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RANT! HA Rebooking Policy for Itinerary Impacted by Schedule Change [Now Resolved]

RANT! HA Rebooking Policy for Itinerary Impacted by Schedule Change [Now Resolved]

Old Mar 8, 21, 6:18 pm
  #1  
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RANT! HA Rebooking Policy for Itinerary Impacted by Schedule Change [Now Resolved]

Sorry, have to vent. I booked my kids on a nonstop LAX-LIH flight last fall, which of course was cancelled and changed to LAX-HNL-LIH. I called to inquire about the change, asking the HA agent that if the Kauai mayor continued to insist on quarantine or "bubble resorts", could I cancel the interisland portion and meet my kids in HNL. Agent affirmed this was possible. The kids are travelling to HNL in 10 days. Mayor Kawakami announced that Kauai will not rejoin the safe travels program until April 5, so I called Hawaiian today to cancel the interisland portion, since the kids only have 6 days of time off work and don't have time to bubble quarantine (We are all vaccinated, but thats another story).

Hawaiian tells me that if I cancel the interisland portion, I will NOT get credit, - I will have to cancel the WHOLE ticket and rebook at today's prices, since the city pair is different. Rebooking the four tickets would cost almost $2k more than the original price. My choices were to 1) pay the extra fare, 2) cancel the ticket and keep the credit and then rebook the new fare, or 3) just lose the ticket. My kids are all frontline workers, worked over a year in hellish COVID ICU's, have six days off together and now, no family get together. All this after a 2.5 hour hold on line. Is this normal for Hawaiian airlines? (I usually fly Alaska, and ticket changes are simple and fast)

Last edited by FlyinHawaiian; Mar 9, 21 at 4:59 am Reason: https://www.flyertalk.com/help/rules.php#threadtitles
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Old Mar 8, 21, 6:43 pm
  #2  
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Call back and try another agent, aka HUCA (Hang Up Call Again).
A reasonable and competent HA agent should be able to make the change for you.
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Old Mar 8, 21, 6:57 pm
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You are at the mercy of HA because while your request is reasonable, the agent is correct. What you are asking for is a new itinerary and it will be priced as of today with the value of the original ticket as a credit (no change fee). Thus, the approach has to be very simple and straightforward.

Try calling back and keep the "ask" to the absolute minimum necessary. Leave out everything about how hard your kids work and why you want to do this. Also, do not use words like "cancel" (even though that is a reasonable way to look at it).

Simply ask that the kids be rerouted LAX-HNL-LAX in light of the travel restrictions. Don't ask for credit for the inter-island segment (you can deal with that after they are back) and don't envision it as a cancellation of anything.

If you get a "no" ask for a supervisor. If that is a no, politely end the call and call back. At some point, you may find that it is obvious that an agent has added PNR notes explaining why what you seek is not permitted and you are then SOL. Hopefully you have the new tickets before it reaches that.
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Old Mar 8, 21, 10:15 pm
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FT support line is the best! Thanks for your advice, I did HUCA, got through two layers of Phillipine based supervisors who then must have talked to a real person not reading out of a manual. Ticket was changed in 5 minutes. Total time spent on the phone with HA today - 4.5 hours.
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Old Mar 9, 21, 9:13 am
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This sort of thing is exactly why I don’t fly HA past Hilo. Front line folk are mostly great, but as a company, they can’t be trusted to have your back when things go sideways.
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Old Mar 9, 21, 11:10 am
  #6  
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Originally Posted by WrightHI View Post
This sort of thing is exactly why I don’t fly HA past Hilo. Front line folk are mostly great, but as a company, they can’t be trusted to have your back when things go sideways.
OP says HA reticketed him (which involved waiving its written policy which is already a waiver of the fare rules)!

That is a good result.
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Old Mar 9, 21, 8:43 pm
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Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
OP says HA reticketed him (which involved waiving its written policy which is already a waiver of the fare rules)!

That is a good result.
"

Kind of? It took 4.5 hours and a lot of frustration dealing with rote answers repeated from a script.

In comparison, I had the exact same thing happen to an Alaska ticket today (different child) - I called Alaska, they cancelled the interisland portion, refunded me $72 and kept the rest of the ticket identical. Took less than 15 minutes. It's probably different written policy, but now I know which airline has the best written policy (do you all really read all that fine print?)
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Old Mar 9, 21, 10:31 pm
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Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
OP says HA reticketed him (which involved waiving its written policy which is already a waiver of the fare rules)!

That is a good result.
A good result after a bunch of stress and consternation, at a time and in circumstances that should have made it an easy ask. Its better than a bad outcome, but not as good as an airline that empowers their front line people to be reasonable (and hires people who can make responsible use of that discretion). The latter has generally been my experience of AS. I may be spoiled, or just lucky.
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Old Mar 10, 21, 1:11 pm
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Originally Posted by QT31415 View Post
FT support line is the best! Thanks for your advice, I did HUCA, got through two layers of Phillipine based supervisors who then must have talked to a real person not reading out of a manual. Ticket was changed in 5 minutes. Total time spent on the phone with HA today - 4.5 hours.
And, to answer your original question: Yes, this type of runaround is USUAL with HA. Next time, just stick with AS or virtually any other major carrier if you want easier changes.
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