AA Wanted $30k Change Fee

Old Jul 14, 22, 8:22 pm
  #16  
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Nice try at laying out compliant but unfortunately miss the mark and unreadable due to too much info not related to the compliant.

Read thru a couple of pages and my understanding of what went down.
  • Originally booked outbound July 15 to BGI and return July 23 from SVD.
  • AA schedule changed and auto book from SVD to UVF in April.
    • Complainant has a point that AA flight changed email needs a lot of work and that's assuming you even get a notification. We all know here often times we don't event get an email.
  • Complainant noticed on July 4 (before travel begin) that their July 23 return from SVD now shows UVF and calls AA to be rebooked back on SVD.
    • Complainant sees several unassigned seats on desired SVD flight and mistakenly believes flight has space and ask AA to move them back to SVD flights.
    • AAgents indicate no availability on that flight or flights around those dates as inventory is zeroed out and is in fact oversold. This leads complainant to (mistakenly) believe they were scheduled change back in April due to overbook.
  • Because the next available flight from SVD with space for the party is a week beyond original date, a fare collection is involved (complainant mistakenly believe this is change fee). Under Schedule Change policy, you can only be rebooked 1 day (other airlines are more generous).
AA should have just waived the fare difference given the schedule change was pretty drastic (not just to a different airport but a different country).

Complainant may think he is a seasoned traveler but not FT-level seasoned traveler. A FT-level seasoned traveler would know:
  • Bumping doesn't occur until date of departure.
  • Rebooked to another flight months/weeks is a schedule change.
  • Seat map is not an accurate reflection of actual availability (eg 7 unassigned seats on seat map does not equate to 7 new passengers can be booked into the flight).
  • Change fee and additional fare collection are two different things.
ijgordon and EXP100 like this.

Last edited by seawolf; Jul 15, 22 at 6:43 am
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Old Jul 14, 22, 8:42 pm
  #17  
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: IND
Posts: 1,962
Originally Posted by LlamaJesus
Just IMO but I think this is basically just a combination of an auto rebooking gone horribly wrong and the guy not checking his agenda until it was too late (along with not realizing that HUCA can in fact be a valid strategy, though who knows what would have actually happened). No idea what the fairest outcome here would be, but at a minimum, AA should really fix their systems so that they don't automatically rebook people to fly out of different countries...
+1. Or AA should contact with a different way to confirm the change of the country, rather than relying on the website/email. AA's automatic rebooking system does change departure city and send the same old 'your trip has changed' email with highlighting so many things at once that the traveler may not catch the city has changed. After getting several similar emails, and if those city names or airport codes are not familiar, I can see that the traveler may have confused and accepted the change. I mean, we usually check dates, times, connections, etc, but who can imagine departure city/country has changed. I have once my departure city changed even though AA didn't pull out of the city when there was a huge schedule change. I called and fixed it but I can totally see how this can happen.
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Old Jul 15, 22, 8:54 am
  #18  
 
Join Date: Jun 2021
Posts: 161
Originally Posted by seawolf
Nice try at laying out compliant but unfortunately miss the mark and unreadable due to too much info not related to the compliant.

Read thru a couple of pages and my understanding of what went down.
  • Originally booked outbound July 15 to BGI and return July 23 from SVD.
  • AA schedule changed and auto book from SVD to UVF in April.
    • Complainant has a point that AA flight changed email needs a lot of work and that's assuming you even get a notification. We all know here often times we don't event get an email.
  • Complainant noticed on July 4 (before travel begin) that their July 23 return from SVD now shows UVF and calls AA to be rebooked back on SVD.
    • Complainant sees several unassigned seats on desired SVD flight and mistakenly believes flight has space and ask AA to move them back to SVD flights.
    • AAgents indicate no availability on that flight or flights around those dates as inventory is zeroed out and is in fact oversold. This leads complainant to (mistakenly) believe they were scheduled change back in April due to overbook.
  • Because the next available flight from SVD with space for the party is a week beyond original date, a fare collection is involved (complainant mistakenly believe this is change fee). Under Schedule Change policy, you can only be rebooked 1 day (other airlines are more generous).
AA should have just waived the fare difference given the schedule change was pretty drastic (not just to a different airport but a different country).

Complainant may think he is a seasoned traveler but not FT-level seasoned traveler. A FT-level seasoned traveler would know:
  • Bumping doesn't occur until date of departure.
  • Rebooked to another flight months/weeks is a schedule change.
  • Seat map is not an accurate reflection of actual availability (eg 7 unassigned seats on seat map does not equate to 7 new passengers can be booked into the flight).
  • Change fee and additional fare collection are two different things.
YES YES and YES
RRROOO is offline  
Old Jul 15, 22, 9:18 am
  #19  
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
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How does AA even allow their system to auto-rebook out of a different country especially with all the COVID and visa restrictions in the world?
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Old Jul 15, 22, 9:27 am
  #20  
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 9,188
Originally Posted by DesertNomad
How does AA even allow their system to auto-rebook out of a different country especially with all the COVID and visa restrictions in the world?
They are old systems and this is a corner case. I'm not surprised.
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Old Jul 15, 22, 12:51 pm
  #21  
 
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Originally Posted by VegasGambler
They are old systems and this is a corner case. I'm not surprised.
and AA's IT isn't known for operational excellence.

Even with old systems, this should be a basic validation that exists. It's either broken code or bad product management.

Last edited by Antarius; Jul 15, 22 at 1:00 pm
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Old Jul 15, 22, 1:11 pm
  #22  
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Join Date: Jun 2014
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Posts: 67
Originally Posted by Antarius
and AA's IT isn't known for operational excellence.

Even with old systems, this should be a basic validation that exists. It's either broken code or bad product management.
Most likely a combination of both

Looks like AA gave him $2000 to cover his out of pocket costs (aka made him whole) - American Airlines Rebooked Family Home From Different Country: Report (businessinsider.com)
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Old Jul 15, 22, 1:11 pm
  #23  
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
Posts: 1,514
Why are co-terminal changes so difficult?

If AA switches passengers' departure airports between airports in different countries, why does AA make it so hard to switch between LGA, JFK and EWR, all in the same metropolitan area?

Consistency please!

I'd also like to see an itemization of the $30,000. It must have been more than "change fees".
WeekendTraveler is offline  
Old Jul 15, 22, 1:11 pm
  #24  
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Posts: 9,188
Originally Posted by Antarius
and AA's IT isn't known for operational excellence.

Even with old systems, this should be a basic validation that exists. It's either broken code or bad product management.
I'm not defending it, just saying that I'm not surprised. And I would not be surprised with any other airline either.
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