Flight time change question

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Old Mar 4, 19, 9:50 am
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Question Flight time change question

Hello FT friends,

I originally booked EW 682 (CGN-ATH) flight and at the time of booking the flight times were 11:30 CGN departure and 15:35 ATH arrival. Fare class: Smart Fare.

EW has now changed the flight to depart at 07:00 CGN time. I am not pleased about the new flight time at all but it is a wee bit tolerable (though that means a very early AM hotel checkout). I would have weighed my options and flew out of FRA or DUS had I known it was a morning (weekend) flight.

Am I able to get them to switch my flight to a neighbouring airport (DUS, FRA) on the same day but no earlier than the original departure time and waive the rebooking fee, paying only any fare difference? Or will they cause a stink about it?

Last edited by wildace; Mar 4, 19 at 12:02 pm
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Old Mar 4, 19, 12:26 pm
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Originally Posted by wildace View Post
Hello FT friends,

I originally booked EW 682 (CGN-ATH) flight and at the time of booking the flight times were 11:30 CGN departure and 15:35 ATH arrival. Fare class: Smart Fare.

EW has now changed the flight to depart at 07:00 CGN time. I am not pleased about the new flight time at all but it is a wee bit tolerable (though that means a very early AM hotel checkout). I would have weighed my options and flew out of FRA or DUS had I known it was a morning (weekend) flight.

Am I able to get them to switch my flight to a neighbouring airport (DUS, FRA) on the same day but no earlier than the original departure time and waive the rebooking fee, paying only any fare difference? Or will they cause a stink about it?
You can always ask for it, but it's not a given they'll accept. I'm told chances are better if you have a LH plated ticket (bought through LH or GDS, not direct on EW website)
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Old Mar 4, 19, 1:55 pm
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Originally Posted by Fabo.sk View Post
You can always ask for it, but it's not a given they'll accept. I'm told chances are better if you have a LH plated ticket (bought through LH or GDS, not direct on EW website)
What is GDS?
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Old Mar 4, 19, 2:19 pm
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Originally Posted by wildace View Post
What is GDS?
Global Distribution System.

essentially a backend for travel agents (including online) to book airline tickets.
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Old Mar 4, 19, 4:16 pm
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When is your travel and when were you notified? You may be due EC 261/2004 compensation if within 14 days and that might be used to negotiate what you want.
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Old Mar 5, 19, 6:23 am
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Are airlines obliged to check with customers if the new flight time works and is more than a given time compared to the original departure time?
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Old Mar 5, 19, 8:13 am
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Originally Posted by Often1 View Post
When is your travel and when were you notified? You may be due EC 261/2004 compensation if within 14 days and that might be used to negotiate what you want.
Travel in summer. Tickets booked about a month ago. I never even got a notification to say "your flight times have changed". Air Canada is good with that, so I always get those from minute changes of 5 minutes to even aircraft change.

EW sent over diddly squat.
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Old Mar 5, 19, 8:49 am
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Originally Posted by iLied View Post
Are airlines obliged to check with customers if the new flight time works and is more than a given time compared to the original departure time?
You mean contacting all pax and asking whether the schedule change is acceptable? I'm sorry, but it doesn't work this way. In one way or the other you should get notified of a schedule change, and if it doesn't suit you, you need to react. I bet the majority of pax simply accept the schedule change without fuzz. It would be a huge task if the airline had to contact each and every pax to get their approval of the schedule change - simply impossible.
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Old Mar 5, 19, 8:53 am
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To the OP, try to contact EW and ask nicely if you will be allowed to reroute ( I understood that you booked directly with EW so you need to contact and deal with EW). Most likely the answer will be "No". BUT you always have the opportunity to reject the schedule change and ask to cancel/for a full refund. Afterwards, you can book the new flights that fit you better on your own.

Last edited by SK AAR; Mar 5, 19 at 8:58 am
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Old Mar 5, 19, 12:15 pm
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Originally Posted by SK AAR View Post
You mean contacting all pax and asking whether the schedule change is acceptable? I'm sorry, but it doesn't work this way. In one way or the other you should get notified of a schedule change, and if it doesn't suit you, you need to react. I bet the majority of pax simply accept the schedule change without fuzz. It would be a huge task if the airline had to contact each and every pax to get their approval of the schedule change - simply impossible.
I agree. There is nothing in a business contract (aka. ticket purchase) that says "we will ask for your permission" before making any changes. However, at the very least the other party - in this case the airline - should be sending you notifications that some changes have been made, and it be up to you what you want to do next (i.e. change/cancel ticket, keep flight as is, etc.).

I'm just not too pleased they had originally set the summer schedule to be mid-day flights and then all of a sudden move them to morning flights after I book the ticket far enough in advance to avoid major changes.
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Old Mar 5, 19, 12:27 pm
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Originally Posted by wildace View Post
I agree. There is nothing in a business contract (aka. ticket purchase) that says "we will ask for your permission" before making any changes. However, at the very least the other party - in this case the airline - should be sending you notifications that some changes have been made, and it be up to you what you want to do next (i.e. change/cancel ticket, keep flight as is, etc.).

I'm just not too pleased they had originally set the summer schedule to be mid-day flights and then all of a sudden move them to morning flights after I book the ticket far enough in advance to avoid major changes.
It need not be in the "contract", if it is in the law, which does say you have to be informed, and then what options you have further on (accept, refund, ask for reroute - not necessarily that your proposal will be accepted)
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Old Mar 10, 19, 3:17 pm
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Originally Posted by SK AAR View Post
You mean contacting all pax and asking whether the schedule change is acceptable? I'm sorry, but it doesn't work this way. In one way or the other you should get notified of a schedule change, and if it doesn't suit you, you need to react. I bet the majority of pax simply accept the schedule change without fuzz. It would be a huge task if the airline had to contact each and every pax to get their approval of the schedule change - simply impossible.
Systems are automated these days so all the airline has to do is enter into the system the change in schedule and then if itís more than their own or EU rules, then the system automatically sends out emails informing pax of this. Airlines already have this system in place for some things.
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Old Mar 10, 19, 3:28 pm
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Originally Posted by wildace View Post
I agree. There is nothing in a business contract (aka. ticket purchase) that says "we will ask for your permission" before making any changes. However, at the very least the other party - in this case the airline - should be sending you notifications that some changes have been made, and it be up to you what you want to do next (i.e. change/cancel ticket, keep flight as is, etc.).

I'm just not too pleased they had originally set the summer schedule to be mid-day flights and then all of a sudden move them to morning flights after I book the ticket far enough in advance to avoid major changes.
It’s obviously a business decision and you need not be informed it’s going to happen but EW should have contacted you afterwards to confirm it’s suitable for you. As I mentioned in a previous post, it could all be automated to avoid them doing a lot of legwork.

This has happened to me recently too, albeit a route cancellation rather than a change of schedule. The airline rerouted me with very few questions asked. In my case though, it was a very public event too which did make things a bit simpler, as I only had to wait and see if my flights were affected and wait for the system to accept reroutings.

I had to book early for my trip but it still happened. Circumstances change and I’ve been told nothing is confirmed until about two weeks before the flight. Airlines sell so far in advance to help us but they can’t confirm everything then.

Last edited by iLied; Mar 11, 19 at 7:15 am
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Old Mar 11, 19, 5:56 am
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The issue is not to contact the pax - that should be fairly easy as you already point out. The issue if you have a procedure where the pax needs to positively react to a schedule change, i.e. to accept the schedule change. What will happen to the majority of pax who doesn't respond? The airline can/has to cancel and refund their tickets because new schedule is not accepted? I can assure you that would develop into chaos at airports with pax turning up for the flights but their tickets being cancelled because they didn't accept the schedule change. In reality there is no other solution than pax being informed of the schedule change and pax need to contact the airline or the OTA to get rebooked or cancel if they are not happy with it.
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Old Mar 11, 19, 7:13 am
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Originally Posted by SK AAR View Post
The issue is not to contact the pax - that should be fairly easy as you already point out. The issue if you have a procedure where the pax needs to positively react to a schedule change, i.e. to accept the schedule change. What will happen to the majority of pax who doesn't respond? The airline can/has to cancel and refund their tickets because new schedule is not accepted? I can assure you that would develop into chaos at airports with pax turning up for the flights but their tickets being cancelled because they didn't accept the schedule change. In reality there is no other solution than pax being informed of the schedule change and pax need to contact the airline or the OTA to get rebooked or cancel if they are not happy with it.
I think this is how itís done. Pax have to get in touch if they donít agree with the change but if they donít then itís assumed the pax is fine with it. I donít see another way of doing it. If itís a ticket with two flight segments then itís a lot simpler than if itís two or more per leg, Iím not even sure what would happen in these cases.
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