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BA has 'lost' 25% of the value of my ticket

BA has 'lost' 25% of the value of my ticket

Old May 5, 21, 9:12 am
  #1  
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BA has 'lost' 25% of the value of my ticket

I'm having an utterly bizarre string of conversations with BA about getting a refund for a ticket for a flight they have cancelled. It's a slightly complex saga, summarized below:

Back in January I booked an A-class return LHR/ORD/LHR for £3,068, outbound in early March, back on 28 June. I was, of course, over-optimistic about how the pandemic would be playing out in March. And so was BA...

One week later I had notice of both a timing change (as they reduced March to one rotation and also put an A350 on the route, thus removing First).

A week after that they removed BA metal entirely, changed the time again, and rebooked me on the one AA flight operating, in business class.

In late Feb, I bowed to the inevitable and changed the outward date of travel to 20 May, putting myself back in First on BA metal. There was no charge for this, I was told, because of the previous cancellations/rebookings.

In early April I changed the outbound date again owing to work issues, now to travel on 5 June. I tried doing this on the GGL line and was asked to pay £900 more, but the agent suggested before doing that I see what it would cost online. That was good advice - it cost £4. Now meaning I had spent £3072 on the booking.

A week after that, the return flight was downgraded to Club following a switch to A350s.

Two days after this, the outbound flight was switched from 10.40 to 4pm, and downgraded.


At this point, I contacted BA and said I would like a refund. They agreed I was fully entitled to one because of the final time change, and said I would get c.£2,300 back on my card. I queried this and said this was not what I paid. This has led to a saga now running into its third week, when several GGL agents have consistently sent this down to the back office folk, who keep clarifying that is the refund due, but not explaining why it is not the £3,072 I actually paid. Over the three weeks, I've been offered two different explanations.

Last week I was told that at some point in February, I think when they switched me to AA, they 'revalued' the ticket, and their system was meant to have put £749 back on my credit card. Well - it didn't. And I've simply never heard of BA automatically refunding part of the value of a ticket proactively. But, so I was told, that means that the value showing in the system of the ticket has, indeed, been reduced, even though this refund was never processed.

And then, yesterday, I was told that it was my own change of date for which I paid £4 more that had somehow lessened the value of the ticket. I have to say I could not follow what the agent was trying to explain. It was sort of that although I'd paid a bit more, the base fare was lower, and it was only this that was eligible for refund. And - to the bewilderment of the agent I was speaking to (on a second call as a follow-up to one 24 hours previously) - a senior manager had looked at this and said it was correct.

I'm awaiting a third call back from the same agent after she's had a couple of days off. She is kind of 'on my side' but her seniors are telling her that it is correct I don't get a full refund. I'm fairly certain that if I raise this with the credit card, they'll deal with it pretty quickly. But I would rather not go down that route... and I'm posting this here to see whether a) this saga has happened to anyone else, and b) if anyone here can sort of understand what it is BA is attempting to say by way of justifying its claim to be allowed to keep about 25% of the value of this ticket. I'm utterly mystified...
DominicB is offline  
Old May 5, 21, 9:16 am
  #2  
 
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I think the excellent BA refund helper may fix this for you, as they have for me in no time
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Old May 5, 21, 9:25 am
  #3  
TPJ
 
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Originally Posted by DominicB View Post

Last week I was told that at some point in February, I think when they switched me to AA, they 'revalued' the ticket, and their system was meant to have put £749 back on my credit card. Well - it didn't. And I've simply never heard of BA automatically refunding part of the value of a ticket proactively. But, so I was told, that means that the value showing in the system of the ticket has, indeed, been reduced, even though this refund was never processed.
They might have issued an EMD for residual amount (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electr...neous_Document) that needs to be refunded via a separate transaction. Ask them to check the PNR if there are any EMD's and if they have Refund status. It happened to me once (with a different airline), but a smart Call Center agent was able to fix it in 2 minutes.
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Old May 5, 21, 10:29 am
  #4  
 
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Not to the same monetary value but I have a similar issue with a flight which I claimed an FTV and then rebooked twice and paid a few £ more, eventually the flight was cancelled and I put in a claim for a refund. Two transactions have been refunded but a third is oustanding. I have called the Gold Line a couple of times and they said it is with the back office. This has been outstanding for about three weeks, but as the amount of £ is minor, I can't be bothered to chase it for now
FlyingWelshie is offline  
Old May 5, 21, 10:30 am
  #5  
 
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Originally Posted by DominicB View Post
I'm having an utterly bizarre string of conversations with BA about getting a refund for a ticket for a flight they have cancelled. It's a slightly complex saga, summarized below:

Back in January I booked an A-class return LHR/ORD/LHR for £3,068, outbound in early March, back on 28 June. I was, of course, over-optimistic about how the pandemic would be playing out in March. And so was BA...

One week later I had notice of both a timing change (as they reduced March to one rotation and also put an A350 on the route, thus removing First).

A week after that they removed BA metal entirely, changed the time again, and rebooked me on the one AA flight operating, in business class.

In late Feb, I bowed to the inevitable and changed the outward date of travel to 20 May, putting myself back in First on BA metal. There was no charge for this, I was told, because of the previous cancellations/rebookings.

In early April I changed the outbound date again owing to work issues, now to travel on 5 June. I tried doing this on the GGL line and was asked to pay £900 more, but the agent suggested before doing that I see what it would cost online. That was good advice - it cost £4. Now meaning I had spent £3072 on the booking.

A week after that, the return flight was downgraded to Club following a switch to A350s.

Two days after this, the outbound flight was switched from 10.40 to 4pm, and downgraded.


At this point, I contacted BA and said I would like a refund. They agreed I was fully entitled to one because of the final time change, and said I would get c.£2,300 back on my card. I queried this and said this was not what I paid. This has led to a saga now running into its third week, when several GGL agents have consistently sent this down to the back office folk, who keep clarifying that is the refund due, but not explaining why it is not the £3,072 I actually paid. Over the three weeks, I've been offered two different explanations.

Last week I was told that at some point in February, I think when they switched me to AA, they 'revalued' the ticket, and their system was meant to have put £749 back on my credit card. Well - it didn't. And I've simply never heard of BA automatically refunding part of the value of a ticket proactively. But, so I was told, that means that the value showing in the system of the ticket has, indeed, been reduced, even though this refund was never processed.

And then, yesterday, I was told that it was my own change of date for which I paid £4 more that had somehow lessened the value of the ticket. I have to say I could not follow what the agent was trying to explain. It was sort of that although I'd paid a bit more, the base fare was lower, and it was only this that was eligible for refund. And - to the bewilderment of the agent I was speaking to (on a second call as a follow-up to one 24 hours previously) - a senior manager had looked at this and said it was correct.

I'm awaiting a third call back from the same agent after she's had a couple of days off. She is kind of 'on my side' but her seniors are telling her that it is correct I don't get a full refund. I'm fairly certain that if I raise this with the credit card, they'll deal with it pretty quickly. But I would rather not go down that route... and I'm posting this here to see whether a) this saga has happened to anyone else, and b) if anyone here can sort of understand what it is BA is attempting to say by way of justifying its claim to be allowed to keep about 25% of the value of this ticket. I'm utterly mystified...
Most likely the change you did in february that was free the fare was lower than the original and as the fare is non refundable it causes this issue.
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Old May 5, 21, 10:49 am
  #6  
 
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Do reach out to BA Refund Helper, and if that fails Twitter - publicly.

I had an almost identical situation a few weeks back - paid <x> and the refund that followed three months later (!) was for orders of magnitude less. Agents that answered the phone could quite easily see how much I paid and had been refunded but refunds were having none of it. [Name removed] from Customer Relations in particular asked me to think of the difficulties airlines are facing... in a sour attempt to make me go away.

BA Refund Helper did sort it, and the refund has been almost fully received. The only issue now I face is BA has refunded in £ whereas I paid in EURO so lost nearly £100 on the fx fee. Amex are absolving themselves of any responsibility and Customer Relations are refusing to get involved.

So yes, BA Refund helper and then Twitter. I wish I'd just sued them as soon as it happened - it is a genuine piss take to wait three months for refund, have the wrong amount refunded and then be told to take pity on the airline and consider not having the full refund.
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Last edited by Prospero; May 5, 21 at 1:22 pm Reason: Remove name of employee per rule 21
ScienceTeacher is offline  
Old May 5, 21, 11:47 am
  #7  
 
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Originally Posted by ScienceTeacher View Post
Do reach out to BA Refund Helper, and if that fails Twitter - publicly.

I had an almost identical situation a few weeks back - paid <x> and the refund that followed three months later (!) was for orders of magnitude less. Agents that answered the phone could quite easily see how much I paid and had been refunded but refunds were having none of it. [Name removed] from Customer Relations in particular asked me to think of the difficulties airlines are facing... in a sour attempt to make me go away.

BA Refund Helper did sort it, and the refund has been almost fully received. The only issue now I face is BA has refunded in £ whereas I paid in EURO so lost nearly £100 on the fx fee. Amex are absolving themselves of any responsibility and Customer Relations are refusing to get involved.

So yes, BA Refund helper and then Twitter. I wish I'd just sued them as soon as it happened - it is a genuine piss take to wait three months for refund, have the wrong amount refunded and then be told to take pity on the airline and consider not having the full refund.
LOL you must be kidding right? What kind of argument is this?

Last edited by Prospero; May 5, 21 at 1:23 pm Reason: Remove name of employee per rule 21
ermis177 is offline  
Old May 5, 21, 12:28 pm
  #8  
 
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Originally Posted by ScienceTeacher View Post
So yes, BA Refund helper and then Twitter.
I'd try BA Refund Helper who is one of the most useful members of the BA team of late, if that doesn't work then go straight to credit card chargeback.

All contacting them on Twitter is going to do is waste more time if they have to email the same team you've been chasing all along.
Schwann is offline  
Old May 5, 21, 1:53 pm
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Originally Posted by ScienceTeacher View Post
BA Refund Helper did sort it, and the refund has been almost fully received. The only issue now I face is BA has refunded in £ whereas I paid in EURO so lost nearly £100 on the fx fee. Amex are absolving themselves of any responsibility and Customer Relations are refusing to get involved.
Did you pay in EUR or GBP? BA should be issuing a refund in the currency of original payment - so they would have been debited the same amount they were originally given. They canít be held responsible for how your bank handles FX conversions - I assume you wouldnít be offering to pay them the difference if the rate had gone the other way?

If they switched currency on your booking (sorry, itís not entirely clear from your post) and refunded a different one from the one in which you paid, then this is weird and absolutely worth further investigation.
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Old May 5, 21, 2:33 pm
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Originally Posted by Confus View Post
Did you pay in EUR or GBP? BA should be issuing a refund in the currency of original payment - so they would have been debited the same amount they were originally given. They canít be held responsible for how your bank handles FX conversions - I assume you wouldnít be offering to pay them the difference if the rate had gone the other way?
To my knowledge, there has not been a 25% drop in value of the euro against the pound since January and no bank charges a 25% fee for converting money back and forth to euros.
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Old May 5, 21, 2:46 pm
  #11  
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Where does the 25% figure come from? EDIT: ignore me, I have worked it out! So yes I think the OP's issue is much more than currency conversions and buy-sell spreads.

When you book you usually pay in the currency of the starting point if booking online - so Euros if starting in a Euro country for example. Your card gets billed in Euros, and your card company converts this in to pounds using their conversion rate and charges any foreign currency fees. if you book online BA will convert it in to pounds using the standard iata conversion rates and it should be billed to your card in pounds.

When getting a refund you should be refunded in the currency you were billed by BA, so if they billed in Euros you will be refunded an amount in Euros and your card company will again convert in to pounds. Obviously if the exchange rate has changed, and depending on the card companies buy-sell spread, the mount you ended up being charged in pounds may not match the amount you were refunded in pounds.
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Old May 5, 21, 2:52 pm
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Originally Posted by KARFA View Post
Where does the 25% figure come from?
The subject of the first post is "BA has 'lost' 25% of the value of my ticket" so that's where 25% comes from. Also, in the first post it says that the OP paid £3,072 and was offered a refund of about £2,300. The difference is approximately 25% of the original amount.

While some money may be lost (or gained) if currency rates change, you wouldn't have lost 25% of the amount in this short period of time. The error lies somewhere else.
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Old May 5, 21, 2:53 pm
  #13  
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Originally Posted by Im a new user View Post
The subject of the first post is "BA has 'lost' 25% of the value of my ticket" so that's where 25% comes from. Also, in the first post it says that the OP paid £3,072 and was offered a refund of about £2,300. The difference is approximately 25% of the original amount.

While some money may be lost (or gained) if currency rates change, you wouldn't have lost 25% of the amount in this short period of time. The error lies somewhere else.
Yes, sorry my apologies I have edited my post now. I (wrongly) assumed the comment was about ScienceTeacher's situation.
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Old May 5, 21, 3:12 pm
  #14  
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Originally Posted by Im a new user View Post
To my knowledge, there has not been a 25% drop in value of the euro against the pound since January and no bank charges a 25% fee for converting money back and forth to euros.
I believe Confus was referring to ScienceTeacher 's post here (relating to currency conversion during a refund) and not the OP of this thread (the missing 25%).
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Old May 5, 21, 3:34 pm
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Originally Posted by jerry a. laska View Post
I believe Confus was referring to ScienceTeacher 's post here (relating to currency conversion during a refund) and not the OP of this thread (the missing 25%).
That person lost £100. Assuming that the ticket cost was £2500 and the currency conversion fee was 2% (per direction), then you'd lose £100 on average from the currency conversion fee. So £100 could definitely be lost from currency changes alone if you bought long-haul business class or first tickets. You'd not lose that much if you bought cheap short-haul economy tickets. Something to keep in mind when paying in a foreign currency.
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