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Flying on separate OW tickets and missing connecting flight

Flying on separate OW tickets and missing connecting flight

Old Mar 4, 19, 2:33 am
  #31  
 
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Originally Posted by Reissuruuna View Post
However, we were able to reach an advanced plan. We're flying with TP to our overnight final OW (!) destination. At this time I'd like to provide the audience with the certain details of the OW customer service. The travel party in question was OWE and OWS (!). Eventually I was expecting a bit more from IB.

This ain't a holiday, I'd need to be at HEL in time for an early morning busines meeting the next morning. OW CS was below the standard.
Well, if you really needed to be in HEL, you should have bought ticket from MAD to HEL, not a ticket from MAD to LHR.

Originally Posted by Reissuruuna View Post
Ps. Off course we were well aware of the risk when booking separete tickets, but still
Apparently you weren't as you said you "expected more". Lesson learned, I guess.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 3:15 am
  #32  
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Originally Posted by the810 View Post
Well, if you really needed to be in HEL, you should have bought ticket from MAD to HEL, not a ticket from MAD to LHR.
I have been quite clear about what I thought the OP could/could not expect, but let's remember that some times things are more complicated than that. It does happen that you buy a ticket to somewhere, and then learn a while later that you have to be somewhere else, often without an option to change to that new destination. At that stage, one's options are either to add a second flight on a separate ticket or to lose the one you have (potentially with bad consequences if it is only the outbound part of a more complex itinerary). Of course, if you choose to add a second separate booking, we have all been very clear to the OP about the risks and that OW/OW and status or not do not generate protection and I suspect OP has now realised (at a hefty price) that it is indeed the case, but I think it is important to recognise that people will and sometimes do find themselves in such situation for a whole range of reasons and that there are many configurations in which despite the risk, this might still be the comparatively most sensible option.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 3:22 am
  #33  
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Originally Posted by orbitmic View Post
... without an option to change to that new destination.
This situation is now pretty rare, especially if one is flying on business. And especially if one is flying on (apparently) time-critical business.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 3:37 am
  #34  
 
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I understand the OP’s frustration - and I actually share it. What the OP experienced is symptomatic of the dumbing down of the industry. When one makes a booking with a LCC, then to my mind you kind of know you’re on your own when things go wrong.

Here, the OP is a top tier oneworld frequent flier, booking on two legacy carriers, both members of OW. One OW carrier was delayed, causing the OP to miss their other OW flight. In those circumstances, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to think booking OW would help. OP may have read, or have been thinking of, the beginning of the below thread for the position a few years ago

Oneworld connection protection on separate tickets
[edited to add: having skimmed through the thread, it isn’t clear to me that this is no longer OW policy]

Unfortunately, these days, legacy carriers have adapted their business practices to streamline processes, remove complexity, all to cut costs and make them more competitive with LCCs. In simple terms, this has meant a dumbing down of customer service. Same as densification, redundancies, no more complimentary food / drink, and so on.

We’ve all played our part in it by booking flights based primarily on price. It has become self-fulfilling, since in economy now there isn’t a huge amount to distinguish a legacy carrier from a LCC.

So, I think the OP is entitled to feel let down by the process. Yes, they got what they were ‘entitled’ to, and to some, it seems that as long as one gets their legal rights then they are perfectly happy. However, there are also warm & fuzzy concepts of ‘loyalty’ and the belief that by booking a legacy carrier this is going to provide more backup / support / service / care when things go wrong. The OP had that dashed last night and I can see where they are coming from. My instinctive emotional response is ‘what is the point of an airline alliance if they don’t provide a seamless service’? The rational answer is there were two contracts, OP booked to London & then missed their separate ticket to Helsinki, tough luck. But when one OW member causes that to happen, it would be lovely if the OP could have been looked after better, especially as a OW FF. Sadly, it’s 2019 and the answer is tough luck, we need to show Willie the money and Ryanair / easyjet wouldn’t do it so with prices as they are today if this were policy we’d be seeing OW airlines going bust.
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Last edited by IAMORGAN; Mar 4, 19 at 4:09 am
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Old Mar 4, 19, 3:53 am
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Well, if I read the threads posted by the OP correctly, BA Customer Services advised the OP that he would be OK. It was the combined wisdom of FTers that he would not be OK. Subsequently, the OP and colleague off-loaded themselves from the MAD-LHR flight and made alternative arrangements. The upshot of all that is we don’t know for sure how BA/AY would have managed the situation.

In any case, the OP and colleague needed to be in HEL at a certain time, and starting from MAD, a TP flight, presumably via LIS, was the only solution.

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Old Mar 4, 19, 3:55 am
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Originally Posted by orbitmic View Post
I have been quite clear about what I thought the OP could/could not expect, but let's remember that some times things are more complicated than that. It does happen that you buy a ticket to somewhere, and then learn a while later that you have to be somewhere else, often without an option to change to that new destination. At that stage, one's options are either to add a second flight on a separate ticket or to lose the one you have (potentially with bad consequences if it is only the outbound part of a more complex itinerary).
Isn't it possible to buy one of those insurances that cover missed connections? I researched this some time ago and I think they affordable. But they cover you only if the connection time is not too tight, usually 3 hours minimum.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 4:12 am
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Originally Posted by DoctorCopper View Post
Well, if I read the threads posted by the OP correctly, BA Customer Services advised the OP that he would be OK. It was the combined wisdom of FTers that he would not be OK. Subsequently, the OP and colleague off-loaded themselves from the MAD-LHR flight and made alternative arrangements. The upshot of all that is we don’t know for sure how BA/AY would have managed the situation.

In any case, the OP and colleague needed to be in HEL at a certain time, and starting from MAD, a TP flight, presumably via LIS, was the only solution.

Doc Copper

I completely agree. As I said upthread I think based on the AY flight in fact going out 55 mins late, the OP may well have made it. But when you have to be somewhere you sometimes have to take control of the situation & realistically if the OP had misconnected, I don’t *think* they’d have got to HEL that night in any event.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 4:14 am
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Originally Posted by DoctorCopper View Post
The upshot of all that is we don’t know for sure how BA/AY would have managed the situation.
It wasn't even a BA problem. He was flying IB from MAD to LHR, and then AY from LHR to HEL.

And however much looking after he might have got in an ideal world, it would not have fixed his problem if he had missed the AY from LHR to HEL, because AFAIK it was the last LHR-HEL of the day yesterday. If he had to be in HEL for an early morning business meeting today, he was stuffed. He would have been stuffed even if he had booked this itinerary on one ticket. Whatever protection or care one might (reasonably or unreasonably) expect from OW, it cannot extend to chartering a private jet at short notice to convey the pax to HEL just because they've missed their onward flight.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 4:18 am
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Originally Posted by Reissuruuna View Post
Thanks for your reply. BA CS told me not to be worried about connection. If I'm missing the flight they will reroute even I have separate tickets.
Who is 'BA CS' here, exactly? Do you mean the check-in agent or service desk at MAD? (Are they even BA staff, or sub-contractors?) Or did you ring up BA and they told you this over the phone. Phone calls are recorded, so if this is what they actually told you, you can ask to have the tape reviewed. It won't help this now post-facto fiasco although if the phone agent lied to you just to get you off the line then he or she might should be sent for some re-training. You may also get a few Avios, if they are of any use to you.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 4:20 am
  #40  
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It's not wise to take the last flights of the night if one must be at the destination for an important business meeting the next morning.....and employers shouldn't try to play cheap on tickets in such circumstances, although the employer might have decided to "self insure" and pay sometimes for tickets that are thrown away as in this case in order to save lots of money on many of these risky "self connections" across separate tickets when they do work out.

OTOH, if MAD runway constructions is causing delays, switching to TAP and connecting through LIS might make the problem worse rather than better in that delays in these situations tend to get worse as the day goes on, so the OP rebooking to take a later flight to LIS (scheduled for a later departure than the IB operated MAD-LHR) and then doing a connection at LIS to a TAP flight LIS-HEL with no *A status doesn't seem like a proactive improvement to me. Yeah, TAP will rebook the LIS-HEL segment if the connection is missed as presumably it's all on one ticket, but this doesn't help the OP to get to HEL in time for that early morning meeting. In fact, I suspect that there's an earlier LHR-HEL flight than LIS-HEL if the outcome is that OP is stranded somewhere along the way.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 5:23 am
  #41  
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Originally Posted by Globaliser View Post
This situation is now pretty rare, especially if one is flying on business. And especially if one is flying on (apparently) time-critical business.
It's happened to me quite a few times. I think it is quite rare if you are on O/D trips as long as flying within the same zone, but the moment you are talking of connecting itineraries, it is actually frequent (in both economy and business) to not be able to make those changes easily/cost-effectively (ie for less than say the price of a brand new ticket). There are also a few O/D tickets which are effectively non-changeable (e.g. some of the I fares from the UK). Again, I have been very upfront from the start about the risk, but I do think that we should take it as face value that the OP booked the way he did for a reason and that there is nothing to be gained by making assumptions as to whether that itinerary was justifiable or silly or why the OP made it in the first place without even asking him/her.

It is clear that this choice entailed a risk and this thread has proven again that the risk is real and not purely notional and not of the "oh well they will find a way to sort it out on the way" type. It is also clear that the level of risk is determined by airlines' choices and policy (as noted above, AA chooses to deal with it differently, and BA itself used to be more likely to go for goodwill gestures in certain scenarii some years ago) but this thread is correctly diagnosing a current mood which is fairly strict. That is what people should bear in mind when making those arbitrations, but I would certainly not go so far as to suggest that people should never fly separate tickets. I do it myself on occasion because I still think that it makes the most sense in terms of the specifics, but I just do it with a full calculation of what will happen to me if my first flight would mean that I will not be able to arrive on time for my next itinerary and a plan B that does not assume sympathy or generosity from the airline.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 6:31 am
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Originally Posted by Globaliser View Post
This situation is now pretty rare, especially if one is flying on business. And especially if one is flying on (apparently) time-critical business.
Whilst you make some very good points, this is somewhat wide of the mark. In reality, when schedules get chopped and changed at the very last minute (I seem to attract this type of schedule destruction on a semi-frequent basis).

It was only in December where I landed on a ZRH-LCY flight on the way to visit the Tanzania visa office in London (I needed a business visa issued same day), where I received a message as we pulled into the parking stand saying my trip to Tanzania had been cancelled (possibly postponed) so this trip was now unnecessary. I had no need to be in London that day except for visa purposes, so jumped on another flight to another location where I could undertake some work at short notice. The point of my story is that sometimes you just do not know where you will end up on any given day, and air tickets are not always easily changed. They do however suit the "out and back" type of trips if you are always coming or going from/to your base location. I do a lot of one-ways (sometimes on LCCs) which means I can drop the sectors easily/cheaply depending on the situation.

Saying that if flying for business using two tickets with an unprotected connection is rare, is not entirely reflective of reality. That being said, the OP should accept with grace that his plan failed (as it has happened to me on several occasions) and make alternative arrangements. It is frustrating when separate tickets don't pay off, but I just remember that financially I (or more likely my employer) is significantly ahead by a huge order of magnitude on ticket price savings, versus buying the odd individual high price one way trip at the airport ticket desk. It is a game, at the end of the day - most often you win, but on the odd occasion you lose.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 6:45 am
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Originally Posted by lostfly View Post
Isn't it possible to buy one of those insurances that cover missed connections? I researched this some time ago and I think they affordable. But they cover you only if the connection time is not too tight, usually 3 hours minimum.
There was no connection to miss.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 6:58 am
  #44  
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Originally Posted by orbitmic View Post
It's happened to me quite a few times. I think it is quite rare if you are on O/D trips as long as flying within the same zone, but the moment you are talking of connecting itineraries, it is actually frequent (in both economy and business) to not be able to make those changes easily/cost-effectively (ie for less than say the price of a brand new ticket). There are also a few O/D tickets which are effectively non-changeable (e.g. some of the I fares from the UK).
Originally Posted by rossmacd View Post
Saying that if flying for business using two tickets with an unprotected connection is rare, is not entirely reflective of reality.
What I meant was this: Having no option to change your ticket to match your new itinerary is pretty rare. That is why I quoted the phrase "without an option to change to that new destination".

Yes, it can happen if you have a totally non-changeable fare, eg ex-UK I class long-haul as sold to the public. But these are intended to be leisure fares and probably not bought by/for many business travellers. Many business travellers who are flying on comparable fares will be on corporate deals that often have more flexibility, so they would have options.

It can also happen if you're going somewhere relatively obscure that can only be reached by a series of tickets on airlines whose fares won't combine. But this situation too must be relatively rare.

What is more common, I expect, is that there is an option to change, but the cost of change is very high and it's not really cost-effective to do so. But even in this situation, suppose the original trip had never been booked, and the new destination that comes up at the last minute means that a new trip has to be booked from scratch at that time. There's a decent chance that if it's really expensive to change to the new itinerary, it would be pretty expensive to book that new itinerary at the last minute anyway.

At any rate, it's not hard to understand why a well-informed traveller who already has an existing itinerary that covers part of the new journey might decide to save some money and take the risk - but such a traveller would perhaps plan some sensible margins and make some contingency plans.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 7:07 am
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Originally Posted by LondonElite View Post
Originally Posted by lostfly View Post
Isn't it possible to buy one of those insurances that cover missed connections?
There was no connection to miss.
It is a missed connection according to most insurance policies. It doesn't matter they are two different carriers in two separate tickets. I asked this specifically to a couple of insurance companies. They only care about the original connection time being reasonable, usually 3 hours minimum.

Note that the policy must include specific coverage for missed connections. Most travel insurances, including those provided by credit cards, usually do not include it.
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