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Local unrest not sufficient cause to allow standby?

Local unrest not sufficient cause to allow standby?

 
Old May 4, 04, 10:42 am
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Question Local unrest not sufficient cause to allow standby?

Some friends of mine are vacationing in Thailand/Vietnam and are scheduled to return to the U.S. on an NW flight next week. As a result of the unrest in Southern Thailand, they decided to play it safe and cut their vacation short. However, when they contacted NW, they were told that they would be charged a change fee plus the difference in the fares (which I am assuming means they would have to pay a walk-up Y fare) if they wanted to standby/change to an earlier flight. From looking at an ITN database (Amex), there do appear to be seats available. (I don't know what fare code they are on, but I presume the fare was fairly inexpensive. Also, I don't know if they used a travel agent.)

From those of you who have regular dealings with NW, do you think the information they received is the best they will get from NW or is there a particular department/person they should contact to try to get on an earlier flight that has availability without substantial cash outlay that they really can't afford?
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Old May 4, 04, 11:11 am
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I don't know the answer to your question, but the unrest is primarily in Southern Thailand - why don't they go North to BKK or Chang Mai? I'm assuming they're flying out of BKK - and currently, there are no real issues in BKK itself - which is where their flight is leaving from. I don't think NW really owes it to them to drop the fares & allow them to fly standby if its not within the fare rules of what they are booked on. It'd be a good Customer Service move for NW to do it because if they don't allow it, NW possibly will lose some future customer revenue (people do respond like that all the time) - however, I don't think that NW is obligated & I think that your friends may just need to adjust their vacation plans and more towards the North.
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Old May 4, 04, 11:16 am
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The "local unrest" is just that. Very localized in souther Thailand, with very little chance of spreading elsewhere. Thailand is a very secular country and sectarian violence is rare.

I would take full advantage of my time in that part of the world and spend more time in Vietnam. I think NW is right in not letting changes happen to tickets unless major unrest breaks out.
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Old May 4, 04, 11:19 am
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I don't think NW owes them any consideration unless BKK explodes, which isn't going to happen. The troubles are a long way from NW's sole Thai station.

Suppose NW had flown you to SFO and you'd found your own way down to LA. While you are hanging out on Venice Beach the Rodney King riots break out over in Crenshaw, etc. You become uncomfortable. Should NW adjust your ex-SFO homebound trip for free? Of course not.
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Old May 4, 04, 12:24 pm
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Talking hehhh tough BEAR

Originally Posted by BearX220
I don't think NW owes them any consideration unless BKK explodes, which isn't going to happen. The troubles are a long way from NW's sole Thai station.

Suppose NW had flown you to SFO and you'd found your own way down to LA. While you are hanging out on Venice Beach the Rodney King riots break out over in Crenshaw, etc. You become uncomfortable. Should NW adjust your ex-SFO homebound trip for free? Of course not.

heheheh my Bear friend is tough on this one..
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Old May 4, 04, 12:31 pm
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NW is pretty tough for changes in Thailand. They did allow changes during the SARS crisis, but any other time, you'd be better off buying a new ticket locally than paying the difference.
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Old May 4, 04, 12:53 pm
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Originally Posted by BearX220
Suppose NW had flown you to SFO and you'd found your own way down to LA. While you are hanging out on Venice Beach the Rodney King riots break out over in Crenshaw, etc. You become uncomfortable. Should NW adjust your ex-SFO homebound trip for free? Of course not.
A better analogy would be that you flew to San Diego on NW, went to LA on your own, and there were riots in San Francisco.
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Old May 4, 04, 1:10 pm
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I defer to xyzzy's geographic exactitude.

And, BOS-NWA, I guess I'm quasi-tough. Seriously, NW has to draw the line somewhere, or there'd be no end to free adjustments. I'm in California today, but I watched "10.5" on NBC last night and took it real seriously, so I want to go home now..
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Old May 4, 04, 1:45 pm
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Thanks. I guess my ignorance of the "inner workings" of Thailand came through. And I agree that NW probably does not have an obligation to make a change unless matters worsen. I guess my thoughts were more along the lines that bhatnasx explored, about goodwill to customers if request is reasonable and will not cause the airline any detriment, as space is available, etc.

However, the CA illustrations are beyond anything that approaches reality. Natural occurances excluded, if one part of Northern CA (say SF or Marin) does one thing, the odds are that parts of Southern CA (say Orange County) would be more inclined to do just the opposite and to a larger extent, if possible, in order to be different.
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Old May 4, 04, 2:18 pm
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Originally Posted by TRRed
However, the CA illustrations are beyond anything that approaches reality. Natural occurances excluded, if one part of Northern CA (say SF or Marin) does one thing, the odds are that parts of Southern CA (say Orange County) would be more inclined to do just the opposite and to a larger extent, if possible, in order to be different.
That's exactly how we got Arnold as governor.
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Old May 4, 04, 6:33 pm
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Originally Posted by channa
That's exactly how we got Arnold as governor.
We got Arnold because the people down here were getting tired of the ultra-left-wing, tree-hugging, socialist wanna-be Democrats from up north ruining our economy with their never-ending spending.

Majority of Northern California voted for the status quo (Davis).

Majority of Southern California voted for change (Arnold).

Thank goodness there are more of us than them!!
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Old May 4, 04, 7:04 pm
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Wanna-be? I'd say they are...

Last edited by the-ca-goat; May 4, 04 at 7:07 pm
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Old May 4, 04, 10:17 pm
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Originally Posted by the-ca-goat
Wanna-be? I'd say they are...
I got my words twisted. Shoulda said "wanna-be socialist Dems".
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Old May 4, 04, 11:45 pm
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agreed with NW

I would have to agree with the majority of the posters and say that it is not NW responsibility or duty to adjust their rules if the situation is not "local" to the airport.

I think in the past NW has shown excellent judgment in cases of forcasted weather at their hubs in allowing passengers a few days leeway if they wish to change their scheduled flights with out penalties.

I think NW would react appropriately if there were to be a major upheaval or weather event in the area and let passengers adjust their schedules.

My final thought is: As world travelers we know there are inherant risks to going to some parts of the world. Those risks can happen at home or at any location in any country at any moment. They are not always predictable, but some areas have a greater percentage probability of "unrest" than others. I think your tolerance for risk is one reason airlines sell several fares. You agree to your restrictions when you buy the ticket. If you plan a trip where there is a "strong" potential for unrest and you buy a restricted ticket than you have to live with the restrictions. If you can't live with the restrictions than you have basically three choices 1) Buy a ticket that allows changes on the return without penalty, 2.) Buy the restricted ticket and if you get real uncomfortable pay the fees and get out or 3) Stay at home and let the world go by without you.

Option 4 however is what most people opt for. Make your decision, buy the cheapest ticket and then expect the airlines to throw out the rules because you feel uncomfortable and then when they don't blame them for not doing good customer service. Ranting and raving that I will take my business elsewhere because "I" deserve an exception.

Option 4 is not an option but unfortunately most people will try it in a bind.

Well let me add an option 5. Explain nicely and politely to the ticket agent that you agreed to a non refundable non-changeable ticket, so it is my fault that I am in this mess, but if it is possible for you to change my ticket without the full fees being applied I would appreciate it. I understand that it would be and exception and I should not expect it in the future, but this "uprising" really concerns me and I would like to get home. If you can not accomodate me I will still use NWA as my carrier of choice since I understand I agreed to the rules and rules are rules. Then just live with whatever the person can do or is willing to do.
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Old May 5, 04, 7:16 am
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Originally Posted by BearX220
I defer to xyzzy's geographic exactitude.

And, BOS-NWA, I guess I'm quasi-tough. Seriously, NW has to draw the line somewhere, or there'd be no end to free adjustments. I'm in California today, but I watched "10.5" on NBC last night and took it real seriously, so I want to go home now..
WOW!!!! Someone ACTUALLY WATCHED 10.5...I had it on for about 2 minutes (when the train track was falling into the earth behind the moving train---That was GREAT SPECIAL EFFECTS)

I would bet that if you used that excuse you could change flights...You could always claim "mental anguish"
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