AA Errors Reticketing into Basic Economy Fare

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Old Mar 14, 17, 7:34 am   -   Wikipost
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Error Rebooking Into Basic Economy

Members and others are reporting erroneous rebooking - mostly under OSO / IROPS conditions - from some form of Main Cabin / Economy (but also domestic First) into "B" Basic Economy. This inhibits the possibility of upgrading, better seat selection and even may bar one from boarding with carryon baggage.

Agents can avoid this, and they can remedy it - but many do not know how at this time, and attribute the issue to "weird computer problems".

Reports in View From the Wing: "UH OH: American Airlines Customers Are Getting Stuck in Basic Economy Even When They Buy More Expensive Tickets" by Gary Leff on March 14, 2017. Link.

Iíve now heard from readers, seen in my Facebook feed, and read a Flyertalk thread all reporting the same problem with American Airlines Basic Economy: agents are rebooking customers who did not buy Basic Economy tickets into Basic Economy fares when changing their flights as a result of cancellations, such as because of the bad weather going on in the Northeast right now.

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Old Mar 13, 17, 9:57 pm
Original Poster
Join Date: Jun 2015
Location: DFW
Programs: AA EXP, National EE, Hilton Diamond
Posts: 20
EXP Agent Involuntary Bumped Me From Main Cabin / Economy to Basic Economy

Originally booked DFW-LGA fare code S on 3/14 re-booked to DFW-LGA 3/13, that flight canceled, I called EXP line, got re-booked to an earlier DFW-JFK.

When I got re-booked for the DFW-JFK flight, the agent on the phone said she couldn't assign me a seat or add me to the upgrade list because "the computer was acting weird." Fast forward to the airport a couple hours later, I couldn't select a seat or add myself to the upgrade list via kiosk. Kiosk spits out boarding pass with the booking code "B"...basic economy.

I go to the Admirals Club to try to be put on the upgrade list, but they tell me they can't do it because I'm in B and there is no way to revert me back to my original booking code. They say they've never seen this before and were at a loss. They send me on my way, SOL, nothing they can do because the computer won't let them.

How does this happen? DFW-JFK isn't a B route. My return was changed too, I can't select seats online. I understand mistakes can happen, but how can there not be a way to correct something like this?

Last edited by JDiver; Mar 14, 17 at 11:37 am Reason: Restore original post title
PDBDrinker is offline  
Old Mar 13, 17, 10:13 pm
Join Date: Feb 2012
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You need to escalate this via phone call or twitter.

You've highlighted a pretty glaring oversight in their computer coding as it pertains to IRROPS (and also agent training). This is why Basic Economy is being rolled out slowly, so incidents like this don't happen! I can tell you with certainty that AA does not want you flying on a B fare by mistake. Please keep us updated on any new developments.

Last edited by YtravelF; Mar 13, 17 at 10:48 pm
YtravelF is offline  
Old Mar 13, 17, 10:28 pm
Join Date: Jul 2004
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This is totally unacceptable.

AA needs to make a function that allows travelers to opt out of B entirely, so that its computer cannot "accidentally" put an opted-out traveler into B.

The only reason someone should end up in B is by buying a B ticket after agreeing to the "Are you sure?" warning.
platbrownguy is offline  
Old Mar 14, 17, 5:35 am
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Obviously this needs to be corrected in the coding going forward. But not much help for the OP right now. I hope the OP gets some remediation for this.
apeortdz is offline  
Old Mar 14, 17, 7:29 am
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I'm surprised an EXP or club agent couldn't call their help desk and get this resolved. They have the ability to pull from any available inventory bucket to rebook someone.
Stripe is offline  
Old Mar 14, 17, 7:33 am
Join Date: Aug 2002
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My guess is that the flight was completely sold out by the time you noticed and there were no other booking classes available to rebook you in. However, a call to revenue management should have been able to resolve this.
MaineFlyer16 is offline  
Old Mar 14, 17, 8:03 am
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: TX
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Posts: 460
This is messed up. DFW-JFK isn't even supposed to have B fares yet is it?
asf-07 is offline  
Old Mar 14, 17, 8:47 am
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View From the Wing reports more than one instance of this egregious practice

beachfan is offline  
Old Mar 14, 17, 8:52 am
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Any response From AA yet?
jay_dubya is offline  
Old Mar 14, 17, 8:53 am
Original Poster
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Location: DFW
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Posts: 20
Originally Posted by MaineFlyer16 View Post
My guess is that the flight was completely sold out by the time you noticed and there were no other booking classes available to rebook you in. However, a call to revenue management should have been able to resolve this.
Yup, completely sold out.
PDBDrinker is offline  
Old Mar 14, 17, 8:54 am
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Also FWIW AA can go back and change fare classes. I got rebooked due to impossible connection to rock bottom
economy classes that would have earned nothing on partners; a call back and a few minutes of my time got me back to my originally booked class.
BThumme is offline  
Old Mar 14, 17, 8:55 am
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Originally Posted by jay_dubya View Post
Any response From AA yet?
PDBDrinker is offline  
Old Mar 14, 17, 8:59 am
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This is a perfect way for AA to see how they can fix up this error. With passengers being accommodated due to weather disruptions and agents unable to correct this, I can see the complaints being raised. Certainly AA HQ has received their share. Time for AA to realize that they forgot some key elements in the training and implementation process.
arollins is offline  
Old Mar 14, 17, 9:08 am
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I wrote this on garys blog:


I was travelling on Business class transcon and I missed the connection, AA agent rebooked me on the next flight (9 hours later), and gave me crappy seats in coach, but thats okay I was tired. She said that since I was travelling originally in First Class they would upgrade me instantly if someone didnt showed up. Fast forward 9 hours later there were about 3 empty seats in First class and they upgraded some other people, I was not even in the upgrade list. I am boarding the plane and at the gate my ticket gave and error, so they went to check and I did not have assigned seats even though my ticket had assigned seats, I boarded LAST, I had to check my carry on, I had to sit separate from my wife and I took the last seat of the plane. It was horrible…… The agents had no idea what happened and the computer was acting weird and they could do anything.
lotrbfme is offline  
Old Mar 14, 17, 9:32 am
Join Date: May 2015
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This happened to me yesterday when there was a schedule change to an upcoming flight this summer. The EXP desk was able to reticket me with no problem into the proper fare class, and confirmed that my upgrade requests would reflect the original time stamp. Yet another reason to be vigilant of schedule changes!
AAEmpireState is offline  

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