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Mechanical issues, connection missed, prepaid hotel refund

Mechanical issues, connection missed, prepaid hotel refund

Old Nov 25, 09, 8:27 am
  #1  
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Mechanical issues, connection missed, prepaid hotel refund

Hello,

RDU-MEM-LAX-SYD

RDU flight was late due to mechanical issues. MEM->LAX took off before our plane even landed putting us a whole day late to Sydney. Northwest put us up in a hotel in memphis with meal vouchers.

I went to the Sydney hotel website to get a phone number to tell them I'd be arriving late, but saw an international phone number so I instead sent them an email-- before a 24 hour deadline cited by Orbitz. Got a reply to the email asking which city, and I immediately replied "Sydney", but no correspondence after that. I asked about it once we got to Sydney, and they said they'll look into it, but I really didn't want to ruin the vacation, so I just let it go.

I want the hotel night credited back to us. I've gone between the hotel and Orbitz, but both blame it on the other and just cites various "prepaid" and "you got 3 days for the price of 2 special", etc. But the agreement said I could make changes before 24 hours prior to checkin. And it would seem quite easy to just pro-rate my refund regardless of what special I had, as is obvious I'm not trying to game the system.

Does Northwest bear any responsibility for compensation here? Should I direct my pressure towards Northwest, Orbitz, or the hotel? Should I just forget about it? About $500 is at stake.

Thanks in advance!
CrazyJ is offline  
Old Nov 25, 09, 8:47 am
  #2  
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Welcome to FT!

The issue here is with Orbitz IMO. I don't see any responsibility for NW to handle your prepaid hotel issue at your destination.

NW's responsibilities are to get you to your destination safely and on time; they compensated you for the lack of on-time service with a hotel and meal vouchers in MEM.
DenverBrian is offline  
Old Nov 25, 09, 8:54 am
  #3  
 
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Welcome to FlyerTalk.

DL/NW is not responsible for hotels at your final destination booked through a 3rd party regardless of the delay. They put you up in MEM which is the limit of their responsibility. Suggest you contact the travel agent you booked the hotel in SYD with which appears to be Orbitz.
bwhite is offline  
Old Nov 25, 09, 9:26 am
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Agree, NW has no further responsibility. And, if you booked 3 nights at the hotel in a 3 for the price of 2 deal and will now only be staying 2 nights I wouldn't expect them to pro-rate anything. They were offering 3 for 2, not a 30% discount on 2 nights and it is not their fault that you couldn't make it for the 1st night. Bummer of a deal for you, but that is unfortunately a risk of travel.

The only way to avoid this is to either buy travel/vacation insurance or an airfare with a guarantee that will cover your lost time/money. I can assure you that over time the cost of either will be far far greater than your cost of eating the occasional grunged schedule.
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Old Nov 25, 09, 9:42 am
  #5  
fti
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Originally Posted by JSFox View Post
Agree, NW has no further responsibility. And, if you booked 3 nights at the hotel in a 3 for the price of 2 deal and will now only be staying 2 nights I wouldn't expect them to pro-rate anything. They were offering 3 for 2, not a 30% discount on 2 nights and it is not their fault that you couldn't make it for the 1st night. Bummer of a deal for you, but that is unfortunately a risk of travel.
Agree.

Originally Posted by JSFox View Post
The only way to avoid this is to either buy travel/vacation insurance or an airfare with a guarantee that will cover your lost time/money. I can assure you that over time the cost of either will be far far greater than your cost of eating the occasional grunged schedule.
Or else book directly or through a travel agency that you can easily contact. One reason I rarely use the online agencies. I either book direct or use a travel agent I can easily contact.
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Old Nov 25, 09, 10:13 am
  #6  
 
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+1
I never use online agency
DLItaly is offline  
Old Nov 25, 09, 10:15 am
  #7  
 
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Generally, the airline has no responsibility beyond setting you up with meals and lodging where you are delayed. Typically, it's in domain of travel insurance. However, that's not to say NW has never paid the hotel for a customer who was important enough for them. I wouldn't count on getting anything other than some sorry miles for the MX.
motytrah is offline  
Old Nov 25, 09, 10:23 am
  #8  
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Thanks guys. Sounds like this is just part of the game when booking online-- and the cheap rates surely reflect the risk.

One thing I learned is not to trust an airlines willingness to ticket short layovers. On the way back from Sydney through LAX we had a 50 minute layover. During this time we were required to pass through customs, fetch our bags, recheck our bags, and get to a different terminal. Our bags didn't even arrive in the baggage claim carousel before our next plane took off. I really don't understand why they'd provide this ticket. It seems to create nearly as much hassle for the airline as it does for the passenger...
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Old Nov 25, 09, 10:34 am
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Have had similar problems before and a lesson learned. Never rely on e-mail. If you can't cancel the one night automatically online (and receive a cancellation confirmation # right then), then make the call and get a cancellation confirmation via live reservation agent.
RCarverJr is offline  

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