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Unused flight credits and airline bankruptcy [Concern about B6]

Unused flight credits and airline bankruptcy [Concern about B6]

Old Mar 27, 2020, 11:47 pm
  #1  
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Unused flight credits and airline bankruptcy [Concern about B6]

I have thousands tied up in my JetBlue travel bank that expire at the end of this year. With the current economic situation, I'm concerned the airline will claim bankruptcy and wipe out travel banks. Has/is anyone been in a similar situation? Can I count on the airline refunding me the full amount in my travel bank or would I be better off booking tickets for late in the year instead, expecting that ticketed travel would be refunded in the event of a bankruptcy?
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Old Mar 28, 2020, 2:31 am
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There is no reason to believe a Ch 11 bankruptcy will wipe out the accumulated miles.
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Old Mar 28, 2020, 8:11 am
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Originally Posted by LondonElite
There is no reason to believe a Ch 11 bankruptcy will wipe out the accumulated miles.
Not miles, unused money for previously cancelled trips held in a travel bank with the airline.
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Old Mar 31, 2020, 1:34 am
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It is very unlikely that any U.S. airlines, including B6, will file for bankruptcy protection, even this remains a possibility.

Also - the chance that any of the travel credit be vanished from any purported bankruptcy protection is extremely low, given that customer support is critical for reorganization.

It is another story if the airline files for Chapter 7 instead.
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Old Apr 2, 2020, 10:38 am
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I would be more concerned that the travel credits are going to expire before travel returns to normal again, honestly. I think the government will be trying to bailout airlines as much as possible. If you think you can finagle a way to get refunds, I think it's worth a try.
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Old Apr 3, 2020, 12:39 pm
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B6's financial situation is better than AAL and UAL. With access to Payroll Grants and Gov't Loans, B6 is not going bust. If anything, investors will be diluted but JBLU will continue as a going concern.
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Old Apr 3, 2020, 3:01 pm
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JetBlue is taking the government bailout. So no bankruptcy, not in the near future anyway.
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Old Apr 4, 2020, 6:11 am
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With the bailout, JetBlue can probably last until Q1/Q2 next year. Airlines are unlikely to be cash positive until at least next Q2. They probably need another loan from either the state gov't or the bank to get through this safely.
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Old Apr 4, 2020, 10:50 am
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JetBlue is actually in a decent financial position to ride this out, especially with the government assistance. I don't anticipate them going bankrupt over this.

-J.
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Old Apr 4, 2020, 10:27 pm
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demand and fight for a cash refund don't settle for a lousy travel credit.
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Old Apr 5, 2020, 3:32 pm
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All irrelevant. If B6 cancels your flight, you are entitled to a refund.

Cash is cash. If you want to use it to purchase a new B6 ticket at some point, you can do that. Or you may want to fly another carrier or do something else with your money.

No reason to tie your cash up.

If you are denied a refund, simply initiate a charegabck with your credit card issuer (bank) and also file a DOT complaint.
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Old Apr 5, 2020, 5:42 pm
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Originally Posted by GW McLintock
JetBlue is actually in a decent financial position to ride this out, especially with the government assistance. I don't anticipate them going bankrupt over this.

-J.
We all hope so. Who knows how long airline industry will struggle to recover from this. All the airlines are now hoarding cash and accumulating travel bank balances. Which means when people do start flying again, they are not getting as much cash come in. And whatever they will get will be at very low yield.

My guess is that legacy airlines are going to run out of cash by Q4 even with the grants. DL and AA are probably going to have to file chapter 11 this year. JetBlue has enough cash on hand to last longer than that, but they'd probably need another loan with gov't help to not have to file chapter 11.
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Old Apr 8, 2020, 2:52 pm
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Some of the states are starting to plateau or move down the curve already. I anticipate business travel slowly starting to come back by June/July. I still have conferences on the calendar for this timeframe. I don't think it will be huge by any means but I do think it will be better than right now.
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Old Apr 8, 2020, 3:01 pm
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Originally Posted by RWPrincess
Some of the states are starting to plateau or move down the curve already. I anticipate business travel slowly starting to come back by June/July. I still have conferences on the calendar for this timeframe. I don't think it will be huge by any means but I do think it will be better than right now.
I agree. Though this crisis has really shown the world how doable video conferencing is, people are itching to travel -- especially on leisure. I anticipate JetBlue and ULCC traffic will pick up more quickly than the legacies, unless they somehow match prices. That said, airfares are currently (in general) the lowest they've ever been. That is how they will get customers onboard after this blows over.

-J.
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Old Apr 10, 2020, 2:26 am
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Originally Posted by GW McLintock
I agree. Though this crisis has really shown the world how doable video conferencing is, people are itching to travel -- especially on leisure. I anticipate JetBlue and ULCC traffic will pick up more quickly than the legacies, unless they somehow match prices. That said, airfares are currently (in general) the lowest they've ever been. That is how they will get customers onboard after this blows over.

-J.
They've actually bounced back somewhat (at least in some markets...RIC-MCO is no longer sub-$20 on B6, though I think NK is offering some advanced deep discount fares in that ballpark...but if I had to guess, NK is in even deeper trouble due to a heavy leisure focus), though they're nowhere near what they would "normally" be in many cases.

As to the cash flow situation, I agree that the airlines are not likely to be cash flow positive until sometime next year (they might even have a lousy 2021 depending on how badly the economy takes the hit), but there's a difference between "burning $60 million/day while the government is backstopping payroll" and "posting a moderate overall loss and modest net cash flow bleed even if seasonally profitable". My guess is that we're going to see a bloody massacre come this fall in terms of layoffs and other issues, depending on how badly things are going by then.

I do agree with a summer timeline for a travel rebound as being most probable, but I think the error bars on that are massive, and we also need to consider the risks of a "double dip" on this one if the virus comes back, as well as the risk of intermittent outbreaks causing a total mess.

To the advantage of B6, it seems like there's every chance that NYC is just going to burn through the virus now and get it over with...confirmed infection rates in some of the suburban counties are the highest in the world and I am reasonably certain that the "actual" infection rates are far higher on the basis of the cases-to-tests ratio [NY is a bit above 2:1 while NJ is actually [i]below 2:1]. Basically, where in a lot of places the "mild" [aka non-hospitalization] cases are getting diagnosed, in the NYC area it seems very likely that a large share of those simply aren't getting picked up. And even with all of that scanty testing and what-have-you:
-Rockland County is over a 2% infection rate (6600 cases on less than 330k people)
-Westchester County is approaching a confirmed infection rate of 2% (they're at 17,000 cases on a population of right under a million).
-Nassau and Suffolk aren't far behind (both are well over 1%).
-Orange County is a bit over 1%.
-NYC is probably over 1%, if just barely.
-Bergen, Hudson, and Union Counties are all just under 1%.

The "bright" side is that, presuming the virus grants immunity for a few years, at least one of their main hubs is somewhat less likely to see a second raging outbreak down the line.

Last edited by GrayAnderson; Apr 10, 2020 at 2:35 am
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