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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
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
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 12, 2015, 12:49 pm
  #2866  
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
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Originally Posted by B747forever
10PM GMT.


Dont have your hopes high on non UA-metal bookings. If anything goes through I would expect it to only be UA operated flights.
Well, I got 1 LH booking and several UA bookings. Always booked my gf also on it. Just incase.

edit: does it actually make a difference? I mean LH has JV with UA anyway.
FlyingLasse is offline  
Old Feb 12, 2015, 12:50 pm
  #2867  
 
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Originally Posted by UA1K_no_more
You're saying that he knowingly provided incorrect information.
That makes his case against UA much weaker, because he would't have been able to take advantage of the glitch if he hadn't knowingly provided incorrect CC info. That is why the CC info matters. If you had to lie in order to buy the ticket, do you think you would have a legal right to have the ticket reinstated?
Can you explain how someone inputs an American city, state, and zip code yet still knowingly provides incorrect info? Anyone with a middle school education can look at an address and know if its in the United States or a European country, despite whatever country site might be selected.
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Old Feb 12, 2015, 12:52 pm
  #2868  
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Originally Posted by B747forever
10PM GMT.


Dont have your hopes high on non UA-metal bookings. If anything goes through I would expect it to only be UA operated flights.
That's how i played it safe - 2 tickets total 12 segments (5+7) - 100% UA mainline metal ... no partner, no codeshare, no interline, no regional

Actually the first ticket was poorly booked, so even if they reinstate, i'll probably ask for refund instead

If DOT forces UA to reinstate, I'd love to see how RDM, PQM, and PQD would be calculated for them
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Old Feb 12, 2015, 12:53 pm
  #2869  
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Originally Posted by bthotugigem05
United could not care less about my credit card's billing address, nor do they ever see that information. A merchant services company processes these payments on United's behalf (just like 99% of websites) and sends them the money. The merchant services company uses fields on United's website to make the transaction seamless for the customer.

The merchant services company sends the billing address country to the credit card transaction network (MC, Visa, Amex, etc.) who then validates it against their internal data. I know for certain that Amex doesn't validate against billing country, so whether I put Denmark, Iraq, Mars, ImaginationLand for the country Amex had enough data to call it a match, and the payment was processed.
Excellent synopsis.

#ReactivateMyPNR
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Old Feb 12, 2015, 12:54 pm
  #2870  
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Originally Posted by nsummy
Can you explain how someone inputs an American city, state, and zip code yet still knowingly provides incorrect info?
By knowingly proving the wrong country information, which is what people did when using their non-Danish CCs to take advantage of the glitch.

UA knows that people who used their CCs to pay for the tickets lied about their CC billing country, which gives them a leg to stand on when claiming that they have the right to cancel the tickets (even though that particular reason may not have been publicly communicated yet).
UA1K_no_more is offline  
Old Feb 12, 2015, 12:55 pm
  #2871  
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
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Posts: 425
Originally Posted by YuropFlyer
I've not got ANY email from UA after they cancelled my tickets (and no, I don't have a spam filter etc.)
Like you, I haven't received any cancellation email. It's not in any of my folders. I know United is on my safe list considering I receive the initial confirmation just fine.
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Old Feb 12, 2015, 12:55 pm
  #2872  
 
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Originally Posted by UA1K_no_more
By knowingly proving the wrong country information, which is what people did when using their non-Danish CCs to take advantage of the glitch.
Could you please stop beeing a troll / feeding a troll?
We know what your opinion is. now stop.
FlyingLasse is offline  
Old Feb 12, 2015, 12:55 pm
  #2873  
 
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Originally Posted by UA1K_no_more
By knowingly proving the wrong country information, which is what people did when using their non-Danish CCs to take advantage of the glitch.
You are adding nothing to this thread whatsoever, please leave
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Old Feb 12, 2015, 12:59 pm
  #2874  
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Originally Posted by FlyingLasse
Could you please stop beeing a troll / feeding a troll?
I'm not allowed to answer questions other posters ask me?
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Old Feb 12, 2015, 1:00 pm
  #2875  
 
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Originally Posted by UA1K_no_more
I'm not allowed to answer questions other posters ask me?
Just be honest to your self. Are you adding value to this thread?

You dont have to respond to this question, as it is rethorical.
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Old Feb 12, 2015, 1:05 pm
  #2876  
 
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http://video.foxnews.com/v/404904740...#sp=show-clips
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Old Feb 12, 2015, 1:05 pm
  #2877  
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Originally Posted by FlyingLasse
Just be honest to your self. Are you adding value to this thread?
I am pointing out that most people knowingly lied when using their CCs to purchase these tickets, and that gives UA a leg to stand on when arguing that they have the right to cancel the tickets. Apparently, some people who purchased the tickets don't like hearing that.

Just be honest with yourself. Did you provide incorrect info about your CC's billing country when buying the tickets?

Last edited by UA1K_no_more; Feb 12, 2015 at 1:10 pm
UA1K_no_more is offline  
Old Feb 12, 2015, 1:06 pm
  #2878  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
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Originally Posted by GucciVersace
Hello folks,

Long-time reader, first-time poster here.

Let's just say that some guy was able to complete his purchase on the United website using his real billing address and country (some kind of glitch that miraculously went thru).

Would he be entitled to travel on the price (DKK) United gave him?

Thank you.
In my experience, the Danish site has Denmark selected by default at the stage where the Credit card billing address is entered. You could leave it that way and enter in your US city and Zip code. If you changed it to a different country, it would automatically take you to a different country's site, where you were prompted with a more realistic fare.
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Old Feb 12, 2015, 1:06 pm
  #2879  
 
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what if we start to write emails to the UA's CEO?
[email protected] ? :P
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Old Feb 12, 2015, 1:07 pm
  #2880  
 
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Originally Posted by UA1K_no_more
By knowingly proving the wrong country information, which is what people did when using their non-Danish CCs to take advantage of the glitch.

UA knows that people who used their CCs to pay for the tickets lied about their CC billing country, which gives them a leg to stand on when claiming that they have the right to cancel the tickets (even though that particular reason may not have been publicly communicated yet).
Expect, that they do not. UA has no information about the valid billing country for a certain card. They can manually try to match it, prob with google maps or something, but that is quite the task.

The AVS does not care about the text nor the country, it only matches the zip code and numbers in your address to your billing address.

So, your AVS would be valid, if you wrote;

10 Tivoligade
12345 Kobenhavn, DK

Instead of
10 Main Street
12345 Podunk, CA

Both send 100% same information for address validation.

I used a valid US card, with a valid DK billing address.

You still haven't answered my question; What about us, who did not lie, cheat or swindle anything?
dera is offline  

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