AA Vacations change fee when TSA interrupts travel plans

 
Old Nov 9, 04, 11:02 am
  #1  
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AA Vacations change fee when TSA interrupts travel plans

Last week I traveled to Reno via an AA Vacations air/hotel package. Upon returning, the TSA informed me that my notebook computer had not only tested positive as an explosive, but had also raised concerns among the screeners (it’s a standard, unmodified, popular model notebook from a major manufacturer). Therefore, I was denied the right to fly until I could undergo additional questioning / screening -- a process that took nearly three hours to complete. By that time my scheduled AA flight, the last of the day, had departed. The only person manning the AA counter referred me to call AA, which told me that my “W-class tour ticket” had no remaining value; I had to purchase a ticket on another airline.

Has anybody else had a similar experience? Can anybody confirm whether or not discounted tickets purchased via AA Vacations are not eligible for change fees, etc. in extreme situations?
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Old Nov 9, 04, 2:23 pm
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Originally Posted by Bagels
Last week I traveled to Reno via an AA Vacations air/hotel package. Upon returning, the TSA informed me that my notebook computer had not only tested positive as an explosive, but had also raised concerns among the screeners (it’s a standard, unmodified, popular model notebook from a major manufacturer). Therefore, I was denied the right to fly until I could undergo additional questioning / screening -- a process that took nearly three hours to complete. By that time my scheduled AA flight, the last of the day, had departed. The only person manning the AA counter referred me to call AA, which told me that my “W-class tour ticket” had no remaining value; I had to purchase a ticket on another airline.

Has anybody else had a similar experience? Can anybody confirm whether or not discounted tickets purchased via AA Vacations are not eligible for change fees, etc. in extreme situations?
YOU should have to pay NOTHING for this! I'm not sure who SHOULD though. AA and/or TSA.

BTW, what was the deal on the notebook? False positive? What did the TSA finally say?
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Old Nov 9, 04, 2:41 pm
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Originally Posted by Bagels
The only person manning the AA counter referred me to call AA, which told me that my “W-class tour ticket” had no remaining value; I had to purchase a ticket on another airline.

Has anybody else had a similar experience? Can anybody confirm whether or not discounted tickets purchased via AA Vacations are not eligible for change fees, etc. in extreme situations?
I am assuming you were flying AA? (Don't laugh, they do sell tix on other airlines depending on the tour package)

If so, this is crap. While probably technically correct in the outer world of fare rules, they should've booked you on the next AA flight in whatever fare class they had available and sent you on your way.

Can you give us more details? And by the way, is your laptop a Toshiba by chance?
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Old Nov 9, 04, 2:53 pm
  #4  
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Originally Posted by Bagels
Last week I traveled to Reno via an AA Vacations air/hotel package. Upon returning, the TSA informed me that my notebook computer had not only tested positive as an explosive, but had also raised concerns among the screeners (it’s a standard, unmodified, popular model notebook from a major manufacturer). Therefore, I was denied the right to fly until I could undergo additional questioning / screening -- a process that took nearly three hours to complete. By that time my scheduled AA flight, the last of the day, had departed. The only person manning the AA counter referred me to call AA, which told me that my “W-class tour ticket” had no remaining value; I had to purchase a ticket on another airline.

Has anybody else had a similar experience? Can anybody confirm whether or not discounted tickets purchased via AA Vacations are not eligible for change fees, etc. in extreme situations?
This is absurd - the flat tire rule should apply.
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Old Nov 9, 04, 4:44 pm
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Originally Posted by das
This is absurd - the flat tire rule should apply.
This is even worse than a flat tire. This was in NO WAY the OP's fault.
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Old Nov 9, 04, 4:46 pm
  #6  
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UA is really good about re-accomodating in such circumstances.
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Old Nov 9, 04, 5:44 pm
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This one makes me mad! Almost enough that for a fleeting moment I wanted to work for AA again...in Reno, and put the knucklehead that sent this customer away on a performance advisory.

OK.... off soapbox. I must've had too much coffee today.
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Old Nov 9, 04, 6:41 pm
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Did you call AAVacations directly? I have found them extremely flexible in various situations including a 30 hour weather delay. Technically what AA told you was correct since they did not sell you the ticket, however having been re-accommodated by AA in a similar situation, I know they could have done something for you.
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Old Nov 9, 04, 9:17 pm
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Your responses are appreciated.

Originally Posted by mwhitted
BTW, what was the deal on the notebook? False positive? What did the TSA finally say?
That’s a good question. I was told that it was rather common for many items to be deemed explosives, simply because they’ve come in contact with common household goods that could potentially be used as explosives. I was also informed that before the notebook was inspected, the screeners had noticed something suspicious (I was never informed what) and between these two items, I was being kept for additional screening. I was asked a lot of personal questions, and underwent a rather intimate search… but ironically, nobody bothered to search my carryon (I did not check baggage).

I was in Reno for only four days, and the day before I left I had traveled FNT-MDW. My notebook was inspected at both airports without incident. It remained in its sleeve in my backpack, with the exception of while I was being screened at DTW in route to RNO.

Originally Posted by flyastrojets
I am assuming you were flying AA?…is your laptop a Toshiba by chance?
Yes, I was flying AA. And my laptop is a Dell.

Originally Posted by yyzflyer
Did you call AAVacations directly?
I didn’t bother since I assumed they’d be unable to help (IIRC, AA Vacations is not owned or managed by AA) for my specific incident. I was also running out of time to purchase my ticket (a redeye flight via LAS on HP).
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