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AB tix issued on/before Aug 11 now non refundable

AB tix issued on/before Aug 11 now non refundable

Old Aug 16, 17, 7:11 am
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AB tix issued on/before Aug 11 now non refundable

AB has informed their travel agents, that all tix issued on or before Aug 11 are now non refundable as a result of insolvency proceedings and german law. Change of flight is possible against a fee if the original booking conditions allow this.

Tix issued after Aug 11 are refundable and changeable according to fare rules.
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Old Aug 16, 17, 7:50 am
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Old Aug 16, 17, 9:28 am
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Can August 13th get a full refund?

I booked my tickets using Avios on August 13th. Does this mean I can get all my points and feed back?
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Old Aug 16, 17, 9:34 am
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Originally Posted by Marcinho231 View Post
I booked my tickets using Avios on August 13th. Does this mean I can get all my points and feed back?
Best to ask the avios carrier where you booked the ticket. AB will not be the one to answer that question.
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Old Aug 16, 17, 11:20 am
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Originally Posted by Marcinho231 View Post
I booked my tickets using Avios on August 13th. Does this mean I can get all my points and feed back?
All Avios bookings are refundable, prior to departure of the first flight, but subject to a cancellation fee.

But why would you want to proactively cancel? If the AB flights aren't operated, you will either be rebooked, allowed to cancel for free, or both (if the rebooking doesn't suit). And if the flights do operate - well, they are the flights you wanted.
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Old Aug 16, 17, 12:47 pm
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Refundable tickets issued (by AB) prior to 11 AUG are now non-nonrefundable? Is that legal under German law?

Tickets issued by other carriers on travel with AB (eg Avios/AA) are still refundable under their respective program rules. I would speculate revenue tickets issued by other carriers should still be refundable because money hasn't change hands. It's still with the ticket issuing carrier.
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Old Aug 17, 17, 2:15 am
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Originally Posted by seawolf View Post
Refundable tickets issued (by AB) prior to 11 AUG are now non-nonrefundable? Is that legal under German law?
It would appear that it is a consequence of filing for administration.

They seek "protection" from their creditors. They don't want ticketholders suddenly becoming "creditors" by demanding their money back!
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Old Aug 17, 17, 2:32 am
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Originally Posted by irishguy28 View Post
It would appear that it is a consequence of filing for administration.

They seek "protection" from their creditors. They don't want ticketholders suddenly becoming "creditors" by demanding their money back!
Exactly.

German insolvency law distinguishes "old debt" from before the filing date from "new debt". New debt has a higher status und thus the management would violate insolvency law and be personally liable if they pay out funds to creditors with "old debt" before the final liquidation of the company and its assets with a quota part payment And tickets issued before filing date Aug. 11 are definitely old debt. Besides from that the acceptance of such tix for transport is also a violation but it probably was the first decission of the official insolvency procurator to honour old tix for transportation as otherwise the company would shut down immediantely without any potential for continuation and therefore chance of upholding value of assets.
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Old Aug 17, 17, 4:20 am
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That makes sense.

Interesting to see how a credit card charge backs would work. Would the credit card issuer end up eating it (or parts of it)?

As far as other carrier issued award tickets are concern, you can still get a refund.
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Old Aug 17, 17, 5:53 am
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Travel agents can technically still do a direct refund on all AB tickets as their plate isn't pulled yet from the IATA BSP.
Will get interesting if they start sending ADM's to (non-German) TA's that process a refund according to the fare rules. Think AB won't get away with that.
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Old Aug 17, 17, 6:38 am
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US credit card holders have special protection here. Any amount paid with a credit card which is not returned by the carrier in accordance with the fare rule, will be credited in a chargeback by the issuer.

Credit card issuers maintain a hold on a percentage of a vendor's (AB in this case) credits to guard against this. As a vendor's situation worsens, the percentage increases.

This would apply to a US credit card holder either if AB does not fly the segment as the result of its insolvency or in the case of a refundable ticket, if a refund is not issued.
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Old Aug 17, 17, 8:11 am
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Travel agents can technically still do a direct refund on all AB tickets as their plate isn't pulled yet from the IATA BSP.
Will get interesting if they start sending ADM's to (non-German) TA's that process a refund according to the fare rules. Think AB won't get away with that.
This is the information I have received. I would like to not that I cannot guarantee that this statement is 100% correct.

If an AB-plated ticket was booked through a GDS/BSP, a refund is not paid out anymore - even if the ticket is refundable. A refund application is still accepted and handled, however, no money is transferred back to the passenger (or company who booked it).
The problem is that there are commercial parties between the passenger and Air Berlin. They fear that if they pay out the refund (according to fare rules), they won't get it back from AB.

In m eyes, this behaviour by AB is not acceptable, and, hence, it makes sense to suspend AB from all GDS/BSP systems.
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Old Aug 17, 17, 11:24 am
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the settled rule in the US is that when an airline ceases operations, the credit card company will approve a chargeback, so long as the chargeback is requested within 60 days of the statement date containing the charge.

i am not aware on any US requirement for the credit card company to approve a chargeback when the airline continues operating and for the reason of the airline refuses to honor the booking terms.

i am in this situation now with AMEX. have filed the chargeback dispute. will see what happens. best case for me would be AB ceases operations prior to early Oct, so am covered as per first paragraph.

will be interesting.
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Old Aug 17, 17, 11:44 am
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Originally Posted by warakorn View Post
In m eyes, this behaviour by AB is not acceptable, and, hence, it makes sense to suspend AB from all GDS/BSP systems.
It is not a "behaviour" of AB, but a apparently a binding requirement by German law, apparently. On that basis all German airlines would have to be suspended ... which is not going to happen.
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Old Aug 17, 17, 2:46 pm
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Originally Posted by Colin View Post
the settled rule in the US is that when an airline ceases operations, the credit card company will approve a chargeback, so long as the chargeback is requested within 60 days of the statement date containing the charge.

i am not aware on any US requirement for the credit card company to approve a chargeback when the airline continues operating and for the reason of the airline refuses to honor the booking terms.

i am in this situation now with AMEX. have filed the chargeback dispute. will see what happens. best case for me would be AB ceases operations prior to early Oct, so am covered as per first paragraph.

will be interesting.
according to the AMEX telephone rep, AMEX has already (within the first 12 hours post dispute) contacted Air Berlin, AMEX says Air Berlin concedes the refundability of the purchased fare, AMEX has flagged the dispute as Awaiting Refund, and that AMEX will always stand behind its customers when an airline fails.

all good to hear, of course nothing is final yet.
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