"Stopover" on 2 PNRs - what happens if IRROPs?

Old Aug 16, 19, 2:22 pm
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"Stopover" on 2 PNRs - what happens if IRROPs?

ETA: This is a long post. It also could have been clearer. It is about a general hypothetical situation, not a specific itinerary.

Reading the italicized text at the end of Post #4 will probably give you a better summation of it than the OP does. Then you might want to read the rest of Post #4 and the OP if you feel like you are able to address the actual question (which, again, is not about any specific itinerary). Thanks!


This thread is related to another one: Odd error booking "stopover" flights

I did not want to muddy the waters by putting two questions in one thread. If they should be combined, feel free.


Let me start off by saying that I got around this potential problem by booking BBB-CCC / CCC-AAA as one ticket and AAA-BBB as the other, but I still wondered what would happen if it the IRROPs scenario I considered actually came to pass – thus this thread.

THE SCENARIO/QUESTION:

I needed to book a trip AAA-BBB on one day and BBB-CCC (brief stopover in non-connection city)-AAA a few days later. The BBB-CCC leg ideally would be flown the same day as CCC-AAA but could, although less than ideally, be flown the night before.

Part of this trip is work-related and part is personal business (in CCC), so I also needed a way to split up the airfares so I could get reimbursed for the work portion most easily. As it turns out, booking this way also results in a lower total cost than booking all three legs as part of a single PNR.

I first considered booking AAA-BBB / CCC-AAA on one ticket and BBB-CCC on another. But this gets to my question: What would happen if IRROPs disrupted the flight BBB-CCC?

It seems like there are two possible scenarios, and each could apply to flying BBB-CCC the evening before CCC-AAA as well as to all the flights on the same day (i.e., flying the night before is not a 100% guarantee against IRROPs turning BBB-CCC-AAA into a trip in vain).

1. A delay or cancellation/rebooking of BBB-CCC puts me into CCC too late to conduct the business I needed to there, but not too late to catch the flight CCC-AAA.

Does this then qualify as a trip in vain?

If I had not yet left for CCC when I learn this, could I be rerouted BBB-AAA as the result of "trip in vain circumstances" (i.e., at no charge to me)?

Could the CCC-AAA flight be changed (at no charge to me) to the next day because of the "trip-in-vain circumstances" so I could still conduct the business?

2. A delay or cancelation/rebooking of BBB-CCC means I will miss the flight CCC-AAA.

Am I out of luck (since there are two different PNRs), and I would need to buy another ticket (either CCC-AAA or BBB-AAA, depending on where I am when this unfolds – for example, I could be stuck on the tarmac and unable to deplane as time slips away, so that I can't help but arrive in CCC after CCC-AAA has left)?

Is there any way that AA rebook me (at no charge to me) on another flight CCC-AAA?

I realize rebooking potentially could be done over the phone and not necessarily in person at either airport.

Thanks! (As I mentioned, I found a way around having to face any of this as a potential obstacle, but I still figured I would ask in case it ever arises again.)

Last edited by Kamalaasaa; Aug 16, 19 at 7:17 pm Reason: Add clarification
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Old Aug 16, 19, 2:26 pm
  #2  
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It is close to impossible to figure out what you are asking.
1. What is the routing (please use real locations, not "AAA" and the like.
2. What are the carriers?
3. How long do you have between flights (separate tickets means no connections or stopovers)?

On the other hand, if all you are trying to do is figure out what part of the ticket is chargeable to your employer and what part is yours, that can easily be determined from the tickets and AA can provide the segment-by-segment pricing for you to submit.

The more precise your response, the more accurate the information will be.
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Old Aug 16, 19, 4:39 pm
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Actually, the answer with extra information will be either

1) Definitely not (if it's not all AA / joint venture partners)
2) We don't know (if it's all AA).

There used to be clear policy that protected you in separate PNRs but that policy was rewritten and the policy is now silent what happens in separate PNRs. Some folks will say there was no intent to change it, but my feeling is that unless you have something written to point to, it's a big risk.
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Old Aug 16, 19, 4:52 pm
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Sorry, I thought I was clear – although I grant the prose is a bit involved.

Taking your questions out of order,

2. The carriers are AA. (I thought that would be obvious, given that I posted this in the AA forum and specifically referenced AA rebooking me toward the end of the OP.)

1. The actual routing seemed to me to be of limited relevance, because, although this started as a potential issue with a specific routing, it now is a more general (hypothetical) question about these circumstances, because I found a solution to my specific routing issue.

So I am not looking for a solution for a particular (potential) problem. I am asking in general "what would happen if ...".

In one sense, I would think that the airports involved don't matter – that there would be a "standard" response AA would have to the situations I mentioned. And that standard response might well be "Sorry, buddy – you buy 2 tickets on 2 different PNRs, you take your chances, and if you miss the second flight, you buy a new ticket!" But I was hoping that, given both tickets would be on AA (and even purchased from AA directly) they might be willing to treat them more like being on one PNR.

However, I suppose how GAs/TAs/CSRs/etc. respond could depend on whether it is a hub or an outstation, and if the latter, how big it is, who is staffing it (AA employees or contractors), and what type of flights it has (e.g., to only.1 hub, to more than 1 hub, direct flights to non-hubs as well) and whether the flights booked are non-stop/direct or connecting.

3. I was asking about 2 different scenarios – one where my second leg is the day before the third leg (or night before, in my specific case, most likely the last flight of the evening) and one where my second leg is the same day as the third leg. (In the latter case, my specific itinerary would have 6 hours between arrival of one flight – a nonstop – and departure of the next – which then has a connection to my final destination.)

I can understand that the length of time between flights, in absolute terms, might have a subjective effect on how a GA/TA/CSR might respond to the situation, although I do not understand why it should.

As far as the "trip in vain" thought, though, if I had a 12 hour window booked, needed 7 for my business, and a delayed flight gave me only 5, it would be a trip in vain (at least if it were all on one PNR - hence my asking about what if it were on 2). And it would be no different (at least in principle, it seems to me) if I had a 6 hour window booked, needed 3, and a delayed flight would give me only 2.

And booking a flight for the night before is no guarantee of avoiding IRROPs, as the night flight might get canceled and the next available flight arrive too late for me to take care of what I needed to, even if it arrived before my next scheduled flight departed (because, again, it's not a layover, it's an actual destination as part of an itinerary). The worse situation would be if it arrived AFTER the next booked flight had departed.


I suppose if I had given my OP as much thought as this reply, I might have distilled my question down to something like

What happens if

I am on two AA tickets (an open jaw + a one-way) with two different PNRs

With less than 24 hours (and maybe less than 12) at the destination for the one-way (which is also the origin for the return portion of the open jaw)

But it is a legitimate stop and not just a layover (e.g., I have a meeting or other business there)

And IRROPs kicks in?


Would I be accommodated (at no cost to me) if the delay makes going to the "stopover" city a trip in vain? And if so, how? Rebook the return portion of the open jaw to a later flight (so I can still conduct my business)? Scrap the one-way and the return portion of the open jaw and just return me to my origin airport?

I hope that is clearer!
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Old Aug 16, 19, 5:12 pm
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Originally Posted by beachfan View Post
Actually, the answer with extra information will be either

1) Definitely not (if it's not all AA / joint venture partners)
2) We don't know (if it's all AA).

There used to be clear policy that protected you in separate PNRs but that policy was rewritten and the policy is now silent what happens in separate PNRs. Some folks will say there was no intent to change it, but my feeling is that unless you have something written to point to, it's a big risk.

Ah - thanks!

Last edited by Kamalaasaa; Aug 16, 19 at 5:14 pm Reason: Edited to add quote
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Old Aug 16, 19, 6:10 pm
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I must confess that I stopped after the third grouping of letters.

That was quite extra mileage out of the A, B, and C letters there.

Hopefully this dual PNR business doesn’t lead to premature key failure for you.
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Old Aug 16, 19, 6:14 pm
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2 options:

1. AA protects you

2. AA says SOL

probably won't know until it happens. good luck.
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Old Aug 16, 19, 6:47 pm
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Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
1. What is the routing (please use real locations, not "AAA" and the like.
to use a more readable example:
I needed to book a trip ORD-DFW on one day and DFW-STL (brief stopover in non-connection city)-ORD few days later. The DFW-STL leg ideally would be flown the same day as STL-ORD but could, although less than ideally, be flown the night before.

Part of this trip is work-related and part is personal business (in STL), so I also needed a way to split up the airfares so I could get reimbursed for the work portion most easily. As it turns out, booking this way also results in a lower total cost than booking all three legs as part of a single PNR.

I first considered booking ORD-DFW/ STL-ORD on one ticket and DFW-STL on another. But this gets to my question: What would happen if IRROPs disrupted the flight DFW-STL?

It seems like there are two possible scenarios, and each could apply to flying DFW-STL the evening before STL-ORD as well as to all the flights on the same day (i.e., flying the night before is not a 100% guarantee against IRROPs turning DFW-STL-ORD into a trip in vain).

1. A delay or cancellation/rebooking of DFW-STL puts me into STL too late to conduct the business I needed to there, but not too late to catch the flight STL-ORD.

Does this then qualify as a trip in vain?

If I had not yet left for STL when I learn this, could I be rerouted DFW-ORD as the result of "trip in vain circumstances" (i.e., at no charge to me)?

Could the STL-ORD flight be changed (at no charge to me) to the next day because of the "trip-in-vain circumstances" so I could still conduct the business?

2. A delay or cancellation/rebooking of DFW-STL means I will miss the flight STL-ORD.

Am I out of luck (since there are two different PNRs), and I would need to buy another ticket (either STL-ORD or DFW-ORD, depending on where I am when this unfolds – for example, I could be stuck on the tarmac and unable to deplane as time slips away, so that I can't help but arrive in STL after STL-ORD has left)?

Is there any way that AA rebook me (at no charge to me) on another flight STL-ORD?
Not sure that helps....
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Old Aug 16, 19, 7:03 pm
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Originally Posted by CPRich View Post
Not sure that helps....
It doesn’t, but that's because, although this originated as a question (in my mind) about an actual trip, it morphed into a more general question about “what would happen if this scenario occurred?”

So any use of actual cities would be misleading, as (to take your examples) it’s not a question about travel between ORD, DFW, and STL - it’s a question about travel among any three cities when the tickets are on 2 PNRs and there’s IRROPs that threaten to upend it all.

But thank you for trying to be helpful (unlike some other posters).
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Old Aug 16, 19, 7:08 pm
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Originally Posted by nachosdelux View Post
2 options:

1. AA protects you

2. AA says SOL
Well, I did at least have that part figured out already!

probably won't know until it happens. good luck.
Thanks, although as I mentioned in the OP, I hit upon a work-around, so it’s not going to happen this time (the “stopover” flights are now on the same PNR).
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Old Aug 16, 19, 7:39 pm
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When you have a specific question, that would be the time to post it. My head is still spinning and, as you can see, what would be a simple question if posed in 2-3 short declarative sentences, got you a bunch of "maybes".
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Old Aug 16, 19, 9:28 pm
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AAA, BBB, CC . Yes, it matters. AA can apply the “flat tire” (FAQ: Late Arrival Standby ("Flat Tire Rule") and its application (master thread)) “rule to domestic “BBB” missed flight, but there’s not such a provision internationally, for example.

No, it was not at all obvious both flights would be AA. We get a lot of queries in this forum about AA-other airline and other airline-AA connections.

AA to AA generally the airline will seek to accommodate you on the next flight with available seating in cases of two PNRs and IROPS causing you to miss your second flight.

If you have important business at “CCC” some of us would say that should be a priority lest you not arrive in time and be dismissed as unreliable by a client.
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