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Cancel or no-show one ticket of two ticket reservation - any issues?

Cancel or no-show one ticket of two ticket reservation - any issues?

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Old Sep 14, 18, 7:56 am
  #1  
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Cancel or no-show one ticket of two ticket reservation - any issues?

Good Morning,

I'm a long time lurker, rare poster. I tried every way I could think of to research this question using both FT and Google and I'm striking out so I'm hoping someone can help me out. I wasn't sure exactly where to ask this question so if this is the wrong forum, I apologize and request that it please be moved it to the correct one.

My elderly mother and husband (70 years old) booked a reservation with AA for two seats, one for each of them. Her husband is now having some health issues and is not going to be able to make the flight. At this point they are totally fine without getting a refund, however he is going to no-show the flight. Would him no-showing for his seat, but her showing for hers, have any adverse effect on her ticket (i.e. would they cancel her seat because he didn't show?).

We thought about calling to cancel however they charge you money just to cancel the flight, even though they aren't processing a refund, which is asinine, so we're inclined to not cancel the ticket.

Anyway, maybe I'm overthinking this, but hoping someone has had experience with this scenario and can advise us on the best course of action.

Thank you,
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Old Sep 14, 18, 8:13 am
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Originally Posted by BigBodySS View Post
We thought about calling to cancel however they charge you money just to cancel the flight, even though they aren't processing a refund, which is asinine, so we're inclined to not cancel the ticket.
Did you book through a travel agent? Tickets booked directly with AA will subtract $200 from ticket value if you want to re-use the funds associated with a non-refundable ticket, but American won't charge you just to cancel the flight. A travel agent, however, can and some do.

As for "no-showing" unless you've booked some sort of companion deal where the passenger who will actually fly is the companion, you should be fine. It would be prudent to just not check that passenger in, but even more prudent to just cancel the ticket unless your travel agent will charge a fee.
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Old Sep 14, 18, 8:27 am
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Originally Posted by BigBodySS View Post
We thought about calling to cancel however they charge you money just to cancel the flight, even though they aren't processing a refund, which is asinine, so we're inclined to not cancel the ticket.
Yea, as mentioned above this is very incorrect.

AA will only charge you if you try to reuse/rebook the ticket, and that will be in the form of a change fee subtracted from the fare they already paid. Just call AA and tell them you want to cancel the husband's ticket, you will not be charged anything.
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Old Sep 14, 18, 9:50 am
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Thank you both, clearly I was uneducated on the process. I appreciate your information and will call in to cancel.
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Old Sep 14, 18, 10:46 am
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Or just no-show. I've done this before and my travel companion was asked on the plane where I was and a simple "he is not feeling well enough to travel" will do. I've even done it at LHR on a connecting flight back to the US (where they knew I had traveled from CDG).
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Old Sep 14, 18, 12:20 pm
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The airlines really give you no incentive to cancel in advance, and there's some advantage to just no-showing. If there's a big schedule change or an operational problem the day of the flight, it should be possible to get a refund on the ticket.
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Old Sep 14, 18, 12:28 pm
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Originally Posted by jordyn View Post
The airlines really give you no incentive to cancel in advance, and there's some advantage to just no-showing. If there's a big schedule change or an operational problem the day of the flight, it should be possible to get a refund on the ticket.
Even a change of equipment (aircraft substitution) would qualify for a refund without penalty.
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Old Sep 14, 18, 12:44 pm
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Originally Posted by jordyn View Post
The airlines really give you no incentive to cancel in advance, and there's some advantage to just no-showing. If there's a big schedule change or an operational problem the day of the flight, it should be possible to get a refund on the ticket.
The incentive to cancel prior to departure is the ability to retain unused ticket funds minus a change fee. The funds would otherwise be forfeit if the ticket isn't cancelled. That's a pretty substantial advantage is my book.

It's true that there's no incentive to cancel far in advance.
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Old Sep 14, 18, 1:42 pm
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Originally Posted by Beltway2A View Post
The incentive to cancel prior to departure is the ability to retain unused ticket funds minus a change fee. The funds would otherwise be forfeit if the ticket isn't cancelled. That's a pretty substantial advantage is my book.

It's true that there's no incentive to cancel far in advance.
Yes, by "in advance" I mean "in advance of showing up at the airport on the day of the flight". Assuming the ticket cost more than the change fee, it's useful to cancel before the time of the flight, but not any farther in advance than that. If the ticket costs less than the change fee, there's nothing to be gained at all.
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Old Sep 14, 18, 5:02 pm
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If he has a legitimate medial issue/reason on why he can't fly and can produce a Dr's note, I thought they would usually allow you to cancel and get a refund? Doesn't hurt to try and/or call a rep to see if that is an option.

And yes, cancel if you plan to use the unused fund less the fee. Otherwise (if the fees is more than the cost of the ticket), just hold off and see if you can get a refund through scheduling changes for the flights.

Good luck!
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Old Sep 14, 18, 8:56 pm
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Originally Posted by lasnowgirl View Post
If he has a legitimate medial issue/reason on why he can't fly and can produce a Dr's note, I thought they would usually allow you to cancel and get a refund?
When my dad passed a while back and I had to cancel several planned trips, I remember DL and AA both waiving the cancellation fees. You should absolutely call AA to request that they waive it and in fact that should be the first thing you do. If when you call they ask that you e-mail Customer Relations, keep the Dr's note available so that you can attach a scan of it to your e-mail.
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Old Sep 14, 18, 9:09 pm
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Originally Posted by jordyn View Post
The airlines really give you no incentive to cancel in advance, and there's some advantage to just no-showing. If there's a big schedule change or an operational problem the day of the flight, it should be possible to get a refund on the ticket.
Many airlines do - on many carriers there are no-show penalties that are applied and are higher than those for making changes/cancelling in advance

Even AA has no-show penalties on fares on some routes
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Old Sep 14, 18, 11:45 pm
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OTOH if it's a non refundable fare AND you can't get a refund even with Dr note - why cancel rather than ask if you could change the ticket to "xtra seat" so traveler would be guaranteed 2 seats (to stretch out). They may not do it, but if you get the right agent they might -
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Old Sep 15, 18, 12:00 am
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Originally Posted by estnet View Post
OTOH if it's a non refundable fare AND you can't get a refund even with Dr note - why cancel rather than ask if you could change the ticket to "xtra seat" so traveler would be guaranteed 2 seats (to stretch out). They may not do it, but if you get the right agent they might -
I can't see that happening - that would be same as a name change
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Old Sep 15, 18, 12:04 am
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Originally Posted by Dave Noble View Post
Many airlines do - on many carriers there are no-show penalties that are applied and are higher than those for making changes/cancelling in advance

Even AA has no-show penalties on fares on some routes
Huh? So you don't show up and AA sends you a bill? I've never heard of such a thing. Can you point at a specific example, maybe?

But once again, you seem to be talking about cancelling before the flight which really has nothing to do with my point. I agree there's often an advantage in cancelling before the flight takes off, but (as I clarified a few pots up) there's basically no advantage to cancelling the second ticket before showing up at the airport on the day of travel. In fact, the opposite is true--it's better to wait until the last minute to cancel since it gives the airline more of an opportunity to change something that will allow for a full refund.
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