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2012 Thanksgiving/Christmas Schedule Cutbacks on United

2012 Thanksgiving/Christmas Schedule Cutbacks on United

Old Aug 18, 12, 10:09 am
  #1  
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2012 Thanksgiving/Christmas Schedule Cutbacks on United

We had 3 GlobalFirst award seats ORD-HKT over the Christmas/New Years time frame.

Overnight UA canceled a lot of the ORD TPAC flights for Dec 24 and 25.

I have spent several hours on the phone with UA CSRs. I have to say all have tried to do their best, but there is no availability that will allow us to travel any time remotely close to our original travel dates.

The last supervisor I worked with indicated that I should contact UA Customer Relations about this. I suspect that will get me nowhere.

Any advice on how to either get this fixed, if it is fixable? If we have to cancel, I want to make sure I get maximum compensation for this. It was pretty hard to explain to my family that we are now not going on a much anticipated tropical vacation.
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Old Aug 18, 12, 10:13 am
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It's with a lot of advance notice, I don't think you would get comp for this. They would refund the miles.

However, they shoulda be able to open up inventory for you since you had confirmed seats,
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Old Aug 18, 12, 10:20 am
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Originally Posted by MR_MAMA View Post
It's with a lot of advance notice, I don't think you would get comp for this. They would refund the miles.

However, they shoulda be able to open up inventory for you since you had confirmed seats,
I tried, they won't.
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Old Aug 18, 12, 10:22 am
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Can you get inventory in a different class? It's not GlobalFirst but it will still get you there.
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Old Aug 18, 12, 10:28 am
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Originally Posted by UnitedFlyGuy View Post
Can you get inventory in a different class? It's not GlobalFirst but it will still get you there.
Only coach. And I ain't flying 28+ hours in coach.

The thing that really frosts me is there was no notification. I found it because I check my itineraries daily. There was available space EWR-HKG (not award space) in BF but they cancelled the HKG-HKT segments and that availability is now long gone.

Last edited by cheltzel; Aug 18, 12 at 10:41 am
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Old Aug 18, 12, 10:33 am
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"We had 3 GlobalFirst award seats ORD-HKT over the Christmas/New Years time frame."

Cheltzel - have you looked at going the other way, TATL vs TPAC? We are traveling over Christmas and New years to Singapore and Phuket. I was able to do this through Frankfurt.

Last night I was looking and it seems they have awards in the higher levels going through London and Germany. See if they would be able to slip you into these slots.
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Old Aug 18, 12, 10:33 am
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Originally Posted by cheltzel View Post
only in coach. And I ain't flying 28+ hours in coach.
Well, the airline cancelled the flight months in advance. If you still want to go, coach might be the only option. Or keep calling and talking until someone can possibly open up seats in GF on a different flight.

And they canceled it with months to go so I think compensation is not warranted, IMO. They SHOULD get you another GF flight though.
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Old Aug 18, 12, 10:35 am
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Thumbs down

Originally Posted by cheltzel View Post
I tried, they won't.
This is garbage.

You had a confirmed F seats.

COdbaUA cancelled the flight and your tickets.

Totally ridiculous and unacceptable.
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Old Aug 18, 12, 10:39 am
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Originally Posted by cheltzel View Post
I tried, they won't.
I would keep trying and escalating.

I don't know the exact policy, but as they still serve your UA destination from other hubs on their metal (assume you were via HKG), and you had a ticket, I would think that they still need to get you there.

Quick search turned up sporadic O/ON and I/IN inventory via PEK, NRT, HKG (and then via BKK in most cases) with domestic US connections in Y (ORD-PEK shows ON4 on the 23rd, for example).
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Old Aug 18, 12, 10:44 am
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Agreed.

Get your flights rebooked. In First or Biz. If in Biz, make sure you get the appropriate miles back.

BE POLITE
BE PATIENT
BE PERSISTENT

Remember, they will keep some type of notes on your calls. As long as you're polite and persistent, they can't toss your case in the inbox without it coming back on them.

Be prepared to talk to dozens of agents over periods of days or months. Call at different times of the day, to get call centers in different areas. Get those seats back. Don't take no for an answer.

Make them want to help you.
They can do it. If THEY want to. Give them a reason for WANTING to help you. Being a nice person is sometimes all it takes. Guilt trips & sob stories don't.
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Old Aug 18, 12, 10:44 am
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Originally Posted by cedahm View Post
I would keep trying and escalating.

I don't know the exact policy, but as they still serve your UA destination from other hubs on their metal (assume you were via HKG), and you had a ticket, I would think that they still need to get you there.

Quick search turned up sporadic O/ON and I/IN inventory via PEK, NRT, HKG (and then via BKK in most cases) with domestic US connections in Y (ORD-PEK shows ON4 on the 23rd, for example).
I tried escalating as best I could. Called several times and talked to several supervisors.

I can get TPAC from ORD. The issue is award availability from an Asian gateway city to HKT. This is their peak season and there isn't availability.
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Old Aug 18, 12, 10:52 am
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Originally Posted by mbru View Post
Cheltzel - have you looked at going the other way, TATL vs TPAC? We are traveling over Christmas and New years to Singapore and Phuket. I was able to do this through Frankfurt.

Last night I was looking and it seems they have awards in the higher levels going through London and Germany. See if they would be able to slip you into these slots.
There is basically no saver availability to HKT available at this time. I had booked a GF award and would accept a BF substituted and a refund of the miles. But that isn't available either.

None of the supervisors were willing to open up standard award availability.
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Old Aug 18, 12, 10:58 am
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Originally Posted by kb1992 View Post
This is garbage.

You had a confirmed F seats.

COdbaUA cancelled the flight and your tickets.

Totally ridiculous and unacceptable.
It's not garbage, all carriers change their schedules based on supply & demand. And, sometimes that leaves little supply.

The COC to which OP agreed (whether award or paid cash) specifies that UA may, at its option, rebook on UA, rebook on another carrier (usually *A) or refund to original form of payment (in this case redeposit miles).

If OP wants positive advice:

1. In all your dealings with UA, remain polite and non-confrontational. Not only may UA cancel and refund, leaving you with zippo, but what you don't want is CSR's noting the record as you work the system. Once one has said "no" getting others to say "yes" will be hard.

2. Do the proactive work. How close can UA get you and what would short-haul tickets cost to purchase? It's the TPAC where premium cabin matters.

3. Can you split up? Finding 3 award seats in a tiny cabin during a season when flights have been cancelled, will be hard. Can 2 go on one route and the third on another?

4. What about C?

5. What about TATL via any European *A connection?

Unfortunately this is a labor intensive effort and may well need to be repeated as all carriers are reducing capacity in general and especially over holidays when there's little business demand (which is what keeps the aircraft flying).
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Old Aug 18, 12, 11:04 am
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Originally Posted by cheltzel View Post
There is basically no saver availability to HKT available at this time. I had booked a GF award and would accept a BF substituted and a refund of the miles. But that isn't available either.

None of the supervisors were willing to open up standard award availability.
I had a situation with some similarity recently. I had an award in F SFO-LHR connecting with a BMI flight LHR-BEY (Beirut). BMI cancelled that flight, so UA rebooked me on a flight a full day later on British Air, creating a 26-hour stop in London.

The easy solution was to move my outbound flight one day; then I'd have a reasonable layover at LHR. However, I could see via ExpertFlyer that there was no saver availability in F the next day for SFO-LHR. Fortunately I had a nice agent on the Premier line (I still have that number from years ago when I was a 2P) who moved my outbound to the following day, keeping me in F despite how there was no saver availability on that flight.

So, I agree with the advice above about calling back several times if necessary. Be nice and get the agent on your side. They alone or maybe with an immediate supervisor's approval can move you if they want to do so.

Good luck!
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Old Aug 18, 12, 11:06 am
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This thread got me paranoid so I checked an upcoming award res in GF. Apparently United is no longer serving IAD-GVA directly and my flights have been totally messed up. Currently on hold but things aren't looking great right now.


Got a great agent to open up O inventory on the direct EWR-GVA flight and got me to EWR from MSY with only an 8hr layover...

Last edited by iahkid2014; Aug 18, 12 at 11:33 am Reason: ETA Resolution
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