Change in my reward booking - for the worse!

 
Old Feb 10, 12, 3:32 pm
  #1  
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Change in my reward booking - for the worse!

In September I booked a reward flight in May, from Seattle to London via Newark, with a comfortable layover in Newark. Yesterday I was notified that the booking has been changed. Now I leave an hour and 15 minutes earlier, and fly Seattle>Houston>Newark>London, with pretty tight connecting times. Is this common? This is the first time it has happened to me, and it was not a pleasant surprise.
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Old Feb 10, 12, 3:37 pm
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You can call in and reject the change. They should be able to put you on different flights.
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Old Feb 10, 12, 3:55 pm
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Originally Posted by colvospass View Post
In September I booked a reward flight in May, from Seattle to London via Newark, with a comfortable layover in Newark. Yesterday I was notified that the booking has been changed. Now I leave an hour and 15 minutes earlier, and fly Seattle>Houston>Newark>London, with pretty tight connecting times. Is this common? This is the first time it has happened to me, and it was not a pleasant surprise.
Flight schedule change happens, maybe your original routing is no longer valid. Go start look for option, you can always change your routing without fee as long as you are still flying SEA-LHR. If it is a premium award, you might need to wait closer to departure date and wait for those to open up.
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Old Feb 10, 12, 4:04 pm
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Thanks - I'll try calling to see if anything better can be worked out.
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Old Feb 11, 12, 1:43 am
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Is there a convenient SEA-EWR flight on your day of travel?

On a few revenue tickets last year after schedule changes, I made them put me on better flights. The one change had a risky connection, and the other involved six more hours of travel. The flights I wanted were wide open, but my booking class was not available.

Last year there was a schedule change on a LH flight within Europe from MUC-FRA. The next day I had a first class LH seat from FRA-SFO. CO re-routed me MUC-ORD-SFO on United. When I found out, the two LH first class seats were gone. I cancelled the trip when CO could not get the first class seats on LH.

Last edited by BF263533; Feb 11, 12 at 2:02 am
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Old Feb 11, 12, 6:05 am
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did you check Seattle-Vancouver-London?

Ask to be rebooked - dont take the inconvenient flights if you dont like it.
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Old Feb 11, 12, 10:42 am
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I had a recent schedule change where the PDX-IAH red-eye at 12:25am on CO switched to a UA (airbus) PDX-IAH red-eye before midnight and it automatically picked the 6am CO flight to IAH which would make me miss my connection to Mexico. Right now it sounds like CO can't just open award space that doesn't exist on a UA flight so they put me on a CO red-eye to EWR and then down to IAH to make my connection to my original flight...sorta like going around Robin Hood's barn to get there, but I think this sorta thing will be happening a lot in the next few months with all the scheduling "adjustments" that are taking place.
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Old Feb 11, 12, 12:14 pm
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Originally Posted by BF263533 View Post
Last year there was a schedule change on a LH flight within Europe from MUC-FRA. The next day I had a first class LH seat from FRA-SFO. CO re-routed me MUC-ORD-SFO on United. When I found out, the two LH first class seats were gone. I cancelled the trip when CO could not get the first class seats on LH.

Did you verify this on the LH side?

The other airline typically does not cancel space in a schedule change until it's been accepted, so you should never have lost the space.

Then again, CO may have seen it and processed the change to UA on your behalf, thinking it was better, which caused the flights to be lost if CO cancelled them.

It's also possible that the OAL rebooked you on something on their metal, and it didn't show up on the SHARES side, so CO assumed there was nothing there. I've seen this several times with CO reservations where CO is abbreviating what's really in the partner record. Remember that CO's interconnection with partners has historically been flaky.

I had a UA flight to MRY which had a schedule change. UA had rebooked me on another flight to MRY, but that was not showing up on the SHARES side. Instead of calling or trying to work it out, or verifying with UA what had really been done, CO out of the blue rebooked me to MSY (agent misread MRY for MSY), cancelled the MRY space, reissued the ticket, and sent me an email.

I've always had good luck with UA India processing schedule changes. I've always stayed low key, and if they're minor, they accept them, or if they're major, they'll call saying to call in. It works pretty well, and I don't have to actively monitor things much until it gets closer to departure.

But if CO is processing schedule changes like cowboys in the above examples, it may make sense to stay on top of any CO schedule changes. I just wish they would show "Schedule Change" in your itineraries list, so you can see which ones that need addressing without having to load them one by one.
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Old Feb 13, 12, 3:43 pm
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The plot thickens. I just called to ask about a more favorable flight option. I had gotten numbers for international travel and domestic travel off of the Continental onepass "use your miles">"reward travel" webpage. Both numbers got to the same recording: "Due to high call volume, we are unable to take your call". And then proceeded to describe various places on the website where my questions could be answered. That was a first! Not just a warning about long hold times, but "we can't take your call".
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Old Feb 13, 12, 3:50 pm
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Originally Posted by colvospass View Post
The plot thickens. I just called to ask about a more favorable flight option. I had gotten numbers for international travel and domestic travel off of the Continental onepass "use your miles">"reward travel" webpage. Both numbers got to the same recording: "Due to high call volume, we are unable to take your call". And then proceeded to describe various places on the website where my questions could be answered. That was a first! Not just a warning about long hold times, but "we can't take your call".

Just call the regular CO reservations number (if you're not Elite).

Sorry about the difficulty getting through, but that's sometimes a cost of doing business with CO.
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Old Feb 13, 12, 3:53 pm
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Originally Posted by colvospass View Post
The plot thickens. I just called to ask about a more favorable flight option. I had gotten numbers for international travel and domestic travel off of the Continental onepass "use your miles">"reward travel" webpage. Both numbers got to the same recording: "Due to high call volume, we are unable to take your call". And then proceeded to describe various places on the website where my questions could be answered. That was a first! Not just a warning about long hold times, but "we can't take your call".
Standard operating procedure... CO drops your call when they are understaffed.
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Old Feb 13, 12, 3:54 pm
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Sorry - I see this is not a new issue. You can tell I don't deal with all this as frequently as many of you road warriors!
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Old Feb 15, 12, 5:45 pm
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Fortunately, I easily got through on the elite line. I had learned that there is a United flight that is almost the duplicate of our original Continental SEA-EWR leg - it just leaves a little earlier. We managed to get on that flight, except in coach instead of in first class like we were on the original flight. We had gotten the first booking as a Saver pass, and the equivalent was evidently not available on the United flight. (Although the seating chart shows only one 1st cabin seat taken.) I am still happy to have the travel day simplified, if a little miffed at the downgrade.
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Old Feb 15, 12, 6:29 pm
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Originally Posted by colvospass View Post
Fortunately, I easily got through on the elite line. I had learned that there is a United flight that is almost the duplicate of our original Continental SEA-EWR leg - it just leaves a little earlier. We managed to get on that flight, except in coach instead of in first class like we were on the original flight. We had gotten the first booking as a Saver pass, and the equivalent was evidently not available on the United flight. (Although the seating chart shows only one 1st cabin seat taken.) I am still happy to have the travel day simplified, if a little miffed at the downgrade.
Call back and have them force the F inventory that you had on the flight previously. They can do it on their own metal without too much trouble.
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Old Feb 15, 12, 11:13 pm
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@ the OP:

That's infuriating that they'd put you in economy. You were scheduled to be in first and due to a fault of their own, you're now in economy. CO can call UA and and get you in the cabin you paid for.

Originally Posted by sbm12 View Post
Call back and have them force the F inventory that you had on the flight previously. They can do it on their own metal without too much trouble.
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