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Flight cancelled 3 months out? Southwest will rebook you for worst alternative!

Flight cancelled 3 months out? Southwest will rebook you for worst alternative!

Old Sep 4, 18, 6:27 pm
  #1  
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Flight cancelled 3 months out? Southwest will rebook you for worst alternative!

After Southwest cancelled my connecting flight for a December ATL-ISP itinerary (which would have included one stop and a plane change at BWI), they rebooked me for a two-stop ATL-IND-BWI-ISP itinerary instead of a far more convenient ATL-ISP flight with one stop at MCO and no plane change. Could this be due to the fact that the preferable itinerary was now pricing at $306 while their routing priced at $107? Had I not jumped on this immediately and spent one hour on the phone with Southwest at 11:15 p.m.,(WGA fares were almost sold out for my preferred flight) I could very well have been stuck with their choice. An e-mail to customer service asking about how their cancellation/rebooking decisions are made proved fruitless. Just a reminder to move as quickly as possible on any flight change!
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Old Sep 4, 18, 6:32 pm
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So dramatic. Stuff happens, and IME invariably WN will change to my preferred flight if a seat is available. And if one isnít available at that moment, it will likely open up at some point.
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Old Sep 5, 18, 5:07 am
  #3  
LBJ
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No need for wild-eyed conspiracy theories. Could it be ATL-IND-BWI-ISP option is simply closer to the departure time of your originally booked flights and perhaps that was a bigger factor than the ATL-MCO-ISP option being shorter time-wise (I'm assuming you are talking 2997 vs. 2056/3245 here)? Whether or not that was the case, I can guarantee that a front-line agent is not going to know the inner workings of the auto-rebooking algorithms off the top of their heads. Nor are they going to spend a bunch of time hunting down IT folks to try to get them to explain how the algorithm actually works (which likely involves a number of factors).
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Old Sep 5, 18, 6:09 am
  #4  
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This is all automated and not the product of WN's Board of Directors sitting around trying to figure out how to do the worst to a passenger.

With the cancellation, you have the option of a reroute or a refund. If you don't like the auto-reroute, just call in. Presuming it is available, it is yours.

WN has a lot of IT flaws, but this one is not markedly different than most carriers. It goes without saying that when there is a schedule change or cancellation, you need to check your record like a hawk until it is where you want it to be.
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Old Sep 5, 18, 7:31 am
  #5  
 
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Originally Posted by freebee View Post
After Southwest cancelled my connecting flight for a December ATL-ISP itinerary (which would have included one stop and a plane change at BWI), they rebooked me for a two-stop ATL-IND-BWI-ISP itinerary instead of a far more convenient ATL-ISP flight with one stop at MCO and no plane change. Could this be due to the fact that the preferable itinerary was now pricing at $306 while their routing priced at $107? Had I not jumped on this immediately and spent one hour on the phone with Southwest at 11:15 p.m.,(WGA fares were almost sold out for my preferred flight) I could very well have been stuck with their choice. An e-mail to customer service asking about how their cancellation/rebooking decisions are made proved fruitless. Just a reminder to move as quickly as possible on any flight change!
They're also going to work with the airports to make sure your planes are at the two gates furthest away from each other, specifically just to mess with you.
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Old Sep 5, 18, 10:50 am
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I've never met an intelligent auto-rebooking engine. These things happen, the advice is good on checking early and often.
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Old Sep 5, 18, 10:54 am
  #7  
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Would the app have allowed you to rebook for free?

I know with some airlines, the auto-rebook function happens but the passenger still has to open the app and accept it or pick something else. Some airlines are better than others, and it's (thankfully) been a while since I've run into this on WN. All of my WN bookings are nonstop, so when irrops occurs, it's usually just looking forward or backward in time to find the next available one.
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Old Sep 5, 18, 1:50 pm
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I've seldom run into this problem because Southwest changes their flights after the schedule is released far less often than other carriers.
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Old Sep 5, 18, 2:16 pm
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Originally Posted by rsteinmetz70112 View Post
Southwest changes their flights after the schedule is released far less often than other carriers.
"Far less often" isn't supported by any available evidence. Carriers revise times by a few minutes with some frequency, IME. But an itinerary change with new flight number(s) and routing is pretty rare.
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Old Sep 5, 18, 3:16 pm
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Originally Posted by LegalTender View Post
"Far less often" isn't supported by any available evidence. Carriers revise times by a few minutes with some frequency, IME. But an itinerary change with new flight number(s) and routing is pretty rare.
I have my own experiance. I have flown 25-50 flights a year for about 30 years. Over that time I have generally flown a single airline for a time, that has included several different airlines I have flown Southwest mostly for the last 5-6 years I have not had any significant schedule changes. I think this is because Southwest releases their schedule in relatively short increments and changes the schedule when they do that. On previous airlines that happened far more often, sometimes only a few minutes schedule change sometimes a few hours, occasionally a flight was cancelled. This does not include IROPs.
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Old Sep 5, 18, 10:17 pm
  #11  
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Actually, the shorter flight leaves an hour earlier and arrives two hours earlier than my original flight; what Southwest assigned me leaves an hour and 20 minutes later and arrives two hours later. There's no logic to their selection.
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Old Sep 5, 18, 11:49 pm
  #12  
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No logic from your perspective, but from the details given I can't say which I would choose. Your original flight might have been at the earliest possible hour I would even consider traveling. (I'm a night owl.) When are the departure times relative to rush hour in your departure city? How can an automated system be built to pick what you (and every other SWA customer in every specific situation) would choose each and every time? In this primitive day and age (relative to 1,000 years hence), the answer is that it can't be done.
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Old Sep 6, 18, 12:19 am
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It is impossible for SWA to know whether you would prefer to leave earlier or later. They're not mind readers.

You called and got it fixed. What is the problem?
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Old Sep 10, 18, 9:09 am
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Originally Posted by Kevin AA View Post
It is impossible for SWA to know whether you would prefer to leave earlier or later. They're not mind readers.

You called and got it fixed. What is the problem?

Best answer so far.

Side note - somewhere, there is some logic, but it would not always appear to be logical looking from the outside.
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Old Sep 10, 18, 11:17 am
  #15  
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Originally Posted by gernabae View Post
I've never met an intelligent auto-rebooking engine. These things happen, the advice is good on checking early and often.
I have stated this before in other airline forums. The auto-rebooking algorithm is NOT a money-making or cost-saving algorithm. Therefore, not a lot of effort is put into these algorithms. If you don't like where it put you, simply research your options and call in and nicely request an suitable alternative. I've never had a problem getting something like this changed (unless they drop the city entirely).
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