FlyerTalk Forums

FlyerTalk Forums (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/index.php)
-   Delta Air Lines | SkyMiles (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/delta-air-lines-skymiles-665/)
-   -   Customer-unfriendly decision: 120-minute delay for a full refund (https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/delta-air-lines-skymiles/2022687-customer-unfriendly-decision-120-minute-delay-full-refund.html)

LAX_Esq Aug 3, 20 9:42 pm


Originally Posted by defrosted (Post 32579661)
Not ideal, not customer friendly, sure, but reasonable all the same.

At what point does non-ideal and not customer friendly cross over into unreasonable?

ethernal Aug 3, 20 9:50 pm


Originally Posted by defrosted (Post 32579632)
In fairness you are confusing the issue, your example of advertising routes they never intend to fly is a cancelation not a schedule change of 90 vs 120. Correct me if I am wrong cancelations are still refunded.

Apologies, shouldn't have said "route" as that implies a specific city pair served nonstop as opposed to multiple.

As an example of what I am talking about - check out ATL-ORD on December 25th. Even in a non-COVID world, there is zero chance that Delta is actually going to fly 10 ATL-ORD flights that day (last year they flew only 6 flights). Just like United will not fly 8 flights that day. I'm picking Christmas as an extreme example, but if I was to book a flight today, there is no way I'll know which flights they will actually fly. In normal times, this is about the time of year they finally start trimming holiday schedules now that summer is on the downswing. Of course, with COVID, who knows how long they will wait to make adjustments (although I am of course willing to excuse this year for that).

They're happy to keep the full schedule to collect data on when people want to fly and run optimization models for when they prune the routes system-wide. And they're also happy to charge for a specific time within a 2-hour window: one way, the 8:28 AM flight is $170. The 10:13 AM flight is $59. I can go check out and Delta is happy to extract a 288% price premium for picking a specific time within a two hour window, but interestingly there is no warning (without reading the revised CoC) when I go to book this flight that Delta could decide to put me on the 10:13 AM flight (priced 65% off) with no recourse if they like.

I picked an extreme example (Christmas day) to make a point, but this kind of stuff occurs (on a smaller scale) all the time. This bothers me. Maybe it doesn't bother you, but it bothers me.

smartytravel Aug 3, 20 9:52 pm


Originally Posted by No_Name (Post 32579667)
Governmental inaction is a good reason to miss a deadline but weather, airport delays (say due to some other flight having an emergency), etc is not a good reason to miss a deadline?

We are not talking about same day changes which can occur due to extraordinary circumstances

In case of airlines, we are talking about schedule changes they make weeks or months in advance of the actual flights that pax had already paid for.

defrosted Aug 3, 20 9:55 pm


Originally Posted by LAX_Esq (Post 32579673)
At what point does non-ideal and not customer friendly cross over into unreasonable?

Great question, the answer probably isn't cut and dry. But we are talking 2 hours here. Any other mode of transportation could be delayed (granted perhaps not on purpose) by 2 hours just as easily. I don't know where the unreasonable line is, I give you that, but i do know moving to 120 minutes versus 90 doesn't cross it.

defrosted Aug 3, 20 10:07 pm


Originally Posted by ethernal (Post 32579683)
Apologies, shouldn't have said "route" as that implies a specific city pair served nonstop as opposed to multiple.

As an example of what I am talking about ............

This bothers me. Maybe it doesn't bother you, but it bothers me.

Fair enough, thanks for the clarification.

It doesn't bother me one iota. I can certainly see where you are coming from though. If there was more competition and someone could sell "no schedule changes" as a benefit, would you pay more for that? I honestly doubt there would be a market for that. I stand by my opinion that this issue is a non issue for the majority of Delta's customers. It isn't my intention to devalue your thoughts on it, I just believe you are in the minority.

ethernal Aug 3, 20 10:16 pm


Originally Posted by defrosted (Post 32579708)
Fair enough, thanks for the clarification.

It doesn't bother me one iota. I can certainly see where you are coming from though. If there was more competition and someone could sell "no schedule changes" as a benefit, would you pay more for that? I honestly doubt there would be a market for that. I stand by my opinion that this issue is a non issue for the majority of Delta's customers. It isn't my intention to devalue your thoughts on it, I just believe you are in the minority.

I'm not asking for no schedule changes. Of course schedule changes are going to happen. What I am asking for the right for a refund if the schedule change made by Delta no longer suits me. This isn't perfect (for example, fare conditions likely would have changed since the schedule change) - but it is at least an effort to make things right.

You can quibble about exactly where the line of materiality is. I think we'd all agree that less than 15 minutes is immaterial. I think the majority (myself included) would say that less than an hour is not material in most cases. I think 2 hours is material to most people. Maybe I have a different opinion. But I take a lot of one-night or same-day leisure trips - and I frequently pay a lot extra for "valuable" time slots - like late afternoon/early evening on a Friday and early afternoon on a Sunday. So yes, I get cranky when those timeslots are disrupted. It may not make a trip in vain, but it does materially impact a weekend trip. Or, even worse, a day trip with only 10 planned hours at the destination that gets cut short by 2-3 hours.

BRITINJAPAN4 Aug 3, 20 10:27 pm


Originally Posted by smartytravel (Post 32579653)
We seem to be talking past each other.
1. What low prices are we talking about? Can I, like in Europe, fly the distance equal to London-Athens in the US, and still pay $20-$100? No. The same distance in the US would be $200-300. US airlines just feed everyone with crap about the choice between cheap prices and no-frills flying. OK, semantics, LOWER Prices It is a nonsense to compare markets, do you think it should be a price per KM anywhere in the world ?

2. If I want flexibility for MY OWN choices, then I purchase my own fully changeable and refundable ticket. However, Iím typically very set and certain about my decisions and I purchase flights based on specific departure and arrival times. Why am I being penalized and forced to accept something that the AIRLINE decides to do? If they want flexibility, they need to pay to passengers. The payment here is the full refund to passengers who do not agree to new departure or arrival times.

Because it is rarely what the airline WANTS to do, it is normally (always exceptions )in their best interests to have to whole network schedule running 100% on time, anyone with any understanding knows that is simply impossible.

If you are set in your requirements then for you, the higher far , less restrictions is the way to go, for others where price is paramount , they are happy to save something and risk a two hour delay, Horses for couses.

It seem you want your cake and eat it, You want to be able to cancel if any delay, well you can, but you simply think its too expensive. And yet your complaint is against the airline that seems to be the most customer friendly in this regard, at least in the USA.

smartytravel Aug 3, 20 10:28 pm


Originally Posted by defrosted (Post 32579708)
It doesn't bother me one iota. I can certainly see where you are coming from though. If there was more competition and someone could sell "no schedule changes" as a benefit, would you pay more for that? I honestly doubt there would be a market for that. I stand by my opinion that this issue is a non issue for the majority of Delta's customers. It isn't my intention to devalue your thoughts on it, I just believe you are in the minority.

Imagine you have an important banquet to attend at 7pm. You schedule and prepay for a taxi to pick you up at 6pm. However, taxi calls you last minute and tells you they would be picking you up at 8pm, instead of 6. Now, you are out of money, late for the banquet, but taxi is happy because they have your money.

Second, why do I need to pay extra for something I already pay for? I pay for a specific departure and arrival, and Iím already charged premium prices for my choices. If they want to change the schedule and it doesnít work for me, I want my money back.

defrosted Aug 3, 20 10:29 pm


Originally Posted by ethernal (Post 32579721)
I'm not asking for no schedule changes. Of course schedule changes are going to happen. What I am asking for the right for a refund if the schedule change made by Delta no longer suits me. This isn't perfect (for example, fare conditions likely would have changed since the schedule change) - but it is at least an effort to make things right.

You can quibble about exactly where the line of materiality is. I think we'd all agree that less than 15 minutes is immaterial. I think the majority (myself included) would say that less than an hour is not material in most cases. I think 2 hours is material to most people. Maybe I have a different opinion. But I take a lot of one-night or same-day leisure trips - and I frequently pay a lot extra for "valuable" time slots - like late afternoon/early evening on a Friday and early afternoon on a Sunday. So yes, I get cranky when those timeslots are disrupted. It may not make a trip in vain, but it does materially impact a weekend trip. Or, even worse, a day trip with only 10 planned hours at the destination that gets cut short by 2-3 hours.

No schedule changes (minimal changes) question stands do we really think there is a market for that? How far out would they have to set it for this to be valuable?

Can you not just wait until the last minute when the schedule is less likely to change and buy a ticket then? I realize that is somewhat rhetorical but my point is by purchasing in advance are you not trying to take advantage of lower than last minute fares, yet you want no risk? Isn't that contrary to the notion of pre-purchase in this situation? Many companies offer pre paid options with strings attached. Gift certificates or coupons with expiration dates?

I totally get in your situations that 2 hours makes a huge difference and I am not going to convince you otherwise. I suppose I am asking what benefit the airline would have (that they don't currently have) that would be a good business case for them to adopt your desired refund policy?

defrosted Aug 3, 20 10:33 pm


Originally Posted by smartytravel (Post 32579739)
Imagine you have an important banquet to attend at 7pm. You schedule and prepay for a taxi to pick you up at 6pm. However, taxi calls you last minute and tells you they would be picking you up at 8pm, instead of 6. Now, you are out of money, late for the banquet, but taxi is happy because they have your money.

Second, why do I need to pay extra for something I already pay for? I pay for a specific departure and arrival, and Iím already charged premium prices for my choices. If they want to change the schedule and it doesnít work for me, I want my money back.

If it were that important I would not cut it that close. Nor would I use pre paid options. If someone already has your money they have less interest in doing what you need.

Easy to say, but your opposing example was just as easy to come up with.

rickg523 Aug 3, 20 10:33 pm


Originally Posted by defrosted (Post 32579691)
Great question, the answer probably isn't cut and dry. But we are talking 2 hours here. Any other mode of transportation could be delayed (granted perhaps not on purpose) by 2 hours just as easily. I don't know where the unreasonable line is, I give you that, but i do know moving to 120 minutes versus 90 doesn't cross it.

I fly an intrastate flight that's less than an hour and a half gate to gate. I'm saying a 2 hour Mulligan is unreasonable.

defrosted Aug 3, 20 10:38 pm


Originally Posted by rickg523 (Post 32579745)
I fly an intrastate flight that's less than an hour gate to gate. I'm saying a 2 hour Mulligan is unreasonable.

Then drive if you find it more reliable. Less than an hour gate to gate... one could argue (in another thread) about when to fly versus when to drive.

Everyone's situation will be different, ideally they should base it on a percentage of flight time. But that is confusing so they are choosing a time that my guess is reasonable in 80% of cases.

ATOBTTR Aug 3, 20 10:40 pm


Originally Posted by smartytravel (Post 32579739)
Imagine you have an important banquet to attend at 7pm. You schedule and prepay for a taxi to pick you up at 6pm. However, taxi calls you last minute and tells you they would be picking you up at 8pm, instead of 6. Now, you are out of money, late for the banquet, but taxi is happy because they have your money.

Your analogy falls short because this is a “day of” issue. And with the airline if the delay day of is extensive enough, you can claim “trip in vain” and get a refund. For your analogy to apply you would have to schedule a cab several months out and then the cab company notifies you of a change, still several months out.

If you want an example from another industry that proves counter to your analogy, check out pro sports and “flex scheduling”. Quite clear up front if you buy a ticket to an NFL game beyond Week 4, the time of the game for Sunday games can be changed due to “flex scheduling” (fortunately as a Bengals fan, our games are never moved into prime time so we don’t have to worry about this one too much. ;) ).

ATOBTTR Aug 3, 20 11:17 pm


Originally Posted by ethernal (Post 32579721)
I'm not asking for no schedule changes. Of course schedule changes are going to happen. What I am asking for the right for a refund if the schedule change made by Delta no longer suits me. This isn't perfect (for example, fare conditions likely would have changed since the schedule change) - but it is at least an effort to make things right.

You can quibble about exactly where the line of materiality is. I think we'd all agree that less than 15 minutes is immaterial. I think the majority (myself included) would say that less than an hour is not material in most cases. I think 2 hours is material to most people. Maybe I have a different opinion.

For most of the people booking flights for whom two hours is not trivial, they’re booking within the window where airline schedules are pretty well fixed anyway (COVID world aside). Most people booking a flight this far out on or around Christmas are booking on the cheapest fare for their holiday travel. If the cheapest fare leaves at 8 am, they'll book that flight. If it’s a 6 am, they'll book that flight. The leisure travelers are the ones who will connect or take a 4 hour layover over a 2 hour layover to save $20 on a ticket. And a 1-2 hour schedule change months in advance is going to have minimal impact on them. They mainly care more about a specific date than a specific time of day. Few people whose time is *that* valuable are booking that far out or making plans for a something that far out because they don’t want to commit their time to one thing if a more valuable prospect or opportunity comes along. Airlines know this and it’s part of why their pricing model and operational model are the way they are.


Originally Posted by ethernal (Post 32579721)
But I take a lot of one-night or same-day leisure trips - and I frequently pay a lot extra for "valuable" time slots - like late afternoon/early evening on a Friday and early afternoon on a Sunday. So yes, I get cranky when those timeslots are disrupted. It may not make a trip in vain, but it does materially impact a weekend trip. Or, even worse, a day trip with only 10 planned hours at the destination that gets cut short by 2-3 hours.


Then as an experienced traveler why do you not just wait until inside 60 days to book such trips when schedules are more likely to be fixed? If you’re “frequently” paying a lot extra for day trips and a lot of them, the money isn’t itself the issue. But if don’t want your money tied up to an airline or ticket that may change to a schedule you don’t like, then why not just wait until schedules are to the point where they’ll be finalized and then determine which airline/option with a finalized schedule best meets your needs?

MSPeconomist Aug 3, 20 11:57 pm


Originally Posted by ethernal (Post 32579721)
I'm not asking for no schedule changes. Of course schedule changes are going to happen. What I am asking for the right for a refund if the schedule change made by Delta no longer suits me. This isn't perfect (for example, fare conditions likely would have changed since the schedule change) - but it is at least an effort to make things right.

You can quibble about exactly where the line of materiality is. I think we'd all agree that less than 15 minutes is immaterial. I think the majority (myself included) would say that less than an hour is not material in most cases. I think 2 hours is material to most people. Maybe I have a different opinion. But I take a lot of one-night or same-day leisure trips - and I frequently pay a lot extra for "valuable" time slots - like late afternoon/early evening on a Friday and early afternoon on a Sunday. So yes, I get cranky when those timeslots are disrupted. It may not make a trip in vain, but it does materially impact a weekend trip. Or, even worse, a day trip with only 10 planned hours at the destination that gets cut short by 2-3 hours.

Sometimes small schedule changes can matter significantly if someone is planning to use very early morning or very late night public transportation to the airport, needs to pick up a rental car before the agency closes for the night, or wishes to avoid driving to/from airport in rush hour traffic. IME DL phone agents have been very accommodating regarding such schedule changes in the past.


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 3:20 pm.


This site is owned, operated, and maintained by MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Designated trademarks are the property of their respective owners.