Rejected refund for cancelled Islamabad flight

Old Nov 17, 19, 11:30 pm
  #1  
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Angry Rejected refund for cancelled Islamabad flight

I have booked a flight from Singapore to Islamabad through BKK few weeks ago.

Unfortunately, the week of my travel so called “Azadi March” was started by Pakistani opposition party leading to political demonstrations and partial blocking of Islamabad. There was a possibility of these demonstrations turning into violent riots.

I started the first part of my journey on November 3 and flew to Bangkok intending to continue the trip to Islamabad a day later. However, all my meetings have been cancelled due to political unrest in Islamabad, my business partner recommended me to postpone the trip and in addition US Embassy Issued a travel advisory to avoid all non-essential travel to Islamabad. Based on my concern for personal safety, I decided to abort my travel and return to Singapore.

I had 3 long calls with Thai Airways in Bangkok and Singapore and at the end I was force to buy a new ticket back to Singapore in order to get refund on the unused portions of the trip (as advised by the agent at BBK airport).

I also booked a promotional (non-refundable) stay with JW Marriott in Islamabad and they refunded me 100% saying that “considering the situation in Islamabad, it was the reasonable thing to do”. This is what I called great customer service.

After numerous emails with Thai Airways in Singapore I was finally advised that I will not get any refund (other that the taxes on unused segments), because of the ticket being bought on promotional fare. They basically dismissed the entire Azadi March as non-event. They claimed wrongly that “the city was open for the public and there are no road/traffic block.” Thai Airways office also said that “ they understood my concern (for personal safety) and that you didn't want to continue your onward journey to Islamabad when I was in Bangkok. However, my fare has it's terms and conditions which I have agreed at the time of purchase online and one of the fare rules is no partial refund allow on fare once you have flown Singapore to Bangkok.”

So needless to say, opposite to the actions of JW Marriott, they care more about making money and sticking to the small script, than being concerned about their customers safety and doing the right thing.

Its very disappointing that an airline “smooth as silk” that once upon a time was very good is going down in treating the customers right and doing the right thing. The only option is to avoid them like a plague in the future and select better airlines for my travels.



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Old Nov 18, 19, 8:33 am
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To be honest, I think that is what you should have travel insurance for. Unless flights into Islamabad were halted for safety reasons, TG has no obligation to refund you anything, especially as you already set off on your journey and on a restricted fare. What the US says has little, if any bearing at all.

I realise that apparently you spoke to an agent who gave you wrong advice, but unless this can be proven you have little case with TG.
From TG's perspective you are a no-show on your onward flight, which invalidates the rest of the ticket. You made the choice of not continuing your journey, so I do not think you have any recourse with TG.
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Old Nov 18, 19, 9:37 am
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Originally Posted by wmajewski View Post
I have booked a flight from Singapore to Islamabad through BKK few weeks ago.

Unfortunately, the week of my travel so called “Azadi March” was started by Pakistani opposition party leading to political demonstrations and partial blocking of Islamabad. There was a possibility of these demonstrations turning into violent riots.

I started the first part of my journey on November 3 and flew to Bangkok intending to continue the trip to Islamabad a day later. However, all my meetings have been cancelled due to political unrest in Islamabad, my business partner recommended me to postpone the trip and in addition US Embassy Issued a travel advisory to avoid all non-essential travel to Islamabad. Based on my concern for personal safety, I decided to abort my travel and return to Singapore.

I had 3 long calls with Thai Airways in Bangkok and Singapore and at the end I was force to buy a new ticket back to Singapore in order to get refund on the unused portions of the trip (as advised by the agent at BBK airport).

I also booked a promotional (non-refundable) stay with JW Marriott in Islamabad and they refunded me 100% saying that “considering the situation in Islamabad, it was the reasonable thing to do”. This is what I called great customer service.

After numerous emails with Thai Airways in Singapore I was finally advised that I will not get any refund (other that the taxes on unused segments), because of the ticket being bought on promotional fare. They basically dismissed the entire Azadi March as non-event. They claimed wrongly that “the city was open for the public and there are no road/traffic block.” Thai Airways office also said that “ they understood my concern (for personal safety) and that you didn't want to continue your onward journey to Islamabad when I was in Bangkok. However, my fare has it's terms and conditions which I have agreed at the time of purchase online and one of the fare rules is no partial refund allow on fare once you have flown Singapore to Bangkok.”

So needless to say, opposite to the actions of JW Marriott, they care more about making money and sticking to the small script, than being concerned about their customers safety and doing the right thing.

Its very disappointing that an airline “smooth as silk” that once upon a time was very good is going down in treating the customers right and doing the right thing. The only option is to avoid them like a plague in the future and select better airlines for my travels.


Did U.S , Singapore, or Thailand MFA issue any travel advisory for Islamabad ? Brought any travel insurance for cancellation without reason?
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Last edited by yauee; Nov 19, 19 at 3:44 am
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Old Nov 18, 19, 9:46 am
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Rejected refund for cancelled Islamabad flight
I am missing the part in the story where the Islamabad flight was cancelled.
Moreover, it must be quite a conscious decision from any traveller to fly to Pakistan. Hence, the security situation is to be taken into account at all times. Terrorist attacks, secterian violence, government crackdowns, mass protests -> this is (sadely) a normal part of life in Pakistan.
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Old Nov 18, 19, 9:35 pm
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Originally Posted by warakorn View Post
I am missing the part in the story where the Islamabad flight was cancelled.
Moreover, it must be quite a conscious decision from any traveller to fly to Pakistan. Hence, the security situation is to be taken into account at all times. Terrorist attacks, secterian violence, government crackdowns, mass protests -> this is (sadely) a normal part of life in Pakistan.

The flight was not canceled. The OP decided not to take the flight. This is not the first time the OP has flown this route, from OP’s previous posts.
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Old Nov 19, 19, 4:21 am
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Seems like this was a voluntary cancellation on your part as you didn't feel safe to contune onwards. No doubt the flight did continue to Pakistan with other paxs and obviously TG crew?

Marriott did provide some relief... But two separate organisations..

What were your expectations? That TG would go outside of the T&Cs that you and TG agreed to and provide a refund? Do the T&Cs say they will provide a refund in extenuating circumstances?
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Old Nov 19, 19, 4:45 am
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Originally Posted by northsideguy View Post
The flight was not canceled. The OP decided not to take the flight. This is not the first time the OP has flown this route, from OP’s previous posts.
or would you have expected TG to "recommend you not to fly" (and have its aircaraft fly empty "just for fun"?
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Old Nov 20, 19, 6:26 am
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Originally Posted by davidj1 View Post
Seems like this was a voluntary cancellation on your part as you didn't feel safe to contune onwards. No doubt the flight did continue to Pakistan with other paxs and obviously TG crew?

Marriott did provide some relief... But two separate organisations..

What were your expectations? That TG would go outside of the T&Cs that you and TG agreed to and provide a refund? Do the T&Cs say they will provide a refund in extenuating circumstances?
I was hoping they would at least refund the unused segments of the ticket.

BTW, despite the bad rap Pakistan gets, the people there are one of the friendliest and most hospitable in the world!
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Old Nov 20, 19, 7:03 am
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Originally Posted by wmajewski View Post
I was hoping they would at least refund the unused segments of the ticket.
For what reason? Then they would have to make exceptions for every man and his dog.

On your comment on the people of Pakistan, I have no doubt that you are right
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Old Nov 24, 19, 7:17 am
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Originally Posted by wmajewski View Post
I was hoping they would at least refund the unused segments of the ticket.
Even if they were forthcoming with a refund, they would probably have calculated the refund based on standard refund rules... that is, they would have recalculated the fare based on a one way ticket SIN-BKK (usually quite expensive) and refunded the balance.

Walk-up fares SIN-BKK on TG range in the SGD500-750 range, one way. I see some promo fares by TG SIN-ISB are less than the one way to BKK
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Old Nov 24, 19, 7:53 am
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Why look to TG for a refund when it neither cancelled the flight nor was the cause of the local unrest which concerns you?

Make sure that you have a PDF / screen shot of the US State Dept. travel advisory and submit that with your claim to your travel insurance and be done with it.

Do not expect air carriers to vary from the fare rules you choose to purchase.
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