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Miserable experience with a bereavement fare on Delta

Miserable experience with a bereavement fare on Delta

Old Apr 14, 13, 6:03 pm
  #1  
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Miserable experience with a bereavement fare on Delta

I am having a problem with Delta. I am trying to book a flight for tomorrow so I can attend my father's funeral. I phoned Delta (bereavement fares can not be booked online), and after what seemed like a long hold time, they offered me a price of $846 from Detroit to Hartford, CT, for two people (me and my husband.) That sounded very reasonable of them, so I booked it.

OK, I thought I had my air tickets all set. Nope. The receipt just showed up in my email and they charged me the full fare of $2487.60 for two people. The email ticket says NONREF/PENALTY/APPLIES so it seems this is a nonrefundable fare despite the high cost.

I called them back and got a recording saying they were busy and they could call me back in 4-8 minutes. But when they called me back, a recording asked me to hold -- and then a few minutes later, it cut me off without anyone every answering.

So, I called again. This time, I stayed on hold instead of having them call me back. I sat on hold for a while, it sounded like someone was going to answer -- but no one ever did. It just cut me off again.

This is causing me major stress. In addition to how miserable I am already feeling (I had not expected my father's death), I have an obituary to write, have relatives to inform, need to pack, etc. Now, I have a $2487.60 charge on my credit card at a time when I may need to cover funeral expenses.

If this is how Delta handles their bereavement fares, I wish they just didn't offer them at all. If I had known how hard they would make this, I would have paid a little more to fly Southwest and not had to deal with all this.

Is there another number I can call to talk to someone at Delta? The only number I have for them is 1-800-323-2323, which they don't answer.
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Old Apr 14, 13, 6:06 pm
  #2  
 
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Tweet @DeltaAssist.

They are great!
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Old Apr 14, 13, 6:08 pm
  #3  
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Thanks for the advice GMill, but I'd have to set up a Twitter account to do that.
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Old Apr 14, 13, 6:14 pm
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Twitter takes 2 seconds to setup, do you want to pay $2400 for the tickets! First check on your own to see how much they would be. DL doesn't really free deep discounts for bereavement fares at times you can fine lower on your own.

If you don't want to set up twitter you an keep calling. Also all tix have a 24 hour cancellation grace period, so you can still search for cheaper fares. I know you are stressed, so sorry about your father, but if you do nothing it will cost you $2400 for your tickets.
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Old Apr 14, 13, 6:15 pm
  #5  
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Originally Posted by JudyS View Post
Thanks for the advice GMill, but I'd have to set up a Twitter account to do that.
Sorry for your loss. This can help:

http://boardingarea.com/blogs/deltap...-how-to-guide/

or

http://boardingarea.com/blogs/deltap...on-medallions/

Rene
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Old Apr 14, 13, 6:19 pm
  #6  
us2
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Good advice here.

I am very sorry for your loss.
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Old Apr 14, 13, 6:23 pm
  #7  
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This is easily fixed. Unfortunately there is no substitute for a call, annoying as the hold time may be. Hopefully you've got a speaker so you can set the handset down and do something else while waiting.
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Old Apr 14, 13, 7:03 pm
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Thank you for all the advice and condolences -- very prompt responses, too!

I tried the "callback method" again and once again Delta called back, then cut me off without anyone answering.

I am now trying the Twitter route. I have tweeted to @DeltaAssist and am waiting for them to follow me, using the instructions at the link provided by user Delta Points.
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Old Apr 14, 13, 7:15 pm
  #9  
 
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Don't use the callback method if it keeps disconnecting you. Just stay on hold. Do you have a speakerphone ? If this is not fixed before you fly then you will not get it refunded.
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Old Apr 14, 13, 7:19 pm
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Judy, what s your twitter ID? Delta follows me on twitter, maybe I an point them in your direction, it does seem there are many phone issues that people are tweeting about to them tonight
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Old Apr 14, 13, 7:43 pm
  #11  
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Originally Posted by MR_MAMA View Post
Don't use the callback method if it keeps disconnecting you. Just stay on hold. Do you have a speakerphone ? If this is not fixed before you fly then you will not get it refunded.
They are disconnecting me even when I stay on hold. I have now tried twice with having them call me back, and twice with my staying on hold. They keep disconnecting me every time -- four times total now.

I am trying the Twitter route now. For some reason, when I went to Direct Messages > New, I couldn't get @DeltaAssist to show up as a follower when I typed them in the User ID box. (Also tried other spellings, typing just the first few letters, signing in & out, etc.) However, sending "DM @DeltaAssist Please contact me" in the regular tweet box got them to DM me, and now I've replied and explained the situation. I'm waiting to hear back via Twitter DM.
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Old Apr 14, 13, 7:49 pm
  #12  
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Judy, my condolences for your loss.

If (when) you get in contact with someone at DL, please note that bereavement fares are some percentage off of full coach fares.

I recognize that minimizing cost may not be your highest priority right now, but you may want to ask the agent if the bereavement fare is actually the lowest cost fare.

Perhaps someone else could add some perspective here. I have heard that there may be more flexibility on changing return schedules on bereavement fares, but I cannot swear to that.
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Old Apr 14, 13, 9:13 pm
  #13  
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Delta has refused to honor the bereavement fare that was given to me over the phone. They said that if I fly, DH & I will be charged the full $2400+ and there is nothing they can do about it.

I canceled the tickets. From the time I explained the problem via Twitter, to the time Delta said the fare was canceled, was about an hour. While I was waiting (and waiting, etc) for them to respond via Twitter, I booked a flight on Southwest.

Thanks for the advice here. I wasn't able to get the promised fare, but at least I was eventually able to find out whether the fare would be honored, and then get it canceled. Without the Twitter advice here, I might not have been able to resolve this tonight (and I am flying tomorrow.) So, I am very happy with Flyertalk!

I am not so happy with Delta. Charging someone a fare 3x the price that was promised and then making the customer spend hours trying to cancel the fare is really not acceptable, even when it's not a bereavement situation. I want to complain about this. (After the funeral; not today.) Any ideas where I should start?
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Old Apr 14, 13, 9:25 pm
  #14  
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Originally Posted by JudyS View Post
Delta has refused to honor the bereavement fare that was given to me over the phone. They said that if I fly, DH & I will be charged the full $2400+ and there is nothing they can do about it.

I canceled the tickets. From the time I explained the problem via Twitter, to the time Delta said the fare was canceled, was about an hour. While I was waiting (and waiting, etc) for them to respond via Twitter, I booked a flight on Southwest.

Thanks for the advice here. I wasn't able to get the promised fare, but at least I was eventually able to find out whether the fare would be honored, and then get it canceled. Without the Twitter advice here, I might not have been able to resolve this tonight (and I am flying tomorrow.) So, I am very happy with Flyertalk!

I am not so happy with Delta. Charging someone a fare 3x the price that was promised and then making the customer spend hours trying to cancel the fare is really not acceptable, even when it's not a bereavement situation. I want to complain about this. (After the funeral; not today.) Any ideas where I should start?
It is unforgivable that you were put through this.

I would suggest that you try the main customer service line at (404) 715-2600.

You will get barraged with a series of voice mail prompts that you will have to wade through, but just keep in mind that you want the option for past travel, not future travel. (Admittedly, you did not travel on DL, but you did your best to try to do so.)

Don't waste your time with the complaint function on the DL web site. Your e-mail will first be read by a computer and then maybe passed on to a human who might be even less interested than the computer in your issue.
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Old Apr 14, 13, 9:37 pm
  #15  
 
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Use award travel

This is a good place to use award travel. There are departures tomorrow for 40k, a pretty good deal relative to purchased fares.
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