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[PREM FARE GONE] UA: NCL-EWR 600 DKK (mistaken fare) DOT ruled; see wiki for link

Old Feb 11, 2015, 11:49 am
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Last edit by: drewguy
If you've never gone through this process read this before posting!
Note: Please consider that with high probability, United is monitoring this thread, so please pay attention on what you post!

DOT Investigation UpdatesNews Media Updates:

-------

According to USA Today, Ben Mutzabaugh:
United is voiding the bookings of several thousand individuals who were attempting to take advantage of an error a third-party software provider made when it applied an incorrect currency exchange rate, despite United having properly filed its fares. Most of these bookings were for travel originating in the United Kingdom, and the level of bookings made with Danish Kroner as the local currency was significantly higher than normal during the limited period that customers made these bookings.
Note that United has also accidentally cancelled "legitimate" tickets paid for in USD, purchased in USD from LHR... Please check your other tickets if purchased today to ensure they were not unilaterally cancelled.

However, there is no chance at all that you can have your tickets re-instated if you complain to DOT on the basis of DOT rule 399.88:
399.88 Prohibition on post-purchase price increase.

(a) It is an unfair and deceptive practice within the meaning of 49 U.S.C. 41712 for any seller of scheduled air transportation within, to or from the United States, or of a tour (i.e., a combination of air transportation and ground or cruise accommodations), or tour component (e.g., a hotel stay) that includes scheduled air transportation within, to or from the United States, to increase the price of that air transportation, tour or tour component to a consumer, including but not limited to an increase in the price of the seat, an increase in the price for the carriage of passenger baggage, or an increase in an applicable fuel surcharge, after the air transportation has been purchased by the consumer, except in the case of an increase in a government-imposed tax or fee. A purchase is deemed to have occurred when the full amount agreed upon has been paid by the consumer.
Form for filing DOT complaint. File complaint as soon as your ticket is cancelled.

Link to PDF of enforcement bodies for European customers affected. File complaint as soon as your ticket is cancelled.


Tips for DOT Complaint:
  • File on DOT for every ticket number affected.
  • If you have one reservation with four people traveling (four tickets) file 4 DOT complaints, one per ticket.
  • If you have separate reservations, file a DOT complaint for each.
  • The DOT complaint website may take several minutes to load, depending on demand.
  • When you go to upload a file, be careful as it will reset all your radio buttons. So, if you want a copy of the complaint, make sure you double check that "Yes" is still selected before submitting, especially if you upload a file.

Template For Complaint:
United has unilaterally cancelled my ticket without my consent.

Facts:
1. The ticket was ticketed (had a ticket number).
2. I received a confirmation number, ticket number, and emails stating both
3. The ticket was paid for and my credit card charged.

United must reinstate the ticket within its original cabin. This trip is for travel TO the United States.

At no time during the booking process was any other fare than the Danish Krone equivalent displayed. As a reasonable, prudent consumer, I believed I was paying the price displayed to me on the website. United never sent or displayed the equivalent fare in any other currency.

Trip Details
Ticket #: 016XXXXXXXXXX
PNR: XXXXXX
Routing: LHR-EWR-LAX-HNL

Attachments: Attached is a document showing the ticket, routing, and providing proof that the reservation was ticketed.

Filename: Cancelled - UA Reservation - LHR-EWR-LAX-HNL - XXXXXX - 016XXXXXXXXXX.pdf

+-------------------------------------------------------+
| Relevant Law |
| http://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/14/399.88 |
+-------------------------------------------------------+
399.88 Prohibition on post-purchase price increase.

(a) It is an unfair and deceptive practice within the meaning of 49 U.S.C. 41712 for any seller of scheduled air transportation within, to or from the United States, or of a tour (i.e., a combination of air transportation and ground or cruise accommodations), or tour component (e.g., a hotel stay) that includes scheduled air transportation within, to or from the United States, to increase the price of that air transportation, tour or tour component to a consumer, including but not limited to an increase in the price of the seat, an increase in the price for the carriage of passenger baggage, or an increase in an applicable fuel surcharge, after the air transportation has been purchased by the consumer, except in the case of an increase in a government-imposed tax or fee. A purchase is deemed to have occurred when the full amount agreed upon has been paid by the consumer.

+-------------------------------------------------------+
| Relevant FAQ |
| http://airconsumer.ost.dot.gov/rules/EAPP_2_FAQ.pdf |
+-------------------------------------------------------+
Does the prohibition on post-purchase price increases in section 399.88(a) apply in the situation where a carrier mistakenly offers an airfare due to a computer problem or human error and a consumer purchases the ticket at that fare before the carrier is able to fix the mistake?

Section 399.88(a) states that it is an unfair and deceptive practice for any seller of scheduled air transportation within, to, or from the United States, or of a tour or tour component that includes scheduled air transportation within, to, or from the United States, to increase the price of that air transportation to a consumer after the air transportation has been purchased by the consumer, except in the case of a government-imposed tax or fee and only if the passenger is advised of a possible increase before purchasing a ticket. A purchase occurs when the full amount agreed upon has been paid by the consumer. Therefore, if a consumer purchases a fare and that consumer receives confirmation (such as a confirmation email and/or the purchase appears on their credit card statement or online account summary) of their purchase, then the seller of air transportation cannot increase the price of that air transportation to that consumer, even when the fare is a mistake.
-----
Tips for retrieving your ticket number:
  1. paste(right click copy link location first) following link into your web browser
  2. change XXXXXX next to COPNR= for your reservation number and LASTNAME next to LN= for you SURNAME
  3. go to the webpage address you have just created

https://www.united.com/web/en-US/app...NRCD=2/11/2015


Originally Posted by MatthewLAX
Originally Posted by MatthewLAX View Post
R E L A X

Breathe deep.

Congrats on all who got in.

Now comes the fun part.

1. Discovery - mistake fare is posted on FT. Novices frantically checks how much vacation time they have and if the dates of availability mesh with their schedules. Experienced FTers just book it and worry about contacting spouses or their boss later. Word spreads like wildfire.

2. Excitement - Tickets purchased, confirmation emails received and dates of travel shared with other FTers. Discussions of what to see and do and where to stay crop up in other threads. Novices contact source to change seats or inquire about upgrades, Seasoned FTers sit back and enjoy reading the discussion threads.

3. Stress Stage 1 - Concern over paper ticket delivery - Novices Frantically check otheFedEx website every few hours, constant monitoring of driveway for FedEx truck. Seasoned FT veterans sit back and relax.

4. Glee and happiness - Paper tickets in hand, vacation request submitted, spouses finally informed, hotel reservations made and bragging to friends and co-workers begins. Both novices and experts get very excited.

5. Stress Stage 2 - Rumors of fare not being honored, discussion threads about the airline and ticketing agency ensue. Rumors crop up like crabgrass at this stage. Many FTers begin to worry excessively about whether or not the trip will happen. Novices make non-refundable and financial committments to their trip. Seasoned FTers make mixed drinks (and maybe a sandwich) and is patient.

6. Reality Check - Accurate information is obtained - usually takes place a week to 10 days after mistake fare is published. Confirmed information from the source as to whether or not tickets will be honored.

7a. Pure Joy (Icelandair style- Fare is Honored) - Lots of happy people, FT threads on shared information regarding hotels, restaurants, tours, etc. Jealousy from others sets in. First "FT guinea pigs" embark, post confirmation threads that all is ok.


7b Hostile Feelings (Copa Airlines Style - fare is not honored) - Many angry and disappointed FTers. Refunds are issued. Novices have multiple discussion threads of lawsuits and hostile correspondence, FT pros mutter "c'est la vie" and look for the next fare mistake.

8a Success (Honored) - Trip Report thread becomes very active


Freedom of Information Act Request
File #2015-147, Office of the Secretary of Transportation - Receipt acknowledged 3/13/15

http://www.dot.gov/individuals/foia/office-secretary-foia-information

Relevant excerpt from my request on 2/24/15. There no need for multiple requests for the same thing, though feel free to request more or different information obviously. I'll post any updates as I get them.

"Under the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S. C. subsection 552, I am requesting access to any and all records of correspondence, including electronic, between anyone working for, or on the behalf of, United Airlines and its subsidiaries, and with anyone working for, or on the behalf of, the Department of Transportation; specifically this would include only the date range beginning on February 11th, 2015 through and including February 24th, 2015.

In addition, I am requesting access to any and all internal records and correspondence in relation to coming to the decision made on February 23rd, 2015 regarding the Office of Aviation Enforcement and Proceedings Determination Regarding United Airlines Mistaken Fare, with the exception of any of the consumer submitted complaints via phone, email, website, or letter. Specifically, this would be any records beginning on February 11th, 2015 through and including February 24th, 2015."
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[PREM FARE GONE] UA: NCL-EWR 600 DKK (mistaken fare) DOT ruled; see wiki for link

Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:14 pm
  #1651  
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Originally Posted by Jesperss
I'm going to post a one star review on Yelp about United.

Is Yelp in Denmark yet?
http://m.yelp.dk
briantoronto is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:14 pm
  #1652  
 
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Originally Posted by dera
I don't believe this to be the case. We do not know anything about who posts what fares where, nor are we in any sort of contract with that information provider.

If I buy a gallon of milk, but the milk provider has told the wrong price to the supermarket, is it my or the supermarkets problem?
Well, the gallon of milk is the ticket here, the milk provider is United who transmitted the correct info, only the supermarket to input them in the register at a wrong conversion rate. So yeah, the supermarket is responsible to cover the damage. Not the company. Seems a legit decision if they decide not to honor the fares since it was not like previous error fare cases where the company transmitted the information wrong in the first place.
Dan98 is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:14 pm
  #1653  
 
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mine was cancelled...it was a short good day
minkeunyun is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:15 pm
  #1654  
 
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Has anyone successfully contested the cancellation of a mistake fare by citing those DOT rules?
IndyHoosier is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:15 pm
  #1655  
 
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Originally Posted by Deltahater
I really doubt UA will contact anybody. They will cancel what they want to cancel and then it is up to us to find and respond accordingly. Either fight via DOT if you have US tickets or simply move on.
I'd be surprised if they don't send an email about it. Lufthansa actually sent two letters to communicate the cancellation of a fare they ended up honoring.

They have my money (my payment is processed, not just pending anymore). I was ticketed and confirmed, seats selected, so I expect to have a flight unless told otherwise.
dera is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:15 pm
  #1656  
 
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Yup mine just got cancelled. Anyone know if the 100 bucks i spent will be refunded?
abari is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:15 pm
  #1657  
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Originally Posted by Karlson
Bad thing that United will probably bring: H) UA reserves the right to cancel bookings and/or reservations which it deems abusive, illogical, fictitious, or which are
booked and/or reserved with no intention of flying without notice to the passenger.

http://www.united.com/web/format/pdf...f_Carriage.pdf page 10
My bookings certainly aren't fictitious or illogical (they're highly logical, in fact!) and I have every intention of flying them. Making two one-way bookings to the United States for a trip I've long been planning could not be, in good faith, reasonably concluded to be abusive.

While the "it deems" language gives UA some latitude, when all of the facts are considered, this provision of the CoC shouldn't apply. United may have a different view, but they would be incorrect. I suspect we will need someone else to decide.
NYBanker is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:15 pm
  #1658  
 
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My bookings are gone.
LH4116 is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:15 pm
  #1659  
 
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Originally Posted by minkeunyun
mine was cancelled...it was a short good day
Did you get a email?
Oliveredmunds is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:15 pm
  #1660  
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Originally Posted by GUWonder
United's wishy-washy language was definitely lawyer-approved, and I wouldn't be surprised if the language was deliberately wishy-washy to make it seem to some like the tickets were all being cancelled even when they are not.
Agree. If they were canceling all of them, just come out and say it.
The thing was alive for almost 5 hours. There were a lot more than "several thousand" of these suckers sold.
SFO777 is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:15 pm
  #1661  
 
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Originally Posted by AJCU
If only it were Etihad, who would say "It is the right thing to do."

For those of you that say that it is an honest mistake, how would you feel if a surgeon forgot a sponge in your body during surgery, or if an engineer forgot to check a calculation that made a bridge collapse, would it be an honest mistake? If a computer programmer misses a bit of code, and does not check their work, is it an honest mistake?
Airlines function in a different regulatory world than licensed professionals or computer programmers, so you're comparisons are a non sequitur to the discussion.
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Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:16 pm
  #1662  
 
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Well, it was fun while it lasted..

nikolask is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:16 pm
  #1663  
 
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And it has begun... My one-way itn has been canceled but my first booking which was a RT is still alive!
bgriz18 is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:16 pm
  #1664  
 
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Originally Posted by Oliveredmunds
Did you get a email?


I checked my united.com account.
minkeunyun is offline  
Old Feb 11, 2015, 4:17 pm
  #1665  
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For those traveling within 14 days, does EU compensation come into effect? 600 Euros?
Gabrca is offline  

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