggests
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