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Shouldn't Iberia honour a British Airways flight booking they booked in my account

Shouldn't Iberia honour a British Airways flight booking they booked in my account

Old Feb 21, 19, 1:57 pm
  #1  
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Shouldn't Iberia honour a British Airways flight booking they booked in my account

Iberia Plus booked flights for us from the UK to Bangkok after a complaint about the way a Qatar flight booking was made in November. Had had numerous Iberia website problems, dropped calls & ’systems down' trying to book & given incorrect information. The new British Airways flights they booked appeared as flight status confirmed in our Iberia Plus accounts. We booked a whole dream holiday around the schedule on the page's itinerary but discovered with just 4 days to go they 'forgot to book them' and they are just reservations. They also hadn't transferred the points across when were booked or cancelled the original Qatar flights. Issue been escalated but so far refusing to honour the booking they made.

Help please!

Last edited by Fiona B; Feb 21, 19 at 2:04 pm
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Old Feb 21, 19, 2:38 pm
  #2  
 
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Fiona, welcome to FT. Based on the information provided, you need to pressure Iberia Plus. They are the only ones that can help in this matter. What happened to the original Qatar booking, who/what complaint? You have not provided, but it appears you need to keep pressuring Iberia Plus to correct the situation.
Good luck.
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Old Feb 21, 19, 2:45 pm
  #3  
 
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Good luck. Flyertalk isn't really a place for communicating with airlines. Your only option is to be persistent with Iberia.
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Old Feb 21, 19, 3:35 pm
  #4  
 
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Originally Posted by Fiona B View Post
Iberia Plus booked flights for us from the UK to Bangkok after a complaint about the way a Qatar flight booking was made in November. Had had numerous Iberia website problems, dropped calls & ’systems down' trying to book & given incorrect information. The new British Airways flights they booked appeared as flight status confirmed in our Iberia Plus accounts. We booked a whole dream holiday around the schedule on the page's itinerary but discovered with just 4 days to go they 'forgot to book them' and they are just reservations. They also hadn't transferred the points across when were booked or cancelled the original Qatar flights. Issue been escalated but so far refusing to honour the booking they made.

Help please!
I'd agree with the posters above that you need to be persistent with Iberia. And in particular, escalate the issue to higher-level people beyond the front-line customer service representatives who are answering the phone. With some airlines it can help to use their social media, especially Twitter - sometimes it's effective in getting better handling and sometimes not. I don't know if that would help with Iberia or not, but you're not out anything by trying - but do so along with escalating in the customer service channel.

It's important to keep your communication simple and to the point of the immediate problem. Leave out anything extraneous. From what I can tell, the prior Qatar booking problems, other issues with the website, etc. should be left out as they will just distract from resolution. Regardless of what led to this point, your immediate concern is the booking with BA for the trip at hand - stick to that. Gather all relevant documentation. Keep your communication calm and factual (hard to do in the moment I know, but it will help). Good luck, hope you get it worked out!

Last edited by 84fiero; Feb 21, 19 at 3:43 pm
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Old Feb 21, 19, 4:09 pm
  #5  
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Thank you to the three of you for replying. It's been such an exhausting day trying to get this sorted so appreciate your support. I did actually try via social media this morning and despite some other people retweeting my post and asking Iberia to respond they didn't which we all thought very surprising. Thought companies' social media teams were meant to be red hot these days.

Good tips about keeping something simple too.

You will all be frequent flyers no doubt but to someone like me the idea that a company could add replacements flights to my partner and my Iberia Plus accounts as confirmed flights and then not accept responsibility for misleading us by doing so is just extraordinary.
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Old Feb 21, 19, 5:28 pm
  #6  
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Originally Posted by Fiona B View Post
Iberia Plus booked flights for us from the UK to Bangkok after a complaint about the way a Qatar flight booking was made in November. Had had numerous Iberia website problems, dropped calls & ísystems down' trying to book & given incorrect information. The new British Airways flights they booked appeared as flight status confirmed in our Iberia Plus accounts. We booked a whole dream holiday around the schedule on the page's itinerary but discovered with just 4 days to go they 'forgot to book them' and they are just reservations. They also hadn't transferred the points across when were booked or cancelled the original Qatar flights. Issue been escalated but so far refusing to honour the booking they made.
A little hard to understand what happened & when.

Have you (tried) to book flights from UK to Bangkok with IB avois on BA?
When was this booked & when were you due to travel?
Did the same before with Qatar flights, but had a problem?
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Old Feb 22, 19, 2:47 am
  #7  
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Could you be a bit more specific about what the Qatar problem was? Are you saying that Iberia agreed to book you on a flight to Bangkok because of a problem you encountered with Qatar? Was this some service recovery gesture or is this the same trip but booked on BA rather than Qatar? I'm a bit confused.
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Old Feb 22, 19, 3:15 am
  #8  
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I’d tried for days to redeem our points under the 90000 Iberia flights offer that was due to expire on December 1st. Had terrible problems with the Iberia website even though tried four different computers, multiple browsers & mobile devices. Assume it must have been completely overloaded. Telephoned lots as well. Repeatedly told to phone back as systems down, calls dropped. Fiasco. The poor staff sounded so stressed. Ended up booking something over the phone in the early hours in the morning that couldn’t have been further from my ideal route after being cut off yet again. These were Qatar flghts from Madrid to Male. I found out immediately I could have got much better destination options using less air miles & tax fees. I was actually trying to get to Bangkok from the UK. I tried to resolve this a few times. Zero success until eventually someone said they would get it sorted and was just in the middle of doing it when the line cut off.

I complained. Was told they would look into it. I didn’t hear back but then suddenly two British Airways flights UK to Bangkok appear in our Iberia Plus accounts for the correct route and options we’d wanted. Full itineraries including flight numbers, etc. in the accounts and app and on each flight 'status confirmed.’ So naturally when we booked our entire dream trip of a lifetime we did so on the information in our accounts - these flights. Who wouldn’t?

Just before we are due to fly we discovered we couldn’t book seats or meals online so we telephoned and they said immediately that the person who had booked the BA flights had 'made a mistake' and they were reservations only. When we ask why they booked them to appear in our accounts if they hadn’t swapped the points over to pay for them they repeatedly tell us that the promotion ended on December 1st and it’s too late now and we have to pay for the BA flights if we want them. But this was all done in November before the deadline. And by them! They also hadn’t cancelled the Qatar flights. Once they added the BA flights into our account it was up to them to sort out the details. They can’t blame us.

Regardless of the earlier complaint about the booking fiasco we have booked our entire trip around the BA flights to a completely different country. They tell us to just use the Qatar flights as in light of their errors they weren’t cancelled but we have booked every single bit of our itinerary starting and ending in Bangkok. The people at Qatar have been incredibly helpful. A lovely BA lady tried four times to get through to the Iberia people we were dealing with and then told me she had arranged for them to issue the tickets. I was so relieved. She said she was transferring me to the person who would issue them. And guess what? When that happened they wouldn’t do it after telling her they would.

It’s now our third day of fighting this and we've made so many calls and sent emails. We need to know either way today.
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Old Feb 22, 19, 10:39 am
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Just to be clear...

What is the exact reason Iberia is telling you that the flights can't (or won't) be ticketed at this point? Lack of award availability on BA for those flights? Some other reason?

You might try looking at current award availability on both Iberia and other partner flights for your dates and destinations and, assuming you have the necessary miles for one or more options, book whatever is available now yourself online (if possible) or by calling. (I'm assuming you still have the miles in your account.) To the extent you have any flexibility in the dates or routing (e.g., able to accept a less than ideal routing or number of connections) it may help open up options. Sometimes award seats can open up in the days just before departure - though not always of course.

Also I had missed in the OP where you said the Qatar flights hadn't been canceled? So now I'm not sure I understand - if they're not canceled, then wouldn't you be able to still travel on those Qatar tickets? Or do you just mean that you are still owed a mileage refund for those Qatar flights?

Last edited by 84fiero; Feb 22, 19 at 10:45 am
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Old Feb 22, 19, 2:46 pm
  #10  
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Moving thread from Information Desk in hope that some of the experts here can help OP.

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Old Feb 22, 19, 3:03 pm
  #11  
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Originally Posted by Fiona B View Post
Just before we are due to fly we discovered we couldn’t book seats or meals online so we telephoned and they said immediately that the person who had booked the BA flights had 'made a mistake' and they were reservations only. When we ask why they booked them to appear in our accounts if they hadn’t swapped the points over to pay for them they repeatedly tell us that the promotion ended on December 1st and it’s too late now and we have to pay for the BA flights if we want them. But this was all done in November before the deadline. And by them! They also hadn’t cancelled the Qatar flights. Once they added the BA flights into our account it was up to them to sort out the details. They can’t blame us.
I don't have any magic wand on this one, it's about as difficult as it gets. I can see what happened: when you complained earlier someone in Iberia checked out the reservation options, and that's how the BA services ended up attached - but not confirmed - to your booking. The trick to this is to get an e-ticket from Iberia with a ticket number on it for the BA services, which you won't have received, you may have something for the Qatar services. I don't blame you for thinking the BA service was confirmed, but in reality it was never more than a "what-if" position from Iberia.

I don't know how this was left, but so long as you have plenty of printouts and screenshots saved you may be in a position to book alternative services and try to pursue Iberia after travel for any monetary shortfall. This is a high risk strategy, even EC261 requires you to have a confirmed reservation. My hope is that via liaison with Iberia you are able to resolve something, even if it's a compromise.

It's a good example of why it's important to follow up carefully and precisely with Iberia in these sorts of circumstances, and make sure you have e-tickets fully issued. If it was a fully automated booking - with automated e-tickets - then it's less of a factor. Keep us informed, I hope you get this resolved. And welcome to the Iberia Forum, welcome to Flyertalk.
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Old Feb 22, 19, 3:51 pm
  #12  
 
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I am afraid that this is a difficult situation. It's an unfortunate fact of air travel that many reservations appear "Confirmed", but until you actually receive a ticket number (a 13-digit number) you do not really have anything. It is of course no help to you in this situation to mention that in the future it is good to check that this number appears on your reservation, specially in cases where there is some manual intervention by an agent (and Iberia always sends an email with the ticket details in a pdf in these cases, when it is actually booked).

At this point, since it was an award booking on another airline and there is no availability, I think the likelihood of getting the same itinerary restored is low. In particular, booking something yourself and going to Iberia after the fact for reimbursement seems very risky. But they can probably offer some compromise (which I appreciate might be useless to you).

Edit: I see now that CWS has already replied on similar lines, but with more authority than I have, while I had this tab open.
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Old Feb 22, 19, 6:48 pm
  #13  
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Thank you for getting back to me.I will definitely know for next time about the tickets. Thank you. In our Iberia account itineraries there was absolutely no difference between flight status confirmed for the Qatar flights and the British Airways ones which turned out to be reservations so we had absolutely no idea. Because of using apps for tickets so much these days I wasn't really looking out for a ticket so long before our holiday as all the flight and itinerary details were there in the Iberia app on my phone. Even when looking at our details on the British Airways website there was no hint that these weren't real flights. Incidentally I never even received a ticket for my Qatar flight either.

We discovered the British Airways flights reservations were cancelled without them notifying us despite having been originally reassured they would be kept whilst the investigation took place.

Two of Iberia Staff told me how to cancel the Qatar flights if we wanted to despite losing the points and the process for refunding the taxes and fees. When I phoned back tonight to do so I've been on the phone for 40 plus minutes at 1.24am because they have now told me they will not refund the taxes and fees. They told me yet again I have been given the wrong information. So now not only do I have the fight about the BA flights leading us to book this whole trip for a different destination I will now have to battle to get the taxes and fees refunded.

So much for a trip of a lifetime.

Last edited by Fiona B; Feb 23, 19 at 4:55 am
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Old Feb 23, 19, 8:29 am
  #14  
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Thank you for doing that. Much appreciated.
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Old Feb 23, 19, 9:51 am
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I'm lost... you booked a return MAD-DOH-Male itinerary with Avios. Because you left it to the last couple of days, you complained that actually you wanted to go to BKK and actually Iberia told you they would book you on another itinerary, for free?

I honestly can't believe it. Agents are not gonna override the system transforming a non-refundable booking to a refundable-replacement itinerary. Unless there were communication issues, I guess the phone operator made a booking but the booking was never paid by OP.

Just a reminder to everyone, as has been repeated many times.... IBERIA PLUS REDEMPTIONS are NON-REFUNDABLE, EXCEPT: IBERIA, IBERIA EXPRESS, AIR NOSTRUM and BRITISH AIRWAYS operated flights.

Regardless, I find all this very fishy. I am very suspicious about this statement "Ended up booking something over the phone in the early hours in the morning that couldn't have been further from my ideal route after being cut off yet again. These were Qatar flghts from Madrid to Male. I found out immediately I could have got much better destination options using less air miles & tax fees. I was actually trying to get to Bangkok from the UK." .... why would anyone on this earth book something completely irrelevant to your personal priorities and goals?
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